Full Text Archive logoFull Text Archive — Free Classic E-books


Part 4 out of 18

Adobe PDF icon
File size: 2.2 MB
What's this? light bulb idea Many people prefer to read off-line or to print out text and read from the real printed page. Others want to carry documents around with them on their mobile phones and read while they are on the move. We have created .pdf files of all out documents to accommodate all these groups of people. We recommend that you download .pdfs onto your mobile phone when it is connected to a WiFi connection for reading off-line.

5. GEOMETRY. This study consisted almost entirely of geography and
reasoning as to geometrical forms until the tenth century, when Boethius'
work on _Geometry_, containing some extracts from Euclid, was discovered
by Gerbert. The geography of Europe, Asia, and Africa also was studied, as
treated in the textbooks of the time, and a little about plants and
animals as well was introduced. The nature of the geographic instruction
may be inferred from Figure 46, which reproduces one of the best world
maps of the day. The main geographical features of the known world can be
made out from this, but many of the mediaeval maps are utterly

To illustrate the reasoning as to geometrical forms which preceded the
finding of Euclid we quote from Maurus, who says that the science of
geometry "found realization also at the building of the tabernacle and the
temple; and that the same measuring rod, circles, spheres, hemispheres,
quadrangles, and other figures were employed. The knowledge of all this
brings to him, who is occupied with it, no small gain for his spiritual
culture." (R. 74 e). After Gerbert's time some geometry proper and the
elements of land surveying were introduced. The real study of geometry in
Europe, however, dates from the twelfth century, when Euclid was
translated into Latin from the Arabic.

6. ASTRONOMY. In astronomy the chief purpose of the instruction was to
explain the seasons and the motions of the planets, to set forth the
wonders of the visible creation, and to enable the priests "to fix the
time of Easter and all other festivals and holy days, and to announce to
the congregation the proper celebration of them." (R. 74 g).

(From a tenth-century map in the British Museum)

This is one of the better maps of the period. Note the mixture of Biblical
and classical geography (Bethlehem, Jerusalem, Pillars of Hercules), and
the animal life (lion) introduced in the upper corner. The Mediterranean
Sea in the center, the Greek islands, the British isles, the Italian
peninsula, the Nile, and the northern African coast are easily recognized.
Western Europe, the best-known part of the world at that time, is very
poorly done.]

Even after Ptolemy's _Mechanism of the Heavens_ (p. 49) and Aristotle's
_On the Heavens_ had filtered across the Pyrenees from the Saracens, in
the eleventh century, the Ptolemaic theory of a flat earth located at the
center of the heavenly bodies and around which they all revolved, while a
very pleasing theological conception, was absolutely fatal to any
instruction in astronomy worth while and to any astronomical advance. All
mediaeval astronomy, too, was saturated with astrology, as the selection
on the motion of the heavenly bodies reproduced from Bartholomew Anglicus
shows (R. 77 b), and the supernatural was invoked to explain such
phenomena as meteors, comets, and eclipses. The Copernican theory of the
motion of the heavenly bodies was not published until 1543, and all our
modern ideas date from that time.

Physics was often taught as a part of the instruction in astronomy, and
consisted of lessons on the properties of matter (R. 77 a) and some of the
simple principles of dynamics. Little else of what we to-day know as
physics was then known.

7. MUSIC. Unlike the other studies of the _Quadrivium_, the instruction in
music was quite extensive, and from early times a good course in musical
theory was taught (R. 74 f). Boethius' _De Musica_, written at the
beginning of the sixth century, was the text used. Music entered into so
many activities of the Church that much naturally was made of it. The
organ, too, is an old instrument, going back to the second century B.C.,
and the organ with a keyboard to the close of the eleventh century. This
instrument added much to the value of the music course, and the hymns
composed by Christian musicians form an important part of our musical
heritage. [11] The cathedral school at Metz and the monastery at Saint
Gall became famous as musical centers, and of the work of one of the
teachers of music at Saint Gall (Notker) it was written by his biographer:
"Through different hymns, sequences, tropes, and litanies, through
different songs and melodies as well as through ecclesiastical science,
the pupils of this man made the church of God famous not merely in
Alemannia, but everywhere from sea to sea."

(From a fourteenth-century manuscript, now in the British Museum)]

THE GREAT TEXTBOOKS OF THE MIDDLE AGES. While the textbooks mentioned
under the description of each of the Liberal Arts formed the basis of the
instruction given, most of the instruction before the twelfth century was
not given from editions of the original works, but from abridged
compendiums. Six of these were so famous and so widely used that each
deserves a few words of description.

1. _The Marriage of Mercury and Philology_, written by Martianus Capella,
between 410 and 427 A.D., was the first of the five great mediaeval
textbooks. Mercury, desiring to marry, finally settles on the learned
maiden Philology, and the seven bridesmaids--Grammar, Dialectic, Rhetoric,
Geometry, Arithmetic, Astronomy, and Music--enter in turn at the ceremony
and tell who they are and what they represent. The speeches of the seven
maidens summarized the ancient learning in each subject. This textbook was
more widely used during the Middle Ages than any other book.

2. _Boethius_ (475-524) was another important mediaeval textbook writer,
having prepared textbooks on dialectic, arithmetic, geometry, music, and
ethics. Nearly all of what the Middle Ages knew of Aristotle's _Logic_ and
_Ethics_, and of the writings of Plato, were contained in the texts he
wrote. His _De Musica_ was used in the universities as a textbook until
near the middle of the eighteenth century.

3. _Cassiodorus_ [12] (c. 490-585), in his _On the Liberal Arts and
Sciences_, prepared a digest of each of the Seven Liberal Arts for
monastic use, fixing the number at seven by scriptural authority. [13]

4. _Isidore_, Bishop of Seville (c. 570-636), under the title of
_Etymologies_ or _Origines_, prepared an encyclopaedia of the ancient
learning for the use of the monks and clergy which was intended to be a
summary of all knowledge worth knowing. While he drew his knowledge from
the writings of the Greeks and Romans, with many of which he was familiar,
contrary to the attitude of Cassiodorus he forbade the monks and clergy to
make any use of them whatever. Cassiodorus was still in part a Roman;
Isidore was a full mediaeval.

5. _Alcuin_, a learned scholar of the eighth century, whom we met in the
preceding chapter (p. 140), wrote treatises on the studies of the
_Trivium_ and on astronomy which were used in many schools in Frankland.

6. _Maurus_. In 819 the learned monk of Fulda, Rhabanus Maurus, a pupil of
Alcuin, issued his volume _On the Instruction of the Clergy_, in the third
part of which he describes the uses and the subject-matter of each of the
Arts (R. 74). He also wrote texts on grammar and astronomy, and in 844
issued an encyclopaedia, _De Universo_, based largely on the work of
Isidore, but supplemented from other sources.

These were the great textbooks for the study of the _Trivium_ and the
_Quadrivium_ throughout all the early Middle Ages. Considering that they
were in manuscript form and were in one volume, [14] their extent and
scope can be imagined. The teacher usually had or had access to a copy,
though even a teacher's books in that day were few in number (R. 78).
Pupils had no books at all. These "great" texts were composed of brief
extracts, bits of miscellaneous information, and lists of names. Their
style was uninviting. They were at best a mere shell, compared with the
Greek and Roman knowledge which had been lost. Some of these books were in
question-and-answer (catechetical) form. Their purpose was not to
stimulate thinking, but to transmit that modicum of secular knowledge
needed for the service of the Church and as a preparation for the study of
the theological writings. For nearly eight hundred years education was
static, the only purpose of instruction being to transmit to the next
generation what the preceding one had known. For such a period such
textbooks answered the purpose fairly well.

3. _Training of the nobility_

TENTH-CENTURY CONDITIONS. Following the death of Charlemagne and the
break-up of the empire held together by him, a period of organized anarchy
followed in western Europe. Authority broke down more completely than
before, and Europe, for protection, was forced to organize itself into a
great number of small defensive groups. Serfs, [15] freemen lacking land,
and small landowners alike came to depend on some nobleman for protection,
and this nobleman in turn upon some lord or overlord. For this protection
military service was rendered in return. The lord lived in his castle, and
the peasantry worked his land and supported him, fighting his battles if
the need arose. This condition of society was known as _feudalism_, and
the feudal relations of lord and vassal came to be the prevailing
governmental organization of the period. Feudalism was at best an
organized anarchy, suited to rude and barbarous times, but so well was it
adapted to existing conditions that it became the prevailing form of
government, and continued as such until a better order of society could be
evolved. With the invention of gunpowder, the rise of cities and
industries, the evolution of modern States by the consolidation of numbers
of these feudal governments, and the establishment of order and
civilization, feudalism passed out with the passing of the conditions
which gave rise to it. From the end of the ninth to the middle of the
thirteenth centuries it was the dominant form of government.

