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the Dark Ages

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Author Topic: the Dark Ages  (Read 1649 times)
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Posts: 39

« on: May 08, 2007, 09:14:32 am »

I do not like the term "Dark Age". THis period was a time of profound change, disturbance, recolonization and growth.

First of all, the Romans ruled western Europe very well and protected people, built infrastructure promoted trade. Life, for that time was very good.

Then the Romans abandoned the area to the fate of eastern tribes pressing at the borders. A massive influx of new people came in with different languages, cultures. Trade was disrupted. No doubt there was conflict and violence.

After several hundred years of this, the Moors invaded Spain and southern France. They raided up to the outskirst of Paris. They occupied much of Italy. They even occupied the Alps for a time. All this was very disruptive.

Finally, Charlemagne was able to consolidate the peoples of western Europe for a time as well as his offspring and repel the Moorish threat.

What was a messy polyglot of latin, local and german languages began to consolidate into distinct languages like french, italian, german and english. People now could communicate with one another.

Finally, the Church began its ascendency. A lot of people resent this. But the fact is that the Church, by promoting Latin as the lingua franca and as a superior ruling force was able to facilitate communication among disparate groups and mediate and broker between warmongering ruling thugs posing as kings.

The church developed an educated class of scribes and started universities and institutions of learning. Were it not for the church, there would be no stability to permit trade, for intelligent people to rise to elevated positions and for intelligent people to have the freedom to investigate the works of God.

I am frankly surprised that all of this reconsolidation was able to take place in such a short time.

With the development of more or less standarized languages, the printing press brought the written word to every man and woman who wished to read. The scientific method developed from the womb of the church itself (not without a little rebellious teenage angst, of course) and all of this despite devastating plagues that set back progress for generations.

So I hate the term Dark Ages. I would call it The Age of Consolidation for it led to all the preconditions needed for the Age of Dicovery, The Age of Nations, The Reformation and the Renaissance to occur and ultimately for the Modern Age to begin.

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