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Presentation on theme: "THE CRISIS OF THE LATER MIDDLE AGES 1300-1450 CH. 12 THE LIFE OF THE PEOPLE/VERNACULAR LITERATURE."— Presentation transcript:


2 THE LIFE OF THE PEOPLE Economic & Social Change Peasants’ revolts throughout Eur. – 14 th C & 15 th C  Beginning – Revolt in Flanders 1320s  Taxes and fees  100 Years War  Financial demands (again)  Usually involved venting thru  Arson  Pillage  Murder  Rape  Peasants’ Revolt – Eng. 1381  Attempt to return wages to pre Black Death  Reflected the rising expectations for improved living conditions of the working class  Resentment of aristocratic privilege  Collection of tax on adult make  Most revolts were crushed with ferocious force

3 MAP: FOURTEENTH-CENTURY PEASANT REVOLTS Fourteenth-century Peasant Revolts In the later Middle Ages and early modern times, peasant and urban uprisings were endemic, as common as factory strikes in the industrial world. The threat of insurrection served to check unlimited exploitation. (Copyright (c) Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.) Copyright ©Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.

4 THE LIFE OF THE PEOPLE Economic & Social Change Eur. urbanized centers  Peasants’ revolts often accompanied by urban revolts  Florence  Ciompi (poor workers) demanded political rights  New form of capitalist production  Guild masters now ran shops that employed others to do only one or two steps of the manufacturing process (still hand made)  Offered opportunity – but lowered soc/econ status of most  Guilds & Journeymen  Restricted membership – freezing out ambitious journeymen  Journeymen tried to organize their own guilds  Rebelled in Florence 1378 to gain recognition & participation in republican government (restricted to guild master)

5 THE LIFE OF THE PEOPLE AP TIP! Guild System early capitalism  Various trades, manufactures & services – guilds  Baker, notaries, wood merchants…  Organized production, materials, craftmanship  Trained apprentice to journeyman to master  Limited hours of operation and set min. wages/prices  Competition between cities, not within  Social service agencies  Cared for widows/children  Some cities (Florence) guilds dominated gov

6 THE LIFE OF THE PEOPLE Gender & Sexuality Women  Worked in shops – sometimes became masters  14 th C – increasingly restricted  Excluded from guilds  No access to political power  Not welcome in journeymen guilds  Marital patterns  Married in teen/early 20s – Italy  Noble & wealthy in mid to late 20s - northwester Eur.  More independent of husband  Fewer children

7 Prostitute inviting traveling merchant Poverty and male violence drove women into prostitution, which, though denounced by moralists, was accepted as a normal part of the medieval social fabric. In the cities and larger towns where prostitution flourished, public officials passed laws requiring prostitutes to wear a special mark on their clothing and regulated hours of business. They forbade women to drag men into their houses (as we see the prostitute doing in this illustration, as she invites a traveling merchant into her house), and denied business to women with the "burning sickness," gonorrhea. (Bodleian Library, Oxford)

8 THE LIFE OF THE PEOPLE Men  Older at marriage  30s – Italy  Mid 20s – most of Eur.  Journeymen/university students forbidden from marrying  Late marriage age left many unmarried men in cities  Fostered riotous atmosphere  Brothels  legal  Rules for prostitutes/customers  Justified – prevention of homosexuality  Rape/sexual harassment – frequent  Female servants vulnerable  Capital offense  Penalties light – especially compared to sodomy, mutilation & forgery  Homosexuality  Considered crimes against nature  Sodomy – capital offense Office of the Night – created to root out sodomy

9 THE LIFE OF THE PEOPLE Fur-C0llar Crime Nobles Suffered from idleness after 100 Years’ War & inflation Lavish lifestyles suffered Fur collar – because only nobles were allowed to wear them Types of crimes Extortion Stealing from the poor & weak Kidnapping high clergy & nobles for ransom Corruption of judicial process Bribery Intimadation Tales of Robin Hood Desire for justice Resentment of the common folk

10 THE LIFE OF THE PEOPLE Ethnic Tensions and Restrictions intensified with economic crisis Important clerical position decided by blood ties Legislation prohibiting sexual relations & intermarriage among ethnic groups Public office required purity of ethnic background Ireland – Statute of Kilkenny 1336 This concept of blood would later morph into modern racism

11 English view of Irish Depicting a subject or colonial people as barbaric and uncivilized has long been a way of denigrating and dehumanizing the enemy. In this thirteenth-century miniature showing the English view of the Irish, a king (in a bath) and his courtiers devour horseflesh with their hands, without plates or eating utensils. (Bodleian Library, Oxford)

12 LITERACY AND VERNACULAR LITERATURE Helped to create a national language and national identity  Dante’s Divine Comedy - early 14 th C  Poetic triplets  Imagines the journey of Dante, guided by the Roman poet Virgil  Hell  Purgatory  Heaven  Commentary on social and religious issues  Reflected medieval intense religiosity  emerging modern materialism  secular ambition  Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales - later 14 th C  Collection of stories of pilgrims on their way to Canterbury  Earthy  Sensual  Materialistic

13 Dante, Inferno In this frontispiece from an early manuscript of Dante's Divine Comedy, Dante, wearing a red robe, is guided by Virgil, in blue, through the agonies of hell. (Bibliotheque nationale de France)

14 LITERACY AND VERNACULAR LITERATURE Literacy  Increased among laypeople  Number of schools for boys increases  Girls sent to convent schools  Taught to read, but not to write  Trade and commerce demanded literate workers  Christine de Pizan - France  Writer  Most famous work – The City of Ladies – 1404  Conutered negative views of women in society  Italian city-states  Still vital even after Black Death  New sets of values & artisitc froms  Lead to a renaissance

15 Christine de Pisan Christine de Pisan (1363?-1434?), married at age 15 to a court secretary, came into contact with educated men who introduced her to Latin prose and the works of Petrarch and Boccaccio. At the age of 25, widowed and grieving, she began to write poetry and, later, turned her interest toward the writers of antiquity. The success of her works accorded her the patronage of such distinguished people as Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, and Queen Isabella of Bavaria. She is best remembered for her two extended works on the role of women in society: The Book of the City of Ladies (1405) and The Book of Three Virtues (also known as The Treasury of the City of Ladies). The latter volume was dedicated to Marguerite of Burgundy and established the criteria for women who desired to live in the city. In this manuscript illustration Christine de Pisan writes her Collected Works. (British Library)


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