The life of the nobility under the feudal regime gave a certain
picturesqueness to what was otherwise an age of lawlessness and disorder.
The chief occupation of a noble was fighting, either in his own quarrel or
that of his overlord. It is hard for us to-day to realize how much
fighting went on then. Much was said about "honor," but quarrels were
easily started, and oaths were poorly kept. It was a day of personal feuds
and private warfare, and every noble thought it his right to wage war on
his neighbor at any time, without asking the consent of any one. [16] As a
preparation for actual warfare a series of mimic encounters, known as
tournaments, were held, in which it often happened that knights were
killed. In these encounters mounted knights charged one another with spear
and lance, performing feats similar to those of actual warfare. This was
the great amusement of the period, compared with which the German duel,
the Mexican bullfight, or the American game of football are mild sports.
The other diversions of the knights and nobles were hunting, hawking,
feasting, drinking, making love, minstrelsy, and chess. Intellectual
ability formed no part of their accomplishments, and a knowledge of
reading and writing was commonly regarded as effeminate.

To take this carousing, fighting, pillaging, ravaging, destructive, and
murderous instinct, so strong by nature among the Germanic tribes, and
refine it and in time use it to some better purpose, and in so doing to
increasingly civilize these Germanic lords and overlords, was the problem
which faced the Church and all interested in establishing an orderly
society in Europe. As a means of checking this outlawry the Church
established and tried to enforce the "Truce of God" (R. 79), and as a
partial means of educating the nobility to some better conception of a
purpose in life the Church aided in the development of the education of
chivalry, the first secular form of education in western Europe since the
days of Rome, and added its sanction to it after it arose.

THE EDUCATION OF CHIVALRY. This form of education was an evolution. It
began during the latter part of the ninth century and the early part of
the tenth, reached its maximum greatness during the period of the Crusades
(twelfth century), and passed out of existence by the sixteenth. The
period of the Crusades was the heroic age of chivalry. The system of
education which gradually developed for the children of the nobility may
be briefly described as follows:

1. _Page._ Up to the age of seven or eight the youth was trained at home,
by his mother. He played to develop strength, was taught the meaning of
obedience, trained in politeness and courtesy, and his religious education
was begun. After this, usually at seven, he was sent to the court of some
other noble, usually his father's superior in the feudal scale, though in
case of kings and feudal lords of large importance the children remained
at home and were trained in the palace school. From seven to fourteen the
boy was known as a page. He was in particular attached to some lady, who
supervised his education in religion, music, courtesy, gallantry, the
etiquette of love and honor, and taught him to play chess and other games.
He was usually taught to read and write the vernacular language, and was
sometimes given a little instruction in reading Latin. [17] To the lord he
rendered much personal service such as messenger, servant at meals, and
attention to guests. By the men he was trained in running, boxing,
wrestling, riding, swimming, and the use of light weapons.

2. _Squire._ At fourteen or fifteen he became a squire. While continuing
to serve his lady, with whom he was still in company, and continuing to
render personal service in the castle, the squire became in particular the
personal servant and bodyguard of the lord or knight. He was in a sense a
_valet_ for him, making his bed, caring for his clothes, helping him to
dress, and looking after him at night and when sick. He also groomed his
horse, looked after his weapons, and attended and protected him on the
field of combat or in battle. He himself learned to hunt, to handle shield
and spear, to ride in armor, to meet his opponent, and to fight with sword
and battle-axe. As he approached the age of twenty-one, he chose his lady-
love, who was older than he and who might be married, to whom he swore
ever to be devoted, even though he married some one else. He also learned
to rhyme, [18] to make songs, sing, dance, play the harp, and observe the
ceremonials of the Church. Girls were given this instruction along with
the boys, but naturally their training placed its emphasis upon household
duties, service, good manners, conversational ability, music, and

3. _Knight._ At twenty-one the boy was knighted, and of this the Church
made an impressive ceremonial. After fasting, confession, a night of vigil
in armor spent at the altar in holy meditation, and communion in the
morning, the ceremony of dubbing the squire a knight took place in the
presence of the court. He gave his sword to the priest, who blest it upon
the altar. He then took the oath "to defend the Church, to attack the
wicked, to respect the priesthood, to protect women and the poor, to
preserve the country in tranquillity, and to shed his blood, even to its
last drop, in behalf of his brethren." The priest then returned him the
sword which he had blessed, charging him "to protect the widows and
orphans, to restore and preserve the desolate, to revenge the wronged, and
to confirm the virtuous." He then knelt before his lord, who, drawing his
own sword and holding it over him, said: "In the name of God, of our Lady,
of thy patron Saint, and of Saint Michael and Saint George, I dub thee
knight; be brave (touching him with the sword on one shoulder), be bold
(on the other shoulder), be loyal (on the head)."

[Illustration: FIG. 48. A SQUIRE BEING KNIGHTED (From an old manuscript)]

THE CHIVALRIC IDEALS. Such, briefly stated, was the education of chivalry.
The cathedral and monastery schools not meeting the needs of the nobility,
the castle school was evolved. There was little that was intellectual
about the training given--few books, and no training in Latin. Instead,
the native language was emphasized, and squires in England frequently
learned to speak French. It was essentially an education for secular ends,
and prepared not only for active participation in the feuds and warfare of
the time, but also for the Seven Perfections of the Middle Ages: (1)
Riding, (2) Swimming, (3) Archery, (4) Fencing, (5) Hunting, (6) Whist or
Chess, and (7) Rhyming. It also represents the first type of schooling in
the Middle Ages designed to prepare for life here, rather than hereafter.
For the nobility it was a discipline, just as the Seven Liberal Arts was a
discipline for the monks and clergy. Out of it later on was evolved the
education of a gentleman as distinct from that of a scholar.

That such training had a civilizing effect on the nobility of the time
cannot be doubted. Through it the Church exercised a restraining and
civilizing influence on a rude, quarrelsome, and impetuous people, who
resented restraints and who had no use for intellectual discipline. It
developed the ability to work together for common ends, personal loyalty,
and a sense of honor in an age when these were much-needed traits, and the
ideal of a life of regulated service in place of one of lawless
gratification was set up. What monasticism had done for the religious life
in dignifying labor and service, chivalry did for secular life. The Ten
Commandments of chivalry, (1) to pray, (2) to avoid sin, (3) to defend the
Church, (4) to protect widows and orphans, (5) to travel, (6) to wage
loyal war, (7) to fight for his Lady, (8) to defend the right, (9) to love
his God, and (10) to listen to good and true men, while not often
followed, were valuable precepts to uphold in that age and time. In the
great Crusades movement of the twelfth century the Church consecrated the
military prowess and restless energy of the nobility to her service, but
after this wave had passed chivalry became formal and stilted and rapidly
declined in importance (R. 80).

(From a manuscript in the British Museum)]

4. _Professional study_

As the one professional study of the entire early Middle-Age period, and
the one study which absorbed the intellectual energy of the one learned
class, the evolution of the study of Theology possesses particular
interest for us.

THE STUDY OF THEOLOGY. During the earlier part of the period under
consideration the preparatory study necessary for service in the Church
was small, and very elementary in character. The elements of reading,
writing, reckoning, and music, as taught to _oblati_ in the monasteries,
sufficed. As knowledge increased a little the study of grammar at first,
and later all the studies of the _Trivium_ came to be common as
preparatory study, while those who made the best preparation added the
subjects of the _Quadrivium_. Ethics, or metaphysics, taught largely from
the digest of Aristotle's _Ethics_ prepared in the sixth century by
Boethius, was the text for this study until about 1200, when Aristotle's
_Metaphysics_, _Physics_, _Psychology_, and _Ethics_ were re-introduced
into Europe from Saracen sources (R. 87).

The theological course proper experienced a similar development. At first,
as we saw in chapter V, there were but few principles of belief, and the
church organization was exceedingly simple. In 325 A.D. the Nicene Creed
was formulated (p. 96), and the first twenty canons (rules) adopted for
the government of the clergy. With the translation of the Bible into the
Latin language (_Vulgate_, fourth century), the writings of the early
Latin Fathers, and additional canons and expressions of belief adopted at
subsequent church councils, an increasing amount relating to belief,
church organization, and pastoral duties needed to be imparted to new
members of the clergy. Still, up to the eleventh century at least, the
theological course remained quite meager. In a tenth-century account the
following description of the theological course of the time is given: [19]

1. Elements of grammar and the first part of Donatus.
2. Repeated readings of the Old and New Testaments.
3. Mass prayers.
4. Rules of the Church as to time reckoning.
5. Decrees of the Church Councils.
6. Rules of penance.
7. Prescriptions for church services.
8. Worldly laws.
9. Collections of homilies (sermons).
10. Tractates on the Epistles and Gospels.
11. Lives of the Saints.
12. Church music.

