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University Degree: Medieval History

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  1. How far must we consider the Norman Conquest as a Military victory

    When thinking about the Norman conquest, a great deal of importance is placed around and upon the battle of Hastings and the way in which William I imposed his rule upon the English (such as the notorious 'Harrying of the North'), however, I believe that it is also important to take into consideration the way in which William revolutionised the ruling elite so that after only twenty years of rule, he had managed to turn it almost wholly Norman. However, whatever the reason, it is clear that as Orderic Vitalis sates, the Normans were a "warlike race, who continually struggled for mastery"3and that they were going to use any means necessary to gain total control over England.

    • Word count: 2293
  2. What methods did Pope Urban utilise to persuade, Christians to join the Crusade?

    can substitute the journey for all penance for sin." 2Moreover, all versions of PUII's speech to the crusaders mention and preserve the idea of 'Sin Removal', additionally PUII often referred to the Crusaders as 'Gods Armies', 'Warriors of Christ', and 'Shield of Christ'. This dialogue was aimed at Knights, Lords, Princes and their martial powers of European Christendom. PUII sought after a mechanised army with financial resources, which could be ordered as opposed to Kings who would covet to command. This deliverance by the Pope would have ignited the ideologically conditioned Christians throughout the content.

    • Word count: 607
  3. How has the Popularisation of 'history from below' influenced historians studying US race relations?

    This is supported by: "Annales school history is best known for incorporating social scientific methods into history"2. Secondly, due to the birth of post modernism, new age historians, or 'revisionist' as they are now referred to - have tried to view history from different perspectives, and producing theories - 'competing modes' of thought - to the 'traditionalist' views. Finally, from the latter half and earlier half of the 20th and 21th centuries the world has become more socially equitable and less discriminative.

    • Word count: 2347
  4. Origins of medieval European Christianity England

    1 The Gezerot Tantu questions the religious motivation behind the Crusade and intentions of the Crusaders. Furthermore, it enables depiction in alterations of Christian ideals, particularly with their Jewish brethren. Jews and Christians have coexisted for centuries in general harmony and peace. St. Augustine of Hippo utilised Jews to strengthen Christianity. Augustine and his supporters believed Jews "must be allowed to survive, but never to thrive"2 this was so that their communal desolation would transmit their "proper punishments for their refusal to recognize the truth of the Church's claims."

    • Word count: 769
  5. Napoleon

    • Word count: 1554
  6. the civil wars

    Puritans in both Britain and British North America sought to cleanse the culture of what they regarded as corrupt sinful practices. They believed that the civil government should strictly enforce public morality by prohibiting vices like drunkenness, gambling, ostentatious dress, swearing and Sabbath breaking. The puritans acquired the label because their primary goals were to "purify" the English church by removing all traces of Roman Catholicism in doctrine and ceremony. Strongest in the 16th and 17th centuries, they advocated strict religious discipline and placed primary emphasis on the Bible rather than on traditions developed in the Christian community.

    • Word count: 967
  7. Free essay

    The Making of Peoples

    As well, the barbarians had strong impact on Rome: on the army, the society and even the games. Some historians, such as Vegetius and Arthur Ferrill, blame the process also known as a~barbarisation' for the collapse of the empire. This process lead to many consequences, a number of which were negative. For example, the barbarisation of the army made the Roman soldier resemble the barbarian one too much and this is thought to be the reason for the numerous defeats from the barbarians. To illustrate this, compare these two pictures. The first one shows a Roman legionnaire of 1-2 centuries AD, and the second is of a legionnaire of 4-5 centuries AD.

    • Word count: 2101
  8. 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
  9. "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
  10. Role of the Scholar-Gentry and Eunuchs in Imperial China

    Only a small fraction became public officials, the ones who passed the highest of the exams. Most were appointed by the emperor to local positions performing day-to-day governance, belonging to an intermediate ruling class.3 Their duties included teaching in schools, conducting Confucian ceremonies, collecting taxes, mediating minor legal disputes, supervising community projects, and generally upholding morality and virtue. Although they received no official salary, they did enjoy much of the prestige, power and privilege of the higher ruling class.4 Their power came from the fact that they were the only group who knew the workings of their local area and

    • Word count: 2395
  11. Why Did Conciliarism Become A Problem in the 15th Century

    had grounds in such events as the Avignon Papacy, which showed that certain Popes were subject to corruption, favoritism, extravagant lifestyles and even heresy. The scandal of the position-holding of first two and then three Popes weakened the papacy as an institution and showed a need for it to be regulated.3 Such thinkers as William of Ockham, who wrote outlining the basics of Conciliarism much earlier in the 1300's, became revered for their ideas. His thoughts spoke of a 'universal church', a congregation of all faithful, rather than the Roman Church governed by the Pope.

