HUM 111 RETURN TO ORDER: TOWNS, GUILDS, AND UNIVERSITITES
Chronology: Rise of Midieval Towns:
University of Bologna:
University of Paris:
Rise of the Medieval Town
Until this point, most families just grew enough for themselves. Early middle ages, cold and wet.
Late middle ages it became warmer and drier, people could grow more crops, so they could have
some surplus. With surplus you can trade more and support more people… the normal family
could probably keep about 1/3 of their products, enough to save and stuff.
Early markets: informal, met at cross-roads, always near castles, later formalized
With surplus people started to set up little trade fairs: everyone would agree to meet a certain day
and bring their goods. At first these were very informal, with people bringing their stuff and
exchanging… eventually they became more formalized, people started bringing tables and
chairs, had tents to protect… slowly these became permanent markets, people would built
warehouses on site and permanent shops… these informal trade fairs grew into the new medieval
cities. At the end of the middle ages with the establishment of feudalism, peace, things settled
down, had the foundation of europe. Land boundaries were better established. There was a
reestablishment of cities in europe. When there were invasions people didn’t want to be in the
cities because they were dangerous to be in. for hundreds of years people didn’t live in cities…
but now they are living there more often.
Athens, for example, grew up around an acropolis and had a religious basis, they all grew up
around religious sites….
“tun” = (town) enclosure or walled area: “burg” = (Hamburg) fortified community
This comes from the latin “tun” so a town actually means enclosure. Every medieval town had a
wall encircling it. The suffix burg means walled enclosure or a fotified community. In French,
the word bourgeoisie (a person who lives in the city, in an enclosed area)
centuries: improvement in weather, excess crops, surplus for trade
This surplus also allowed for population increase and the support of more people
Opening up of the East by the Crusades, influx of goods
…explained? The crusades (knights of europe to go and free the holy land) the crusaders opened
up trade from the east, from asia (silk and spices- were used as preservatives)… and people
really wanted the goods once they had them once. The warmer climates have more spicy foods,
note this!!! The people didn’t need spices in scandanavia, for instance very bland food there…
italy was a recipient of this. Much of the trade went by ship. It was safer to carry it this way.
When the crusaders went to the east and found that the Byzantine and muslim scholars had kept