Medieval England/ Holy Roman Empire

By: Mark Jeska, Gaurav Vaidya, Haris Khan

Medieval England

Medieval England is believed to be from 1066 when King Edward the Confessor died, the successor, Harold of Wessex, was beat by William the Conquer in the Battle of Hastings for the crown of England. From this point, there were many revolts by the northern parts, mainly Yorkshire, of England, but were eventually put out by William by basically destroying their towns.
Introducing Britain: Medieval Arcitecture - Ely Cathedral

Architecture and Cathedrals

The architecture during this time was very magnificent for its time with the massive cathedrals being built ever few years and they became the largest structures the people in England had ever seen. Not a very big surprise, but these were for religious purposes for the Catholic Church and was largely influential to the people of the towns they were built in.

Domesday Book

This was an inventory of all the men who owned land in England and the amount of tax they had to pay the King, William the Conqueror, for owning that land. It, also, one of the first censuses created and was completed in 1086. This enforced people to pay taxes and have no revolt against it because it was in writing that they had given to the government.

Hundred Years War and The War of the Roses

The War of the Roses was a civil war between Richard the Second and his cousin, Henry Bolingbroke, where Richard was murdered and this began the civil war once Henry became King and continued through his son's reign as king.

The Hundred Years War really lasted 116 years and was between England and France. England had the upper hand for basically 90 years of the war until Joan of Ark became a large influence in the people of France and she helped empower the French military. Castles were very important during this time.

Holy Roman Empire

Holy Roman Empire, a realm in medieval and early modern times that consisted primarily of Germany and that part of Italy governed by the German ruler. The empire, which lasted from 962 to 1806, was in theory a revival of the Western Roman Empire—the political counterpart of the Roman Catholic Church. This was a group of regions and free cities in Central Europe which all came under the rule of an emperor who was elected by the princes and magistrates of the regions and cities within the empire.

The Emperor

When the Western Roman Empire collapsed in 408, four centuries later, Charlemagne, was crowned the Emperor of the Romans on Christmas Day 800 by Pope Leo III. Since he was crowned emperor in Rome by the pope, the name Holy Roman Empire was applied to the realms which he ruled. Many historians have pointed out that the empire was not actually an empire. It was actually just a bunch of germanic tribes that were ruled by one king. The grandsons of Charlemagne divided his empire into three parts in the Treaty of Verdun in 843. This division proved to be permanent. The eastern part became Germany, the western part France, and the middle never became a single state but was often the battle ground between France and Germany.

The Fall of the Holy Roman Empire

The fall of the Holy Roman Empire was a process that took place over many years. The most obvious explanation for this decline was that it was not an empire at all, meaning it had very little central control over all it’s parts. The empire was made up of hundreds of different kingdoms, principalities, duchies and free cities that were populated by various ethnic and religious groups. Pleasing the desires of these various was becoming pointless and with an emperor whose local influence was very little, maintaining a powerful national identity was impossible.

Essential Questions

  • How could the Domesday book help the centralization of England's government during this time? How does this affect the people that collect the taxes and people that pay the taxes and how has this affected the governments of today?
  • If a leader, who was very powerful, effective, and promising to the people he or she lead, like Charlemagne to the Holy Roman Empire, where leave or die, would the successor(s) to the leader be just as great as the first was or not as good? How has Medieval England and The Holy Roman Empire shown this in history and how some presidents "seem" better than others?