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University Degree: Medieval History

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

    If sodomy/homosexuality was 'unmentionable' in the Middle Ages, how can we write its history?

    5 star(s)

    Of the secondary evidence available to us through the study largely of gender, again, caution is important. Often, the writing must be seen as promoting a particular point of view. It is my belief that this essay will highlight three key issues. Firstly, the study of homosexuality in the middle ages is vital for the understanding of the evolution of gay culture. Secondly, that what we term as homosexual in the Middle Ages varies enormously with today's concepts of being gay.

    • Word count: 3250
  2. Marked by a teacher

    T o what extent does the Demographic Transition Model provide a reliable and accurate representation of Europe's demographic past? What are the main problems of measuring the chief variables in the model?

    4 star(s)

    Stage One (UK pre 1760) is characterised by high birth rates, high death rates and slow rates of population growth, occurring in a traditional, agricultural society. Population levels fluctuate somewhat but there is no steady growth. There is a lack of medical care or sanitation and little use or access to birth control. Large families have cultural and religious value and are needed for agricultural labour. Mortality decline precedes fertility decline. Thus stage two (UK 1760-1880) indicates increasing rates of demographic growth, typical of a modernising society beginning the process of industrialisation.

    • Word count: 3238
  3. Marked by a teacher

    Response to Pandemic Death: The Black Death in Europe

    4 star(s)

    Europe spent the majority of the fourteenth century in an economic slump; small villages were becoming overcrowded, famine weakened the lower and middle classes, and the general public was not in a state of well being (Zeigler 32). Famine was a result of poor farming due to erosion, extreme cold weather, and inability to properly take care of the land (33). Death due to starvation skyrocketed with the rapid increase in population and the inability to feed them (34). There small wars being fought from the British Isles to the eastern most parts of Europe where the Black Death was said to originate (Mullet 21, Janis, McNeill 159).

    • Word count: 3237
  4. To what degree was the Black Prince the epitome of the Age of Chivalry?

    However not everything that the Black Prince ever did has been considered chivalric, some of it appears could be classed as very un-chivalric. However this is when wider issues are ignored such as whom exactly was it that chivalry concerned? We must also define chivalry. Chivalry was simply, a code of conduct that the noble classes would try to follow in their lives which was suppose to make you a model human being. One of the reasons given for the Black Prince being un-chivalric is the sack of Limoges in 1370.

    • Word count: 3272
  5. How important was royal patronage in the establishment and development of Portuguese overseas empire 1415-1550

    was quite exceptional'.2 This act carried out by members of the royal family is not simply royal patronage but royal engagement in the establishment of Portuguese empire in North Africa, and their involvement in the region did not cease following the capture of Ceuta, 'from Joao I to Manuel I (1495-1521) Portuguese rulers became deeply enmeshed in North Africa'.3 Establishment of empire went further with the capture of Tangier, Al-Ksar as Saghir and Asilah under the direction and command of the royal princes.

    • Word count: 4172
  6. How important were the political and economic factors in the Christianization of Vikings

    argument is raised on whether the old ways were more beneficial to the lower class peasantry than the method of society incorporated after Christianization. The peasantry of pre-Christianized Denmark paid their local chieftains (go�i) tribute, but on a restricted scale. If the go�i attempted to impose themselves too much then the peasants could simply transfer to another go�i,6 making the power of a go�i dependent upon his personal and political skills.7 This implies that the peasants may have been at an advantage under the Old Norse society, which therefore highlights the importance of the political factors in the Christianization of

    • Word count: 3585
  7. Place-Name Evidence for the Coexistence of Viking Settlers and other Groups in Derbyshire

    The first element appears to be from OE middel, meaning 'middle'. However, a later form of this is Melton(e) (Journal of the Derbyshire Archaeological and Natural History Society, 1227, cited in Cameron, 1958: 104), which seems to indicate a replacement by the ON cognate me�al. A final example is evident in Ashford, the pre-Scandinavian form of which is �scforda (926) and its post-Scandinavian form is Askeford (1265), (Townend, 2002: 70). Here, the OE �sc ("ash tree") is replaced by ON cognate askr. These cognate replacements provide evidence of the Scandinavians' ability to use a switching-code to adapt OE place-name elements in order to make them more comprehendible to their group.

