Published on February 3, 2014
The Middle Ages 1066 - 1485
A Quick Review… Horrible Histories - Vikings
I. The Norman Conquest Began in October 1066 when Duke William of Normandy (William the Conqueror) defeated King Harold of England A. William was the cousin of English King Edward the Confessor who was childless when he died in 1066 - B. Harold, the Earl of Wessex, was crowned King, but William claimed Edward promised him the throne. William wanted to rule the Anglo-Saxons, not eliminate them. The two cultures intermingled.
I. The Norman Conquest cont’d C. One of William’s great administrative feats was the Domesday Book – an inventory of nearly every piece of property in England - For the first time people could be taxed based on what they owned HH: The Doomsday Book D. William divided the holdings of the fallen English landowners among his own followers - They created a new social system FEUDALISM Norman Conquest YouTube Link
II. Feudalism Feudalism is a pyramid system (caste system) based on a religious concept of hierarchy with God as the supreme overlord The Annoying Peasant from Monty Python
HH: Medieval War
II. Feudalism cont’d A. The primary duty of males above the serf class was military service to their lords. 1. 2. Brave Sir Robin Boys were trained from an early age to become warriors. They were dubbed a knight upon completion of their training. Knighthood was grounded in the feudal ideal of loyalty. The virtues of chivalry included: - Humility - Loyalty to God, king, and country - Courage - Honor - Being true to one’s word - Protection of the weak - Respect for women - Generosity - Fairness to enemies - Developing one’s skills - Determination to fight evil The Worst Jobs in History
II. Feudalism cont’d B. The feudal system did not always work if a vassal (a feudal tenant) chose not to honor his obligations to a weak overlord. - A man’s word was the cornerstone of social life C. Since they were not soldiers, women had no political rights in this system. - A woman’s social standing depended completely on her husband’s or father’s status. - Women were subservient to men, but they ran things when their husbands were away The Feudal System: Lego Style HH: Historical Fashion Fix
III. Chivalry Chivalry led to an idealized attitude toward women and gave rise to a new form of literature – the Romance A. Chivalry was a system of ideals and social codes governing the behavior of knights and gentlewomen. 1. Adhere to one’s oath of loyalty to the overlord 2. Observe certain rules of warfare 3. The Code of Chivalry did not extend to peasants a. The “weak” was widely interpreted as “noble women and children” b. Thus, knights were often brutal to common folk c. Knights could rape young peasant women without fear of reprisal, all because they were part of the upper class
III. Chivalry cont’d 4. Knights Should honor, serve, and do nothing to displease ladies and maidens Were members of the noble class socially as bearers of arms, economically as owners of horse and armor, and officially through religiousorientated ceremony Believed in the code of chivalry Promised to defend the weak Be courteous to all women Be loyal to their king Serve God at all times HH: I’m a Knight
III. Chivalry cont’d 4. Knights cont’d Were expected to be humble before others, especially their superiors. They were also expected to not “talk too much.” Were to give mercy to a vanquished enemy However, the very fact that knights were trained as men of war belied this code Conquest: Weird Weapons
III. Chivalry cont’d 4. Knights cont’d Came from rich families, but many were not the firstborn, so they did not receive an inheritance. This makes them little more than mercenaries. Plundered villages or cities that they captured, often defiling and destroying churches and other property Belonged to a multitude of specific Orders, each established for one purpose or another Most Orders emphasized components of piety, faith, humility, chastity or some other worthy ideals
The Most Well-Known Knights Hospitallers Teutonic Templars Lost Worlds: The Knights Templar
III. Chivalry cont’d B. Courtly love non-sexual acting in the name of a lady - A knight would wear his lady’s colors, but the lady remained pure and out of reach literary example : Lancelot and Guinevere crossed the line, and Camelot fell C. Women’s position in society did not improve
Let’s Take a Break from the Notes and discuss The Legend of King Arthur (a very shortened version)
What is a Legend? a traditional historical tale or collection of related tales popularly regarded as true, but usually contain a mixture of fact and fiction not to be confused with a myth (A traditional, typically ancient story dealing with supernatural beings, ancestors, or heroes that serves as a fundamental type in the worldview of a people, as by explaining aspects of the natural world or delineating the psychology, customs, or ideals of society)
Arthur’s childhood Arthur is the son of King Uther Pendragon, but is orphaned at a young age, unaware of his royal heritage Upon King Uther’s death, Merlin places the sword Excalibur (a magical sword given to Merlin by the Lady of the Lake) in a stone containing a spell that only the rightful king could remove it from the stone In need of a sword for his adoptive brother, Arthur pulls Excalibur from the stone, proving himself the rightful king of England
The New King’s First Challenge When Arthur assumes power, England is torn apart by war, is fractioned into citystates, and is on the brink of invasion by the Saxons To unite the country and defeat the Saxons, Arthur creates the Knights of the Round table. This is a revolutionary idea for the time in which each city state is represented by a knight. No one knight, including King Arthur himself, has more power than another. Arthur creates a democratic society. Because of this alliance, Arthur and his knights defeat the powerful Saxons in a series of 12 battles. It is said that the key to Arthur’s success is the sword Excalibur which he always takes into battle. Excalibur is said to make its bearer invincible.
