Feudalism and the Rise of the Church

Unit IV
 Term for system of
political and social order
in Medieval Western
 New economic pattern
based on land ownership
 The manor became the
main economic unit.
 Feudal system developed
 King at top
 Lords, vassals, and
 Those who fight: nobles and
 Those who pray: monks,
nuns, leaders of the Church
 Those who work: peasants
 Social class is usually
inherited; Most peasants are
serfs—people lawfully
bound to place of birth
 What they produce belongs
to their lord
 Term for economic
System of Medieval
 Medieval fiefs, include
lord’s house, church,
workshops, village. It’s a
large plot of land
 Peasants pay taxes to use
A depiction of a Medial Fief.
mill and bakery; pay a tithe
to priest
 Serfs live in crowded
cottages with dirt floors,
straw for beds
 Daily grind of raising crops,
livestock, feeding and
clothing family
 Serfs generally accept their
lives as part of God’s plan
 Leather saddle and
stirrups enable knights to
handle heavy weapons
In 700s, mounted
knights become most
important part of an
By 1000s, western Europe
is a battleground of
warring nobles
Feudal lords raise private
armies of knights
Knights rewarded with
land; provides income
needed for weapons
Knights’ other activities
help train them for
 The Code of Chivalry
 By 1100s, knights obey code
of chivalry—a set of ideals
on how to act
 They are to protect weak
and poor; serve feudal lord,
God, chosen lady
 Knighthood and the Code
of Chivalry
 Brutal reality of warfare
 Castles are huge fortress
where lords live
 Attacking armies use
wide range of strategies
and weapons
 Pageantry, The skills of
knights shown off, part
of a mans commitment
to chivalry
 A Knight’s Training
 Boys begin to train for
knighthood at age 7;
usually knighted at 21
 Knights gain experience
in local wars and
 Guilds organization of
people in the same
Merchant guilds begin
first; they keep prices up,
provide security
Guilds set standards for
quality, prices, wages,
working conditions
Avoided changed in
The wealth of guilds
influences government
and economy
 Trade fairs are held several
times a year in towns
Trade routes open to Asia,
North Africa, and Byzantine
Merchants develop credit to
avoid carrying large sums of
Merchants play a bigger role in
Merchants take out loans to
purchase goods, and banking
Economic changes lead to the
growth of cities and of paying
 All medieval Christians
expected to obey canon law
which governed religious
 Popes have power over
political leaders through
threat of
 Excommunication—
banishment from
Church, damnation
 Interdiction—king’s
subjects denied
sacraments and services
 Kings and emperors
expected to obey pope’s
 Church builds
where monks live to
study and serve God
 Monks and Nuns
vow celibacy and
improving the lives
of others
 Monks establish
schools, preserve
learning through
 Some Church officials marry
even though the Church
objects (celibacy)
Some officials practice
simony—selling religious
Kings use lay investiture to
appoint secular bishops
Reformers believe only the
Church should appoint
Starting in 1100s, popes
reorganize Church like a
The King James Bible
 Pope Greg0ory VII bans
lay investiture—kings
appointing Church
 Henry IV (Germany)
orders pope to resign;
Gregory VIII
excommunicates Henry
 Henry goes to Canossa,
Italy, to beg Gregory for
 Gregory forgives Henry
 Concordat of Worms
Compromise: pope
anoints bishops, emperor
can veto appointment