Chapter 14 - The Latin West, 1200-1500 Flashcards Preview

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Flashcards in Chapter 14 - The Latin West, 1200-1500 Deck (21)

Latin West

Historians’ name for the territories of Europe that adhered to the Latin rite of Christianity and used the Latin language for intellectual exchange in the period ca. 500–1500.


Rural French Peasants

Many scenes of peasant life in winter are visible in this small painting by the Flemish Limbourg brothers from the 1410s. Above the snow- covered beehives one man chops firewood, while another drives a donkey loaded with firewood to a little village. At the lower right a woman, blowing on her frozen fingers, heads past the huddled sheep and hungry birds to join other women warming themselves in the cottage (whose outer wall the artists have cut away).


three-field system

A rotational system for agriculture in which two fields grow food crops and one lies fallow. It gradually replaced the two-field system in medieval Europe.


Black Death

An outbreak of bubonic plague that spread across Asia, North Africa, and Europe in the midfourteenth century, carrying off vast numbers of persons.


water wheel

A mechanism that harnesses the energy in flowing water to grind grain or to power machinery. It was used in many parts of the world but was especially common in Europe from 1200 to 1900.


The Black Death in Fourteenth-Century Europe

Spreading out of southwestern China along the routes opened by Mongol expansion, the plague reached the Black Sea port of Kaffa in 1346. This map documents its deadly progress year by year from there into the Mediterranean and north and east across the face of Europe.


Hanseatic League

An economic and defensive alliance of the free towns in northern Germany, founded about 1241 and most powerful in the fourteenth century.


Flemish Weavers, Ypres

The spread of textile weaving gave employment to many people in the Netherlands. The city of Ypres in Flanders (now northern Belgium) was an important textile center in the thirteenth century. This drawing from a fourteenth century manuscript shows a man and a woman weaving cloth on a horizontal loom, while a child makes thread on a spinning wheel.



In medieval Europe, an association of men (rarely women), such as merchants, artisans, or professors, who worked in a particular trade and banded together to promote their economic and political interests. Guilds were also important in other societies, such as the Ottoman and Safavid Empires.


Gothic cathedrals

Large churches originating in twelfth-century France; built in an architectural style featuring pointed arches, tall vaults and spires, flying buttresses, and large stained glass windows.


Renaissance (European)

A period of intense artistic and intellectual activity, said to be a “rebirth” of Greco-Roman culture. Usually divided into an Italian Renaissance, from roughly the mid-fourteenth to mid fifteenthcentury, and a Northern (trans-Alpine) Renaissance, from roughly the early fifteenth to early seventeenth century.



Degreegranting institutions of higher learning. Those that appeared in the Latin West from about 1200 onward became the model of all modern universities.



A philosophical and theological system, associated with Thomas Aquinas, devised to reconcile Aristotelian philosophy and Roman Catholic theology in the thirteenth century.


humanists (Renaissance)

European scholars, writers, and teachers associated with the study of the humanities (grammar, rhetoric, poetry, history, languages, and moral philosophy), influential in the fifteenth century and later.


Dante’s Divine Comedy

This fifteenth-century painting by Domenico di Michelino shows Dante holding a copy of the Divine Comedy. Hell is depicted to the poet’s right terraces of Purgatory behind him, surmounted by the earthly and heavenly Paradise. The city of Florence, with its recently completed cathedral, appears to Dante’s left.


printing press

A mechanical device for transferring text or graphics from a woodblock or type to paper using ink. Presses using movable type first appeared in Europe in about 1450.


Michelangelo’s Tomb Statueof Lorenzo de Medici

The greatest of the Medici bankers, Lorenzo governed Florence during the height of the Renaissance. At the time of his death in 1492 he had fallen under the influence of Girolamo Savonarola, a stern, moralistic priest who felt that art and morals had departed too far from proper Christianity. Nevertheless, the Roman armor and pensive expression of this statue epitomize the antique revival and dedication to thought associated with the term Renaissance.


Great Western Schism

A division in the Latin (Western) Christian Church between 1378 and 1415, when rival claimants to the papacy existed in Rome and Avignon.


Hundred Years War(1337–1453)

Series of campaigns over control of the throne of France, involving English and French royal families and French noble families.


new monarchies

Historians’ term for the monarchies in France, England, and Spain from 1450 to 1600. The centralization of royal power was increasing within more or less fixed territorial limits.


reconquest of Iberia

Beginning in the eleventh century, military campaigns by various Iberian Christian states to recapture territory taken by Muslims. In 1492 the last Muslim ruler was defeated, and Spain and Portugal emerged as united kingdoms.