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§ 3. Man in the Middle Ages (textbook)

§ 3. Man in Middle


You know

  • As the Middle Ages consisted relationship between man and nature?
  • What was the population of medieval Europe?
  • What people ate, drank, dressed as where lived?
  • What evil man waiting for ages?
  • What is the internal colonization?


1. Interaction man and nature in the early Middle Ages

In the Middle Ages life as in ancient days continued to remain dependent on climatic conditions. They determined by lifestyle, occupation and even the nature of man.

In the early Middle Ages (V-th century.) When the climate compared with ancient times was more humid and warm most of Europe was covered with forests. Even in Italy and Spain, where antiquity was ruined a lot of land, forests were more than fields. Among this sea of forest were scattered in small settlements, which were joined to the piece of land that processed for growing vegetables, legumes and cereals.


During the early Middle Ages were mostly lost farming traditions of ancient times, because peasant farms usually get into the development of forest resources. Forest in those days was the main source life and income. There vyhanyalysya graze herds of cattle. There, especially in oak forests fall recruited fat pig vidhodovuyuchys on an acorn. This farmer receives for the winter stock guaranteed clear soft food. In the forest zahotovlyuvalysya firewood for heating and vyhotovlyalosya charcoal, an important component for production of iron implements and weapons. Wood gave and building materials, For the stone at that time for construction was rare. Besides the forest was a place for collection of various fruits and berries that have made poor food diversity in human Middle Ages. Especially important for those times was the honey of wild bees, including the fact that sugar is not known for a long time. In all kinds of resinous wood were collected substances for making torches and lamps. Also zahotovlyuvalysya bark oak, without which it would be possible vychynyaty skins of animals. Ashes of burned shrubs brush used for bleaching or dyeing fabrics. Moreover, woods and meadows collecting herbs - only those drugs times.

Important was the forest for hunting. All barbarians were skillful hunters. To hunt in the forest was more suitable for the domesticated they that, except dogs, falcons, ferret and even deer that vymanyuvaly their wild relatives. Total forest gave everyday people the opportunity, even in the hungry years survive. A famine at that time happened quite often.

Wood was an important component for the wealthy society. Most of the holdings of large landowners were exactly woodlands. According to historians forest offered them a third of revenue. Except that here they comfort themselves hunting.


Kapitulyariy Vilis (early ninth century).

Let the good Follow our forests and groves, and where there is room for clearance, that our we save do, and let them see to it that the fields do not capture the forest; and must be such forests, where many can not hack the trees or cause them harmful, and let them watch game in the forest, and may also engage in hawk and kite for our hunt, and may collect payment, which belongs to us for it. And yes we save if they fed pigs in the forest, let the managers or their people, let they are the first pay tithes as to give an example to others, then others hired.


1. What gives instructions to their stewards liege?

2. What was the superior attitude to the forest?

3. What can explain his attitude is?


At the same time the woods went out real or fictional danger. Wood was the horizon for medieval man, the boundary between holdings seniors. Since the forest `appeared to hungry wolves, robbers, burglars and conquerors. Not surprisingly, in fairy tales and legends that were born in those times, timber and its inhabitants, necessary characters.

Diversity in a monotonous landscape only makes a landscape that some basic training and koryhuvav lives. In mountainous areas dominated farming, in plain - farming.


2. Population. Dashing medieval man

Medieval Europe was inhabited by peoples of the former Romanised Roman Empire, Greeks, Celts, Germans, Slavs, Thracians, Balts, Finno-Finns. The population can be set only approximately. Scientists believe that after the collapse of the Roman Empire population in Europe has declined.

What caused this decline? One reason historians see Plague. This most terrible disease for the first time literally medieval devastated Europe in the VI century. The epidemic lasted for half a century, and sometimes reduced the population by half. People perceived "black death" as a disaster approximation of the Last Judgement. Salvation from the plague was not, except to flee from the scene epidemic quickly, as far as possible to return later.


How many people lived in Europe in the Middle Ages? This issue is quite complex, because nobody  then did not hold census population in the modern sense. However, some rulers and feudal lords back in those days trying to know how many subjects are and what they have in the lands to to find out how much they will collect taxes and then have the income. For this purpose, description of the holdings held with all residents. Most fundamentala census was carried out by Norman conquerors of England in 1086 All lists of information among the people called "Domesday Book". For modern these scientists and other documents are an important source for identification of the number of ` Domestic contemporary Europe. As a result of `research found that for the period medieval population of Europe grew. Is most active took place in the XI-XIII. Also, scientists from the `found that in V - VI century. little place very significant population reduction as a result of epidemics of various diseases, infringement of your life during the Roman Empire. In  XIV - XV centuries. happening again population reduction as a result of unprecedented pandemic plague.


