European Civilization in the Early Middle Ages, 750-1000

European Civilization in the
Early Middle Ages, 750 - 1000
Dr. Matthew’s
History 119
Europeans and the Environment
Sparsely populated, heavily forested
Less than 10 percent of land cultivated
Low crop yields
Improving weather after 700
Constant threat of natural disaster
The World of the Carolingians
Charlemagne and the Carolingian Empire (768 –
Pepin (751 – 768) deposed last Merovingian
Charlemagne from Carolus Magnus, or Charles the
Expansion of the Carolingian Empire
Army gathered each spring for campaign
Carolingians crush the Lombards in Italy (773)
Disastrous campaign in Spain (777)
Campaigns against the Saxons
Bavarians, Slavs and Avars
Map 8.1: The Carolingian Empire
Governing Charlemagne’s
Governing the Empire
Income from royal estates
Counts as administrators
Missi Dominici
System very inefficient
Help from the Church
Charlemagne as Emperor
Pope Leo III (795 – 816)
Charlemagne crowned emperor in 800
The Carolingian Intellectual
Carolingian Miniscule
Carolingian Renaissance
Alcuin of Northumbria
Monks as Copyists
Life in the Carolingian World:
The Church, Marriage and
Divorce prohibited
The nuclear family
Christianity and Sexuality
Sexual activity permitted
only within marriage
Travel and Hospitality
Diet and Health
Bread as the basic staple
Pork, wild game, dairy,
eggs, vegetables
Gluttony and drunkenness
Medical practices
Herbs and Bbleeding
Disintegration of the Carolingian
Louis the Pious (814 – 840)
Treaty of Verdun (843)
• Charles the Bald (843 – 877): Western Section
• Louis the German (843 – 876): Eastern Section
• Lothair (840 – 855): Middle Section
Emergence of two different cultures
Conflicts between the three sons of Louis
the Pious
Invasions of the Ninth and Tenth
Muslims and Magyars
Muslims attack in Mediterranean
Magyars settled in modern day Hungary
The Vikings
Germanic people from Scandinavia
Warriors and shipbuilders
Ireland, England and France
Iceland, Greenland and Newfoundland
Map 8.2: Invasions of the Ninth
and Tenth Centuries
Castle at Les Baux Constructed as a Refuge from
Saracen raids
Eight Century – Provence, France
Replica of a Viking house in Denmark
The Emerging World of Lords
and Vassals
Lords and Vassals
Larger horses and stirrups
Act of Homage
Grant of land in exchange for military service
Fragmented authority in the ninth century
Mutual obligations of lord and vassal
A Knight’s Equipment Showing
Saddle and Stirrups
New Political Configurations in the
Tenth Century
The Eastern Franks
The Saxon dynasty
Otto I (936 – 973)
The Western Franks
The Capetians
Hugh Capet (987 – 996)
Anglo-Saxon England
Unification under Alfred the Great (871 – 899)
Growth of monarchial government
The Manorial System
The Manor
Peasants and Serfs
60% of European population had become serfs by ninth
Working the demesne (lord’s land) and paying rents
Lord’s legal rights over the serfs
Manorial administration
Trade in Luxury Goods
Map 8.3: A Typical Manor
The Zenith of Byzantine
Michael III (842 – 867)
Foreign attacks continue
Differences with the West
The Macedonian Dynasty (867 – 1081)
Increased prosperity
Conversion of the Prince of Kiev, Russia
Military Offensive in the tenth century
Basil II (976 – 1025)
Emperor Leo VI
The Slavic Peoples of Central
and Eastern Europe
Invasion and Assimilation
Western Slavs
Poland and Bohemia
Conversion by Germans
Southern Slavs
Conversion by the Byzantine Empire
Eastern Slavs
Encounters with Vikings
The “Rus”
Vladimir (c. 980 – 1015)
Map 8.4: The Migrations of the
The World of Islam
The Umayyad Dynasty
Abu al-Abbas puts an end to the Umayyads (750)
The Abbasid Dynasty
New Capital in Baghdad
Harun al-Rashed (786 – 809)
Al-Ma’mun (813 – 833)
Spain and the Continuation of the Umayyads
Abd al-Rahman (756)
Fatimid Egypt (973)
Islamic Civilization
Cordova – Population of 100,000
Science and Philosophy
Paper and Books
Mathematics and Natural Sciences
Chemistry and Medicine
Ibn Sina (980 – 1037)
• Medical Encyclopedia
Discussion Questions
How was Charlemagne able to unite and govern his large
What role did the Church play on family and everyday life
in the Carolingian world?
Why were the invasions of the Ninth and Tenth Centuries
so damaging to Europe?
What is the relationship between feudalism and
What liberties did peasants give up in exchange for land
and protection from their lords?
What impact did the Byzantine world have on the Slavic
people of Central and Eastern Europe and vice versa?
What were the factors that contributed to the flourishing of
Islamic Civilization under the the Abbasids?