Review for May History Test

The High Middle Ages is a period of time that lasted from 1050 to 1300. What is significant about this time period is how it recovered Europe from the first millenium. During this time, the invasions from local tribes ceased and the Europeans went on the offensive, trade revived, agriculture expanded, population, increased, and it was also a cultural Golden Age.

Economic expansion is one of the significant events that occurred in the High Middle Ages. Two things caused this expansion: an agricultural revolution and a major rise in population. The first part of this agricultural revolution consisted of expanses in technology. These advances included the heavy plow, horseshoes and collar harnesses, and water and windmills. There were also advances in farming, which included a 3 field system, which allowed for more food to be made. The population rise also took a part in the economic expansion because it gave a need for more land.

Besides being the location of the Vatican, Italy was significant during the High Middle Ages because of how it acted as a gateway of trade between the east and the west. First, a trade route from China, which was known as the "Silk Route" because it carried silk, passed through it. Second, many market fairs were held there. Third, it had a very developed structure of business conduction: there was a bill of exchange, commercial law, banking and credit, double-entry book keeping, and insurance.

Another of the key features of the High Middle Ages was the rise of towns. This is how a town would rise: first, the area would start off as a small village centered about a castle or a manor. Eventually, merchants would come and set up markets around the castle. As more merchants came, these small markets eventually turned into market fairs. People would then move to the area of the merchants so that they could be near the shops. As more and more people settled, the village had enough of a population to be considered a town. Originally, villages were set up under a feudal system. However, as they grew into towns, Feudalism and Manoralism fell. Freedom was bought through charters from the lords. The free men would then set up a town assembly. The town assembly consisted of patricians and merchants. Merchants would marry into rich families to achieve what is known as "old money" along with the money they have already made as merchants. The fall in Feudalism also led to a revival of civic life. There was no more loyalty to a lord, instead to the town, people had control over their own lives, and the people, the merchants and the guildsmen, were in charge. Another effect of the decline of Feudalism was a damaged relationship to the church, mainly because the towns were set up in a secular form. Instead, the church’s power was negative. It only had power when one would make a horrible wrong, and one would give money to it to perform a service for it if one would want to change.

The rise of states was another significant occurrence during the High Middle Ages. A King who became more powerful than the lords and the bishops usually organized states. There were three significant states that rose during this period of time: England, France, and Germany. England began its rise under Henry I, who started out strong. He is known for creating the Domesday Book. Although this book was really just a census, it was really created to show that there is a ruler up top. Putting this concept into the mind of the subjects can help to keep control. King John wrote the Magna Carta. This historic document guaranteed trial by jury, put a check on royal power, and prohibited arrest without a charge. It also created the Parliament, which at the time was set up as a mean for the king to obtain money for soldiers granted by Vassals. It also set up the House of Commons, which was to be used as consultation for the king. The state of France did not have as much of a historic rise, yet its rise still was significant. It began its rise with Philip Augustus. He kicked out England while tripling the kingdom, and then became stronger than the governors. After this he centralized his power. Unfortunately, he also expelled the Jews from France. Louis IX instituted several significant laws. He ordered that vassals cannot fight each other, the king can issue ordinances without consulting vassals, created a coinage and taxation system, instituted royal court, which allowed common justice. He also created the Estates General, which is similar to the Parliament, but not as strong it. The rise of Germany was signified by the kingship of Otto the Great, who was crowned Emperor of the Romans by the pope. The main significance of the rise of states was the emergence of representative institutions. This emergence started a refocus of law. In it, the king became bound to the "laws of the land", and created the idea of Government by Consent.

Another of the significant events that took place during the High Middle Ages was the growth of papal power, the most important of these being the role of the church in everyday life. The clergy advised the people, acting as intermediaries between G-d and people, and they administered the sacred rights. These sacred rights are known as the seven sacraments: baptism, confirmation, matrimony, extreme unction, Eucharist, penance, and ordination. Another of the significant events concerning the church was the Gregorian Reform. In the 10th century, the office of the pope was under aristocratic families, who sometimes killed to obtain office, Popes were involved in conspiracies, and bishops were appointed for political power. As a response to this, monastic reforms began to be instituted in 1059. The most historical of these are the reforms instituted by Pope Gregory in 1073. His goal was to establish Christian society on Earth. He prohibited priests with wives and concubines from conducting mass, kicked out clergy that bought offices, and excommunicated bishops who obtained offices from nobles. Unfortunately this resulted in the Investiture Controversy, which included a French king being excommunicated, a Civil War with the rise of a new king, and Lords gaining more power during the controversy. Another set of reforms was instituted at the Concordat of Worms in 1122. This council instituted that bishops must be appointed by the Church, and he must be given a staff and a ring from the top bishop, known as the "Arch-Bishop." However, territorial disputes arose in Northern Italy. To take advantage of the, Fredrick I tried to asset authority over Italy, but his troops were stopped at Legnano in 1176.