The biggest disaster of the Middle Ages were hunger, disease, epidemics and war. Constant threat of hunger - a characteristic medieval society. Insufficient development of technology led to poor harvests. The state of independent farmers - the majority of producers agricultural products - not prompted them to increase yields. Medieval Europe was constantly on the verge of starvation. Enough has been drought prolonged rains or locust invasion and the level of the population fell sharply in many regions.


Story Burgundian monk Raul Hlabera the famine 1027 - 1030 рр. in Normandy

? famine began strengthened throughout the land, and the threat of death appeared to almost all kinds human? There were also several days, which could raise bread? Continuous rains flooded the earth so that within three years there were no grooves suitable for cultivation. And harvest weeds? covered the surface of all the fields?

When eaten all the cattle and poultry, hunger became more doshkulyaty people, they began devouring the meat and do other untold things. To avoid death, some dug roots and gathered forest algae? people pozhyraly meat men?, markets began to appear cooked cholovichyna? Some attacked the hungry travelers, and murdered their pozhyraly?, showed the children an apple or an egg, they took away in a secluded place, killed and ate. The famine raged for three years. The dead were so numerous that their not managed to bury? "

Why medieval man believed God's punishment hunger and was helpless before him?


Those who perished from hunger, suffering from disease. Unfortunate food, poor food, lack of understanding of hygiene, lack of basic medical care did medieval people extremely vulnerable to various diseases. The highest mortality was from tuberculosis, malaria, leprosy, cholera, dysentery, typhoid.

Helpless and desperate people saw in them the divine punishment and sought assistance from the saints. And their in medieval Europe was over 20. It was believed that the pilgrimage and to touch their Relicscures the disease.

When the disease moved into the epidemic, they devastated huge areas. Worst was the plague. Panic that she raised in the medieval man at that time reflected the most common prayer to God: "From plague, famine and war, deliver us, O Lord!"

Equally disastrous consequences had the war. For Medieval Europe continuously suffered from predatory raids, aggressive and internecine wars, foreign invasions. War reduced or completely destroyed the meager food supplies, argued to begging people weakening their ability to resist diseases and epidemics.

All Rights medieval disasters led to what average life expectancy was 22 - 32 years. Was extremely high infant mortality. Age in 1970 survived one. Rare exceptions considered cases of people in life know their grandparents, or those more long lived with them together.


3. Migration

Limited forest environment in which people lived ages, causing her limited horizons. But it is not evidence that people in the Middle Ages were bezvylaznymy homebody, property are connected to their plot of land surrounded by forest. Conversely, people in this period were very mobile and it can be argued that society all the time there were in motion. At first it is were echoes of the Great Migrations. Later in the way people pushed have other causes. Along the roads of Europe were moving villagers alone and in groups, looking for a better life; knight - in search of deeds and beautiful ladies, monks - moving from monastery to monastery, students who go to famous schools and universities, pilgrims and all kinds of beggars and vagrants. What pushed these people to long and dangerous way? There were several reasons, among them can be identified following:

-         Medieval society was very poor, usually all the usual property person could fit in a small handbag, and so in search of better life man was ready to go world-Correspondence; besides all the land belonged to the seniors, and farmer only had it not `property yazuvalo it to her;

-         Knights to get their fief, were ready to go on any trip and settle there, where it received;

-         Christianity as it leads people on a long journey - to places of pilgrimage, to atone for their sins:

-         also people fleeing from disease epidemics, famine, wars and all other ills.

 Only the beginning Fourteenth century. craving for their homeland is a small hill. Farmers obzavodyatsya considerable property, the powerful feudal castles, growing city. On the roads of Europe mostly there are only beggars and sick, as well as merchants. Europeans are homebody.


4. Home

View homes depend on natural conditions, terrain, type of employment and living standards of its owner. Peasant houses almost unchanged from ancient times to the twentieth century. But the town houses, palaces and castles in medium ages have changed. Built houses, depending on the financial position and available materials, wood, stone or adobe did. Precious stones cost, so used mainly for construction of churches, palaces and locks.

Joint housing for various social classes in the early Middle Ages was an internal planning. Most buildings are not were individual rooms. People slept, ate and cooked in the same room. Only on XI - XIII. wealthy city dwellers and villagers have begun to separate from the bedroom kitchens and dining rooms. Many rooms appeared in the palaces and castles of Representatives nobility. However, all rooms located one after another, and to get from one part of the palace to another, had to go all premises.


