Medieval - Christina Strawser Humanities Chris Naffziger...

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Christina Strawser Humanities – Chris Naffziger (Monday Night) 12/8/2008 The Medieval is the longest major era in European history. It is also exceedingly complex. There are, however, some key elements that separate Medieval Europe from the classical civilization of Greece and Rome that it replaced, and our modern world today. Life in Medieval Europe was ruder or more primitive than that of Imperial Rome. There were barbaric elements. Society was dominated by a single, militant, and exclusive religion, which discouraged or prevented the development of a secular society. The medieval era is generally defined as the period of European history from the fall of Rome (5th century) to the Renaissance (15th century). This era is considered a transitional period between the ancient classical world and the Renaissance. Immediately after the fall of Rome, Europe became small kingdoms and states. Throughout the period, new kingdoms evolved into states like England, France and Spain. The impact on the Western mind and our modern society was enormous. There were three preeminent cultural influences affecting Medieval Europe. The old civilization of imperial Rome left a powerful cultural footprint. The Church became the dominant influence during much of the medieval period. The Church provided an ethical dimension that involved moral responsibilities lacking in classical society. The asceticism of the early Church, however, rejected the worldliness of pagan culture. While commonly labeled as barbarian, the German invaders introduced concepts of individuality and personal freedom that are hallmarks of Western civilization today.
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Most surviving art from the medieval period was religious in focus, often funded by the Church, powerful ecclesiastical individuals such as bishops, communal groups such as abbeys, or wealthy secular patrons. Many had specific liturgical functions such as processional crosses and altarpieces. Lack of realism is obvious in medieval art. A great deal of knowledge of perspective in art and understanding of the human figure was lost with the fall of Rome. But it is important to realize that realism was not the primary concern of medieval artists. They were simply trying to send a religious message, a task which demands clear iconic images instead of precisely rendered ones. Several periods of art emerged during the medieval period. They are now known as Byzantine, Early Medieval Art, Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance. In 323, Emperor Constantine moved the capitol of the Roman Empire to Byzantium. It was then renamed Constantinople. The Eastern part of the empire developed differently than the Western. The Western Empire fell in 400's with an invasion from the northern Germanic Tribes. The Byzantium Empire (Eastern section) stayed in tact over a thousand years longer, until the fall of Constantinople in 1453 to the Turks. Constantinople was renamed by the Turks Istanbul, which is the name it bears today. The art and architecture reflects differences between the Roman Catholic religion,
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This note was uploaded on 08/04/2009 for the course MKTG 101 taught by Professor Dr.jones during the Spring '09 term at Lindenwood.

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Medieval - Christina Strawser Humanities Chris Naffziger...

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