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Early Middle Ages

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Early Middle Ages

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Early Middle Ages

  1. 1. The Early Middle Ages
  2. 2. Middle Ages The years between CE 400s and 1500s are called the Middle Ages  Also called the Medieval period This period is seen as a transition in the development of western culture  Took place in Europe
  3. 3. Foundations of Early Medieval Society Classical heritage of Rome Christian beliefs Customs of Germanic tribes
  4. 4. Background Information The decline of Roman influence in Western Europe left people with little protection against invasion, so they entered into feudal agreements with land- holding lords who promised them protection.
  5. 5. Feudal Agreements As we have seen repeatedly, when power falls, chaos often follows.  With the decline of the Western Roman Empire (the power), western Europe fell into complete chaos.
  6. 6. Germanic Invasions shattered Roman protection over the Empire.
  7. 7. Germanic Invasions In 476, the last of the Western Roman Empire vanished. One of the major reasons for the decline and fall of Rome was the Germanic Invasions
  8. 8. Those invasions continued into the Medieval period, also known as the Middle Ages. These invaders were the Angles, Saxons, Magyars and Vikings. Germanic Invasions
  9. 9. Germanic Invasions They greatly influenced the development of Europe.
  10. 10. Germanic Invasions Angles and Saxons came from the European continent (current day Germany) and settled in England
  11. 11. Anglo Saxons
  12. 12. Germanic Invasions Magyars came from Central Asia and settled in what is now Hungary
  13. 13. Germanic Invasions Vikings were raiders that would make raids into Europe, steal everything they could, and then go back to Scandinavia. They rarely settled.  Later they migrate to Russia. Known for their ship- building and navigation skills
  14. 14. What was the Result of these Invasions? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v= Q_KWEMmbHjM&index=6&list=PL F78AEA66545C9BCE Invasions disrupted trade Towns declined Strengthened the Feudal system
  15. 15. Rise of Feudal Agreements Roman protection is gone Roman towns are in decline, losing population rapidly. Remember, Roman towns developed to support trade with the Roman legions stationed at forts, protecting the borders.
  16. 16. From This To This
  17. 17. Rise of Feudal Agreements Without any central government, those towns started to die and people drifted away. Add to this mix, the Germanic barbarians wandering the countryside causing trouble. These people had no written laws and elected kings to lead them.
  18. 18. Rise of Feudal Agreements People were looking for leadership and protection. Local strongmen who commanded small armies often provided that protection
  19. 19. Rise of Feudal Agreements The agreement part came when people agreed to work the land of the local strongman in return for protection.  “I’ll farm for you and you won’t let the bad guys get me.” Each side had responsibilities and benefits.
  20. 20. Medieval Society Three social classes grew out of this initial chaos and reorganization:  Nobles  Clergy  Peasants
  21. 21. Nobles Ruling class, top of the pyramid, the strongman Kings, lords, vassals, and knights were all types of nobility.
  22. 22. Clergy Clergy – Church officials  Priests, monks, nuns, the Pope. Could come from the nobility or the peasant class.
  23. 23. Clergy Obviously, clergy that came from nobility were ranked higher in the church than peasant clergy.
  24. 24. Peasants Lowest class, also the largest Approximately 95% of the entire population of Europe at this time were Peasants.
  25. 25. Peasants Three guesses as to what peasants did for work…..
  26. 26. Peasants FARM!!!
  27. 27. Farming Unlike the Mediterranean land which had dry soils the land in Western Europe had nutrient rich soil Also had plenty of timber, underground mineral deposits and seas for riches. Could trade through large rivers and mountain streams could turn water wheels.
  28. 28. Peasants Peasants had no power They lived dirty, difficult, short lives of unending work, mostly farm work.
  29. 29. Peasants Although they mostly farmed Peasants performed chores around the manor house Many went hungry in winter months Disease killed many and few peasants lived beyond the age of 35 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIfDhHIy -Wo
