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Monachy of the Middle ages - Essay Example

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Part One: Monarchy of the Middle Ages The Early Middle Ages ranged from 500 to 1000 CE and began with the collapse of the Roman Empire. The period was also known as the ‘Dark Ages’, a reference to the relatively little liberty that citizens had, and the low amount of cultural growth that occurred through this time…
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Download file to see previous pages At this point leadership followed the Roman standard of having an Emperor, who took power through being named as successor or through overthrowing the previous successor. At the start of the early middle ages, Justinian I (who ruled from 527-565) was able to restore some of the western territories to the empire, however most remained under Germanic control. The Macedonian dynasty rose to power in 867, cementing the influence of what remained of the Roman Empire1. Those in the West were considered to be barbarians, and any advances that they made were scorned or ignored. The Germanic monarchy in the West was formed from the leaders of tribes and this was often known as the Barbaric Monarchy. Unlike in the East, there was no single leader; instead there were multiple kings, each of whom had to follow three functions. These were: to act as a leader at the time of warfare, as a judge during assemblies and as a priest when sacrifice was needed. Unlike the system in Eastern Europe, under Germanic monarchy, all sons had equal right to rule. This often resulted in co-rulership of the tribes. Under Germanic monarchy, there were three levels, similar to the class system present in the Roman Empire; these were the king, the nobility and the free man2. The Late Middle Ages (c. 1300-1500 CE) were differentiated by a strong advancement in the level of knowledge and cultural attainment that were obtained. In addition, towns were becoming established as self-sustaining entities that were distinct from one another. Social unrest was prevalent with much of the population being lost through plagues and famines. The influence of monarchs and ruling powers over their citizens was substantially decreased as the consequent of the development of state laws3. These laws were designed to ease the growing civil unrest by providing civilians with reassurance, and by the creation of a system that was distinct from the whims and desires of the monarch. Nevertheless, the monarch remained the predominant power within the Late Middle Ages, determining which laws were established and which were not. Consequently, the Late Middle Ages differed from the Early Middle Ages through the development of more consolidated monarchies and increases in the rights of citizens. The creation of state laws allowed for the application of justice that was relevant to the case in question. Part Two: The Role of Religion on Western Civilization Religious activities have had a significant impact on the formation and development of the Western civilization between the years of 1050 and 1690 CE. One source of this influence was the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church was not the only strong religious influence of the Middle Ages, another was Judaism and Christianity in general as well as the Protestant religion. In 1054, an event known as the East-West Schism saw the division of the roman church into two divisions, the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church. This was the first development of the Catholic Church as its own entity. The Catholic Church exerted powerful influence on the lives of citizens determining many of the ways in which they interacted and what they could and could not do. An example of this is contraception. Contraception was considered immoral under the Catholic religion, and consequently no member was allowed to use any method of birth control. The result was ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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