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Final Regents Review: The Middle Ages. Periodization. Early Middle Ages : 500 – 1000 High Middle Ages : 1000 – 1250 Late Middle Ages : 1250 - 1500. Officially in 476 No Roman Government No protection from invading Barbarians Results: Collapse of trade and towns Loss of literacy.

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Final Regents Review: The Middle Ages

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Final Regents Review:

The Middle Ages


Early Middle Ages: 500 – 1000

High Middle Ages: 1000 – 1250

Late Middle Ages: 1250 - 1500

Officially in 476

No Roman Government

No protection from invading Barbarians


Collapse of trade and towns

Loss of literacy

Roman Empire Collapses


Not much different than that of the old Roman Empire at is greatest extent

Only thing different is the capital moves from Rome to Constantinople

Peninsula – surrounded almost totally by water

Controlled shipping between Black and Mediterranean Seas

Natural Harbors, Natural Crossroad for trade

Wealthiest part of Roman Empire

Byzantine Empire

Eastern Roman Emperor (527)

Most important contribution:

Codification of Roman Law (Code of Justinian)

The Body of Civil Law

Law code is used in West and becomes basis for the European legal system


Justinian &

  • Wife of Justinian

  • Served as major adviser to husband

  • Other Plans:

    • Mobile Military

    • New Military strategies and tactics

    • Mix Greek culture and Roman Law

Five churches: Antioch, Constantinople, Jerusalem, Alexandria, and Rome

Ideas that caused Problems:

Authority: Pope (Bishop of Rome) claims authority over every church

Language of services: West (Latin), East (Vernacular – language of the region)

Use of Icons (symbols representing religious figures): West – Uses Icon, East: no Icons

Church Problems

Break in the Christian Church1054

Eastern Orthodox Church

Roman Catholic Church


Roman Catholic


Services in Latin

Uses icons

Crosses themselves from left to right

Eastern Orthodox


Services in the vernacular

Little use of icon

Cross themselves from right to left


Frankish Leaders

  • Clovis

    • First of Frankish leaders to convert to Christianity

  • Pepin II

    • Rules from 687-714

    • Continues to unite Frankish kingdom


  • Charles Martel

    • Defeated Tariq and the Moors (Spanish Muslims) at the Battle of Tours in 732

    • Stops Islam invasion into Europe

    • Who was the Greatest of all Frankish Rulers?

Charlemagne: 768 to 814

  • Rules from 768-814

  • Greatest of all Frankish rulers

  • Builds tremendous empire

  • Spends most of life at war

  • Declared “Emperor of the Romans” by Pope, December 25, 800

Man: Athletic, well-spoken, charismatic, married 4 times

Administrator: Delegated authority to nobles, Kept local laws in areas conquered, districts, Missi Dominici (Messengers of lord king)

Conqueror: aggressive Warrior, Strengthens Frankish Military

Patron of Learning: Revived classical studies, Preserved Latin Culture, Monastic and Palace schools


United most of Western Europe for first time since fall of Roman Empire

Set up an efficient government

Emphasized education

Importance of Charlemagne

Charlemagne’s Empire Collapses:Treaty of Verdun, 843

  • What become of Charlemagne’s Empire?

    • Charles the Bald > France

    • Louis the German > Germany

    • Lothair > Rhineland (Alsace-Lorraine) – Germany and France will go to war over area many times

Vikings –

from Northern Europe and Scandinavia

also called Norsemen

Most fishermen/farmers

Very skilled in navigation

Led numerous raids into England, France, Kiev, and Constantinople

Used swords, spears, axes, and shields in battle

Sold captives into slavery


- invaded from the east

- fierce warriors, fought on horseback

- nomadic, at first

- raids eventually crushed


- Invaded from Northern Africa

- Tried to take Spain

- Changed tactics from large invasions to small raids

- Raided Rome and stopped trade with Byzantine Empire

- Forced Popes to turn to Franks (France) for help

New Barbaric Invaders


1. Europeans find new and quicker ways

to respond to guerilla attacks

2. Vikings (all invaders) gradually accept


3. Warmer climate allowed barbarians to

stay home (Scandanavia/Greenland)

Invasions Cease around 1000


A political, economic, and social system based on loyalty and military service.