    • Word count: 3538
  8. 87777777

    • Word count: 6000
  9. Were the Crusades a shameful episode in the history of the west?

    and more than half of his troops deserting. According to historian W.B. Bartlett, it was not in the loss of material or life that the significance of the defeat lies but in the psychological and spiritual effects of the battle. For at Manzikert, the major casualty was the soul of an empire itself.3 With such a powerful and aggressive force expanding its territory in the East the people of Christendom had every reason to be worried, especially as Europe had already witnessed similar hordes of the Eurasian steppe lands.

    • Word count: 3296
  10. Knight Weaponry

    The drawing of Sir Robert Shurland at his tomb on the Isle of Sheppey displays him with a spear-type weapon but also with a sword on his hilt.2 This sword was a double-edged with a long blade. It was not curved but straight hilted. The longsword required a lot of strength to wield but was still able to be carried by one arm. It was diverse in thrusting and slashing opening up armor leaving an enemy defenseless. The end-handle or pommel of this sword was widely used to attack enemies up close.

    • Word count: 4199
  11. the Aztec rebellion against the Conquistadors Formatted

    They dyed the thread in vivid colours and wove it into cloth with elaborate designs. From this cloth they made clothing-loincloths and capes for men and long skirts and sleeveless blouses for women. Specially trained craftsmen knotted feathers into webs to make mantles (cloaks), headdresses, and banners. (Based on Encarta) Aztec art is a very broad term, encompassing: * Aztec Pottery - As mentioned previously, pottery was not only useful to the Aztecs in the home, in farming and as sacrifice but it was also an important religious craft within the Aztec arts.

    • Word count: 3263
  12. China's political, social and economic problems

    "Growth has been consistently, but unevenly high and fluctuations in output growth have generated periods of high inflation and substantial deficits in current payments"(3). Firstly I would like to discuss about the domestic foundations. Banking reforms introduced in China came earlier than reforms in other sectors. The reform consist of establishment of the central bank, reformed of the specialized banks, reform and development of urban and rural cooperatives, reform of non-bank financial institutions and the financial market and reform of interest rate structures.

    • Word count: 3710
  13. What common features can be discerned in the careers of Tanchelm, Henry of Le Mans, Peter of Bruys and Arnold of Brescia.

    It is suggested, however, through Henry's alliance with Peter of Bruys, sometime before c.1133, that Henry takes on a more heretical stance.17 Henry is arrested by the bishop of Arles and brought before the Council of Pisa in 1135, where he is ordered to give up his itinerant preaching and re-enter a monastery.18 Whether Henry initially obeyed this order or not is not known because in 1145 he is the object of Bernard of Clairvaux's mission against heresy. After this time, however, Henry is not mentioned again in the sources.19 Tanchelm preached against the materialism of the church in the

    • Word count: 3206
  14. To what extent did a new concept of

    It was generated by a revival of interest in classical literature and the classical ideals. Humanism was a rejection of the medieval mindset and worldview and the intellectual constraints of Scholasticism. Humanist scholars reveled in the intellectual freedom cultural riches of the classical pagan world. A hint of Humanist thought could be seen in the medieval poet Dante (1265- 1321) who selected Roman poet Virgil as his model. Petrarch (1304-1374) was the first poet to truly reflect the spirit of the Renaissance. His poems were penned in Latin hexameter as did the classical Roman poets.

    • Word count: 3705
  15. Patricia Schreckengost

    After the Reformation, scholars had more freedom to explore these fields (Spielvogel 571). Another possible influence was the work of the humanists (Spielvogel 572). Humanism, which spread throughout Europe during the Renaissance, focused on the potential and achievements of humans and practical studies of human life (Henry 10). The Scientific Revolution researched and elaborated on the ideas of humanists (Henry 13). Additionally, humanist schools began incorporating scientific education, which helped provoke the expansion of the Revolution (Burns 91). Renaissance art also may have contributed to the Scientific Revolution (Spielvogel 572). Renaissance art portrayed real items, since most art was done by direct observation (Henry 10).

    • Word count: 3716
  16. Famine and the Black Death: Social and Economic Change in Medieval England.

