The Crusades And Medieval Government Essay

1184 words - 5 pages

The Crusades that occurred in Europe during the Middle Ages were an unified effort of Church, State, and economic institutions that farther urbanized European material, social and intellectual development.
Before the Crusades began, the three main institutional pillars that shaped European life was religion, the monarchy (government) and the economy. Religion was highly important during the Middle Ages, as Christianity spread extensively throughout Europe, Catholicism was the sole Christian faith that this time and the Roman Catholic Church was influential to Christians as it spread throughout Europe. No matter what class, it was an unifying factor on people from corners of Europe, except for a small population of Jews; everyone was a Christian, from Kings to serfs and provided a format for conduct from birth to death. Following baptism, all things Christian engulfed a child of the Middle Ages from the teachings of prayers, to learning one’s responsibilities to God and the Church. All were expected to follow the Church’s law and support it financially by paying heavy taxes. Besides collecting taxes, the Church also accepted gifts from individuals in exchange for special favors. While a significant departure from the core message of Christianity, the Church became very powerful through the practice of exchanging Church influence and doctrine for granting individual indulgences. Consequently, the Church often used this power to influence kings to do, as it wanted.
Because of religions importance in people�s live, many people chose to devote their lives to serve God and do the Church’s work. These monks and nuns lived apart from the world and lived in special communities called monasteries or nunneries. Monks and nuns promised to remain celibate, to be obedient to their Church superiors and live a simple life of prayer. In the Middle Ages, the Pope ruled supreme over all other Church’s in Europe. The Papacy yielded considerable power and influenced the various European kings and their advisors. The office of the Pope, wielded secular power within the city as well as a measure of spiritual leadership from father afield. The Church’s main concern was the rapid growth and expanding realm of Islam, and became a more threatening power as it expanded into Europe. Likewise, it’s military control over the Holy Land; an important element of the Christian faith- the Church ended that something must be done to stop these threats. Since the Church had no military force, and did not want to spend the money to undertake this mission, they needed to engage the monarch and people of Europe to achieve their goal.
The government in the Middle Ages, a monarchy, was also very important in shaping Europe. The head of the government was the king, and the purpose of the government was to put his ruling and policies to practice. The monarchy protected the people in exchange for taxes paid to the monarchy. The population relied on the King. Individual economic...

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