Medieval History

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Carolingian Empire
A dynastic line and empire associated with Charlemagne. It was located in France and parts of Germany and Italy. It was centralized via the Church and its capital at Aachen.
The first Holy Roman Emperor.
Catholic Church
Controlled all aspects of Medieval society.
Magna Carta
This important document weakened the English monarch and gave the people legal rights and trading rights.
Holy Roman Empire
This empire, focused around the Catholic Church, helped centralize and stabilize central Europe.
Head of the Catholic Church. Had a lot of power during the Middle Ages.
Another word for a pope.
Government run by a king or a queen.
Divine Right
The idea that a monarch gets the power to rule from god. This strengthens their authority to rule.
This religion dominated in Europe during the Middle Ages. It one was the one thing that unified all Europeans.
Feudalism/Feudal System
The dominant social system in the Middle Ages. Land was exchanged for certain obligations. Kings gave land to the lords/nobles, knights/vassals protected the land, peasants/serfs worked the land. This provided protection and support for the peasants/serfs/
Manor System
The dominant economic system in the Middle Ages. Peasants/serfs farmed the land/
3-Field Crop Rotation System
Part of the manor system. Using 2 out of 3 fields to allow the other to rejuvenate. Crops would also be switched.
Holy wars between Christians and Muslims. Effects: Racism, Cultural Acceptance, Exchange of ideas, increased trade (esp. luxury goods).
Commercial Revolution
This led to the use of money, banks, and credit.
Fancy word for trade
Agricultural Revolution
This led to the use of various farming technologies and innovations: windmills, watermills, 3-field system, heavy plows, etc.
Started to grow because not as many people were needed to farm due to better farming technologies; therefore, they moved here to try to make a life for themselves.
Similar to a Medieval workers’ union. People from the same industry (i.e. blacksmiths, bakers, etc.) would all set similar prices and standards so that they could combat the corrupt feudal lords.
Common Law
Spoken law (not as organized)
Civil Law
Written law (best)
Combining religious faith and science/reason.
Hundred Years’ War
A war fought between England and France over the French throne and territory. France wins.
Religious trials
Someone who went against the Catholic Church. Usually burned at the stake.
Black Death
This disease wiped out 1/3 of the European population. Effects: weakened the Church, weakened social institutions, population loss led to the Renaissance.
Members of the aristocracy. Often had a lot of land and power.
Farmed the land on the manors.
Medieval/Middle Ages
The time period between the fall of Rome and the Black Death.
Byzantine Empire
The eastern portion of the former Roman Empire. Its church was Orthodox (no pope/papacy).
How did Islam Spread to North Africa?
Muslim Merchants (Trade)
What were the 3 most important trade items in Africa?
Salt, Gold, and Slaves
Mansa Musa
An important king of Mali who expanded the empire. He went on an epic hajj to Mecca, spending so much gold that he caused inflation. He also spread Islam throughout North Africa.
An important city in Mali.
Three most important North African Empires
Ghana, Mali, Songhai
Long Lines of people and animals used to transport goods long distances for TRADE, especially Luxury Trade (wants, not needs). Used in the Middle East and North Africa.
Muslim holy law which also influences society.
Ottoman Empire
A Muslim society, which used guns to aid in their expansion. Their leader was a sultan and they had various levels of religious tolerance. Focused on various methods of trade, especially Luxury Trade. The empire was broken up by the Treaty of Versailles after WWI.
Safavid Empire
A Muslim society which clashed with the Ottomans. They did not have religious freedom. Their leader was a shah. They focused on Luxury Trade.
Mongol Empire
A massive nomadic (travelling) empire from Central Asia. They were tolerant of many religions. They conquered massive amounts of territory.
Five Pillars of Islam
Things that all Muslims must abide by.
-Belief (one true God)
-Prayer (five times a day)
-Fasting from dawn to sunset during the month of Ramadan.
-Pilgrimage (Hajj) to Mecca.
Sunni vs. Shia Islam
Schism (split) in authority.
-Sunni: power was held by the caliphs (followed the death of Muhammad) and then chosen.
-Shia: power should have descended from Ali, Muhammad’s son-in-law, and his successors.
Categories: Medieval