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Top 10 Inventions of the Middle Ages

The middle ages (5th – 15th Centuries AD), often termed The Dark Ages, were actually a time of great discovery and invention. The Middle ages also saw major advances in technologies that already existed, and the adoption of many Eastern technologies in the West. This is a list of the ten greatest inventions of the Middle Ages (excluding military inventions).

1. The Heavy Plough 5th Century AD

2. Tidal Mills 7th Century AD

3. The Hourglass 9th Century AD

4. Blast Furnace 12th Century AD

5. Liquor 12th Century AD

6. Eyeglasses 13th Century

7. The Mechanical Clock 13th Century AD

8. Spinning Wheel 13th Century AD

9. Quarantine 14th Century AD

10. The Printing Press of Gutenberg 15th Century AD

Sources: Wikipedia, Britannica



  1. João Pedro Pereira says:

    Without any doubt excelent choices !

  2. Bill Bennett says:

    Lovely and very well done. I suppose the invention of the printing press more or less marked the official end of the Middle Ages.

  3. Nicely done. It is entirely correct to list the printing press as the last important invention of the middle ages. Its invention ended the middle ages and ushered in the Renaissance.

  4. Fredrick says:


  5. historian says:

    In Croatia it is believed that Dubrovnik was the first town to set up the first quarantine in the 14th ct during the great plague. Probably there are some records, although I haven’t seen them.

  6. 27. july 1377. City of Dubrovnik installed First Quarantine on few nearby islands , so it is in 14-th century, and Venetian one was opened in 15-th


  7. First Quarantine was not set up in Venice. First world quarantine was set up in Dubrovnik 27.7.1377. due to Liber Viridis also known as Green Book in chapter “Veniens de locis pestiferis non intret ragusium nel districtum” which can be found in Dubrovnik archive.

  8. Some of these technologies are still unavailable / or illegal to most people today.

  9. racy_rick says:

    What about the compass? or surveying?

    I remember seeing something about the surveying of england and how it changed how land was parceled and sold.



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