It will be seen from this tenth-century course of theological study that
it was based on reading, writing, and reckoning, and a little music as
preparatory studies; that it began with the first of the subjects of the
_Trivium_, which was studied only in part; and that its purpose was to
impart needed information as to dogma, church practices, canon (church)
law, and such civil (worldly) law as would be needed by the priest in
discharging his functions as the notary and lawyer of the age. There is no
suggestion of the study of Theology as a science, based on evidences,
logic, and ethics. Such study was not then known, and would not have been
tolerated. There were no other professions to study for.

SYSTEMATIC INSTRUCTION BEGINS. About 1145 Peter the Lombard published his
_Book of Sentences_, and this worked a revolution in the teaching of the
subject. In topics, arrangement, and method of treatment the book marked a
great advance, and became the standard textbook in Theology for a long
time. It did much to change the study of Theology from dogmas to a
scientific subject, and made possible schools of Theology in the
universities now about to arise. In the thirteenth century it was made the
official textbook at both the universities of Oxford and Paris. The
studies of dialectic and ethics were raised to a new plane of importance
by the publication of this book.

By the close of the twelfth century the interest of the Church in a
better-trained clergy had grown to such an extent that theological
instruction was ordered established wherever there was an Archbishop. In a
decree issued by Pope Innocent III and the General Council it was ordered:

In every cathedral or other church of sufficient means, a master ought
to be elected by the prelate or chapter, and the income of a prebend
assigned to him, and in every metropolitan church a theologian also
ought to be elected. And if the church is not rich enough to provide a
grammarian and a theologian, it shall provide for the theologian from
the revenues of his church, and cause provision to be made for the
grammarian in some church of his city or diocese. [20]

We also, in the early thirteenth century, find bishops enforcing
theological training on future priests by orders of which the following is
a type:

Hugh of Scawby, clerk, presented by Nigel Costentin to the church of
(Potter) Hanworth, was admitted and canonically instituted in it as
parson, on condition that he comes to the next orders to be ordained
subdeacon. But on account of the insufficiency of his grammar, the
lord bishop ordered him on pain of loss of his benefice to attend
school. And the Dean of Wyville was ordered to induct him into
corporal possession of the said church in form aforesaid, and to
inform the lord bishop if he does not attend school. [21]

5. _Characteristics of mediaeval education_

FOUNDATIONS LAID FOR A NEW ORDER. The education which we have just
described covers the period from the time of the downfall of Rome to the
twelfth or the thirteenth century. It represents what the Church evolved
to replace that which it and the barbarians had destroyed. Meager as it
still was, after seven or eight centuries of effort, it nevertheless
presents certain clearly marked lines of development. The beginnings of a
new Christian civilization among the tribes which had invaded and overrun
the old Roman Empire are evident, and, toward the latter part of the
Middle Ages, we note the development of a number of centers of learning
(R. 71) and the beginnings of that specialization of knowledge (church
doctrine, classical learning, music, logic and ethics, theology), at
different church and monastery schools, which promised much for the future
of learning. We also notice, and will see the same evidence in the
following chapter, the beginnings of a class of scholarly men, though the
scholarship is very limited in scope and along lines thoroughly approved
by the Church.

In education proper, in the sense that we understand it, the schools
provided were still for a very limited class, and secondary rather than
elementary in nature. They were intended to meet the needs of an
institution rather than of a people, and to prepare those who studied in
them for service to that institution. That institution, too, had
concentrated its efforts on preparing its members for life in another
world, and not for life or service in this. There were as yet no
independent schools or scholars, the monks and clergy represented the one
learned class, Theology was the one professional study, the ability to
read and write was not regarded by noble or commoner as of any particular
importance, and all book knowledge was in a language which the people did
not understand when they heard it and could not read. Society was as yet
composed of three classes--feudal warriors, who spent their time in
amusements or fighting, and who had evolved a form of knightly training
for their children; privileged priests and monks and nuns, who controlled
all book learning and opportunities for professional advancement; and the
great mass of working peasants, engaged chiefly in agriculture, and
belonging to and helping to fight the battles of their protecting lord.

For these peasants there was as yet no education aside from what the
Church gave through her watchful oversight and her religious services (R.
81), and but little leisure, freedom, wealth, security, or economic need
to make such education possible or desirable. Moreover, the other-worldly
attitude of the Church made such education seem unnecessary. It was still
the education of a few for institutional purposes, though here and there,
by the close of the twelfth century, the Church was beginning to urge its
members to provide some education for their children (R. 82), and the
world was at last getting ready for the evolution of the independent
scholar, and soon would be ready for the evolution of schools to meet
secular needs.

during this period, as we see it to-day, was to assimilate and
sufficiently civilize the barbarians to make possible a new civilization,
based on knowledge and reason rather than force. To this end the Church
had interposed her authority against barbarian force, and had slowly won
the contest. Almost of necessity the Church had been compelled to insist
upon her way, and this type of absolutism in church government had been
extended to most other matters. The Bible, or rather the interpretations
of it which church councils, popes, bishops, and theological writers had
made, became authoritative, and disobedience or doubt became sinful in the
eyes of the Church. [22] The Scriptures were made the authority for
everything, and interpretations the most fantastic were made of scriptural
verses. Unquestioning belief was extended to many other matters, with the
result that tales the most wonderful were recounted and believed. To
question, to doubt, to disbelieve--these were among the deadly sins of the
early Middle Ages. This attitude of mind undoubtedly had its value in
assimilating and civilizing the barbarians, and probably was a necessity
at the time, but it was bad for the future of the Church as an
institution, and utterly opposed to scientific inquiry and intellectual
progress. Monroe well expresses the situation which came to exist when he

The validity of any statement, the actuality of any alleged instance,
came to be determined, not by any application of rationalistic
principle, not by inherent plausibility, not by actual inquiry into
the facts of the case, but by its agreement with religious feelings or
beliefs, its effect in furthering the influence of the Church or the
reputation of a saint--in general, by its relationship to matters of
faith. Thus it happens that the chronicles of the monks and the lives
of the saints, charming and interesting as they are in their naivete,
their simplicity, their trustful credulity, and their pictures of a
life and an attitude of mind so remote from ours, are filled with
incidents given as facts that test the greatest faith, strain the most
vivid imagination, and shock that innate respect for reality, that it
is the purpose of modern education to inculcate. [23]

This authoritative and repressive attitude of the Church expressed itself
in many ways. The teaching of the period is an excellent example of this
influence. The instruction in the so-called Seven Liberal Arts remained
unchanged throughout a period of half a dozen centuries--so much
accumulated knowledge passed on as a legacy to succeeding generations. It
represented mere instruction; not education. As a recent writer has well
expressed it, the whole knowledge and culture contained in the Seven
Liberal Arts remained "like a substance in suspension in a medium
incapable of absorbing it; unchanged throughout the whole mediaeval
period." Inquiry or doubt in religious matters was not tolerated, and
scientific inquiry and investigation ceased to exist. The notable
scientific advances of the Greeks, their literature and philosophy, and
particularly their genius for free inquiry and investigation, no longer
influenced a world dominated by an institution preparing its children only
for life in a world to come. Not until the world could shake off this
mediaeval attitude toward scientific inquiry and make possible honest
doubt was any real intellectual progress possible. In a rough, general way
the turn in the tide came about the beginning of the twelfth century, and
for the next five centuries the Church was increasingly busy trying, like
King Canute of old, to stop the waves of free inquiry and scientific doubt
from rising higher against the bulwarks it had erected.

THE MEDIAEVAL EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM. The educational system which the Church
had developed by 1200 continued unchanged in its essential features until
after the great awakening known as the Revival of Learning, or
Renaissance. This system we have just sketched. For instruction in the
elements of learning we have the inner and outer monastery and convent
schools, and, in connection with the churches, song schools, and chantry
or stipendary schools. In these last we have the beginnings of the parish
school for instruction in the elements of learning and the fundamentals of
faith for the children of the faithful. In the monasteries, convents, and
in connection with the cathedral churches we have the secondary
instruction fairly well organized with the _Trivium_ and the _Quadrivium_
as the basis. At the close of the period under consideration in this
chapter a few privately endowed grammar schools were just beginning to be
founded to supplement the work of the cathedral schools (RS. 141-143). In
some of the inner monastery schools and a few of the cathedral schools we
also have the beginnings of higher instruction, with theology as the one
professional subject and the one learned career.