Guinevere After the battles with the Saxons, England finally experiences peace. During this time, Arthur decides to marry the lovely young Guinevere. She does not see him before they are married. Arthur sends his most trusted knight Lancelot to fetch her. He marries her and they are happy for some time. Guinevere, upon seeing Lancelot, believes he is her husband to be and falls in love with him.
Mysteries and Evil Plots Arthur unknowingly had a half sister, Morgan de Fey. She believed that she was rightful ruler. In an attempts to usurp the throne, she slept with him and conceived a son. Morgan was said to be a witch and a powerful woman. Her son, Mordred, threatened Arthur’s marriage and his throne.
Mysteriesare and Evil Plots as any good legend there several mysterious stories that parallel the legend of King Arthur. King Arthur’s Camelot is one that is surrounded by countless stories of chivalry, fairies, magic and monsters. Some of the most famous of these stories are the following: Sir Gawain and the Green Knight Tristan and Isolde The White Stag The Lady of the Lake
A Countryof the Old Religiously Divided Arthur was a member Celtic religion (as evident by keeping a Royal wizard, Merlin) However, a new religion, Christianity, was beginning. Guinevere, Arthur’s wife, was a member of this religion. Arthur and Guinevere were having trouble conceiving. Guinevere believed this was because God was punishing Arthur for believing in pagan gods and encouraging his people to do so as well. To try to remedy the problem of an heir and heal the country, which had once again grown restless, Arthur established the Crusades.
Crusades and the Holy Grail Because the Celtic religion is based upon tangible items and nature, Arthur would need artifacts to convince his country to convert to Christianity. With the help of Merlin, Arthur decided to send his knights on a quest for religious artifacts, more commonly know as the Crusades. The body of Joseph of Arimathea The Spear of Destiny The Holy Grail King Solomon’s Temple Byzantine Crown of Thorns Holy Rood
The Holy Grail and The Templars The Holy Grail is the only artifact not recovered which explains its continued popularity Once the Holy Land was discovered, Arthur encouraged the English to visit it and created the Knights Templar** who were warriors sent to protect the road to the Holy Land. These warriors begin much of the problems that still exist in the Middle East today. *** Please note: This is one version of the story. Many scholars argue that this is not historically accurate.
Trouble At Home Holy Grail During the search for the Arthur’s life begins to fall apart. Some versions of the story have Arthur gone 10-20 years on his quest. During this time, Merlin is seduced by a young woman who steals his powers and imprisons him. Arthur is left without an advisor. In Arthur’s absence Mordred has been raised to hate Arthur and upon his return, Arthur unknowingly knights his own son and invites him to the round table. Guinevere has begun to realize her true love for Lancelot, not Arthur, during both their absences.
