What is your first name?
What is your last name?
When the Roman Empire fell, Europe was plunged into a period known as The Dark
Ages. Chaos broke out as the many tribes of people that had been under Roman control
vied for land and power. There were frequent wars for almost two hundred years but in the
700’s Charlemagne, King of the Franks, succeeded in conquering many of the warring
tribes. Charlemagne built a large empire to which he brought peace and the Christian
religion he felt so strongly about.
Under Charlemagne and for years to come, warfare gave way to a system called
Feudalism which brought order to the chaotic continent. Under this system kings
subdivided their lands, giving fiefs, or portions of land, to loyal nobles called vassals in
exchange for protection and service. These nobles in turn gave fiefs to lesser vassals in
exchange for protection and service, and so forth. At each level nobles maintained armies
of knights to protect the land and aid the noble in the position above. Before long, most of
Europe was divided and well-defended so wars occurred less frequently.
Feudalism also reduced the power of the kings, giving it instead to local landowners at every level. Local lords ruled their lands called manors,
self-sufficient estates which the lord controlled along with all of the people living on them. Though the size of the manor varied with the levels
of nobles in charge, the vast majority of people in Europe at the time lived on manors. For most, their days were long and filled with hard labor.
Life was difficult and grim.
Based on the passage, what was of the GREATEST value during the Dark Ages?
During the Dark Ages ___ ruled, but ____ had a great deal more power.
Manors were important for all of the reasons listed, EXCEPT
Use the reading and the diagram to the right to explain how medieval society worked.(Requires Paragraph)