Skip to main content

Infinite Mirrors: Narratives on the Mongol Invasion of Central Europe

Matthew Paris
Wednesday, March 1, 2023, 5:40 pm – 7:00 pm

On Wednesday 1 March, the Department of Medieval presents a public lecture exploring narratives around the Mongol invasion of Central Europe. From 5:40pm, Zsuzsanna Papp Reed, Balázs Nagy and József Laszlovszky will discuss recent work on the reception of the Mongol invasion. 

Zsuzsanna Papp Reed will ask why an English chronicler living in St Albans Abbey bothered with an Eastern and Central European cataclysm in a galaxy far, far away? She will present the key findings of her recent monograph (Matthew Paris on the Mongol Invasion in Europe. Brepols, 2022), focusing on the role of narrative construction, historiographic tradition, power games, medieval news networks, and serendipity in creating one of the best-known chronicle accounts about the Mongol Invasion in Europe. Balázs Nagy will question how other European texts depicted the same events, and in which ways news arrived and appeared in historical narratives of the period, and József Laszlovszky will speak about massacres and cannabalism. He will ask whether the reports of medieval chronicles about such events during the Mongol invasion are reliable historical sources, or whether they should be treated as rumors or imagined parts of narratives. This will include the presentation of some recent archaeological finds, which are crucial for our understanding of the textual sources and historical narratives.

This event is organized in the framework of the Interdisciplinary Research Project on the Mongol Invasion of Hungary (1241-42) and its Eurasian Context, supported by the Hungarian National Research, Development and Innovation Office (2018–2022) (project identification number: K 128880).


To join in person at CEU's Quellenstrasse campus, please email To join via zoom, please follow this link: