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Chapter 9: Christian
Societies Emerge in
Europe, 600-1200
AP World History
I. The Byzantine Empire 6001200
► A.
An Empire Beleaguered
 1. Muslim Arabs took the wealthy of Syria,
Egypt, and Tunisia and converted their people
to Islam.
 2. The Byzantine Empire experienced declining
relations with the popes and princes of Western
Europe and the formal schism between the
Latin and Orthodox churches in 1054.
► B.
Society and Urban Life
 1. Decline of urbanism with the loss of the middle class
and there was a gap between the wealth of the
aristocrats and the poverty of the peasants.
 2. Women were confined to the house and wore veils
when they went out, but did rule alongside men from
 3. Emperors intervened in the economy by setting
prices, controlling the provision of grain in the capital,
and monopolizing trade on certain goods.
 4. Western Europe began to view the Byzantine Empire
as a crumbling power while the Byzantines viewed the
westerners as uncouth barbarians.
► C.
Cultural Achievements
 1. Legal scholars put together a collection of
Roman laws and edicts under the title Body of
Civil Law.
 2. Became basis of Western Law.
 3. Byzantine developed the technique of
building domed buildings.
 4. In the 9th century, missionaries Cyril and
Methodius preached to the Slavs of Moravia and
taught their followers to write in Cyrillic script.
II. Early Medieval Europe
A. A Time of Insecurity
 1. After the fall of the Roman Empire in the 5th century
Europe was fragmented, with Germanic Kings ruling a
number dissimiliar kingdoms.
 2. Muslim Arabs and Berbers took the Iberian Peninsula and
pushed into France, but were defeated by Charles Martel at
the battle of Tours.
 3. In the 8th century the Carolingians united various Frankish
kingdoms and at its height under Charlemagne, the empire
included Gaul and parts of Germany and Italy, but it was
divided by his sons and was never united again.
 4. Vikings raided England, France, and Spain in the late 8th
and 9th centuries.
 5. Vikings also settled Iceland and Normandy, from which
the Norman William the Conqueror invaded England in 1066.
Charles Martel Tomb
► B.
A Self-Sufficient Economy
 1. Fall of the Roman Empire led to an economic
transformation with a decline in urbanization and a
decline in trade.
 2. The medieval diet in the north was based on
beer, lard or butter, and bread while the diet in the
south was based on wheat, wine, and olive oil.
 3. Self-sufficient farming estates called manors
began to develop.
 4. The lord of the manor had almost unlimited
control of his serfs, but the serf conditions varied
based on the tradition of free peasantry in some
C. Early Medieval Society in the West
 1. Class of nobles emerged and developed into mounted knights.
 2. Landholding and military service became almost inseparable.
 3. The need for military security including the stirrup, bigger
horses, and the armor and weapons of a knight.
 4. These weapons were expensive and a man needed land to
afford them.
 5. Kings granted a fief to a man who promised to supply military
 6. Kings were weak because they depended on their vassals.
 7. Kings and nobles had limited ability to tax and administer their
realms because they could not tax the vast landholdings of the
 8. Women were pawns in marriage politics.
III. The Western Church
► A.
Politics and the Church
 1. Popes sought to combine their religious
power with political power by forging alliances
with kings and finally by choosing to crown a
German king as Holy Roman Emperor.
 2. Popes and kings disagreed with who had the
power to appoint bishops.(investiture
 3. Western Europe was heir to three legal
traditions; German feudal law, canon, and
Roman law.
► B.
 1. Based on celibacy, devotion to prayer, and
isolation from society.
 2. Benedict of Nursia supplied monasteries with a
set of written rules that governed all aspects of
ritual and of everyday life.
 3. Monasteries were centers of literacy, learning
and refuges for widows and other vulnerable
 4. The head of Catholic Church had a difficult time
overseeing monasteries so the abbey of Cluny
worked to improve the administration and discipline
of monasteries.
IV. Kievan Russia, 900-1200
A. The Rise of the Kievan State
 1. Territory stretched from the Black and Caspian Seas in the
south to the White and Baltic seas in the north.
 2. Many different people groups. (Slavs, Turks, Finns)
 3. Long-distance trade linked Russia with the Silk Road,
Varangians were active traders on the rivers, and the Khazar
Turks built a trading kingdom at the mouth of the Volga.
 4. Vladimir I became Grand Prince of Kiev in 980 and chose
Orthodox Christianity, adopted the Cyrillic alphabet, and
modeled the culture of the Byzantine Empire.
 5. Food production was low due to a short growing season
so the political power in Kiev was based on trade.
 6. Christianity spread slowly, but in the 12th century
Christianity triumphed and the Church became more
V. Western Europe Revives, 10001200
► A.
The Role of Technology
 1. Population and Agricultural production
increased due to new technologies and to the
appearance of self-governing cities.
 2. Technological innovations included the heavy
moldboard plow, the horse collar, and the
breast-strap harness.
► B.
Cities and the Rebirth of the Trade
 1. Independent cities emerged in Italy and
 2. Venice emerged as a dominant sea power,
trading with Muslim ports for spices and other
 3. Cities like Ghent in Flanders imported wood
from England and wove it into cloth for export.
 4. Europeans began to minting silver and gold
VI. The Crusades, 1095-1204
► A.
The Roots of the Crusades
 1. Series of Christian military campaigns against
Muslims in the eastern Mediterranean between 11001200.
 2. The tradition of pilgrimages, Muslim control of
Christian religious sites, and the Byzantine Empire’s
requests for help against the Muslims combined to make
the Holy Land the focus of the Crusades.
 3. Factors causing the Crusades included religious zeal,
knight’s willingness to engage in church-sanctioned
warfare, a desire for lands on the part of younger sons
of the European nobility, and an interest in trade.
 4. Pope Urban II initiated the First Crusade when he
called upon the Europeans to stop fighting each other
and the fight the Muslims instead.
► B.
The Impact of the Crusades
 1. The Crusades had a limited impact on the
Muslim world.
 2. They ended Europe's intellectual isolation
when Arabic and Greek manuscripts gave
Europeans their first access to the work of the
ancient Greek philosophers.
 3. Significant impact on the lifestyle of
European elites.
VII. Comparative Perspectives
► A.
Church Differences Between Western
Europe and Byzantium
 1. Western Church leaders wrote their treatises
in Latin; eastern church leaders wrote in Greek.
 2. The eastern church was influenced by Arab
conquests of the 7th century.
► B.
Political and Economic Distinctions Between
Western Europe and Byzantium
 1. The Byzantine Empire initially enjoyed more
economic prosperity and sophistication in arts and
culture than the west.
 2. Christianity became embedded in Byzantine
society before it did in the western church.
 3. The Byzantine Empire did not witness the
improved military techniques, new agricultural
technologies, population growth, and trade of
Western Europe, leading to its decline in prosperity
and cultural innovation in comparison to the west.