    The structure and perspective upon which these authors undertake their studies are of paramount importance. These four books are notable examples of genre. Two, those of Campbell and Hilton, are collections of studies and essays respectively. Their subtitles make the difference in approach and focus between them clear. Before the Black Death consists of, "studies in the 'crisis' of the early fourteenth century", while Class conflict and the crisis of feudalism concerns itself with, "essays in medieval social history". The issue of 'choice' relates to both these books for a number of reasons. The synopsis of Campbell's book asserted that five of the essays (excluding Barbara Harvey's introduction), which discuss demographic developments, the agrarian economy,

    • Word count: 4058
  17. Industrial and Agricultural Revolution.

    A revolution can be, violent although a revolution is a change of some kind and does not have to be violent. A revolution could be a change in the social structure of a community, a change in political power and government structure, or a religious change. A revolution could also be an advance in industry or agriculture as featured in this project. A revolution can be a sign of discontent or civil disobedience although if a peaceful revolution is taking place, people who do not like what is happening sometimes become violent and cause trouble.

    • Word count: 3068
  18. Can We Distinguish Between a ‘Revolution’ and a ‘Social Movement’? To What Extent Can It Be Argued That the Age of Revolutions Is Over?

    There are several other movements of recent origin that do not fit neatly into any of the above groups, these include the animal liberation movement and the Trade Justice Movement. Although few movements have revolutionary aims and often exist as a fluid element within political and social systems, most movements and revolutions are born from a dissatisfaction with existing lack of equality, justice and liberty. The strength of this desire for equality, justice and liberty and its mass appeal to individuals is an important factor in the success of revolutions and movements.

    • Word count: 3946
  19. As it occurred in most spheres of the progressing 14th century society, the renaissance in the realm of scientific inquiry was not a process which took hold of the entire population, but rather was the contributions of the select few.

    However, during the Renaissance this doctrinal passivity began to change. The quest to understand the natural world led to the revival of botany and anatomy by thinkers such as Andreas Vesalius during the later sixteenth century.3 The middle Ages were centuries of stability in the intellectual world. All scientific and philosophical expression was monitored extensively by, and most often produced from within, the Church. During the middle Ages, the Church ruled conclusively on a number of truths about the natural world, which it claimed were undeniable. These alleged truths were produced by Biblical study and the widely accepted Aristotelian system, which became official Church doctrine.4 The Aristotelian system defined the laws of physics erroneously in many cases.

    • Word count: 3004
  20. The Black Death

    Without any doubt, the Black Death disrupted every aspect of medieval life but all to differing extents. Although all areas inter-link and have an immediate effect on the others, it is easiest to survey societies success in coping and the changes that were made by looking at the areas of: demography, sociology, economy, industry, politics, the church and medicine, individually. The most apparent and devastating affect of the plague was on the population of Europe. The approximate rates of death as a result of the plague are augured over by historians continually although most will accept that charting even approximate rates of mortality is impossible due to inaccurate local and regional records of current population and lack of full recording of the outbreaks of plague3.

    • Word count: 3706
  21. What is the relationship between Revolutions and International Relations?

    Others believe that revolutions occur due to sociological determinism, found back on the writings of Hume and Mill, that every event has a cause and it is the most general and comprehensive of all the natural laws3. Contemporary sociological theories focus on the need of modernisation as the root cause of modern revolutions, when others as Eric Voegelin and Norman Cohn. Emphasise the recurrence of utopian and millenarian motive in history and look for chiliastic elements in contemporary secular movements.

    • Word count: 3253
  22. Discuss the process by which the Kings of the Scots formed the Kingdom of Scotland. Assess Broun's view that a broad sense of Scottish ethnicity may only have developed in response to Edward I's wars.

    The structure of Irish kingship and especially that of the Kingdom of Dalriada is used as a kinship/authority model and from this there can be seen to be three distinct types of king. The petty or tribal king, the great king (as overlord of a number of tribes and/or tribal kings) and the kings of the over-kings6. The ri, ruri and ri ruiech respectively and it is likely that each of these three 'grades of kings existed in Scotland.7' Lynch identifies two distinct phases in the formation of a unified kingdom.

    • Word count: 3847
  23. The One Hundred Years War

    After a time of civil wars and turmoil in England identified as The Anarchy (1135-1154), the Anglo-Norman reign was overthrown by the Angevin Kings. At the height of power the Angevins controlled Normandy and England, along with Maine, Anjou, Touraine, Gascony, Saintonge and Aquitaine. Such assemblage of lands is sometimes known as the Angevin Empire. The king of England, who was still a vassal of the King of France, directly ruled more French territory than the King of France himself.

    • Word count: 3037

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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