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The Classes for the Masses

Class Schedule With Descriptions

All classes will be held in the Activities Hall with the Art/Sci competition unless otherwise announced.

9:00 – 10:00

Nunsense: a lecture/workshop on the Medieval nun's habit

by Marian Makedance


The word "habit" derives from the Latin "habitus", meaning "demeanor, appearance, or dress." Even today (long after the ecumenical reforms of the 1960s) most people, when they think "nun", think "habit", and the habit they envision is the voluminous black gown with wimple, guimpe, headband, and veil, in which most women religious dressed from the earliest centuries of the Latin Church to the late 20th Century. The habit has been described by more than one historian as the dress "of most women in the Medieval period", but is it really? The answer is that it is and it isn't. This hour and a half lecture/workshop will disassemble the nun's habit: its origins, variations, rituals, and components. Class hand-out will include a list of resources for those who want to make their own period-correct (Latin or Byzantine) nun's habit. There will be time for Q and A. Participants will also make a "paternoster" or a traditional knotted cord cincture that was and is worn at the waist by many religious orders. Are you bold enough to undress a nun?

10:00 – 11:30

3-D Wet Felting

by Mistress Alexis MacAlister


Participants will make a pouch. This class is appropriate for all ages; children must be accompanied by an adult. Time: approx 90 minutes, cost: $1.

1:00 – 2:00

Replication of Period Rosaries

by Mistress Anne of Blackthorne


Replication of period rosaries based on depictions in illuminated manuscripts.

2:00 – 3:00

Continental Knitting

by Mistress Alexis MacAlister


Participants will make a pouch. This style of knitting is also called 'picking', and is easy for crocheters to learn. Time: 1 hour, cost: $4.

3:00 – 3:30

Monastic Sign Language

by Lord Dmitri Skomorochov


Class describing hand signs and signals from early medieval monasteries, specifically from the 11th century Benedictine manuscript “Monasteriales Indicia”.  30 minutes; no material costs.