In most European peasant houses built of wood, on South, where this material does not suffice, provided the advantage of stone. Roof covered with straw or reeds. In one room sleeping, cooked, ate. Heating and cooking facilities was carried out through open fire, which gradually replaced by the oven. When dissolved in fire, smoke coming out through hole in the ceiling. Chimneys came later. The small window had no windows, they covered the wooden shuttered, skin or bladder. Cold season peasant Families often lived in the same building with livestock.

All home furnishings consisted of crudely shot down the table, several benches along the walls, boxes for storing holiday dress for years and it nazhyvaly transmitted by inheritance. Slept on a wide bed or on the benches. Bed was a mattress or mattress, packed with straw


Middle man in your life did not have possibilities remain in solitude. Proof of this was that time furniture. Bed and done really great and it is usually in addition to the hosts, rested as guests. It was considered a sign of hospitality. Canopy - a "roof" over bed - defended the rest of the insects were abundant in houses.

Ordinary people mostly sleeping on benches or chests. Most furniture was simple and rough work. However wealthy ordered furniture craftsmen carved, inlaid with precious metals and stones. Usual for our cases did not exist - things were kept in chests. Cases Reach drawers have spread from Italy, where they began making in the XII century.

Opalyuvaly house fires or fireplaces. Furnaces were only in the early fourteenth century. when they borrowed in the Nordic peoples and the Slavs. Lit candles and home sebaceous oil lamps. Dear wax candles could buy only wealthy people.

The view of most medieval European villages answered saying: "My house - my fortress." And there were many serious grounds.


5. Food and Beverage

The vast majority of Europeans ate enough modestly. Ate, usually twice a day: morning and evening. Daily meals were Rye bread, cereals, beans, turnips, cabbage, grain soup with garlic or onion. Meat eating enough. Moreover, within a year had 166 days of fasting, when forbidden to eat meat dishes. Much more in the diet was fish. Of sweets known only honey. Sugar was introduced to Europe from the East in the thirteenth century. and was very expensive. Fruits and vegetables consumed very little.

The nature of the diet of the nobility and the poor differed, mainly consumed not quality, its quantity. In castles ate more meat, and many were game, as hunting was considered a privilege nobility. Wealthy and liked to cook amazing dishes like roasted peacocks or swans or paste from nightingale reed. By eating oriental spices added - pepper, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon. However, their cost (selling spices weight in gold) not everyone was affordable.

In medieval Europe saw a lot: in the south - the wine, the north - beer. Instead zavaryuvaly tea herbs.

Tableware most Europeans - bowls, mugs - was very simple, made of clay or tin. Items made of silver or gold enjoyed only know. No forks, spoons at the table eating. Roasts cut with a knife and eat with your hands. Peasants ate food from a bowl with the family. Nobility at banquets put on two one bowl and cup for wine. Bones cast under the table and his hands wiping cloth.


6. Clothing and Jewelry

Climatic conditions in most European countries demanded Dress warmer than ubyralysya Romans. Unlike ancient praise beauty of the human body, the church considered sinful flesh, and insisting that it should cover the clothes.

For a long time women's and men's clothing was similar: long, knee-shirt, short pants, top shirt, coat. In the XII century. he started to increasingly differ, the first signs of fashion. Change Style clothing of that time reflect social preferences. Men started wearing thick stockings, which in the XIV century. turned into trousers, women only imbibed skirts. However, the opportunity to follow fashion representatives were mainly wealthy. Church disapproved fashion elite capture.


From peasant clothes usually worn linen kamyzu-shirtand pants to the knees or even ankles. Floor kamyzyanother wore a long shirt with long sleeves and wide (blouse). Upper clothing was a coat, pulled on the shoulders of fastener (fibula). In winter, worn or rudely brushed sheep casing or a warm cloak of thick fabric or fur.


Clothes hide the man's place in society. In rich attire prevailed bright colors, cotton and silk fabrics. Underclass vdovolnyalasya dark clothing of coarse homespun cloth. Footwear for men and women were leather hostronosi shoes without hard soles. Most poor people Chagall rural roads or city streets in a mud wooden shoes or even barefoot. Headwear emerged in the XIII century. and from that time continuously changed. Usual gloves came in the middle ages important. Shake hands they considered an insult, and throw the gauntlet was an expression of someone contempt and a challenge to fight.

Nobility liked to add variety to your clothing Jewelry. Men and women wore rings, bracelets, belts, chains. Very often these things were unique jewelry. For the poor it was all unattainable. And not only because of cost but also because it was prohibited by law. Significant funds spent on cosmetics affluent women and perfume, which brought with eastern merchants. They were jealous of representatives of the fair half of mankind who could not afford such luxury, but tried to keep pace with fashion.


