Chapter 8: European Civilization in the Early Middle Ages, 750-1000

  1. Spacious Plain housed several nomads that terrorized and plundered communities. It was easy to create large empires and be overthrown and later assimilated by native Slavs. The Slavs were originally a single people in c. Europe who through mass migration and nomadic invasions were divided into three major groups:
    • Western Slavs
    • Eastern Slavs
    • Southern Slavs
  2. I.                   Western Slavs
    • a.      Germans assumed responsibility for these people’s conversion because German emperors considered it their duty to spread Christianity to barbarians
    •                                                               i.      Also provided opportunity to extend political authority
    •                                                             ii.      Missionaries converted Czechs
    • 1.      Bishopric occupied by Czech bishop
    •                                                           iii.      Slavs in Poland not converted until Prince Mieszko reign
    • b.      Non-Slavic kingdom of Hungary, which emerged after Magyar defeat at Lechfeld in 955, converted to Christianity by German missionaries
    • c.       Saint Stephen, king of Hungary from 997 to 1038, facilitated the acceptance of Christianity by his people
    • d.      They became closely tied to the Roman Catholic Church and Latin culture
  3. I.                   Southern Slavs
    • a.      Converted to Eastern Orthodox Christianity of Byzantine empire by Cyril and Methodius (two Byzantine missionary brothers)
    •                                                               i.      Created Cyrillic alphabet, translated Bible into Slavonic, and developed Slavonic church services
    • b.      Southern Slavs accepted Christianity
    •                                                               i.      Still, a split developed between those who accepted Roman church (Croats) and those who remained loyal to eastern Christianity (Serbs)
    • c.       Bulgars absorbed by southern Slavs and formed Slavic Bulgarian Kingdom
    •                                                               i.      Accepted Eastern Orthodox churches
    • 1.      Embraced Slavonic church services
  4. I.                   Eastern Slavs
    • a.      Contended with Viking invaders after settling
    •                                                               i.      Swedish Vikings moved down rivers into their land in search of booty and trade routes
    • 1.      Established trading links with Byzantine State
    • a.      Varangians built trading settlements
    • b.      Became involved in civil wars among Slavs
    • c.       Dominated natives
    •                                                                                                                                       i.      Rurik + Vikings= Rus; attached to Russia
    •                                                                                                                                     ii.      Oleg: resided in Kiev and created Rus state
    • 1.      Successors extended control over eastern Slavs and expanded Kiev
    • 2.      Through intermarriage, they were assimilated into Slavic population
  5. Eastern Slavs
    Growth of Kiev
    • a.      Growth of Kiev attracted missionaries from Byzantine Empire
    •                                                               i.      Vladimir married Byzantine emperor’s sister and accepted Christianity
    • 1.      Not spiritual motives
    • a.      Believed an established church would help develop an organized state
Card Set
Chapter 8: European Civilization in the Early Middle Ages, 750-1000