Medieval life is built around war and military service

Feudal Contract

  • Based on relationship between the lord and the vassal

  • Public ceremony


Mostly Nobles

Ruled and protected people

Controlled land

Had own coinage

Collected taxes

Subordinates had to provide military system

Built and lived in fortresses (castles)

Played war games as well as fought battles


Served higher lord in exchange for land and protection

Raised own army

Made payments (taxes) to lords

Daughter’s marriage


Sons knighted

Lords & Vassals


  • Lived in by nobles

  • Stone walls w/ lookouts

  • Moats

  • Drawbridges and iron gates

  • Self sufficient

Role of

  • Kept house

  • Had and raised babies

  • Made cloth

  • Defense of the home

The Road to Knighthood





    • Honor the following:

      • Heavenly lord

      • Earthly lord

      • Chosen lady

  • Progression of Knighthood

    • Age 7- trained as page

    • Age 15 – trained as squire

    • Dubbed as knight when ready to be a worthy fighter

Code of Honor, Ethics, and Behavior

for Knights

Defend Church and defenseless

Treat captives as honored guests

Fight only for Glory (not reward)

Why has the proper treatment of women been seen as chivalrous?


1066 – Norman Conquest

William of Normandy defeats King Harold of England

William Crowned king: Merges French

and English culture, takes first census, Doomsday Book, (included people, manors, and farm animals)

Battle of Hastings

Evolution of England’s Political System

  • Henry I:

    • William’s son.

    • set up a court system.

    • Exchequer dept. of royal finances.

  • Henry II:

    • established the principle of common law throughout the kingdom.

    • grand jury.

    • trial by jury.

Magna Carta, 1215

  • King John I

  • Runnymeade

  • “Great Charter”

  • monarchs were not above the law.

  • kings had to consult a council of advisors.

  • kings could not tax arbitrarily.

The Beginnings of the British Parliament

  • Great Council:

    • middle class merchants, townspeople were added at the end of the 13c.

    • eventually called Parliament.

    • by 1400, two chambers evolved:

      • House of Lords  nobles & clergy.

      • House of Commons  knights and burgesses.

Medieval Universities

First university located in Balogna, Italy

Women were unable to attend first universities

Other universities: Paris, Oxford

Approximately 80 universities by 1500

Rise of Universities

Grammar, math, rhetoric, logic, arithmetic, geometry, music, and astronomy

Used Lecture (“to read”) method of teaching…Why?

No exams after a series of lectures

Application for degree = oral exam by committee of teachers (4 or 6 years of study)

1st Degree = Bachelors, 2nd Degree = Masters

Could then study: law, medicine, or theology (study of religion and God) = may take 10 years or more to earn a doctorate

What do universities teach?

Withdraw from society and temptations

Serve God through fasting, prayer, and self- denial

Inflicted suffering on themselves to gain closer relationship with God

Life as a Monk

Influential Monks

  • St. Benedict

    • Benedictine Rules of monastic behavior

    • Vows of Poverty and Obedience

    • Time and labor went to monastery

  • St. Patrick

    • Brought Christianity to Ireland

  • St. Augustine

    • Brought Christianity to England

A Medieval Monk’s Day

Canon Law – law of the Catholic Church

Excommunication – expel from the church

Interdict – Stop administrating of sacraments in a whole region

Heretics / Heresy – people who have false teaching of the church

Political Definitions of the Church

Will last hundreds of years

Very little accomplished because:

Weakened by internal division

Rise of other European powers

Ambitions of local nobles

Power of Holy Roman Emperor declines to mere figurehead

Creates a close and lasting tie between Germany and Italy

Holy Roman Empire

Lay investiture – church offices being given to non-clergy

Simony – buying of church offices by nobles

Role of church in everyday affairs of the people

Forcing Catholicism on non-Catholics

Problems of the Church


  • Gains throne in 1056 at age of 6

  • Youth seen as weakness – German nobles as well as Pope sees opportunity to regain control

  • Conflict breaks out over…………

Cistercians: formed in 1098, by unhappy Benedictine monks: strict, simple diet, single robe, took religion outside monastery

Franciscans: founded by Saint Francis of Assisi: vow of poverty, preached repentance, simple life, lived in the world

Dominicans: founded by Dominic de Guzman; defend Church from heresy, need for spiritual revival, vows of poverty

New Religious Orders

Practice of giving of church offices by kings and nobles

Conflict breaks out over issue

Pope Gregory VII releases Germans from their allegiance to Henry IV

Pope Gregory VII excommunicates Henry

Henry fearing rebellion ask Gregory for mercy

Goes to Pope’s winter home in Canossa

Gregory makes him wait in freezing cold – forgives him

Lay Investiture

Takes place in 1122

Issue of Lay Investiture answered

Limits power of Emperor – could appoint Bishop for fiefs

Pope had to appoint Bishops with spiritual power

Concordat of Worms

The Inquisition

Holy Office

Find and try heretics

Often used Dominicans as examiners

If found guilty:

Forced to perform public penance acts

Subject to punishments (flogging)

No confession = execution

How do we deal with heretics?

