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University Degree: Medieval History

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  • Marked by Teachers essays 6
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  1. Marked by a teacher

    Did the state of the English Church by the 1530s mean that it was "ripe for reform"?

    4 star(s)

    If it is reasonably clear how the reformation evolved in England it is far more uncertain why these changes occurred. There is a spectrum of explanation for the reformation, ranging from pure political events as the cause to the conversion of the population at the other extreme. Although it would be unwise to claim that only one of these was prevalent, historians have disagreed as to which is the most significant. If the government was predominantly responsible for the events of reformation this would not indicate that the church or its ideology was in any sense in a poor state that demanded reform.

    • Word count: 1714
  2. Marked by a teacher

    The second industrial revolution.

    3 star(s)

    Economical issues on Productivity and technology The second industrial revolution witnessed the growth in some industries of huge economic of scale and throughput and was a new kind of industrialization, a "revolution" affected in large part by the partnership of science and technology. New material, new sources of power, and the application of scientific knowledge to industry increased rapidly the productivity. For example, steel was almost a semiprecious material with a world production of eighty thousand tons, but by the year 1900 the production had reached 28 million tons.1 Electricity was a major new form of energy that proved to

    • Word count: 1692
  3. A Commentary on the Laws of King Alfred, 871-901 A.D.

    society, such as theft, murder or treason, as well as ideas regarding religion such as Chapter 43 of the law-code regarding the 'celebration of mass-days'9 we can only learn so much from it. With this in mind and with the lack of contemporary charters, we are left with just a few historical documents that become vital if we are to understand their world at all from the point of view of the contemporaries. We know that 'the written laws can sometimes be reinforced by evidence from Doomsday Book'10 and so know that what we have today can be said to be what were the codes.

    • Word count: 1727
  4. Effects of the Fourth Lateran Council on France. When Louis VIII began his reign as King of France after his father Philip Augustus died in 1223, it became clear that he would be a lot more respectful to the church doctrines than his father.

    A prime offering of this plenitude of sinful religious is shown by an instruction by Pope Gregory IX in 1236. It is very similar to the instance in Lincoln in 1239, this is because Pope Gregory again adds to the instruction of punishment of simoniac nuns in Amiens 'if that is possible'2. This again shows a lack of conviction to the punishment set by Pope Innocent III and also jeopardises the strength of the implemented canons. The reason this kind of flexibility weakened the decrees of the Fourth Lateran Council is that by allowing leniency on certain occasions it sets

    • Word count: 1655
  5. This paper examines the appeal of the school of Zen to the warrior class and what it offered the changing society of Japan. The main point of appeal of this new religion was that it brought new ideals and values to the people of Japan. Zens focus on

    It does not rely on any sacred foundation, but rather on the individuals understanding of their environment and surroundings (Sansom, 1978, p.339) and it sought to convey this enlightenment non-verbally. The sect of Zen Buddhism offered a different and simpler was of achieving spiritual blessing which allowed them to come to terms with the warrior life and death. At the same time, it opposed the complicated and elitist rituals of the previously established schools (Adolphson, 1997, p.244). Zen's focus on spiritual enlightenment through zazen (meditation), the vigorous collaboration between the warriors and Zen masters, the emphasis on self-awareness and understanding were all new and challenging experiences for the Japanese warriors (Collcutt, 1982, pp.192-3).

    • Word count: 1049
  6. History of Russia. Examine the Impact of Mongol Rule Upon Medieval Rus

    After the initial destruction of Kiev, other well established Kievan cities suffered cultural and economic decay. Subjugation of the regions was no better exemplified than by the emasculation of the monarchy, Russian Princes could no longer make decisions without the Khan's permission, they were forced to be subordinate to the Khans and to collect and bring them tributes from across the entirety of Kiev Rus'. This was compounded by an artificial state of instability created by the Khans, where the Princes were kept in-line by a system of repeatedly selecting a new Grand Prince, forcing each Prince to be obedient to the Grand Prince of the time.