The relative weight of the lines indicates approximate development. The
lines along which educational evolution took place in the later Middle
Ages are here clearly marked out.]

All these schools, too, were completely under the control of the Church.
There were no private schools or teachers before about 1200. Only the
chivalric education was under the control of princes or kings, and even
this the Church kept under its supervision. The Church was still the
State, to a large degree, and the Church, unlike Greece or Rome, took the
education of the young upon itself as one of its most important functions.
The schools taught what the Church approved, and the instruction was for
religious and church ends. The monks who gave instruction in the
monasteries were responsible to the Abbot, who was in turn responsible to
the head of the order and through him to the Pope at Rome. Similarly the
_scholasticus_ in the cathedral school and the _precentor_ in the song
school were both responsible to the Bishop, and again through Archbishop
and Cardinal to the Pope.

part of the period under consideration in this chapter an interesting
development in church school administration took place. As the cathedral
and song schools increased assistant teachers were needed, and the
_scholasticus_ and _precentor_ gradually withdrew from instruction and
became the supervisors of instruction, or rather the principals of their
respective schools. As song or parish schools were established in the
parishes of the diocese teachers for these were needed, and the
_scholasticus_ and _precentor_ extended their authority and supervision
over these, just as the Bishop had done much earlier (p. 97) over the
training and appointment of priests. By 1150 we have, clearly evolved, the
system of central supervision of the training of all teachers in the
diocese through the issuing, for the first time in Europe, of licenses to
teach (R. 83). The system was finally put into legal form by a decree
adopted by a general council of the Church at Rome, in 1179, which
required that the _scholasticus_ "should have authority to superintend all
the schoolmasters of the diocese and grant them licenses without which
none should presume to teach," and that "nothing be exacted for licenses
to teach" issued by him, thus stopping the charging of fees for their
issuance. The _precentor_, in a similar manner, claimed and often secured
supervision of all elementary, and especially all song-school instruction.
Teachers were also required to take an oath of fealty and obedience (R. 84

As a result of centuries of evolution we thus find, by 1200, a limited but
powerful church school system, with centralized control and supervision of
instruction, diocesan licenses to teach, and a curriculum adapted to the
needs of the institution in control of the schools. We also note the
beginnings of secular instruction in the training of the nobility for
life's service, though even this is approved and sanctioned by the Church.
The centralized religious control thus established continued until the
nineteenth century, and still exists to a more or less important degree in
the school systems of Italy, the old Austro-Hungarian States, Germany,
England, and some other western nations. As we shall see later on, one of
the big battles in the process of developing state school systems has come
through the attempt of the State to substitute its own organization for
this religious monopoly of instruction.


1. Outline the instruction in an inner monastery school.

2. Show how the mediaeval parish school naturally developed as an offshoot
of the cathedral schools, and was supplemented later by the endowed
chantry schools.

3. What effect did the development of song-school instruction have on the
instruction in the cathedral schools?

4. Why was it difficult to develop good cathedral schools during the early
Middle Ages?

5. About how much training would be represented to-day by the Seven
Liberal Arts, (_a_) assuming the body of knowledge then known? (_b_)
assuming the body of knowledge for each subject known to-day?

6. What great subject of study has been developed out of one part of the
study of mediaeval rhetoric?

7. Why would dialectic naturally not be of much importance, so long as
instruction in theology was dogmatic and not a matter of thinking?

8. Characterize the instruction in arithmetic, geometry, and geography
during the early Middle Ages. Would we consider such knowledge as of any
value? Explain the attention given to such instruction.

9. What great modern subjects of study have been developed out of the
mediaeval subjects of arithmetic, geometry, and astronomy?

10. Compare the knowledge of mediaevals and moderns in (a) geography, (b)

11. What does the fact that the few great textbooks were in use for so
many centuries indicate as to the character of educational progress during
the Middle Ages?

12. Was the Church wise in adopting and sanctifying the education of
chivalry? Why?

13. What important contributions to world progress came out of chivalric

14. What ideals and practices from chivalry have been retained and are
still in use to-day? Does the Boy Scouts movement embody any of the
chivalric ideas and training?

15. Compare the education of the body by the Greeks and under chivalry.

16. Compare the Athenian ephebic oath with the vows of chivalry.

17. Picture the present world transferred back to a time when theology was
the one profession.

18. What educational theory, conscious or unconscious, formed the basis
for mediaeval education and instruction?

19. Explain why the Church, after six or seven centuries of effort, still
provided schools only for preparation for its own service.

20. What does the lack of independent scholars during the Middle Ages
indicate as to possible leisure?

21. Was the attitude of Anselm a perfectly natural one for the Middle
Ages? Can progress be made with such an attitude dominant?

22. Contrast the deadly sins of the Middle Ages with present-day
conceptions as to education.

23. Contrast the purposes of mediaeval education and the education of to-

24. When Greece and Rome offered no precedents, how did the Church come to
so fully develop and control the education which was provided?

25. Compare the supervisory work of a modern county superintendent with
that of a _scholasticus_ of a mediaeval cathedral.


In the accompanying _Book of Readings_ the following selections are

70. Leach: Song and Grammar Schools in England.
71. Mullinger: The Episcopal and Monastic Schools.
72. Statutes: The School at Salisbury Cathedral.
73. Aldwincle: Foundation Grant for a Chantry School.
74. Maurus: The Seven Liberal Arts.
75. Leach: A Mediaeval Latin Colloquy.
76. Quintilian: On the Importance of the Study of Grammar.
77. Anglicus: The Elements, and the Planets.
(a) Of the Elements.
(b) Of Double Moving of the Planets.
78. Cott: A Tenth Century Schoolmaster's Books.
79. Archbishop of Cologne: The Truce of God.
80. Gautier: How the Church used Chivalry.
81. Draper: Educational Influences of the Church Services.
82. Winchester Diocesan Council: How the Church urged that the Elements
of Religious Education be given.
83. Lincoln Cathedral: Licenses required to teach Song.
84. English Forms: Appointment and Oath of a Grammar-School Master.
(a) Northallerton: Appointment of a master of Song and Grammar.
(b) Archdeacon of Ely: Oath of a Grammar-School Master to.


1. Distinguish between song and grammar schools (70), and state what was
taught in each. Do we have any modern analogy to the same teacher teaching
both schools, as was sometimes done?

2. Distinguish between monastic and episcopal (cathedral) schools (71).
When was the great era of each? How do you explain the change in relative
importance of the two?

3. Explain the process of evolution of a parish school out of a chantry

4. What was the nature of the cathedral school at Salisbury (72)?

5. What type of a school was provided for in the Aldwincle chantry (73)?
Why was it not until after the twelfth century that the endowing of
schools (73) began to supersede the endowing of priests, churches, and

6. How do you explain the need for so many years to master the Seven
Liberal Arts (74)?

7. Into what subjects of study have we broken up the old subject of
grammar, as described by Quintilian (76), and how have we distributed them
throughout our school system? Is technical grammar at present taught in
the best possible place?

8. What stage in scientific knowledge do the selections from Anglicus (77
a-b) indicate? What rate of scientific progress is indicated by its
translation and length of use?

9. What scope of knowledge is represented in the library (78) of the
tenth-century schoolmaster? What does the list indicate as to the state of
learning of the time?

10. Picture the manners and morals of a time which called for the
proclamation of a Truce of God (79). Would the rate of progress of
civilization and the rate of elimination of warfare up to then, and since,
indicate that the Church has been very successful in imposing its will?

11. Show how Chivalry was made a great asset to the Church (80).

12. How do you explain the much greater simplicity of the church service
of modern Protestant churches than that of the Roman (81) or Greek
Catholic churches?

13. Explain the form of mild compulsion toward learning which the diocesan
council of Winchester (82) attempted to institute.

14. Is the modern state teacher's certificate a natural outgrowth of the
mediaeval licenses (83) to teach grammar and song? Why did the Church
insist on these when Rome had not required such?

15. Show how the modern oath of office of a teacher, and the possibility
of dismissal for insubordination, is a natural development from the oath
of fealty and obedience (84 b) of the mediaeval teacher? Is this true also
for our modern notices of appointment (84 a)?


