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The Middle Ages

The Middle Ages. Your Worst Nightmare (a.k.a. Mr. C). Introduction. The Middle Ages (300 – 1475) The Dark Ages (476 – 800)

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The Middle Ages

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  1. The Middle Ages Your Worst Nightmare (a.k.a. Mr. C)

  2. Introduction • The Middle Ages (300 – 1475) • The Dark Ages (476 – 800) • or, more generally, to the period between about 500 and 1000, which was marked by frequent warfare and a virtual disappearance of urban life. It is now rarely used by historians because of the value judgment it implies. • Medieval • Typically an adjective, can be a noun; of or relating to the Middle Ages : of or relating to the period of European history from about A.D. 500 to about 1500 • medium aevum • You can use this word instead of “The Middle Ages”.

  3. So why Medieval History? • 2 reasons • Learn it for its own sake. • History is fun! Right? Right?  • Understand our modern world more deeply • Medieval origins!

  4. Previous Medieval Tomes • Edward Gibbon • The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire • (18th Century – 1700’s) • A gloomy story of degeneration and decay. • Places a lot of blame on Christianity/Catholicism. • Jacob Burckhardt • The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy • (19th Century – 1800’s) • The modern state only became possible when Renaissance men turned their backs on “faith, illusion, and childish pursuits” of the MA. • Problems with these two views?

  5. Assumptions • WHEN WE ASSUME… • MA was grossly inferior to ancient world or modern world • Modern civilisation grew directly from Classical roots and that the MA was an aberration • In the cool kid terms, they retconned history • It’s not cool?

  6. Aberration Mr. C? • 1. the act of departing from the right, normal, or usual course. • 2. the act of deviating from the ordinary, usual, or normal type. • 3. deviation from truth or moral rectitude. • 4. mental irregularity or disorder, especially of a minor or temporary nature; lapse from a sound mental state.

  7. The Theme of THIS Class • The Middle Ages arise as a synthesis of the Roman Empire, the Church, and the German barbarians. • The MA impacts our culture today. • Are you impacted by your parents? • Were they impacted by your grandparents? • Ecetera (and all the rest)

  8. The Questions for THIS Class • When did the Roman Empire/Classical civilization end and the Middle Ages begin? • When did the Western world begin its religious tradition? • When did the West take the lead in technology? • When and how did the Western world develop distinct “governments” separate from ancient world, Byzantium, and Islam? • What pieces of the MA still exists in our world?

  9. Byzantium? • Byzantium • Constantinople • Istanbul

  10. Off to Rome! • Questions?

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