The Most Famous Affair in Literary History Mordred sees the possibility to overthrow his father in Lancelot. Mordred discovers Guinevere and Lancelot’s affair (the two people that Arthur loves most) and convinces the rest of the Round Table to capture Lancelot in the act. Lancelot escapes but Guinevere is captured and is to be burned at the stake for her treachery against the king. She is rescued at the last minute by Lancelot and the two escape and are never heard from again. Arthur does not follow them due to the problems of his kingdom. They are once again on the brink of war and Mordred has turned much of the Round Table against him.
The Fall of Camelot Metaphorically, the country already had fallen with the betrayal of Arthur’s only love and his best friend There are many versions of the story. All of which end with Arthur’s death in battle. Some of the versions include the following battles: Saxons Romans Goths French Irish Lancelot Morgan de fey Mordred All of the stories end with Arthur’s glorious death in battle, all that any legendary king or hero can ask for
True History Most scholars believe that a King named Arthur did defeat the Saxons in the 5th or 6th century. This is outlined in one of the oldest accounts of English History Geoffrey of Monmouth's fanciful and imaginative 12th-century Historia Regum Britanniae There are ruins of a castle in Cornwall that many believe to belong to Arthur Not much else is known; accounts of Arthur seem to be mysteriously missing from all Anglo-Saxon chronicles and other such history books.
III. Chivalry cont’d D. Etymology The word evolved from… Chevalier (French) Caballero (Spanish) Cavaliere (Italian) These words all mean “a warrior who fought on horseback”
III. Chivalry cont’d Some Big Ideas Associated with Courtly Love Marriage is no real excuse for not loving. He who is not jealous cannot love No one can be bound by a double love. It is well known that love is always increasing or decreasing. That which a lover takes against the will of his beloved has no relish. Boys do not love until they arrive at the age of maturity. When one lover dies, a widowhood of two years is required of the survivor. No one should be deprived of love without the very best of reasons. No one can love unless he is impelled by the persuasion of love. Love is always a stranger in the home of avarice. It is not proper to love any woman whom one would be ashamed to seek to marry. A true lover does not desire to embrace in love anyone except his beloved. Think about how this compares to modern associations of love before we look at more of these ideas…
III. Chivalry cont’d Some more ideas associated with courtly love When made public, love rarely endures. The easy attainment of love makes it of little value, difficulty of attainment makes it prized. Every lover regularly turns pale in the presence of his beloved. When a lover suddenly catches sight of his beloved, his heart palpitates. A new love puts to flight an old one. Good character alone makes any man worthy of love. If love diminishes, it quickly fails and rarely revives. A man in love is always apprehensive. Real jealousy always increases the feeling of love. Jealousy, and therefore love, are increased when one suspects his beloved. He whom the thought of love vexes eats and sleeps very little. Every act of a lover ends in the thought of his beloved. A true lover can never have enough of the solaces of his beloved. Love can deny nothing to love. A slight presumption causes a lover to suspect his beloved. A man who is vexed by too much passion usually does not love. A true lover is constantly and without intermission possessed by the thought of his beloved. Nothing forbids one woman being loved by two men or one man by two women.
The Twelve Chief Rules in Love 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. From The Art of Courtly Love by Andrea Capellanus Thou shalt avoid avarice like the deadly pestilence and shalt embrace its opposite. Thou shalt keep thyself chaste for the sake of her whom though lovest. Thou shalt not knowingly strive to break up a correct love affair that someone else is engaged in. Thou shalt not chose for thy love anyone whom a natural sense of shame forbids thee to marry. Be mindful completely to avoid falsehood. Thou shalt not have many who know of thy love affair.
The Twelve Chief Rules in Love From The Art of Courtly Love by Andrea Capellanus 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. Being obedient in all things to the commands of ladies, thou shalt ever strive to ally thyself to the service of Love In giving and receiving love’s solaces let modesty be ever present. Thou shalt speak no evil. Thou shalt not be a revealer of love affairs. Thou shalt be in all things polite and couteous. In practising the solaces of love thou shalt not exceed the desires of thy lover.