    • Word count: 1522
  7. Populating more important than Overpopulation

    What I'm proposing is that if people fear overpopulation, then they need to populate; they need to put more people on the earth, so more people can use their brains to solve these problems. While there will come a time when the earth simply can't hold any more people that time is very far away. It was Tertullian that, around 200 A.D, commented, "Everywhere there are people, communities-everywhere there is human life!" (6) This wasn't a positive statement though as it first sounds.

    • Word count: 1840
  8. Napoleon

    • Word count: 1554
  9. How important were 'capital cities' in the exercise of power in this period? (300-1050)

    The remains from the Medieval world are Theodoric's palace and mausoleum and a lot of ecclesiastically important buildings. In his book 'Sacred Fortress: Byzantine Art and Statecraft in Ravenna', Simson exaggerates with every single element of Ravenna's monuments, therefore his expression 'no other city has produced monuments which embody the spirit the spirit of the two worlds with equal clarity' (2) carries absolutely no support to the argument that Ravenna was in fact a major architectural main city throughout the Middle Ages, apart from the times of Theodoric and Byzantine rule.

    • Word count: 1769
  10. "Marriage was as much about the transmission of property as it was about the raising of children." Does this adequately explain the lives of aristocratic women in the Middle Ages?

    The historian, Elisabeth van Houts makes a very important point about the lives of medieval aristocratic women; she says, 'Modern historians have often underestimated the strong feeling amongst women destined to be exchanged and given to whomever provided their fathers of uncles with the best political deal'. (1) This idea is often one which is overlooked when looking at medieval women and this is why a statement as general as 'marriage is as much about the transmission of property as it was about the raising of children' can be used to describe life for a majority of aristocratic women.

    • Word count: 1971
  11. historical review of Else Roesdahl's The Vikings

    Was this achieved? To a certain extent, yes. The bulk of the book is concerned with painting for us a vivid picture of culture and society during the Viking Age. She does this by providing us with information displayed clearly and in an easy to follow format of chapters, including geography, language, travel, trading, religion, art and poetry etc. Her central theme is to show the reader that the modern day 'classic image' of the Vikings "appearing on foreign shores in their ships, sword in hand, performing bloody deeds, plundering churches, extorting money, engaging in battle, murder and abductions, is

    • Word count: 1862
  12. Statutes of Kilkenny (commentary)

    This was a big anti- Gaelic law adopted by the Parliament. The document contained 35 acts, each of them aimed to reinstall the English authority. We will try to analyze 6 parts of this law in order to understand the importance of this rule, its consequences on the society. We will try to explain its purpose and understand what would be lost by the English if this assimilation was not stopped. We will separate our analysis in three different parts: cultural restrictions, prohibition of the Irish law and protection from the Irish enemies.

    • Word count: 1505
  13. Why was it so hard to resolve the Great Schism?

    For one thing, the schism proved hard to resolve due to the "unprecedented complexity" of the legal situation it created, which "called into question much of the accepted ecclesiastical constitution".5 It was far from clear what actions could canonically be undertaken to end such a schism, especially since neither Pope was hostile to the institution of the Papacy and so did not (initially) seem heretical. Very quickly after the schism had developed, however, clergy and academics began to discuss ways of ending it.

    • Word count: 1987
  14. The European Voyages of Discovery

    They behaved just as their ancestors had before them, fishing and hunting, seeking shelter and crafting weapons. In many ways they can be compared to the hunter gatherers of the late stone age. The Europeans on the other hand had advanced to a far greater degree in terms of technology. They had graduated to become farmers, they had began trading, built cities and towns and now they were the architects of great civilisations. However in some respects they were as savage and primitive as wild animals. When in the 15th and 16th century these two orbiting and alien cultures crashed together they became joined in a juxtaposition that was to have both positive and negative consequences.

    • Word count: 1454
  15. Witchcraft. In this essay I am going to look at two types of witchcraft and attempt to compare them. I have chosen witchcraft amongst the Azande and witchcraft in medieval Europe.

    Witchcraft involved the renunciation of God. The witch would make a pact with the devil and this is how she gained her powers. Keith Thomas states that the church constructed witch craze by producing literature on witches or devils worshippers and highlighting how the witches were thought to have conducted themselves. The belief in witches was an explosive force and witchcraft expanded after the Renaissance. Trevor-Roper believes that the church exploited pagan beliefs. The theory of Satan's Kingdom was produced with it's hierarchy of demon's and witches.

