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Socio - economic and Political changes which occurred in western Europe between the 9th and 16th Centuries. After the fall of the Roman Empire, Many groups of Germanic People occupied regions of Italy, Spain and France.
The three orders are three social categories : Christian priests, landowning nobles and peasants.
The term'feudalism' has been used by historians to describe the economic, legal, polital and social relationships that existed in Europe in the medieval era.
Cathedral - Towns:
From the twelfth century, large churches - called cathedrals - were being built in France. These belonged to the monasteries Cathedrals were built of stone. The area around the cathedrals became more populated and they became centres of pilgrimage. Small towns developed around them. Stained glass was used for windows of the Cathedrals. During the day the sunlight would make the radiant and after Sunset, the light of candles would make them visible to people outside. The stained glass narrated the stories in the Bible through Pictures.
The Crisis of the Fourteenth Century
In Europe economic expansion slowed down. This was due to three factors.
1. In Northern Europe, by the end of the thirteenth century the warm summers of the previous 300 years had given way to bitterly cold summers. Seasons for growing crops were reduced by a month.
2. Trade was hit by a severe shortage of metal money because of a shortfall in the output of silver mines in Austria and Serbia. This forced governments to reduce the silver content of the currency and to mix it with cheaper metals.
3. Ships carrying goods from distant countries had started arriving in European ports. The ships came with rats carrying deadly bubonic plague infection (the Black Death).
In the 15th and 16th Centuries, European kings strengthened their military and financial power. The newmonarchs, LouisXI in France, Maximilian in Austria, Henry VII in England and Isabelle and Ferdinand in spain were absolutist rulers.
Hever Castle in England, Salisbury Cathedral in England, Nemours Castle in France, Canterbury Tales written by Chaucer.
Derived from the German word 'feud', which means a piece of Land', it refers to the kind of society that developed in medieval France and later in England and Italy.
It is derived from the Syrica abba, meaning father. An abbey was governed by an abbot or an abess.
Doon de Mayence:
Athirteenth century French poem to be sung recounting the adventures of Knights.
The word 'monastery' is derived from the greek word 'monos', meaning someone who lives alone
The Black Death:
Ships with rats carrying the deadly bubonic plague infection in Western Europe between 1347 and 1350.
The bigger towns had populations of about 30,000. They could be said to have formed a 'fourth'order.