The Crusades were a series of holy wars that were fought during the High Middle Ages. The main goals were to regain the Holy Land from the Muslims, to spread Christianity, and to show Christian strength and hegemony, and to show papal strength. Before the Crusades begun, almost all of Europe had been Christianized: the Italians secured the Mediterranean from the Muslims, building a merchant empire, the Normans took Sicily, and Spain was recaptured. In 1248, only Grenada belonged to the Muslims. Also, the Germans had taken control of Poland and Eastern Europe. However, the Turks took the Near East, and the Byzantines called for help. In 1095, the Council of Claremont called for the Crusades, taking advantage of this occurrence as an opportunity to spread Papal Hegemony to the Greek Orthodox Christians. Soldiers for the First Crusade organized at Constantinople between 1096 and 1099. In 1099, they overran Jerusalem, and continued to colonize it. The Second Crusade was an attempt to take the Balkans and Asia Minor, but it failed. However, in 1187, led by Saladin, the Muslims retook Jerusalem. The Third Crusade was organized as a response to this. Richard I, the Lion-Hearted of England, Philip Augustus of France, and Fredrick Barbarossa of Germany organized to retake this territory. They were able to capture Acre and Jaffa, but not Jerusalem. A fourth crusade was created later. However, there was not enough money for transport, and the Venetians only would allow take them if they attacked Zara, a rival port of Venice. After doing so, the Crusaders were excommunicated, but this judgement was later lifted to save the crusade. Some of them went to Syria to fight the Muslims, but most attacked Constantinople in 1204. After this, in 1212, two Children’s Crusades organized. The first one was made up of French peasant children who tried to travel to the Holy Land. 2 of the boats were lost at sea, and Muslims captured the other 5 were sold into slavery. The second was made up of German children, but it ended in the deaths of thousands of children. The effect of the crusades was an acceleration in the decline of feudalism, because lords died or lost money, the fluidity of the system broke down, and they resulted in more trade and less of cosmopolitan atmosphere.

The relationship between Jews and Christians was not a good one during the High Middle Ages, especially during the Crusades. However, there were no attempts to get rid of the religion because the Jews were needed for the Second Coming and scripture, as stated in the Doctrine of the Witness. Several villages were destroyed, but few were killed, and these outbreaks were isolated, but acute. The clergy provided ideological justification, but they also provided a protective shield, which was not always affective, based on the Doctrine of the Witness. What made Jews subject to violence was the religious factor, and their economic and social standing made them vulnerable and suspicious. There were not many, they were closed off, and many were usurers (moneylenders). Also there was the blood libel, which was the accusation that Jews kill Christian babies, and that they use the blood for Matza and Passover wine. The first one was in 1143. There were also laws decreed concerning Jews. They were prohibited from holding office, but there were also decrees designed for protecting Jews. For example, they were not allowed to be out during Christian holidays, and in some countries they were forced to wear some sort of identification.

There were also many a few groups of dissenters and reformers. There were mainly four of these groups.

The first two were considered heresy movements. The first of these was the Waldensians. They sought a return to the simpler and purer life of Jesus and the Apostles. They were excommunicated, but continued as a group in northern Italy. The second group was the Cathari, created by Peter Waldo. They believed that the god of the Old Testament was evil, and therefore all that he created is evil, including the world and Human flesh. So, they said that the soul is good, but it is trapped in the evil flesh. They avoided eggs, cheese, milk, and meat. They also believed that the church was created by God to enslave people, and that Christ was an angel, not a god. They were all exterminated by inquisitors. The next two groups were part of controlling the heresy movement. They were the Franciscans and the Dominicans. Francis of Assisi led the Franciscans. He was into love, and he cared for the poor. They eventually became agencies to the pope. Dominic led the Dominicans. He was into formal learning. They eventually became "sniffers" for the pope. The two main methods of control were excommunication, and inquisitions. An inquisitor created the inquisitions, and he used the Franciscans and Dominicans as investigators. They ruled out heresy by torturing in order to take testimony and confessions of heresy, and they burned people at the stake, even with a confession.

Pope Innocent III was a pope who ruled at the apex of papal power. However, what he did planted the seeds for the collapse of this power. In France, King Philip Augustus rejected his wife the day after his wedding, and married someone else. The Pope stayed after him for 20 years until he gave in and made his former wife the queen of France. In England, he wanted to be the Bishop of Cadbury. John, the bishop there at the time, exiled all of the other bishops in England as a mean of protest, causing the pope to excommunicate him, and ask Philip to invade England. John backed down after this. The third thing he did had to do with the Holy Roman Empire. He wanted to separate Sicily from the Holy Roman Empire. He accomplished this task with the help of Fredrick, who promised that he would offer help and not reunite Sicily with the Holy Roman Empire. Fredrick broke his promise, but lost Sicily in the battle that followed. This pope also declared a crusade against the Cathari. He showed his supremacy through the Fourth Latin Council, which met in 1215. It decreed that Greek Orthodoxy is subservient to Roman Catholicism, the state cannot tax clergy, and all detrimental laws are null and void. It also decreed that the bishops are responsible for getting rid of and punishing heretics, and all Catholics must confess their sins to a priest at least once a year and perform the prescribed penance.

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