* Abelson, Paul. _The Seven Liberal Arts_.
Addison, Julia de W. _Arts and Crafts in the Middle Ages_.
Besant, W. _The Story of King Alfred_.
* Clark, J. W. _The Care of Books_.
Davidson, Thomas. "The Seven Liberal Arts"; in _Educational
Review_, vol. II, pp. 467-73. (Also in his _Aristotle_.)
Mombert, J. I. _History of Charles the Great_.
* Mullinger, J. B. _The Schools of Charles the Great_.
Sandys, J. E. _History of Classical Scholarship_, vol. I.
Scheffel, Victor. _Ekkehard_. (Historical novel of monastic life.)
Steele, Philip. _Mediaeval Lore_. (Anglicus' Cyclopaedia.)




THE MOHAMMEDANS IN SPAIN. It will be recalled that in chapter V we
mentioned briefly the Mohammedan migrations of the seventh century, and
said that we should meet them again a little later on as one of the minor
forces in the development of our western civilization. After their defeat
at Tours (732) the Mohammedans retired into Spain, mixed with the Iberian-
Roman-Visigothic peoples inhabiting the peninsula, and began to develop a
civilization there. Figure 33 (p. 114) shows how much of the world the
Mohammedans had overrun by 800 A.D., and how much of Spain was in their

In Spain they developed a skillful agriculture (R. 85), as, in lands as
hot and dry as Spain, all agriculture to be successful must be. They
introduced irrigation, gave special attention to the breeding of horses
and cattle, and developed garden and orchard fruits. To them western
Europe is indebted for the introduction of many of its orchard fruits,
useful plants, and garden vegetables, as well as for a number of important
manufacturing processes. The orange, lemon, peach, apricot, and mulberry
trees; the spinach, artichoke, and asparagus among vegetables; cotton,
rice, sugar cane, and hemp among useful plants; the culture of the
silkworm, and the manufacture of silk and cotton garments; the manufacture
of paper from cotton, and the making of morocco leather--these are among
our debts to these people. Though many of the above had been known to
antiquity, they had been lost during the barbarian invasions and were
restored only through their re-introduction by the Moslems.

GREAT ABSORPTIVE POWER FOR LEARNING. The original Arabians themselves were
not a well-educated people. Before the time of Mohammed we have
practically no records as to any education among them. When in their
religious conquests they overran Syria (see Map, p. 103), they came in
contact with the survivals of that wonderful Greek civilization and
learning, and this they absorbed with greatest avidity.

It will be recalled, too, that in chapter IV (p. 94), it was stated that
the early Christians developed very important catechetical schools in
Egypt and Syria, and especially at Alexandria, Antioch, Edessa, Nisibis,
Harran, and Caesarea. [1] (See Figure 27, p. 89.) It was also stated that
the Christian instruction imparted at these eastern schools was tinctured
through and through with Greek learning and Greek philosophic thought.
Here monasteries also were developed in numbers, and Syrian monks had for
centuries been busy translating Greek authors into Syriac. It was also
stated (p. 94) that the Eastern or Greek division of the Christian Church,
of which Constantinople became the central city, was more liberal toward
Greek learning than was the Western or Latin division of the Church.

By the fifth century, though, due in part to the breakdown of government,
the increasing barbarity of the age, and the greater control of all
thinking by the Church, the Eastern Church lost somewhat of its earlier
tolerance. In 431 the Church Council of Ephesus put a ban on the
Hellenized form of Christian theology advocated by Nestorius, then
Patriarch of Constantinople, and drove him and his followers, known as
_Nestorian Christians_, from the city. These Nestorians now fled to the
old Syrian cities, which early had been so hospitable to Greek learning
and thinking. [2] Being now beyond the reach of Christian intolerance and
in a friendly atmosphere, they remained there, developing excellent higher
schools of the old Greek type, and there the Mohammedans found them when
they overran Syria, in 635 A.D.

Mohammedanism now came in contact with an educated people, as it did also
in Babylonia (637), in Assyria (640), and in Egypt (642), and the need of
a better statement of the somewhat crude faith now became evident. The
same process now took place as had occurred earlier with Christianity. The
Nestorian Christians and the Syrian monks became the scholars for the
Mohammedans, and the Mohammedan faith was clothed in Greek forms and
received a thorough tincturing of Greek philosophic thought. Within a
century they had translated from Syriac into Arabic, or from the original
Greek, much of the old Greek learning in philosophy, science, and
medicine, and the cities of Syria, and in particular their capital,
Damascus, became renowned for their learning. In 760 Bagdad, on the
Tigris, was founded, and superseded Damascus as the capital. Extending
eastward, these people were soon busy absorbing Hindu mathematical
knowledge, obtaining from them (c. 800) the so-called Arabic notation and

Caliph at Bagdad, and he and his son made it an intellectual center of
first importance. In all the known world probably no city, not even
Constantinople, during the latter part of the eighth century and most of
the ninth, could vie with Bagdad as a center of learning. Basra, Kufa, and
other eastern cities were also noted places. Schools were opened in
connection with the mosques (churches), a university after the old Greek
model was founded, a large library was organized, and an observatory was
built. Large numbers of students thronged the city, learned Greeks and
Jews taught in the schools, and a number of advances on the scientific
work done by the Greeks were made. A degree of the earth's surface [3] was
measured on the shores of the Red Sea; the obliquity of the ecliptic was
determined (c. 830); astronomical tables were calculated; algebra and
trigonometry were perfected; discoveries in chemistry not known in Europe
until toward the end of the eighteenth century, and advances in physics
for which western Europe waited for Newton (1642-1727), were made; and in
medicine and surgery their work was not duplicated until the early
nineteenth century. Their scholars wrote dictionaries, lexicons,
cyclopaedias, and pharmacopoeias of merit (R. 86).

This eastern learning was now gradually carried to Spain by traveling
Mohammedan scholars, and there the energy of conquest was gradually turned
to the development of schools and learning. By 900 a good civilization and
intellectual life had been developed in Spain, and before 1000 the
teaching in Spain, especially along Greek philosophical lines, had become
sufficiently known to attract a few adventurous monks from Christian
Europe. Gerbert (953-1003), afterward Pope Sylvester II (p. 159), was one
of the first to study there, though for this he was accused of having
transactions with the Devil, and when he died suddenly at fifty, four
years after having been elevated to the Papacy, monks over Europe are
recorded as having crossed themselves and muttered that the Devil had now
claimed his reward. A monk from Monte Cassino also studied at Bagdad, and
brought back some of the eastern learning to his monastery.


development at Bagdad was in part due to the patronage of a few caliphs of
large vision, and was of relatively short duration. The religious
enthusiasts among the Mohammedans were in reality but little more zealous
for Hellenic learning than the Fathers of the Western Church had been.
Finally, about 1050, they obtained the upper hand and succeeded in driving
out the Hellenic Mohammedans, just as the Eastern Christians had driven
out the Nestorians, and these scholars of the East now fled to northern
Africa and to Spain. [4] Almost at once a marked further development in
the intellectual life of Spain took place. In Cordova, Granada, Toledo,
and Seville strong universities were developed, where Jews and Hellenized
Mohammedans taught the learning of the East, and made further advances in
the sciences and mathematics. Physics, chemistry, astronomy, mathematics,
physiology, medicine, and surgery were the great subjects of study. Greek
philosophy also was taught. They developed schools and large libraries,
taught geography from globes, studied astronomy in observatories, counted
time by pendulum clocks, invented the compass and gunpowder, developed
hospitals, and taught medicine and surgery in schools (R. 86).

Their cities were equally noteworthy for their magnificent palaces, [5]
mosques, public baths, market-places, aqueducts, and paved and lighted
streets--things unknown in Christian Europe for centuries to come (R. 85).
It became fashionable for wealthy men to become patrons of learning, and
to collect large libraries and place them at the disposal of scholars,
thus revealing interests in marked contrast to those of the fighting
nobility of Christian Europe.

THEIR INFLUENCE ON WESTERN EUROPE. Western Europe of the tenth to the
twelfth centuries presented a dreary contrast, in almost every particular,
to the brilliant life of southern Spain. Just emerging from barbarism, it
was still in an age of general disorder and of the simplest religious
faith. [6] The age of reason and of scientific experiment as a means of
arriving at truth had not yet dawned, and would not do so for centuries to
come. Monks and clerics, representing the one learned class, regarded this
Moslem science as "black art," and in consequence Europe, centuries later,
had slowly to rediscover the scientific knowledge which might have been
had for the taking. Only the book science of Aristotle would the Church
accept, and even this only after some hesitation (Rs. 89, 90).

