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- Created 2012-02-15
This article is about Medieval Europe. For a more global outlook, see
, lasted from the 5th to the 15th century. It began with the
Western Roman Empire
, and was followed by the
Age of Discovery
. The Middle Ages is the middle period of the traditional division of Western history into Antiquity, Medieval, and Modern periods. The period is subdivided into the
, and the
Late Middle Ages
Depopulation, deurbanization, and
invasions, which had begun in
, continued in the Early Middle Ages. The barbarian invaders formed new kingdoms in what remained of the Western Roman Empire. In the 7th century,
, once part of the Eastern Roman Empire (the
), became an
after conquest by
. Although there were substantial changes in society and political structures, the break with
was not complete. The still sizeable Byzantine Empire survived and remained a major power. The empire's law code, the
Code of Justinian
, was widely admired later in the Middle Ages. In the West, most kingdoms incorporated extant Roman institutions, while monasteries were founded as Christianity expanded in Western Europe. The
, under the
, established an empire covering much of Western Europe; the
endured until the 9th century, when it succumbed to the pressures of invasion—
from the north,
from the east, and
s from the south.
During the High Middle Ages, which began after AD 1000, the population of Europe increased greatly as technological and agricultural innovations allowed trade to flourish and crop yields to increase.
, the organization of peasants into villages that owed rent and labour services to the
, the political structure whereby
s and lower-status nobles owed military service to their overlords in return for the right to rent from lands and
s, were two of the ways society was organised in the High Middle Ages. The
, first preached in 1095, were military attempts by Western European Christians to regain control of the Middle Eastern
s. Kings became the heads of centralised nation states, reducing crime and violence but making the ideal of a unified
more distant. Intellectual life was marked by
, a philosophy that emphasised joining faith to reason, and by the founding of
. The philosophy of
, the paintings of
, the poetry of
, the travels of
, and the architecture of
cathedrals such as
are among the outstanding achievements of this period.
The Late Middle Ages were marked by difficulties and calamities, such as famine, plague, and war, which much diminished the population of Western Europe; between 1347 and 1350, the
killed approximately a third of the European population. Controversy,
paralleled the warfare between states, civil wars, and peasant revolts occurring in the kingdoms. Cultural and technological developments transformed European society, concluding the Late Middle Ages and beginning the
early modern period
from Wikipedia (last updated: 16 May), licensed under
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Internet Medieval Sourcebook Project
The Online Reference Book of Medieval Studies
The Middle Ages
Information from the Medieval Period.
De Re Militari: The Society for Medieval Military History
"MacKinney Collection of Medieval Medical Illustrations"
''A Note-Book of Mediaeval History, A.D. 323- A.D. 1453''
The Soldier in later Medieval England
Clio History Journal, Medieval History Page
''The Medieval Review''
Islamic Golden Age
History of science in the Middle Ages
Popular revolt in late medieval Europe
Horses in the Middle Ages
Medieval Warm Period
Crisis of the Late Middle Ages
Plague of Justinian
Middle Ages in film
Mining and metallurgy in medieval Europe
Slave trade in the Middle Ages
Jews in the Middle Ages
Women in the Middle Ages
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