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Feudal Europe

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Brian Roberts

on 31 October 2013

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Transcript of Feudal Europe

A New Civilization Emerges in Western Europe
I. Introduction
A. Middle Ages – Medieval
1. Gradual recovery from Rome’s collapse
2. Growing interaction with other societies
B. Spread of religious beliefs
1. Most polytheists converted to Christianity
II. Medieval Development
A. Rome’s decline affected
1. Spain in hands of Muslims
2. Frequent invasions
– Viking raids
B.The Manorial System:
Obligations and Allegiances
1. Manoralism
economic/political relation between lord and peasants
C. The Church: Political and Spiritual Power
1. Only stable organization in W. Europe
a. Copied structure of Roman Empire
1. Pope in Rome – top authority
2. Regional bishops
3. Supervised local priests
D. Charlemagne and His Successors
1. Charles Martel – Battle of Tours 732
pushed back Muslims in Spain
E. New Economies and Urbanization
1. New sources of strength
a. new agricultural techniques
1. three-field
2. moldboard plow
3. horse collar
b. Viking raids slowed down
1. Christianized
2. Regional gov't became stronger
G. Limited Government
1. Power of Church limited political claims
2. Aristocrats – powerful independent voice
a. Magna Carta – nobles forced King John in 1215 to sign rights
H. The West’s Expansionist Impulse
1. Causes
a. Population growth
b. Missionary impulse
c. Righteous zeal provided by Christianity
2. Expulsion of Muslims in 1492
3. Germanic knights pushed east – Germany and Poland
4. Pushed to Greenland, Canada
5. Crusades
a. Pope Urban II – indulgences – fight for God, reclaim holy land
1. forgiveness of sins
2. ensured entry to heaven
3. spoils from rich Arabs
4. Thirst for excitement
5. facilitate Christian pilgrim’s visits
6. Venice – save commercial rites
7. attacking Jews
b. Opened to economic/cultural influence of Middle East
III. Medieval Culture
A. New Universities
1. Intellectual vitality – university education led to higher jobs
2. Students actually paid teachers directly sometimes
D. Limited Sphere for Women
1. Christian religion
a. Women’s monastic groups – convents
b. Veneration of Mary, religious saints
c. But…Eve as cause of original sin
V. Decline of Medieval Era
A. Signs of Strain
1. Land owning aristocracy fading
a. But still keeping ceremony and chivalry
2. Church losing power
a. Church focused on political involvement/
loses spiritual side
b. Gov’ts gain power, start taxing Church
3. The Arts
a. Art now focuses on human figures, less spiritual
B. The Postclassical West and Its Heritage
1. Improvements after 900
a. population
b. trade
c. cities
d. intellectual activity
e. universities
f. Gothic art
g. government based on feudal/Church relations
2. Imitation of surrounding regions – especially Islam
3. Divided rule resembled feudal Japan and feudal Africa
D. Religious Themes in Art and Literature
1. Christian art reflected popular outlook and formal religious theology
a. Goal – serve the glory of God
b. Depicted saints
c. Stained glass designs for churches
C. Knowledge from trade/invaders
1. Tools for new crops
2. Arabs – math, science, philosophy
D. Took more from other nations than contributed
one-sided trade
E. Two Images
1. Prejudice toward Europe – big, smelly, hairy lugs
a. Newer to civilization
b. Economy less advanced
2. Flashes of brilliance
a. Thomas Aquinas – sum up knowledge of man, God, nature
4. Weak rulers
5. Subsistence agriculture
6. Literacy limited to nobility and monks
a.lived on self-sufficient manors
b.received protection/justice from lords
c.gave part of goods/crops to lord
d.worked monthly on lord’s land
e.production low – limited equipment
Three-field system – fallow
a.For labor and land received
ownership of houses
pass property rights to children
2. Role of pope
a. regulate doctrine
b. beat back heresies
b. Charles the Great – Charlemagne
1. Substantial empire in France/Germany
2. Restored church-based education
3. Intellectual activity gradually restored
4. Upon death, split empire among 3 grandsons
a. Successors useless
2. Regional monarchies
a. no single language
1. Separate languages led to national identities
b. cultural unity around Church
2. All led to population growth
a. Led to new markets
b. Loosen bonds of serfdom
c. trade with others led to new crops
3. Growth of towns
a. Literacy spread
b. Professional entertainers
new songs, tricks
c. Monastic schools/ hospitals
d. Merchant activity/craft production
E. New Economic and Urban Vigor
1. New sources of strength
a. new agricultural techniques
1. three-field
2. moldboard plow
3. horse collar – almost as cool as the world famous Chinese ox collar
b. dominance of lord/knights – horse collar and stirrups
c. Viking raids slowed down
1. Christianized
2. Regional government stronger
2. All led to population growth
a. Led to new markets
b. Look to eastern lands not previously converted to agriculture
c. Loosen bonds of serfdom
d. trade with others led to new crops
3. Growth of towns
a. Literacy spread
b. Professional entertainers – new songs, tricks – the lovely bear-baiting
c. Monastic schools/hospitals
d. Merchant activity/craft production
4. Improved cultural life
a. Universities next to cathedrals
b. Taught philosophy and theology
b. Led to creation of Parliament
1. House of Lords
2. House of Commons
wealthy businessmen
3. Held power of taxation
could prevent/enable King warfare
C. Emphasis on previous learning, but some exceptions
1. Roger Bacon – optics – added to Muslim learning
a. Eyeglasses
B. Thomas Aquinas
1. Faith came first
2. Through reason, humans could find order
a. Scholasticism – logic to absurd degrees – can you prove anything logically?
2. Gothic Architecture
a. Combined Muslim design and Western engineering
b. Gothic
1. Soaring spires
2. Tall arched windows – cast to heavens
3. Medieval Literature
a. Mostly Latin, but vernacular writing emerged
1. Christian values vs. richness/coarseness of life
b. Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales – has naughty stories that poke fun at institutions
6. Guilds – relatively independent from state
– like labor unions today
a. limit membership
b. control apprenticeships
c. discouraged new methods of mfg
goal was job security-not innovation
d. guaranteed quality
C. Growth of Trade and Banking
1. Urban growth
a. specialized manufacturing
b. increased commercial activities
c. greater trade
d. banking introduced
2. Rising trade
a. Wanted luxury goods
b. Wanted spices – flavor, preservation, medicinal value
c. Hanseatic League
– Scandinavian cities
3. Jewish businessmen became money lenders
4. Trade, bankers, merchants all pushed for capitalism
5. Merchants
a. Not as wealthy as Muslims
b. But…because of weak govts they had more power
3. Urban women had role in commerce
a. Could operate/run guilds
4. Literature stressed women as docile/supportive/chivalry
2. Compared to Islam
a. less confined to house
b. less segregated in church services – but couldn’t lead
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