Over the course of the project we’ve given over 50 presentations in 17 different countries to a variety of academic and public audiences. This has included:

3.2.16. ‘Indigenous resilience under the rule of militarised Christian theocracies in the medieval eastern Baltic’. Public Research Seminar, University of Oslo, Norway.

15.2.16. ‘The Environmental Impact of the Baltic Crusades: New Understandings of Conquest, Colonisation and Religious Conversion in Medieval NE Europe’, Oxford Medieval Seminar, All Souls College, University of Oxford.

1.4.16. ‘The ecology of crusading: the environmental impact of holy war, colonization and religious conversion in the medieval Baltic region’, The Archaeology of Conversion Seminar, Workshop on Religious Conversion, University of Florida, USA.

2.3.15. ‘The Ecology of Crusading: The environmental impact of holy war, colonisation and religious conversion in the medieval Baltic’. Crusades and the Latin East seminar, IHR, UK.

11.11.14. ‘How conquest transformed northern Europe’ (inaugural lecture for the Stanford Europe Center). Stanford Archaeology Center, Stanford University.

9.10.14. ‘The Ecology of Crusading project: Investigating the ecological and cultural impact of crusading, colonisation and Christianisation in the eastern Baltic’. Vatican Museums, Vatican City.

25-27.6.14. ‘The impact of crusading and colonisation on animal husbandry in the medieval eastern Baltic’. Toponimia, Historia y Arqueología del Reino de Granada, University of Granada, Spain.

12.5.14. ‘Landscapes of holy war and colonisation: The ecological impact of the crusades in the medieval eastern Baltic’. The Columbia Center for Archaeology, Columbia University in New York, USA.

29.4.14. ‘Landscapes of holy war and colonisation: The ecological impact of the crusades in the medieval eastern Baltic’. Institute of Archaeology CAS, Prague, Czech Republic.

  1. 21.2.14. ‘The ecology of crusading: The environmental impact of holy war and colonisation in the medieval eastern Baltic’.McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, University of Cambridge.
  2. 29.8.13. ‘The role of castles in physical and conceptual landscape transformation in the medieval eastern Baltic’. Turaida Castle Museum, Latvia.
  3. 4.4.13. ‘Key changes in the exploitation of animals and plants in the Baltic region associated with the establishment of the Teutonic Order’s state’. Mammal Research Institute, Polish Academy of Sciences, Białowieża, Poland.


We had the privilege of working with Magnus Elander, who documented various aspects of the project – the landscapes, plants and wildlife associated with the ecological transformations of the crusading period, as well as our excavations and laboratory analyses. His work will be included in our publications and other outputs such as a future planned exhibition.

See Magnus Elander’s portfolio

In February 2014, we collaborated with Łukasz Dutkiewicz and his company of knights to re-create elements of a Reise or ‘campaign’ across the frontiers of the Teutonic Order’s state at the end of the 14th century. With the time and resources at our disposal, we aimed to simulate a small retinue traversing through the frozen landscape and this resulted in a series of striking and evocative photographs.

TV clips and short articles

Anda Pastare from LTV covers our excavations at Cēsis castle in late August 2011 (embedded with permission from LTV)

Article by Maria Kielmas on our presentation at the Estonian embassy in London, February 2011.

Environmental Crusaders“: article by David Malakoff on first results from Malbork, based on JAS paper.

Crusader Crisis: How Conquest Transformed Northern Europe“: article by Andrew Curry on project for Science (30 November 2012, Vol. 338 no. 6111 pp. 1144-1145). This article has been widely cited, and includes a small detail which needs to be clarified. The early medieval Prussians did not eat dogs. There is no evidence of this to date. There is evidence for horse consumption in ritualistic contexts amongst some of the Prussian tribes. This misunderstanding derives from a humerus fragment belonging to a large canid (dog or wolf) recovered from the early medieval Slavic settlement of Kałdus, which is in the Kulmerland – a region on the Slavic/Prussian frontier temporarily occupied by Prussians in the early thirteenth century. The bone had cut marks on it which can be interpreted as evidence for meat removal, but this cannot be extrapolated as a alimentary phenomenon amongst the Slavs, let alone the Prussians.

Stanford researchers find clues to the Baltic Crusades in animal bones, horses and the extinct aurochs“: article by Melissa Pandika following an interview with project zooarchaeologist Dr. Krish Seetah, who had recently taken up a tenure-track post at Stanford.

Baltic Crusades Caused Extinctions, End to Pagan Practices“: article by LiveScience staff for LiveScience. This one emphasises the misleading dog-eating reference as does:

Baltic Crusades left behind major ecological, cultural scars“: article on Science at NBC News.

“Ecology of Crusading”: article by Karen Schousboe for Medieval Histories.

An article on the project in World Archaeology by Lisa-Marie Shillito.

A Transformative Force: The Environmental Impact of the Baltic Crusades

An article on the project’s collaboration with the History and Archaeology Museum in Elbląg by the Elbląg Internet Gazette.