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Feudalism Timeline

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by

Da-Hye Oh-Han

on 22 October 2010

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Transcript of Feudalism Timeline

Fall of Rome 476 C.E. Clovis 481 C.E. Charlemagne 768 C.E. Church Split 1054 C.E. William The Conquerer 1066 C.E. King John and the Magna Carta 1215 C.E. English longbows at Crecy 1346 C.E. Bubonic Plague 1347 C.E. The Middle Ages began at the beginning of the Fall of Rome in 476 C.E. Around this time the last emperor of the Roman Empire in the west was forced from his rule, breaking the empire into separate kingdoms ruled by different tribes. Most of Europe was unified during the Roman Empire’s reign for several centuries. When Rome collapsed life was dangerous and hard throughout Europe, forcing commoners to work hard just to survive. Because of this new conflict feudalism was created as a system of protection.

Clovis was an ambitious young fighter, an early commander of the Franks (France). At a very young age Clovis became king of the Franks, and during his 30-year reign he spread the boundaries of his kingdom and Christianity, a religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. The Roman Catholic Church, the Christian church headed by the pope in Rome, eventually baptized the Clotilda and him himself. Charles The Great or Charlemagne was considered the most important leader of the Franks. His most impressive choice was unifying most lands under Christian rule into a single empire. Charlemagne managed to successfully unify all Christian lands with the help of Leo III, leader of the Catholic Church in Rome. The two helped each other and soon enough Charlemagne was crowned Holy Roman emperor in 800 C.E. After his death in 814 C.E. his empire rapidly collapsed but Charlemagne’s examples during his dominion helped develop feudalism. During the Byzantine Empire the east and the west were connected because of Christianity. Yet the Eastern Orthodox Church developed differently than any other churches. Soon enough the east and west came into conflict because the banning of religious images, the crowning of Charlemagne, and by the excommunication of Cardinal Humbert and Cerularius. The excommunication finally completed the division of both churches.

When the king that came from the Germanic tribe called the Saxons died without an heir there was utter confusion about who would become king. William, the powerful Duke of Normandy, was convinced that he should be able to become king. When the English unexpectedly crowned his cousin Harold William became enraged and invaded England in 1066 C.E. After seizing the English throne William was named William the Conqueror. As a result of the invasion William brought feudal institutions with him. John became king after his father, Henry II, in 1199. John was not a good king at all. He taxed people heavily, quarreled with the church, ignored traditional rights, arrested opponents at will, etc. During June 1215 King John was forced into a meeting with some angry barons in a meadow beside the River Thames. They forced John to agree with the Magna Carta, or Great Charter. This charter established the idea of rights and liberties that no king could violate.

The English longbows were used by the English to win battles during the Hundred Years’ War. The longbow was proved to be very useful because it overpowered the crossbows that the French used. The crossbow was a bow that was fixed to a wooden stock and was operated by a trigger. The longbows were just simple long bows that were used to fire feathered arrows, yet it helped defeat the English defeat the much larger French force at the Battle of Crecy.

The bubonic plague first struck Europe from 1347 to 1351C.E. This plague continued to spread throughout Europe, returning about every decade. The Black Death continued to spread because of trade and commerce, including the dirty conditions that people lived in. Soon about 24 million Europeans died because of the Black Death, probably about a third of the population. Because of the Bubonic Plague the need of workers was very high, and the workers took advantage of that by demanding more money and rights. This contributed to the decline of feudalism. Towns growing 1200 C.E. People lived in the Countryside 1000 C.E. Since life was dangerous and difficult due to the Fall of Rome people needed protection and security in order to live. Around this time the system of feudalism was created. This system worked by having people working the land while the lord promised to protect them. This was mostly done with promises of loyalty to one and another. A great deal of land was owned by the church, and there were also serfs, or peasants, who were "tied" to the land.
At the start of the Middle Ages most people lived in the countryside, but soon towns grew to become centers of trade and industry. Some of the reasons for the growth of towns were due to the improvements in agriculture and the revival of trade. People could sell more goods now and were becoming permanent residents in towns. As towns grew the system of feudalism was gradually becoming unnecessary.


After the Fall of Rome in the west the eastern part continued as the Byzantine Empire. The Byzantine Empire’s church continued to improve in its own unique way. This church became known as the Eastern Orthodox Church. Both churches from the east and the west had a first major conflict because of religious icons. Leo III banned the use of religious icons in 730 C.E. because people were beginning to worship the icons as if they themselves were the gods. The ban angered people and some popes from Rome because the ban was applied to parts of Italy too. Pope Gregory III ended up excommunicating the emperor.
Before the ban was lifted all of the religious icons were destroyed. But even after the ban was lifted the east and west churches could not find a way to make peace at all. After this disagreement many other disagreements followed, ending with the church split. Iconoclasm 730 C.E. Lifted Ban of Icons 843 C.E.
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