Chivalric Hero: Arthur beowulfandgrendel.com/v-web/gallery/albums/THE-GEAT-GALLERY/Iceland_ Beowulf_Grendel_2004_239.jpg&imgrefurl=http:// http://www.firstfoot.com/scotchmyth/images/King-Arthur-Butler-L.jpg Epic Hero: Beowulf
Epic Hero: Beowulf 1. Struggle is physical with a monster or warrior 2. Fights to save people Chivalric Hero: Arthur 1. Struggle is spiritual with ideals and standards 2. Fights to save ideals 3. Audience constantly at 3. Audience of leisure, war, fighting for wanting to be survival entertained
IV. Medieval Society For the most part medieval society centered around the feudal castle, but as the population grew, many people lived in towns and cities. A. This led to the eventual collapse of the European feudal system B. It led to the development of lower, middle, and upper-middle classes literary example: The Prologue in the Canterbury Tales C. These people were free, tied neither to the land nor to knighthood and chivalry - This point of view was expressed in ballads, in mystery and miracle plays, in cathedrals, and in municipal buildings
V. Specific Events that Influence English History and Literature Several specific events radically influence the course of English history and literature A. CRUSADES (1095-1270) were a series of wars waged by European Christians against Muslims 1. Jerusalem and the Holy Land was the prize 2. The Europeans failed, but they benefited enormously from contact with the higher civilization of the Middle East The Crusades HH Link
V. Specific Events that Influence English History and Literature cont’d B. The 1170 martyrdom of Thomas a Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury, led to greater power for the Church of Rome. Old School Trailer for Becket 1. Thomas, a Norman, has risen to great power under his friend King Henry II (reigned 1154-1189) 2. All Christians belonged to the Catholic Church 3. The pope in those days was enormously powerful and controlled most of the crowned heads of Europe 4. Henry hoped to gain the upper hand in disputes with the church, but often Thomas took the pope’s side 5. Four of Henry’s knights murdered Becket in his own cathedral. Becket became a martyr, and public outrage turned against King Henry 6. This outrage helped to develop the concept of corruption in the church because the church was allowed to gain greater power (show in TCT) 7. The medieval church did have one positive effect: it fostered cultural unity a. The church continued to be the center of learning b. The church fostered common beliefs and symbols
V. Specific Events that Influence English History and Literature cont’d C. In 1215 English barons forced King John (who was backed strongly by the pope) to sign the Magna Carta as an effort to curb the Church’s power 1. Heralded a return to older, democratic tendencies 2. This document later became the basis for English constitutional law
V. Specific Events that Influence English History and Literature cont’d D. The English lost the Hundred Years’ War (13371453) with France, but in the process they began to think of themselves as British rather than Anglo-Norman 1. This may be considered the first national war waged by England against France 2. Based on dubious claims to the throne of France by two English Kings: Edward III (reigned 1327-1377) and Henry V (reigned 1413-1422) 3. After the war England was no longer best represented by the knight. Instead, the were represented by the yeoman (small landowner) a. With this, modern democratic England was born b. An English national consciousness gradually developed
V. Specific Events that Influence English History and Literature cont’d E. The Black Death or bubonic plague (1348-1349) delivered another blow to feudalism 1. Very contagious; spread by fleas from infected rats 2. Reduced the nation’s population by 1/3 - This was approximately 34 million people - This caused a labor shortage which gave the lower class more leverage against their overlords 3. One long term result was the serfs’ freedom and greater power to the lower class 4. This led to the end of feudalism marking the end of the Middle Ages HH Bubonic Plague Bring Out Your Dead HH Peasants Plague
Common Remedies for the Black Death: 1. Apply sterile egg whites 2. Give the patient a treacle 3. Swaddle the patient and shave the sign of the cross into her head
VI. Health A. As the populations of medieval towns and cities increased, hygienic conditions worsened B. Medical knowledge was limited and an adequate health care system did not exist C. Antibiotics were not invented until the 1900s and it was almost impossible to cure disease without them Historical Paramedics
