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Middle ages.

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Middle Ages RELIGION The Catholic Church was the only church in Europe during the Middle Ages, and it had its own laws and large funds. Church leaders such as bishops and archbishops were on the king's council and played leading roles in government. Bishops, who were often wealthy and came from noble families, ruled over groups of parishes. Parish priests, on the other hand, came from poorer backgrounds and often had little education. The village priest tended to help the poor and, if he was able, taught Latin and the Bible to the youth of the village. In the Middle Ages the Church encouraged people to make pilgrimages to special holy places called shrines. It was believed that if you prayed at these shrines you might be forgiven for your sins and have more chance of going to heaven. Others went to shrines hoping to be cured from an illness they were suffering from. Some people went on pilgrimages abroad. Traveling on long journeys in the Middle Ages was a dangerous activity. Pilgrims often went in groups to protect themselves against outlaws. I think that religion was very important in the Middle Ages. Pilgrimages were very common, and they do not really occur today. Today, I think that the church is less important than in the medieval times. STRUCTURE OF SOCIETY In this "feudal" system, the king awarded land grants to his most important nobles, who were at the top of the pyramid. ...read more.


He had to pay rent for his land to his lord; he had to pay a tax to the church called a tithe. This was a tax on all of the farm produce he had produced in that year. The church collected so much produce from this tax that it had to be stored in huge tithe barns. Some of these barns can still be seen today. Peasants also had to work for free on church land. This was very difficult as this time could have been used by the peasant to work on their own land. However, the power of the church was so big that no-one dared break this rule. Peasants lived in cruck houses. These had a wooden frame onto which was plastered wattle and daub. Families would have cooked and slept in the same room. Children would have slept in a loft if the cruck house was big enough. For all peasants, life was "nasty, brutal and short." Life was very hard for the peasants. It was a great difference to how much the bishops worked. In recent times there is not such a difference. The poor had to live through a hard life, in which all they had to do was work. They were ordered like slaves and didn't have any luxuries. They had short lives, which are very different to ours. CHAUCER Chaucer was a writer and a bureaucrat. ...read more.


The book was left unfinished when the he died. It depicts a pilgrimage of 30 people, who are going on a spring day in April to the shrine of the St. Thomas � Becket. Throughout the journey they amuse themselves by telling stories. In the group of pilgrims, there was a knight, a monk, a prioress, a plowman, a miller, a merchant, a clerk, and an widowed wife from Bath. The rhyming verse was written in Middle English, an old form of the language we use today. Chaucer's style and techniques have been copied through centuries. Shakespeare even borrowed his plot for the drama. My Opinions Geoffrey Chaucer led an amazing life, from serving the King, to being the Father of English poetry. I think he was a true and worthy English poet. I think that this is because he affected the world of poetry in many ways. He had some ups and downs in his life but he never stopped writing. I also think that he had quite a lucky life. He wasn't an ordinary person, and he was mostly supported by the King. He had many things that normal people could not have. I think that Chaucer achieved great things in this life, and might have influenced the English that we speak today. I think that he is extraordinary, not only because he was a great author, but because he wrote poems in English, in a time when nearly everything was written in French or Latin. I think that this makes him different to other authors. ...read more.

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