    • Word count: 2594
  12. describe the cultural landscapes created by neolithic farming communities in ireland with reference to Aalens model of cultural landscape formation

    The French historical geographer Vidal de la Blanche once said that the landscape "was a medal struck in the image of a civilisation". It is a narrative of our countries past and a palimpsest of the people's history and nature's history intertwined.3 In Ireland, natural landscapes are almost non-existent as much of our landscape is a product of human endeavour. It is important to remember that the natural landscape has had a significant bearing on the course of our islands past as it is located on the western edge of Europe.

    • Word count: 2786
  13. To what extent did witchcraft accusations reflect socio-economic tensions in early modern British communities?

    It is always made clear that throughout the Early Modern Britain period 'a great majority of those prosecuted came from the lower levels of society.'1 The main socio-economic tensions that reflect on witch accusations all stem from this principle that it was the lower end of the social hierarchy that were susceptible to witchcraft allegations. The reasoning behind the lower class of society being most vulnerable to witch accusations can be split into numerous parts for example the fact that they were the part of society that was weak and had little power in society and due to this they were used as scapegoats for any issues in the society of Early Modern Britain.

    • Word count: 2505
  14. viking saga

    These two contrasting contexts - a sophisticated political and intellectual milieu together with a very basic fight for physical survival - form the backdrop to the events of the family sagas. Much of the substance of the sagas is an exploration of personal and social relations, of how neighbours form alliances or foster lethal feuds, of how families develop into invincible kin groups through generations, or fragment under the pressures of life in Iceland. As one might expect, disputes both between and within families arise over land, livestock or vital food supplies, and we can begin to see that the theme of feud is a common one throughout the Icelandic works.

    • Word count: 2656
  15. vikings & runestones

    One such important facet is that of Rune Stones. The alphabet the Vikings used was known as 'runic', each letter known as a 'rune'. Nobody knows exactly when or where the runic characters were invented. It was several centuries before the Viking period and probably somewhere near the Roman Empire, as many of the earlier letters inscribed resemble those of the Roman alphabet. Runic images were carved on wood, mental, bone and stone. They were widely used and in the case of Viking society, they offer us an interesting insight into their everyday life.

    • Word count: 2000
  16. vikings raids essay

    The subject of Viking raids has come to be one of the better-known aspects of Viking history over the years. Their destructive and violent nature ensures that they are not easily forgotten. John Haywood claims that the Vikings have become a byword for seaborne terror; 'violent raiders descending in their longships to plunder monasteries and butcher peaceful communities of men, women and children.'1 In recent years, however, a new image of these plundering warriors has emerged. In his book, Kings and Vikings, Sawyer notes that although the Vikings were disruptive and destructive when raiding, they made a positive contribution to society as conquerors and colonists.

    • Word count: 2122
  17. 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
  18. 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
  19. How did the martyr's body become an emblem of triumph for early Christian communities

    The body of the martyr was an emblem of triumph for early Christian communities as the martyr showed a sense of control, dignity and nobility arguably achieving a sense of victory over the persecuting Roman authority. Although the martyr was the victim of the persecuting force of the Rome the martyr in reality had complete determination over their own destiny this in many ways castrated the totalitarian use of violent torture and execution by Rome as it was willingly accepted by the martyr, rendering it's desired repression of the victim's self assertion useless.

    • Word count: 2421
  20. To what extent did commerce flourish in this period?

    Trade existed at this time as a way for such leaders to get hold of these valuable objects required to demonstrate their wealth.1 The leader of one group would exchange certain articles in their possession, normally gained through taxation or gifts, with another leader for items he had obtained through similar means "Long distance trade appears to be forged by Kings or their emissaries".2 This would either be a direct swap or in the form of gifts, presented to neighbouring clans to ensure peaceful relations or alliances.

    • Word count: 2124
  21. 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
  22. 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
  23. Vikings in Britain - The Archaeological Evidence

    Archaeology has much to say about the complex processes behind the creation of a Scandinavian society in the British Isles in the early medieval period. When looking at the history of the Viking settlement, one is initially confronted with several questions about the process and nature of the settlement. Was the settlement a single movement, or one of disparate migrations, was it intended as a military conquest, or a peaceful movement into the land and what kind of numbers did the Vikings arrive in?

    • Word count: 2756
  24. Did women have a role in the Seventeenth- Century Politics?

    This can be a difficult subject to study objectively, as women had few rights in the early modern period. There is the danger of supposing that because women were very much confined to the domestic sphere that they were unhappy, oppressed, and abused by tyrannical husbands. While tyrannical husbands certainly existed, there is no evidence to suggest that they were the norm and that women were generally mistreated and unhappy. Yet in the mid-sixteenth Century there were female queens ruling England, Mary Tudor, her sister Elizabeth and their cousin Mary Queen of Scots. The contention that as women they could not rule was ancillary to wider political and confessional debate between Protestants and Catholics3 The issue here was not just their gender but their religion too.

    • Word count: 2566
  25. 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

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