7. Internal colonization

At the end of XI century. population of medieval Europe for the first time began to feel that it closely on its continent. Way of the wandering knight, pondering where to find a possession in which the war to participate and gain land. Farmers also began to condemn land, and to give our prohoduvatysya part of their feudal lords. This forced the Europeans to start colonization- Development of new lands. Sometimes active European colonization was the whole period of XI - XIII centuries.

In the Middle Ages distinguish military (external) and internal colonization. Military colonization was aimed at capturing new lands by force of arms outside the spread of Western Christian civilization. Military colonization of the Europeans was aimed at the Iberian Peninsula, where was conducted fight with the Arabs and was called Reconquista (reconquer release), in Palestine Where carried out during the Crusades cause the release of the Holy Sepulcher, in the Baltic States, where the flag of anti- Pagans actually nyschylosya local population more.


Internal colonization - is developing an array of free land to farmers in Europe. At the time, free areas in Europe is lacking. It was just a lot of work to make that they gave yields and feed people. New farmers settled the land with great difficulties, but the threat of bad harvests and hunger pushed them to do so. They cut down forests, swamps osushuvaly and turned them into fertile fields. That process was very difficult, exhausting and time-consuming. Only a few generations peasant family could change unsuitable for agriculture A fruitful area for Niva. Typically mastered extension of the land was existing fields.

Seniors support the efforts of the villagers, they understand: development of new land will bring population growth, because then more people will prohoduvatysya, maybe even have new villages, whose inhabitants they pay taxes and they are even more rich. Therefore feudal encouraged farmers to cultivation of virgin land, freeing them for some time taxes.

The need for land to the peasants even pushing on the offensive sea. Thus, residents of the Netherlands built a dam and gradually fought at sea scraps of land, turning them into suburbs. Competitions and water rights floods lasted for centuries. Sometimes, during a sea storm flood drained earth, but people restoring the dam, and again instead of the waves zelenily Ottawa.

To make such a grandiose attack on the nature They needed new tools and various technical inventions. Most new implements or methods of agriculture were not invented at a time when Europeans expand their living space (XI-XIII.), but considerably earlier. However, at this time, they became widely available and played decisive role. For deforestation near the chopper began to use heavy ax. For plowing new land was used heavy wheeled plow, in through which clamps and harness were to harness the horse. Clamp moved gravitate work for a horse from the neck to the chest that did not contribute to the rapid exhaustion. A horseshoe-shaped iron for the horse were protected against injury. For the cultivation of land became use heavy iron harrows. Thanks to the plow and harrow could develop more difficult, but fertile soils. An important element of rural landscape were windmills, borrowed from the East.

Along with technical innovations and in establishing new tillage technologies. In most areas of Europe was confirmed trohpillya. Land that was before the peasant, he divided into three parts. Home zasivalasya part of autumn winter crop. The second spring spring. Third - rest, that was under steam. The following year, leaving the first field in pairs, the second planted winter, and third - spring crops. Besides carried out by rotation. At the same box, not sown several years in a row and one tuzh same culture. Were used organic fertilizers. These changes in techniques and technologies have enabled some increase yield.


Rural life. Byzantine miniature XI.


Internal colonization had significant positive effects. Yes Europe's population doubled. It was possible to get rid of constant hunger ghosts. Changed diet: grains and Ogorodnyi culture gradually superseded gifts forests. For several centuries of hard human labor instead of Europe forest gradually emerged Field Europe.


8. The crisis of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries.

Top of the XIV century. development of Europe vpovilnyvsya, and since 1316, when there was famine, even stopped. Economy Europe has entered a strip of deep crisis, which she was able to overcome only a hundred years. What, was caused by this crisis?

When growing population of Western Europe, respectively, increased demand for grain and other food products. To meet it, began to use the land of little value for crops growing, for essentially increase yields on already used land did not know how. But even largest yields barely enough to feed all. Therefore, a small harvest and cold winter could lead to disaster. And ever more frequent crop failures: from early fourteenth century. in Europe have changed natural conditions - winter were cooler, fits more rain.

To escape from hunger, some farmers began move to the cities, hoping that by finding work, they can buy afford more food. But the large influx of labor and the father of the problem of unemployment fall in earnings. In 1316 Europe has covered famine in the coming years was repeated. Famine led to serious consequences: decreased fertility, decreased number of marriages, and epidemics spread revolt poor segments of society. These troubles plague added that a few years spread throughout Europe.

