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Royal Power Grows. Chapter 8, Section 1. Monarchs vs. Churchmen & Nobles. Monarchs struggled to exert authority over the church…why?. Monarchs. @ the head of society, but limited power. NOBLES & CHURCH. KINGS. Monarchs. @ the head of society, but limited power.

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Royal power grows

Royal Power Grows

Chapter 8, Section 1

Monarchs vs churchmen nobles
Monarchs vs. Churchmen & Nobles

  • Monarchs struggled to exert authority over the church…why?


  • @ the head of society, but limited power




  • @ the head of society, but limited power

*Sometimes, the church was more powerful



Monarchs vs the church
Monarchs vs. the Church

  • Both have their own taxes, courts, & armies

  • But in the “High Middle Ages” = 1000-1300 AD the balance of power started to shift

Royal domain
“Royal Domain”

  • Monarchs expanded their power =

  • Set up stronger courts

  • Organized gov’t programs

  • Appointed sheriffs developed tax system

  • Strengthened ties w/ the middle class—who then supported the King


  • King Edward dies

  • Son (Herald) –not that good of a relationship

  • Relation (William, Duke of Normandy) -supposedly was promised the throne


  • Raised an army & won backing of the pope

  • “Battle of Hastings” = wins over Harold


  • Becomes “William the Conqueror”

  • King of England

  • Crowned Christmas day, 1066

King william i
King William I

  • Wanted power…

King william i1
King William I

  • Wanted power…

    so he gave fiefs to the church & nobles

    (required allegiance [homage] to him as King over any other lord)

Domesday book
Domesday Book

  • Census for tax purposes

Henry ii
Henry II

  • 1154 inherited the throne

  • Increased royal justice by expanding accepted customs into law

  • Sent out traveling justices to enforce these laws

Henry ii1
Henry II

  • The decisions of the royal courts = common law

  • Applied to all of England

  • In time, people brought their disputes to royal courts rather than the church or nobles

  • Juries = 12 neighbors

Conflict with the church
Conflict with the Church

  • King Henry II’s extension of power upsets the church

  • He claimed the right to try clergy in royal courts

Chess how does the strategy and or moves of chess game pieces relate to medieval societal roles
Chess:How does the strategy and/or moves of chess game pieces relate to medieval societal roles?


  • Pawn

  • The pawn is the most populous of all the pieces, just as the peasant was the highest in number. The pawn, with its limited movement (one square at a time), is considered the least powerful chess piece. Although they can be used to protect or distract opponents to save the more powerful pieces, losing too many pawns is not a good winning strategy. This is also similar to medieval society, where peasants could—and were—used to protect those of nobility, but peasants were necessary for the betterment of society as a whole and were needed in other ways. They had the least amount of political power, but were important overall as a member of the group.


  • Rook

  • With its tower-shape, the rook is meant to signify the importance of the castle as a fortification element in power. Castles, as beautiful as we consider them today, were as much a part of one’s arsenal as were soldiers and weapons since every single aspect of a castle was designed specifically for protection during warfare. For example, the moat, walls, counterclockwise stairs, bridges, narrow windows, spires, etc. were all designed for the protection of its defenders. The rook moves both vertically and horizontally and is worth even more than the knight—since in warfare a knight is certainly more dispensable than the castle itself.


  • Knight

  • The knight is a tricky game piece in that it is the only one that can attack in an “L” shape and is allowed to jump other pieces to get to their destination. Knights during the medieval period were indispensable for attaining, keeping, and holding land. Knights were the backbone of warfare and swore homage to their king and/or lord. Knights are very important pieces in keeping the king safe and so are worth more points than either the bishop or the pawn.


  • Bishop

  • The bishop is a stronger piece than the pawn in that it moves diagonally and multiple spaces at once. There are fewer pieces (only two), making them more lucrative than the pawn. The bishop holds power for the player, especially as the game progresses, due to his movements and freedom on the board. It can be deadly to the opponent, and thus, it is often the strategy of players to get rid of another player’s bishops early. Bishops, during medieval society, were important political players as the church owned land and was central to beliefs of “heavenly” rewards. Bishops were not poor, but were nobles by birth and held a strong place in society among other nobles. Their importance in the game of chess does not go unnoticed.


  • Queen

  • Ironically, the queen is the most powerful chess game piece. Those unfamiliar with chess may assume that it would be king, but he does not have the abilities she does on the board. The queen has the highest point value and is the most central piece to winning the game (other than the king, of course). The queen is capable of moving diagonally, horizontally, as well as vertically. But, similar to society, the queen is not typically very effective when utilized alone, and is best when paired with others in order to attack the opponent’s pieces strategically. In the Dark Ages, the queen held the highest position second only to the king himself. She often made decisions and was a great influence on her husband. It is the queen that chess players will say is the most important piece.


  • King

  • The king, interestingly enough, has no point value but is the most central to winning or losing the game since one he is lost, the game itself is over. Although the king is only able to move one square at a time in any direction (which is barely better than the pawn), he is the piece that must be protected at all costs. The importance of the king’s role in the game of chess as it relates to medieval society is that a king, as important as he may seem, is only as powerful as those around him are willing to protect him. A king is one man versus the role of many and thus gets his power from those around him bending to his will. But, if the king is lost, so is the kingdom as it is known.

King john
King John

  • (son of Henry II)

  • Angered his own nobles w/ oppressive taxes & abuses of power

Magna carta
Magna Carta

  • “Great Charter”

  • Forced to sign

  • Gave nobles certain rights

  • Made the King obey the law (limited king’s power)

Magna carta1
Magna Carta

  • Due process of law

  • Habeas Corpus

Create This ChartHow does royal power increase and/or decrease?(also available in “assignments” section of module)

Royal Power Changes

William I

Henry II