    • Word count: 1853
  16. medieval women-wealth or love?

    And moreover, it is a partnership which is a result of love. In the Medieval times however things were much different. The Medieval period is widely thought of as a romantic era, with the idea of "romantic love". However, the idea of "courtly love" is also prominent in medieval society Marriage was a basic economic device of medieval society. Often there were cases of "from rags to riches", where luck lifted families from obscurity to greatness. The economic transferal that ensured the family's survival tended to take precedence over other considerations. Marriage partners were chosen to help improve the economic state of estates, farms, or businesses.

    • Word count: 1613
  17. What was the impact of the Black Death on European society? What do you think were the most salient consequences?

    Part III. A longer essay. 50 points. Choose One. 1. What is The Last Duel all about. How is the history of the 100 Years War woven into the narrative of this personal conflict? What social and cultural facts serve as contexts for the story? What can you learn about medieval society from this book? 2. How did politics and the formulation of new ways of thinking about power and sovereignty serve as a response to the crisis. Provide examples (Castile, Italy, and other places)

    • Word count: 1378
  18. Analysis of the Statutes of William the Conqueror

    In 1050, William was threatened by the King of France and the Count of Anjou both significant players in contemporary French politics. He married Matilda of Flanders. This marriage secured the support of Flanders and helped minimize the threats. In 1060, the King of France and the Count of Anjou died. That enabled William to secure and create his Norman Empire. William took advantage of the lack of leadership and conquered the region of Maine in 1063. After, King Edward of England secured his throne he invited William I to England and nominated him to be the next heir to the throne.

    • Word count: 1669
  19. How far did the Reformed Church make good the deficiencies of the late medieval church in the decades immediately after the reformation of 1560?

    In the early 16th Century, Scotland was dominantly a Catholic nation. John Knox led the Protestant Reformation in Scotland. His strong personality and passionate preaching made him one of the most powerful Scots of his day. Under his leadership, the Church of Scotland adopted a declaration of Faith, a form of government, and a liturgy. Reformers wanted to reorganise church finances to support Parish churches, schools and universities. They wanted to get rid of the devotion to the Pope, confessions to priests and the worship of Saints.

    • Word count: 1924
  20. Malraux's Man's Fate: History and Life.

    The wealthy citizens and landowners were abusing the peasants. The attempt to gain firearms would double their chances of success over the revolutionary troops of the Kuomintang. Malraux, wanting his readers to understand the reason behind the revolt, described scenes of deprivation and violence. Kyo, the main character in the story, does everything he can to lead the revolt. The prelude to the revolution is a general strike followed by an attack on the authorities. When Kyo arrives, troops were waiting everywhere.

    • Word count: 1743
  21. In the Wake of the Plague.

    The life of the aristocracy was one of very high income. They were very rich people and had vast income from their landed estates and from the work of peasants. They lived in large houses and were very contented. They ate very elaborate food, guzzled enormous amount of wine, and dressed exceptionally well. Being a military society, the downside of their life was that they were frequently engaged in local, national, and international wars. Then the Black Death struck. The Plague was a "democratic epidemic" because it affected both poor and the rich members of society.

    • Word count: 1633
  22. During the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, revolutionary ideas about society and government began to affect much of the world.

    Saint Domingue only complicated this situation with its diversity and racial separation. Saint Domingue consisted of the white planters, petit blancs, free persons of color, the domestic slaves, field hands, and the maroons. The white planters were wealthy whites who owned plantations and many slaves. They were united in support for slavery since their wealth depended on the labor of slaves. The petit blancs where the less powerful group of whites who "were especially anti-black, seeing free persons of color as serious economic and social competitors."2 The free persons of color were black slaves who had received freedom and were quite wealthy.

    • Word count: 1574
  23. In his article "The populations of France and Quebec", Franois Drieu tries to establish a comparison between the French and the Quebeckers.