Western Europe had, however, advanced far enough through the study of the
Seven Liberal Arts to desire corrected and additional texts of the earlier
classical writers, particularly Aristotle, and also to be willing to
accept some of the mathematical knowledge of these Saracens. It was here
that the Moslem learning in Spain helped in the intellectual awakening of
the rest of Europe. Adelhard, an English monk, studied at Cordova about
1120, and took back with him some knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, and
geometry. His Euclid was in general use in the universities by 1300.
Gerard of Cremona, in Lombardy (1114-1187), who studied at Toledo a little
later, rendered a similar service for Italy. He also translated many works
from the Arabic, including Ptolemy's Almagest (p. 49), a book of
astronomical tables, and Alhazen's (Spanish scholar, c. 1100) book on
Optics. Other monks studied in the Spanish cities during the twelfth
century, a few of whom brought back translations of importance. Frederick
II [7] employed a staff of Jewish physicians to translate Arabic works
into Latin, but, due to his continual war against the Pope and his final
outlawry by the Church, his work possessed less significance than it
otherwise might have done. Among the books thus translated was the medical
textbook of Avicenna (980-1037), based in turn on the Greek works by Galen
and Hippocrates of Cos (p. 197). This book described ailments and their
treatment in detail, became the standard textbook in the medical faculties
of the universities, and was used until the seventeenth century. Another
Moslem whose translated writings had great influence on Europe was
Averroes (1126-1198) who tried to unite the philosophy of Aristotle with
Mohammedanism (R. 88). His influence on the thinkers of the later Middle
Ages was large, he being regarded as the greatest commentator on Aristotle
from the days of Rome to the time of the Renaissance.

[Illustration: FIG. 52. ARISTOTLE]

What Europe obtained through Moslem sources which it prized most, though,
was the commentary on Aristotle by Averroes and the works of Aristotle (R.
88). The list of the books of Aristotle in use in the mediaeval
universities by 1300 (R. 87) reveals the great importance of the additions
made. By the middle of the twelfth century Aristotle's _Ethics_,
_Metaphysics_, _Physics_, and _Psychology_, as well as some of his minor
works, had been translated into Latin and were beginning to be made
available for study. The translation route through which these works had
been derived was a roundabout one--Greek, Syriac, Arabic, Castilian,
Latin--and hence the translations could not be very accurate, but they
sufficed for the needs of Europe until the original Greek versions were
recovered when the Venetians and Crusaders took and sacked Constantinople,
in 1204. These were then translated directly into the Latin. Western
Europe also was ready to use the Arabic (Hindu) system of notation, the
elements of algebra, Euclid's geometry, and Ptolemy's work on the motion
of the heavens. These contributions western Europe was ready for; the
larger scientific knowledge of the Saracens, their pharmacopoeias,
dictionaries, cyclopaedias, histories, and biographies, it was not yet
ready to receive.

One other influence crept in from these peoples which was of large future
importance--the music and light literature and love songs of Spain. There
had been developed in this sunny land a life of light gayety, chivalrous
gallantry, elegant courtesies, and poetic and musical charm, and this
gradually found its way across the Pyrenees. At first it affected Provence
and Languedoc, in southern France, then Sicily and Italy, and finally the
gay contagion of lute and mandolin and love songs spread throughout all
western Europe. A race of troubadours and minnesingers arose, singing in
the vernacular, traveling about the country, and being entertained in
castle halls.

Lordlyng listneth to my tale
Which is merryr than the nightengale

won admission at any castle gate. "Out of these genial but not orthodox
beginnings the polite literature of modern Europe arose."


THE ELEVENTH CENTURY A TURNING POINT. By the end of the eleventh century a
distinct turning-point had been reached in the struggle to save
civilization from perishing. From this time on it was clear that the
battle had been won, and that a new Christian civilization would in time
arise in western Europe. Much still remained to be done, and centuries of
effort would be required, but the Church, almost for the first time in
more than six hundred years, felt that it could now pause to organize and
systematize its faith. The invasions and destruction of the Northmen had
at last ceased, the Mohammedan conquests were over, almost the last of the
Germanic tribes in Europe had settled down and had accepted Christianity,
[8] and the fighting nobility of Europe were being held somewhat in
restraint by the might of the Church, the "Truce of God" (R. 79), and the
softening influence of chivalric education (R. 80). There were many
evidences, too, by the end of the eleventh century, that the western
Christian world, after the long intellectual night, was soon to awaken to
a new intellectual life. The twelfth century, in particular, was a period
when it was evident that some new leaven was at work.

Up to about the close of the eleventh century western Europe had been
living in an age of simple faith. The Christian world everywhere lay under
"a veil of faith, illusion, and childish prepossession." The mysteries of
Christianity and the many inconsistencies of its teachings and beliefs
were accepted with childlike docility, and the Church had felt little call
to organize, to systematize, or to explain. Here and there, to be sure,
some questioning monk or cleric had raised questions over matters [9] of
faith which his reason could not explain, and had, perhaps, for a time
disturbed the peace of orthodoxy, but a statement somewhat similar to that
made by Anselm of Canterbury (footnote, p. 173), as to the precedence of
faith over reason, had usually been sufficient to silence all inquiry.
Once, in the latter part of the eleventh century, when a great discussion
as to the nature of knowledge had taken place among the leaders of the
Church, a church council had been called to pass upon and give final
settlement to the questions raised. [10]

RISE OF THE SPIRIT OF INQUIRY. As the cathedral schools grew in importance
as teaching institutions, and came to have many teachers and students, a
few of them became noted as places where good instruction was imparted and
great teachers were to be found. Canterbury in England, Paris and Chartres
in France, and several of the cities in northern Italy early were noted
for the quality of their instruction. The great teachers and the keenest
students of the time were to be found in the cathedral schools in these
places, and the monastic schools now lost their earlier importance as
teaching institutions. By the twelfth century they had been completely
superseded as important teaching centers by the rapidly developing
cathedral schools. To these more important cathedral schools students now
came from long distances to study under some noted teacher. Says McCabe:

The scholastic fever which was soon to influence the youth of Europe,
had already set in. You could not travel far over the rough roads of
France without meeting some footsore scholar, making for the nearest
large monastery or cathedral town. Robbers, frequently in the service
of the lord of the land, infested every province. It was safest to don
the coarse frieze tunic of the pilgrim, without pockets, sling your
little wax tablets and stylus at your girdle, strap a wallet of bread
and herbs and salt on your back, and laugh at the nervous folk who
peeped out from their coaches over a hedge of pikes and daggers. Few
monasteries refused a meal or a rough bed to the wandering scholar.
Rarely was any fee exacted for the lesson given.

The cathedral school in connection with the church of Notre Dame [12]
became especially famous for its teachers of the Liberal Arts
(particularly Dialectic) and of Theology, and to this school, just as the
eleventh century was drawing to a close, came a youth, then barely twenty
years of age, who is generally regarded as having been the keenest scholar
of the twelfth century. His brilliant intellect soon enabled him to refute
the instruction of his teachers and to vanquish them in debate. His name
was Abelard. Before long he himself became a teacher of Grammar and Logic
at Paris, and later of Theology, and, so widely had he read, so clearly
did he appeal to the reason of his hearers, and so incisive was his
teaching, that he attracted large numbers of students to his lectures. To
assist in his teaching of Theology he prepared a little textbook, _Sic et
Non_ (Yea and Nay), in which he raised for debate many questions as to
church teachings (R. 91 b), such as "That faith is based on reason, or
not." In the introduction to this textbook he held that "constant and
frequent questioning is the first key to wisdom" (R. 91 a). His method was
to give the authorities on both sides, but to render no decision. His
boldness in raising such questions for debate was new, and his failure to
give the students a decision was quite unusual, while his claim that
reason was antecedent to faith was startling. Even after being driven from
Paris, in part because of this boldness and in part because of a most
unfortunate incident which deservedly ruined his career in the Church,
students in numbers followed him to his retreat and listened to his
teachings. His method of instruction was for the time so unusual and his
spirit of inquiry so searching that he stimulated many a young mind to a
new type of thinking. One of his pupils was Peter the Lombard (p. 171),
who completely redirected the teaching of theology with his _Book of
Sentences_ (c. 1145)--This was based largely on Abelard's method, except
that a positive and orthodox decision was presented for each question

The present cathedral was begun in 1163, consecrated in 1182, and
completed in the thirteenth century. It is built on an island in the
Seine, and on the site of a church built in the fourth century. The little
community which grew up about the cathedral church formed the nucleus
about which the city of Paris eventually grew. This cathedral front, with
its statues and beautiful carving, formed a type much followed during the
great period of cathedral-building (thirteenth century) in Europe. The
school in connection with this cathedral early became famous.]