The Power of the Medieval Church

  • Control 1/3 of the land.

  • Limit feudal warfare  only 40 days a year for combat.

  • curb heresies (speaking out against church)  crusades; Inquisition

  • tithe  1/10 tax on your assets given to the church.

  • Peter’s Pence  1 penny per person [paid by the peasants].

Purpose: Liberate Holy Land from the infidels (non-believers), the Muslims

1096 - Pope Urban II calls on Christians to start Crusades

First Crusades: French warriors push east; take Holy City from Muslims in 1099, citizens massacred in process

Second Crusade: 1140’s, Muslims taking power back – French and German leaders try to push out Muslims (Absolute failure);

Christian Crusades

Frederick Barbarossa (Germany), Richard the Lionhearted (England), Phillip II Augustus (France)

1187 – Muslim leader Saladin, a Muslim, takes Jerusalem

1189: Problems encountered:

Barbarossa drowns while swimming

France and England successful at sea, but failed as they moved inland

Phillip retreats home, Richard I signs truce with Saladin

Christians can still go to Jerusalem

Leaders during Third Crusade

Pope Innocent III – calls for 4th Crusade

Constantinople taken in 1204 by Crusaders, eventually lost in 1261 when Byzantine Empire is revived

Other Crusades follow, including a Children’s Crusade; 1,000,000 + dead

Late Crusades

Christian Crusades: East and West

Trade increased because of the need for weapons, food, and other supplies

Muslim Culture and faith spreads

Kings gain power (so they can prevent rebellions and other problems)

Jews are persecuted

Effects of Crusades

Population increases  Food Production Increases

Why did food production rise?

Climate change

Land could be cultivated

Technological innovations were made

Carruca (plow)

Shift from two-field to three-field system: only 1/3 of land lay fallow instead of 1/2

Manorial System

Agricultural estate ran by a lord ond worked by peasants/serfs

Agricultural Changes

Two-Three Field System

Cycle of Labor

The peasants cycle of labor explained peasants job tasks each month of the year

Medieval diet

Bread (w/ barley, millet, and oats)


Nuts, berries, fruits, grains


Agricultural Changes

Freedom – Anyone lived in town for a year and a day was free, including serfs

Exemption – Any townspeople were exempt from working on a manor

Town Justice – Towns had their own courts

Commercial privileges – Townspeople could trade freely in the town market but outsiders would be taxed

Four Basic Rights of Townspeople

Major Cities

Medieval Guilds

Guild Hall

  • Commercial Monopoly:

    • Controlled membershipapprentice journeyman  master craftsman

    • Controlled quality of the product [masterpiece].

    • Controlled prices

Set wages and pay

Set standards of quality

Sick pay for members – Benevolence packages

Benefits of Guilds

Frederick I (Barbarossa)

  • Rules from 1152 – 1190

  • Also called the Red Beard

  • Wanted to control trade-rich northern Italy (Lombardy)

  • City-states of Lombardy unite to form Lombard League to stop invasion of Frederick

Battle of

  • Takes place on May 29, 1176

  • Lombard League takes on Frederick and his forces in Legnano

  • Victory for the Lombard League

Northern Italy – Lombard League

Central Italy – Papal States

Southern Italy – controlled by Sicily

Italy divided into three regions

Attempts to unite Italy and Germany into one empire failed

Pope Innocent

  • Pope from 1198-1216

  • Saw rulers of Europe as servants of the church

  • Had major conflict with King John

    • Places interdict on England

      • Closed churches and withheld sacraments


  • To control church goes as far as arresting Pope Boniface II

  • After Boniface’s death (under somewhat questionable circumstances) will influence the election of Clement V

  • Moves papacy to France causing

The Pope, Clement V, supposedly fearing violence in Rome moves Papacy to Avignon, France

Rome then selects another Pope, creating two – will eventually have three

Council of Constance forced all three to resign and appoints one

The Great Schism

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