Fall 2010

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McMaster University
Bernice Kaczynski

History 2CC3 Notes The Medieval World 4001050Fall 2010DrKaczynskiLate Roman Empire Medieval periodinstitutions of the late roman empire Christianity barbarians nd Height of the Roman Empire was the 2 Century was very largepart of the reasons that it fell it got to large and diverse Reasons for fall Time of imperial crisis Serious change that indicates a new type of world Economic decline deficiency with the method of production They relied on slave labour and were not able to adapt when technology was needed DiseaseDifficulty defending the empire The army would normally recruit from Italy when soldiers retired they were given a plot of land No longer need for this kind of army They began recruiting less from Italy and more from different areas therefore there was not as much loyalty to Rome Internal trade decline desire from east but not much coming into Rome Led to a great inflationdebase coins so that they were worth less Crisis in agricultural life use to be citizen farmers but that changed Large estates bought farms and citizen farmers moved into citiesUrban poor No way to orderly transfer power when an emperor diedrdth Medieval world origin is in the disruption of the 3 Century and reconstruction of the 4given reprieve under Diocletian Last great prosecutor of ChristiansHe put an end to the period of turmoil by controlling violence Notion of the empire changed abandons first among equals He claims he was chosen by God which sets him aparthe emphasized his superiority Found away to centralize the empire he divided the empire into two parts the east and the west He assumed control of the easttetarchy rule of four 2 emperors two subemperors 4 prefects The prefectures answered to the AugustusConstantine equal of apostles Civil war because the tetarchy fell apartconverted to Christianity which led to the rise of Christianity The end of prosecutionestablished new imperial capital in Byzantium Impact of ChristianityChristian religion not widespread until 300s Natural interest of religion because of the time of instability people began seeking the supernatural Romestate religion designed to maintain political structure cult of deified emperor Emperor cult and civil cult very impersonalpersonal religion for personal solution began to interest people mystery religions began to fill void Cult of mythras popular in the army Was an all male cultWhat all the cults had in common was that they emphasized an emotional experience They offered Communion with God in this life You can individually connect promised eternal salvation Promise of an after life Christianity developed in the context of these cults Why did it become a dominant religion Religious emperors turned it from tolerant to prosecution dangerousrefused to worship the emperor opposed to violence met in private From the point of view of pagans Christians were atheist because they did not worship the emperor Constantine Battle of Milivian Bridge he won the battle and became the emperor of the west Why did Constantine convert he was indifferent to religion He only converted to bring stability to the empire Unifying ideology he underwent the real Christian experience mythical experience as both began and Christian underwent conversion but may not have been completely Christian What does his conversion mean for the development of Christianity Edict of Malian 313 toleration of religion including Christianity whatever gods there are may they move towards us Christian clergy given some of the same perks as pagan priests Thedosius I made Christianity the official religion of the roman empire more and more people converted to Christianity once the emperor made it ok What does it mean for the Church Special privilegessupport the building of churches 321 Sunday was made a holiday Constantine and his successorschampion of the church emperor was the representation of God on earth expected the support of the church to maintain unification equal of the apostles Emperors became protectors of the faith important to determine limits of the church and stateChristianity and Classical culture Almost every aspect of Christianity was shaped by Greco Roman civilization Reaction adaptation modification Many leaders were recent converts to Christianity Spread of Christianity was opposed by intellectuals and most elites Julian 361363 defender of paganism He was the nephew of Constantine he grew up Christian but converted to paganism The Apostate one who turned away from religion One of the most educated emperors in centuries He tried to reverse the religious policies reinstituted pagan ceremonies try to enhance pagan priests tried to prove that the pagan gods do exist he rebuilt temples he tried to prohibit Christians from teaching People were not interested in the intellectualized pagan cults After Julian the emperors were always Christian but there were still pagan elite were still in the government Dilemma to Christian church pagan culture was everywhere Initial response hostilityend of world was near and considered education useless tertullian Aristotle Plato animals of selfglorification antiintellectualnd Towards the end of the 2 century intellectuals converted in adult life renounce knowledge or risk renouncing faith to embrace glory of classical literature St Jerome beat on himself because he thought was sinning because he was reading classical literatureChristians often came to terms with classical culture and adapted it to serve the purpose of Christianity Educated Romans didnt like the Latin the gospels were written in St Jerome vulgate bible wrote in common Latin instead of classical Latin St Ambrose his life illustrates blending old paganism and new ChristianityChristian Monasticism Monetary was one of the most important institutions of the Middle Ages Benedict Rule constitutional building institution perfectly adapted to the needs of medieval society It combined Christian and roman values They were centers of learning meditation hospitals and hotels for travellers The church leaders took on social roles that we would see as roles usually preformed by the stateConcept of Monasticism Expression of asceticismdiscipline bodies can free their spirit to connect with Godst 1 forms eastern Mediterranean in the Egyptian desertwanted to live like hermits to get away from the city avoid indulgence little food slept little avoided wearing soft clothing bathing They believed that If you denied the material world you could peruse the spiritual world The fathers of the desert competed with each otherspiritual athletes
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