Timeline of Early Middle Ages events from 500 to 1000.
DAY IN THE LIFE DURING ... THE EARLY MIDDLE AGES
by Jacquelin Cangro
Meet Harold, the squire of Lord Roundtree, and spend a day
with him helping prepare his lord for a joust.
WHAT TRIBE ARE YOU?
Abigail Mieko Vargus
Ever heard of the “barbarian hordes”? The early
Middle Ages were full of them – although no one called
himself a barbarian. Barbarian or otherwise, there were many
tribes and many battles for control. If you were alive during
the so-called Dark
Ages, what tribe would you belong to? Take our quiz and find
HOW THE IRISH CHANGED CHRISTIANITY
According to legend, a man named Patrick converted the whole
of Ireland to Christianity all by himself. While this is a
great tale, the true story of Patrick is not as grand. The
real Patrick did spread Christianity in Ireland during the
mid-fifth century, but the diocese he created did not last
more than fifty years. Eventually, the native Irish became Christian on their own.
In doing so, the Irish added their own unique character to the religion – find out how.
THE LINDISFARNE GOSPELS
Bound in gold, wrapped in velvet and scattered with jewels,
the Lindisfarne Gospels were far more than a book to the
monks who created them. Resting in their place in a secluded,
lonely monastery on Lindisfarne Island off the northern
coast of England, the Gospels didn’t just hold the
words of the Bible. Learn more about the how the elaborate
drawings, colored in with handmade dyes and even gold,
as well as pages of text painstakingly copied by hand,
displayed the artwork of Western Europe as it shifted its
influence from the Roman Empire to Celtic and Anglo-Saxon
GREGORIAN CHANT: MUSIC WITH A LASTING LEGACY
For the people of the Early Middle Ages, music was just as vital
a part of everyday life as it is today – perhaps even
more, since they had to perform it themselves instead of just
hitting the “play” button. Read how one of the most
influential forms of Western music was developed during this
time, and in a place you might not expect – the monasteries
and parish churches throughout Europe.
VENERABLE BEDE: HE TOLD IT LIKE IT WAS
If you had to write a report on one of the most influential leaders in your nation’s history, how would you begin? With a list of her successes? A tribute to his talents? A story of her heroism? Chances are, you would not begin as Bede did! To describe the arrival of Augustine of Canterbury in 582 A.D. – a key event heralding the end of England’s “Dark Ages” – Bede tells an embarrassing story of Augustine’s cowardice. Learn more about no-holds-barred “father of English history.”
ALFRED: THE FIRST KING OF THE ENGLISH
In the late ninth century, the small kingdoms of Europe were in grave danger of being overrun by the Vikings, the fearsome warriors from Scandinavia.
Longboat fleets ransacked coastal towns and monasteries in search of loot, land, and glory.
At this time of struggle, Alfred, king of Wessex, fought against the odds and managed to halt the Viking advance.
Doing so brought about changes that laid the foundation for the future English nation – find out how.
HOLY WAR IN THE DARK AGES
In the seventh and eighth centuries, bands of warriors converged
in Europe. Barbarians clad in furs and armed with spears and
swords marched through dense forests, laying claim to land
later known as Belgium, France, Germany, and the Netherlands.
Skilled horsemen galloped across North Africa and boarded ships
to cross the Mediterranean and seize Spain. At stake was an
empire once ruled by Roman legions. Warriors on both sides
claimed God as their ally. Little was written about their battlefield
clashes – explore why their choices and conflicts still
affect the course of modern history.
THE BATTLE OF TOURS
To some, the battle between Charles Martel and the Arab Muslims represents a struggle between East and West, Christianity and Islam.
To others, it represents another Arab raid against the inhabitants of Gaul, not an attempt to take over Europe.
Either way, historians can agree that the outcome of the Battle of Tours influenced the course of history.
Never heard of it? We’ll take you directly to the battlefield …
KINGS, NOBLES, KNIGHTS, AND SERFS
Explore the life and economic system of Early Medieval Europe,
with a look at the feudal system and manor life.
INTERVIEW WITH A MODERN DAY CHAIN MAIL ARTISAN
Chain mail was the most popular form of armor worn by medieval
knights. Hear a modern day chain mail artisan talk about how
and why he creates chain mail today
CHARLEMAGNE: HOLY ROMAN EMPEROR Thomas Saul
Charlemagne knelt down before the pope. It was Christmas Day, 800 A.D. and it was the beginning of Mass. He looked up at Pope Leo III, who was gazing at him with hope in his eyes and a crown in his hands. Charlemagne knew that he was the new hope of the church. The pope had taken a great interest in him and today, in addition to his title of king of the Franks, he was being crowned Holy Roman Emperor. He was now the most powerful man in Europe. Hear Charlemagne tell the story of his as it unfolded from childhood to old age.
THE VIKINGS IN FRANCE
For more than two hundred years during the Middle Ages, Vikings
the countries of Europe. The Vikings became a terror to their
Tales of violence preceded them, and people thought they were
unbeatable. The Vikings had many strong leaders – read
about one of the
most famous, Rollo, and his impact on the country of France.
OTTO I AND THE BATTLE OF LECHFELD
Read about the Battle of Lechfeld - a conflict that permanently
changed the ethnic and political makeup of Europe, stopped
the spread of the Magyars into central Europe and also increased
the stability of the German kingdoms, leading the way for a
unified German state led by Otto the Great.
THE SHOW MUST GO ON:
REBUILDING DRAMA IN THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH
While the period between 500 and 1000 AD is not known as a
high point in Western theater, it was a time that gave life
to a new dramatic form, capturing the highly religious and
sober mood of the medieval people. Find out what type of theater
provided spirituality, education, and maybe even a little enjoyment.
ARTS & CRAFTS
DARK AGE FARE by
MAKE A MEDIEVAL POMANDER by
LITERATURE STUDY GUIDES
THE LANTERN BEARERS (Middle School) by Catherine Morin
FIVE LIVES OF ARTHUR (High School) by Jim Cort
policies Learning Through History magazine is published
by Classic Education, Inc