    At the end of the introduction, he clearly outlines the three parts of his argument: he gathers the differences between the two populations in three main groups: the distribution of the population, its origin and its mentality. Each paragraph contains an idea, examples and/or data. Nevertheless, if you examine the article more closely, the structure turns out to be too mechanical. With three paragraphs of the same length, the question is oversimplified. Human thought is not necessarily organized in three points; it is just a rhetorical ideal.

    • Word count: 1960
  24. Account for the pattern of population growth in Europe, 1500-1800

    Similarly, disease would have catastrophic effects on population growth given the lack of sophisticated remedies available to combat them. From 1500 Europe's population was still experiencing growth from the period of post Black Death recovery that had ravaged through Europe. During the century Europe's population as a whole began to increase possibly due to a relative absence of destructive wars and a lull in the frequent attacks of epidemics. However this growth was uneven with the highest rate of population growth in the North in the Scandinavian countries, Britain and the Low Countries. The Scandinavian countries by 1600 registered on advance of two thirds of their 1500 levels.

    • Word count: 1710
  25. America has been blessed with more than her fair share of stellar individuals.

    Perhaps the arena in which they worked was not as well known or less exposed to the world, but their work and achievements demand the same accord as their more published cousins. One of these individuals was the famed "Swamp Fox" of the Revolutionary War's southern campaign. Francis Marion was born in 1732 in Berkeley County, South Carolina, the youngest of six children of French Huguenot settlers. As a child, he explored the surrounding swamps, until he knew them like the back of his hand.

    • Word count: 1303

Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • The scale of the raids, the density of the settlements and the degree of destruction have been greatly exaggerated'. Discuss this assessment of Viking activity in England in the ninth and tenth centuries

    "Nils Lund claimed it was misleading to arrange numbers, influence and permanent effects co-ordinately, the latter two being the premises, the first the conclusion drawn from these. Again and again we come back to the same question of whether it is possible for a small group of invaders to effect large-scale change (and, in relation to the Vikings, destruction). As we have seen, the Vikings had a massive and permanent impact on English society, partly positive, partly negative, but always significant. Hopefully it has been established that it is not necessary for there to have been thousands of invaders for this change to happen, at least in the first place. We need to remember to see the Viking period as fragmented: the early period being a great deal more destructive; the later period more constructive, however unless significant archaeological evidence comes to light, we cannot draw firm conclusions on the scale of the Viking raids or the density of settlement, or the timescale involved."

  • To what extent did commerce flourish in this period?

    "Trade can indeed be seen to have grown during and following the eighth century but this is only relative to the period before. There are two further arguments against a view that trade flourished in this period. Firstly compared to the Roman Empire, where trade was abundant, the volume of trade is still relatively small. Secondly, throughout much of the period under consideration trade was practically non-existent following the fall of the Romans. In conclusion trade did not flourish in this period. It is fair to say that there was a period of growth after 700 but this was preceded by a period of considerable decline; therefore the growth that was taking place started from practically zero and was not sufficient to return commerce to the levels enjoyed by the Romans. However this growth is important as it paved the way for the rapid expansion and flourishing trade which can be seen at the turn of the millennium and thereafter. 2068 words"

  • Can We Distinguish Between a ‘Revolution’ and a ‘Social Movement’? To What Extent Can It Be Argued That the Age of Revolutions Is Over?

    "In conclusion it can be seen that there are some ways in which the praxis of revolutions and social movements differ, such as the degree of violence used and the participation and dedication of the members. Although revolutions are borne from social movements, very few social movements engender a revolution. The majority of social movements are of the type that do not have revolutionary intentions but aim to change specific aspects of society. It is these which now have a far greater chance of success than those with revolutionary aims. The classic type of revolution can be considered over in the West where security is tight, peoples' basic needs are satisfied, international links are strong and where there is no cause yet great enough to unite sufficient numbers of people. Revolutionary movements do however, have the potential to succeed in the developing world where hunger, mass poverty, religious fundamentalism and lack of democracy are able to fuel a revolutionary outcome. A more sophisticated, non-violent revolution, does however, seem possible engendered by a strong coalition of social movements opposed to the globalisation of capitalism."

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