Engineering in the Middle Ages

By Rachel Louise Allen III


  • Became popular in Europe at the beginning of the Middle Ages
  • Mostly water mills but wind wills were also used
  • Used to grind corn, crush olives, tan leather, make paper, etc
  • More uses were found later on
  • Mills took over servent's jobs
  • Towards the end of the Middle Ages, there were about 6,500 mills in England
  • 1500s(ish) Romans started to find better ways to use mills
  • Still use mills today but have found better technology


  • Simple deisgn
  • Updated the design from traction to counterweight
  • Counterweight trebuchets started to show up in Christian and Muslim territories around the 12th century
  • Not really used for defense anymore
  • Still used for pumpkin chuckin' and other things mostly used for entertainment purposes


Guido da Vigevano

  • Physican and engineer
  • Drew lots oh sketches of armored chariots, wind-propelled carriages and siege engines
  • Created a vehicle that used windmills to power it

Villard de Honnecourt

  • Experient in many arts and sciences
  • Drew over 250 sketches of mostly architectural designs and mechnial devices
  • Designed perpetual-motion machine, a water-driven saw, a number of automata, lifting devices, war engines
  • Compared to Da Vinci