What took place at Paris also took place, though generally on a smaller
scale, at many other cathedral and monastery schools of western Europe.
The spirit of inquiry had at last been awakened, the Church was being
respectfully challenged by its children to prove its faith, and the
learning of the Saracens in Spain, which now began to filter across the
Pyrenees, added to the strength of their challenge. Returning pilgrims and
crusaders (First Crusade, 1099) also began to ask for an explanation of
the doubts which had come to them from the contact with Greek and Arab in
the East. A desire for a philosophy which would explain the mysteries and
contradictions of the Christian faith found expression among the scholars
of the time. In the larger cathedral schools, at least, it became common
to discuss the doctrines of the Church with much freedom.

THE RISE OF SCHOLASTIC THEOLOGY. The Church, in a very intelligent and
commendable manner, prepared to meet and use this new spirit in the
organization, systematization, and restatement of its faith and doctrine,
and the great era of Scholasticism [13] now arose. During the latter part
of the twelfth and in the thirteenth century Scholasticism was at its
height; after that, its work being done, it rapidly declined as an
educational force, and the new universities inherited the spirit which had
given rise to its labors.

With the new emphasis now placed on reasoning, Dialectic or Logic
superseded Grammar as the great subject of study, and logical analysis was
now applied to the problems of religion. The Church adopted and guided the
movement, and the schools of the time turned their energy into directions
approved by it. Aristotle also was in time adopted by the Church, after
the translation of his principal works had been effected (Rs. 87, 90), and
his philosophy was made a bulwark for Christian doctrine throughout the
remainder of the Middle Ages. For the next four centuries Aristotle
thoroughly dominated all philosophic thinking. [14] The great development
and use of logical analysis now produced many keen and subtle minds, who
worked intensively a narrow and limited field of thought. The result was a
thorough reorganization and restatement of the theology of the Church.


This was the work of Scholasticism. The movement was not characterized by
the evolution of new doctrines, but by a systematization and organization
into good teaching form of what had grown up during the preceding thousand
years. To a large degree it was also an "accommodation" of the old
theology to the new Aristotelian philosophy which had recently been
brought back to western Europe, and the statement of the Christian
doctrines in good philosophic form.

THE ORGANIZING WORK OF THE SCHOOLMEN. Peter the Lombard (1100-1160), whose
_Book of Sentences_, mentioned above, had so completely changed the
character of the instruction in Theology, began this work of theological
reorganization. Albert the Great (_Albertus Magnus_, 1193-1280) was the
first of the great Schoolmen, and has been termed "the organizing
intellect of the Middle Ages." He was a German Dominican monk [15], born
in Swabia, and educated in the schools of Paris, Padua, and Bologna. Later
he became a celebrated teacher at Paris and Cologne. He was the first to
state the philosophy of Aristotle in systematic form, and was noted as an
exponent of the work of Peter the Lombard. Thomas Aquinas (c. 1225-1274),
the greatest and most influential scholastic philosopher of the Middle
Ages, studied first at Monte Cassino and Naples, and then at Paris and
Cologne, under Albertus Magnus. He later became a noted teacher of
Philosophy and Theology at Rome, Bologna, Viterbo, Perugia, and Naples.
Under him Scholasticism came to its highest development in his harmonizing
the new Aristotelianism with the doctrines of the Church. His class
teaching was based on Aristotle, [16] the Vulgate Bible, and Peter the
Lombard's _Book of Sentences_. During the last three years of his life he
wrote his _Summa Theologiae_, a book which has ever since been accepted as
an authoritative statement of the doctrines of the Roman Catholic Church.

The character of the organization made by Peter the Lombard and Thomas
Aquinas may be seen from an examination of their method of presentation,
which was dogmatic in form and similar in the textbooks of each. The field
of Christian Theology was divided out into parts, heads, subheads, etc.,
in a way that would cover the subject, and a group of problems, each
dealing with some doctrinal point, was then presented under each. The
problem was first stated in the text. Next the authorities and arguments
for each solution other than that considered as orthodox were presented
and confuted, in order. The orthodox solution was next presented, the
arguments and authorities for such solution quoted, and the objections to
the correct solution presented and refuted (R. 152).

RESULTS OF THEIR WORK. The work of the Schoolmen was to organize and
present in systematic and dogmatic form the teachings of the Church (R.
92). This they did exceedingly well, and the result was a thorough
organization of Theology as a teaching subject. They did little to extend
knowledge, and nothing at all to apply it to the problems of nature and
man. Their work was abstract and philosophical instead, dealing wholly
with theological questions. The purpose was to lay down principles, and to
offer a training in analysis, comparison, classification, and deduction
which would prepare learned and subtle defenders of the faith of the
Church. So successful were the Schoolmen in their efforts that instruction
in Theology was raised by their work to a new position of importance, and
a new interest in theological scholarship and general learning was
awakened which helped not a little to deflect many strong spirits from a
life of warfare to a life of study. They made the problems of learning
seem much more worth while, and their work helped to create a more
tolerant attitude toward the supporters of either side of debatable
questions by revealing so clearly that there are two sides to every
question. This new learning, new interest in learning, and new spirit of
tolerance the rising universities inherited.


THE OLD ROMAN CITIES. The old Roman Empire, it will be remembered, came to
be largely a collection of provincial cities. These were the centers of
Roman civilization and culture. After the downfall of the governing power
of Rome, the great highways were no longer repaired, brigandage became
common, trade and intercourse largely ceased, and the provincial cities
which were not destroyed in the barbarian invasions declined in population
and number, passing under the control of their bishops who long ruled them
as feudal lords. During the long period of disorder many of the old Roman
cities entirely disappeared (R. 49). Only in Italy, and particularly in
northern Italy, did these old cities retain anything of their earlier
municipal life, or anything worth mentioning of their former industry and
commerce. But even here they lost most of their earlier importance as
centers of culture and trade, becoming merely ecclesiastical towns. After
the death of Charlemagne, the break-up of his empire, and the institution
of feudal conditions, the cities and towns declined still more in
importance, and few of any size remained.

In Italy feudalism never attained the strength it did in northern Europe.
Throughout all the early Middle Ages the cities there retained something
of their old privileges, though ruled by prince-bishops residing in them.
They also retained something of the old Roman civilization, and Roman
legal usages and some knowledge of Roman law never quite died out. In
other respects they much resembled mediaeval cities elsewhere.

Charlemagne's empire, the portion of it now known as Germany broke up into
fragments, largely independent of one another, and full of fight and
pride. The result there was continual and pitiless warfare. This, coupled
with the raids of the Northmen along the northern coast and the Magyars on
the east, led to the election of a king in 919 (Henry the Fowler) who
could establish some semblance of unity and order. By 961 the German
duchies and small principalities had been so consolidated that a
succeeding king (Otto I) felt himself able to attempt to reestablish the
Holy Roman Empire by subjugating Italy and annexing it as an appendage
under German rule.

He descended into Italy (961), subjugated the cities, overthrew the
Papacy, created a pope to his liking, and reestablished the old Empire, in
name at least. For a century the German rule was nominal, but with the
outbreak of the conflict in the eleventh century between king and pope
over the question of which one should invest the bishops with their
authority (known as the _investiture conflict_, 1075-1122), Pope Gregory
VII humbled the German king (Henry IV) at Canossa (1077) and won a partial
success. Then followed repeated invasions of Italy, and a century and a
half of conflicts between pope and king before the dream of universal
empire under a German feudal king ended in disaster, and Italy was freed
from Teutonic rule.

All of the cities in the valley of the Po, except Turin, Pavia, and
Mantua, were members of the Lombard League of 1167.]

Roman legal usages and some knowledge of Roman law had never quite died
out in these Italian cities. But, while regarded with reverence, the law
was not much understood, little study was given to it, and important parts
of it were neglected and forgotten. The struggle with the ruling bishops
in the second half of the eleventh century, and the discussions which
arose during the investiture conflict, caused new attention to be given to
legal questions, and both the study of Roman (civil) and Church (canon)
law were revived. The Italian cities stood with the Papacy in the
struggles with the German kings, and, in 1167, those in the Valley of the
Po formed what was known as the _Lombard League_ for defense. Under the
pressure of German oppression they now began a careful study of the known
Roman law in an effort to discover some charter, edict, or grant of power
upon which they could base their claim for independent legal rights. The
result was that the study of Roman law was given an emphasis unknown in
Italy since the days of the old Empire. What had been preserved during the
period of disorder at last came to be understood, additional books of the
law were discovered, and men suddenly awoke to a realization that what had
been before considered as of little value actually contained much that was
worth studying, as well as many principles of importance that were
applicable to the conditions and problems of the time.