In October, 1347 to the port of Messina in Sicily arrived ship. Sat at the oars men, whose bodies were covered with dark Blisters that bleeding and hnoyilysya. Sailors tormented by pain, they died a few days after onset of signs of illness. Ship influx of Kafi, whose inhabitants fled the city, surrounded by Mongols. Latest from the despair that can not take the city, thrown outside the walls of several dead bodies of plague. The city started the epidemic, and the inhabitants fled. They arrived in Sicily. With their ship got here rats that were with fleas peddle infection. So spread the epidemic, named "Black death". Plague manifested in two forms: bubonic and pneumonic. The first passed through bites of infected fleas, the second - through coughing or breathing impressed lungs. Second form was terrible, because it died from all patients, while the first - 80%. Since then struck Europe two active plague, the disease quickly mowed people and spread with lightning speed. In just three years the plague killed a quarter European population - about 25million people.

The causes of this disaster, no one system did not know, but terrified people were ready to believe anything to find the culprit. And such "Guilty" were: Jews poisoned wells, to destroy Christians. Europe was hit Jewish pogroms. Thus, in the town Saint Veltene was Jews burned alive in 2000. This attitude toward Jews explained that most of the population they perceived as wrong: They pray not because God killed Christ, lead a different lifestyle and more. Escaping from persecution, they fled to Poland and Lithuania, where the attitude to them was more tolerant.


European Jews. XV century.


In a letter to Pope Clement VI

In the year 1348 from BC almost the entire surface of the earth there is such a mortality, which previously was not. Living just enough to bury the dead, alive or turned away from them with disgust. A terrible fear seized all, and when someone appeared ulcer or tumor?, then that person is not rendered any assistance, and relatives turned away from it? Many died from what they were refused treatment? Many, whose thought was doomed? to death? was taken to the pits where they zaryvaly, and many was buried alive? This plague lasted for two years in a row?

No one could hear the bells, and no one cried, no matter how he died family and friends - almost everyone was waiting for death? People said and believed: it is end of the world.

How can we explain this behavior people?


But the world did not end nastavav, life continued. Bede fourteenth century. but a sharp decrease in population and mass expulsion of Jews have given great impetus shift in the economic development of Europe. Those who survived, especially residents cities, property owners were dead. After the terrible years were unprecedented rich people - the founders of the future and merchant banking dynasties. So Commercial life in Europe not only died, but instead flourished. Particularly increased the demand for prestige goods (expensive fabrics, jewelry, etc.) all sorts of delicacies, which they bought new rich and mighty.

Europe zahlynulasya finding money. Landowners who by times of plague lost a lot of dependent peasants and profits sought by any price increase them: some farmers demanded their money, others were forced to more work. In turn, farmers tried to cultivate the fields that can be easily sold: vegetables, grapes, plants, with some dyes. Proceeds was enough money to pay landowners and buy plenty of bread, brought from Eastern Europe. Pohlyblyuvalosya population stratification not based on occupation and place in society and the poor and the rich that worsening relations in society and caused the poor performances of powerful walks of life. Jacquerie in France, the revolt Uota Tyler in England, the revolt wool comber (chompi) In Florence and others. At the end of Medieval life is fundamentally differed on what it was in early Middle Ages.


Check how to remember

  1. Is it fair to call the contemporary Europe, "a country of forests?
  2. What gave the forest a man?
  3. What is migration? Why in the early Middle Ages, Europeans were unwilling      stay in one place?
  4. Zmalyuyte look ordinary man medieval villages.
  5. What they ate during the Middle Ages? Make a list of basic products.
  6. What clothes worn by people of the Middle Ages?
  7. What evil threatened the medieval man?
  8. What is the internal colonization? Explain what it was called.
  9. What is the disease in the Middle Ages was considered horrible?


Think and answer

  1. What is the role played by forests in people's lives early Middle Ages?
  2. What was the dynamic growth of the population of Europe during the Middle Ages? What she      was caused by?
  3. What food and drinks people of that time differed from the present? What      especially food medieval man?
  4. Why are the representatives of the poor dressed very modestly      and not bright?
  5. Why in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Europe was hit by the crisis? What were its implications?
  6. What were the extent, causes and consequences of Plague 1348-1351 biennium?


Perform the task

  1. Identify the basic features of medieval fashion. What may explain clothes      Medieval man?
  2. Fill in the table: "Internal Colonization in Europe

Factors internal colonization

Positively influenced

Negatively influenced



Results colonization



  1. Prepare a story on behalf of a man who survived the Black Death      1348-1351 biennium?


For the curious

What was the relationship between man and nature in the Middle Ages?