Learn about the Middle Ages!
- Date: October 27 at 2:00 PM
- Venue: Dumbarton Oaks
- Exhibition & activities
- Age: All ages
- Duration: 2 hours
What it is about…
Family Day is a great opportunity for children of all ages to learn about our Juggling the Middle Ages exhibition through hands-on activities, including juggling! Families can enjoy two live juggling performances, arts and crafts tables, and book readings, followed by the chance to view the exhibition.
Live performances will take place at 2:30 and 3:30. Light snacks and refreshments will be available.
See how one tale has transformed over time, captivating medieval and modern audiences alike with its enduring messages. Art is miraculous! A humble juggler-turned-monk struggles to think of a gift worthy of the Virgin Mary, before delivering a heartfelt juggling performance in front of her statue. This endlessly relatable story, called Le Jongleur de Notre Dame or Our Lady’s Tumbler, has been adapted and reimagined repeatedly, each version affirming the importance of art.
Featuring more than 100 objects, "Juggling the Middle Ages" explores the influence of the medieval world by focusing on this single story with a long-lasting impact. The exhibit follows the tale from its rediscovery by scholars in the 1870s to its modern interpretations in children’s books, offering viewers a look at a vast range of objects, including stained glass windows, illuminated manuscripts, household objects, and vintage theater posters. This exhibition allows viewers to consider the role of the Middle Ages in the fashioning of modernity— from Gothic Revival architecture to the latest films—through the lens of one powerful tale.