  30. 30. Peasants Two Types of Peasants 1. Serfs – People who were tied to the land, could not leave the land of their lord. The lord had complete power over the serf.  Similar to a slave, but could not be sold off the manor (lord’s land)
  31. 31. Peasants Two Types of Peasants 2. Freemen – only 2% of the peasant population were freemen. They were frequently skilled laborers who would be hired to do work for the lord.
  32. 32. Nobility & Feudal Obligation Remember, there is no central government during the early Middle Ages. Created a system called Feudalism
  33. 33. Feudalism is a system in which a powerful noble grants land to a lesser noble – a set of mutual obligations between a lord and vassal  In exchange for land the lesser noble promised loyalty, military assistance, and other services Nobility & Feudal Obligation
  34. 34. Nobility & Feudal Obligation This is called the Lord- Vassal Relationship (Feudal Contract).  Lord – noble man who granted land  Vassal – received land, expected to be loyal, provide military support and pay ransoms to free Lords
  35. 35. Nobility & Feudal Obligation Fief – the lot of land granted to a vassal by a lord
  36. 36. World of Nobles http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pygLvy DdewU&list=PLF78AEA66545C9BCE&ind ex=2
  37. 37. Nobility & Feudal Obligation Knight – landless noble (often the second or third son of a noble) who was trained to fight for a living – professional warrior
  38. 38. Chivalry Definition: Chivalry is a code of conduct  A system of rules that dictated a knight’s behavior toward others Knighthood  To be a knight, a boy had to belong to the noble class and pass training  Knights were expected to be courageous in battle and fight fairly  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ZrE1mVc B2k&index=9&list=PLF78AEA66545C9BCE
  39. 39. Nobility & Feudal Obligation A person could be both a lord and a vassal at the same time…and often was http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QV7Ca nyzhZg&index=16&list=PLF78AEA66545C 9BCE
  40. 40. King or Monarch King’s Vassals LORDS Vassals to lower lords Peasants
  41. 41. Warfare For nobles, war was an opportunity for glory and wealth Warfare was a way of life Feudal Justice – trial by battle, oath taking, or trial by ordeal
  42. 42. Manorial system The Manorial System was the primary economic system during the Middle Ages (rigid class system) Nobles gave peasants the right to work land on their manors in return for a fixed payment (usually 1/3 of the manor land)
  43. 43. Manorial system Manor – a large farm estate with houses, land, woods, pastures, fields, and villages Manors were self-sufficient (provided for themselves!)
  44. 44. Medieval Manor They were totally self- sufficient, producing everything they needed right on the manor. During the Middle Ages, trade was nearly non-existent.
  45. 45. Wheat Field Fallow Field Mill Church Lord’s Manor House Well Blacksmith Shop Lord’s Oven Peasant’s Houses Kitchen Garden Peas, Oats, Barley, Beans
  46. 46. Life in a Manor Peasant Life  Very hard life – spent long hours in the fields  Little time for leisure activities  Life expectancy was short due to hunger, disease, and war Noble Life  Lived in castles that served as a fort for protection  Not a luxurious life – disease
  47. 47. Medieval Manor http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J NQ3EEYRnTc Manors, often with castles, provided protection from invasion, first establishing and then reinforcing the feudal system of allegiance for protection.
  48. 48. Medieval Manor Castles were not pretty mansions filled with luxuries where princesses waited to be saved by handsome princes. Castles were fortresses, defensive fortifications designed to withstand months of siege and keep out invaders http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_oXu EA5mwIw
  49. 49. Noblewomen Noblewoman had to take over the duties of her husband on the manor when he was off fighting Women had little rights since land was passed to eldest son of family If husband dies before the wife retained land
  50. 50. Review Questions Answer the following questions on a separate sheet of paper.
  51. 51. Review Questions 1. In feudalism what does the Lord grant to the Vassal? 2. What is the code of conduct that Knights fought and lived by? 3. Describe life as a peasant. 4. What did the Vassal have to give to the Lord in the feudal system? 5. What was the manorial system?

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