VI. Health Cont’d D. Many myths about health and hygiene existed 1. disease was spread by bad odors 2. disease of the body resulted from sins of the soul 3. many sought relief through meditation, prayer, pilgrimages, and other nonmedical methods
VI. Health Cont’d E. The body was viewed as part of the universe 1. four “humors,” or body fluids, were directly related to the four elements a. fire = yellow bile or choler b. water = phlegm c. earth = black bile d. air = blood 2. these elements had to be in balance to ensure health F. Bloodletting was a popular method of restoring health and “humors” G. Early surgery was often done by barbers without anesthesia The Worst Jobs in History: Leeches
Literature Connection Illuminated Manuscripts
Literature Connection The Canterbury Tales Geoffrey Chaucer 1387: Poem about the pilgrimage to St. Thomas a’ Becket’s shrine Composed in Middle English The Prologue in Middle English
Literature Connection The Pilgrimage to Becket’s Shrine Remember: Becket disagreed with King Henry II and was murdered in Canterbury Cathedral There have been several miracles in this cathedral After all the miracles, a shrine was put up in the cathedral Becket was canonized a saint People set out on a pilgrimage, to Canterbury Cathedral to pay homage to the shire of St. Thomas a’ Becket. Some believed that shrine had healing powers Canterbury Cathedral Visit
Literature Connection The Canterbury Tales SETTING: April, The Tabard Inn “Prologue”- 29 pilgrims, the narrator, and the inn host are introduced The 29 are spending the night at the Tabard Inn. The Narrator says he will describe and repeat everything he hears no matter how offensive. The Host proposes that each pilgrim tell 2 tales on the way there and back. The best tale will win dinner at the Inn
Literature Connection The Canterbury Tales The pilgrims are made up of all 3 divisions of class in medieval society: Feudal class The Church Merchant class
Literature Connection The Prologue Chaucer’s characterization was unlike anything ever written before. He creates a human encyclopedia by describing physical, social, mannerisms, beliefs, and morals of each character. The Characters After the pilgrims are introduced in the prologue each character tells his or her own tale. The Mark Steel Lectures
Review HH Review
The Canterbury Tales
Table of Contents The Journey Begins . . . England in the Middle Ages Focus question Geoffrey Chaucer The Canterbury Tales Travelers to Canterbury Chaucer’s Middle Ages Population Sir Gawain and the Green Knight The Green Knight Sir Gawain Works Cited
The Journey Begins . . . In October 1066, a daylong battle near Hastings, England, changed the course of history.
Geoffrey Chaucer c. 1343-1400 Considered the father of English poetry Wrote in the vernacular Served as a soldier, government servant, and member of Parliament in France, Italy and Spain, as well as England Introduced iambic pentameter First writer ever buried in Westminster Abbey
Background Geoffrey Chaucer wrote this story in the late 1300’s but never finished it. He wrote in the native language or vernacular of the Medieval period in Britain called Middle English.
The Cathedral at Canterbury The cathedral at Canterbury is the main cathedral of the Church of England. The shrine to the martyr Saint Thomas a Becket is located at this cathedral.
The Story Frame Twenty nine people that represent all aspects of Medieval society go on a pilgrimage to the cathedral at Canterbury in southeast England.
The Prologue Chaucer’s characters are going to pay respects to this shrine as a part of a religious pilgrimage. They all meet at a tavern to begin their journey.
Some of the characters The host of the tavern or innkeeper is the man who suggests that the pilgrims each tell a story on the way to entertain the group. Chaucer intended for each to tell 2 stories, but he only got to write one apiece.
The wife of Bath and the Pardoner,
The Priest and the Miller
The Knight and his Squire
The Canterbury Tales: Snapshot of an Age It frames a story of characters on a religious pilgrimage to Canterbury. The characters are a concise portrait of an entire nation. The pilgrimage is a quest narrative that moves from images of spring and awakening to penance, death, and eternal life. The characters tell stories that reflect “everyman” in the universal pilgrimage of life.
The Travelers to Canterbury Working Class Plowman Cook Miller Reeve Host Haberdasher Dyer Carpenter Weaver Carpetmaker
The Travelers to Canterbury Professional Class Military Knight, Squire, Yeoman Religious Nun, 3 Priests, Friar, Parson, Pardoner, Summoner Secular Cleric, Serjeant at Law, Merchant, Skipper, Doctor
The Travelers to Canterbury Upper Class Wife of Bath Franklin
Chaucer’s Snapshot of the Middle Ages Population
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