Capitals and small letters are here used, but note the difficulty of
reading without spacing or punctuation.]

The great student and teacher of law of the period was Irnerius of Bologna
(c. 1070-1137), who began to lecture on the _Code_ and the _Institutes_ of
Justinian about 1110 to 1115, and soon attracted large numbers of students
to hear his interpretations. About this same time the _Digest_, much the
largest and most important part of the old law, was discovered and made
known. [17]

This gave clearness to the whole, as before its discovery the study of
Roman law was like the study of Aristotle when only parts of the _Organon_
were known. Irnerius and his co-laborers at Bologna now collected and
arranged the entire body of Roman civil law (_Corpus Juris Civilis_) (R.
93), introduced the _Digest_ to western Europe, and thus made a new
contribution of first importance to the list of possible higher studies.
Law now ceased to be a part of Rhetoric (p. 157) and became a new subject
of study, with a body of material large enough to occupy a student for
several years. This was an event of great intellectual significance. A new
study was now evolved which offered great possibilities for intellectual
activity and the exercise of the critical faculty, while at the same time
showing veneration for authority. Law was thus placed alongside Theology
as a professional subject, and the evolution of the professional lawyer
from the priest was now for the first time made possible.

the study of civil law, a monk of Bologna, Gratian by name, set himself to
make a compilation of all the Church canons which had been enacted since
the Council of Nicaea (325) formulated the first twenty (p. 96), and of
the rules for church government as laid down by the church authorities.
This he issued in textbook form, about 1142, under the title of _Decretum
Gratiani_. So successful were his efforts that his compilation was "one of
those great textbooks that take the world by storm." It did for canon
(church) law what the rediscovery of the Justinian _Code_ had done for
civil law; that is, it organized canon law as a new and important teaching

The _Decretum_ of Gratian was published in three parts, and was organized
after the same plan as Abelard's _Sic et Non_, except that Gratian drew
conclusions from the mass of evidence he presented on each topic. It
contained 147 "Distinctions" (questions; cases of church policy), upon
each of which were cited the church canons and the views and decisions of
important church authorities. [18] This volume was added to by popes later
on, [19] so that by the fifteenth century a large body of canon law had
grown up, which was known as the _Corpus Juris Canonici_. Canon Law was
thus separated from Theology and added to Civil Law as another new subject
of study for both theological and legal students, and the two subjects of
Canon and Civil Law came to constitute the work of the law faculties in
the universities which soon arose in western Europe.

367? B.C.)]

THE BEGINNINGS OF MEDICAL STUDY. The Greeks had made some progress in the
beginnings of the study of disease (p. 47). Aristotle had given some
anatomical knowledge in his writings on animals, and had theorized a
little about the functions of the human body. The real founder of medical
science, though, was Hippocrates, of the island of Cos (c. 460-367 B.C.),
a contemporary of Plato. He was the first writer on the subject who
attempted to base the practice of the healing art on careful observation
and scientific principles. He substituted scientific reason for the wrath
of offended deities as the causes of disease, and tried to offer proper
remedies in place of sacrifices and prayers to the gods for cures. His
descriptions of diseases were wonderfully accurate, and his treatments
ruled medical practice for ages. [20] He knew, however, little as to
anatomy. Another Greek writer, Galen [21](131-201 A.D.), wrote extensively
on medicine and left an anatomical account of the human body which was
unsurpassed for more than a thousand years. His work was known and used by
the Saracens. Avicenna (980-1037), an eastern Mohammedan, wrote a _Canon
of Medicine_ in which he summarized the work of all earlier writers, and
gave a more minute description of symptoms than any preceding writer had
done. These works, together with a few minor writings by teachers in Spain
and Salerno, formed the basis of all medical knowledge until Vesalius
published his _System of Human Anatomy_, in 1543.

The Roman knowledge of medicine was based almost entirely on that of the
Greeks, and after the rise of the Christians, with their new attitude
toward earthly life and contempt for the human body, the science fell into
disrepute and decay. Saint Augustine (354-430), in his great work on _The
City of God_, speaks with some bitterness of "medical men who are called
anatomists," and who "with a cruel zeal for science have dissected the
bodies of the dead, and sometimes of sick persons, who have died under
their knives, and have inhumanly pried into the secrets of the human body
to learn the nature of disease and its exact seat, and how it might be
cured." [22] During the early Middle Ages the Greek medical knowledge
practically disappeared, and in its place came the Christian theories of
satanic influence, diabolic action, and divine punishment for sin.
Correspondingly the cures were prayers at shrines and repositories of
sacred relics and images, which were found all over Europe, and to which
the injured or fever-stricken peasants hied themselves to make offerings
and to pray, and then hope for a miracle.

Toward the middle of the eleventh century Salerno, a small city
delightfully situated on the Italian coast (see Map, p. 194), thirty-four
miles south of Naples, began to attain some reputation as a health resort.
In part this was due to the climate and in part to its mineral springs.
Southern Italy had, more than any other part of western Europe, retained
touch with old Greek thought. The works of Hippocrates and Galen had been
preserved there, the monks at Monte Cassino had made some translations,
and sometime toward the middle of the eleventh century the study of the
Greek medical books was revived here. The Mohammedan medical work by
Avicenna (p. 185), also early became known here in translation. About 1065
Constantine of Carthage, a converted Jew and a learned monk, who had
traveled extensively in the East [23] and who had been forced to flee from
his native city because of a suspicion of "black art," began to lecture at
Salerno on the Greek and Mohammedan medical works and the practice of the
medical art. In 1099 Robert, Duke of Normandy, returning from the First
Crusade, stopped here to be cured of a wound, and he and his knights later
spread the fame of Salerno all over Europe. The result was the revival of
the study of Medicine in the West, and Salerno developed into the first of
the medical schools of Europe. Montpellier, in southern France, also
became another early center for the study of Medicine, drawing much of its
medical knowledge from Spain. Another new subject of professional study
was now made possible, and Faculties of Medicine were in time organized in
most of the universities as they arose. The instruction, though, was
chiefly book instruction, Galen being the great textbook until the
seventeenth century.


THE CRUSADES. Perhaps the most romantic happenings during the Middle Ages
were that series of adventurous expeditions to the then Far East,
undertaken by the kings and knights of western Europe in an attempt to
reclaim the Holy Land from the infidel Turks, who in the eleventh century
had pushed in and were persecuting Christian pilgrims journeying to
Jerusalem. For centuries single pilgrims, small bands of pilgrims, and
sometimes large numbers led by priest or noble, had journeyed to distant
shrines, to Rome, and to the birthplace of the Saviour, [24] impelled by
pure religious devotion, a desire to do penance for sin, or seeking a cure
from some disease by prayer and penance. It was the spirit of the age.
Says Adams: [25]

A pilgrimage was ... in itself a religious act securing merit and
reward for the one who performed it, balancing a certain number for
his sins, and making his escape from the world of torment hereafter
more certain. The more distant and more difficult the pilgrimage, the
more meritorious, especially if it led to such supremely holy places
as those which had been sanctified by the presence of Christ himself.
For the man of the world, for the man who could not, or would not, go
into monasticism, the pilgrimage was the one conspicuous act by which
he could satisfy the ascetic need, and gain its rewards. A crusade was
a stupendous pilgrimage, under especially favorable and meritorious

(From an old manuscript in the British Museum)]

The Mohammedan Arabs who took possession of the Holy Land in the seventh
century had treated the pilgrims considerately, but the Turks were of a
different stamp. In 1071 they had defeated the Eastern Emperor, captured
all Asia Minor, and had taken possession of the fortress of Nicaea (Map,
p. 183), near Constantinople. The Eastern Emperor now appealed to Rome for
help. In 1077 the Turks captured Jerusalem, and returning pilgrims soon
began to report having experienced great hardships. In 1095 Pope Urban, in
a stirring address to the Council of Clermont (France), issued a call to
the lords, knights, and foot soldiers of western Christendom to cease
destroying their fellow Christians in private warfare, and to turn their
strength of arms against the infidel and rescue the Holy Land. The journey
was to take the place of penance for sin, many special privileges were
extended to those who went, and those who died on the journey or in battle
with the infidels were promised entrance into heaven. [26] nobles and
peasants, filled with a desire for adventure and a sense of personal sin,
no surer way of satisfying either was to be found than the long pilgrimage
to the Saviour's tomb. In France and England the call met with instant
response. Unfortunately for the future of civilization, the call met with
but small response from the nobles of German lands.

The First Crusade set out in 1096. A second went in 1144, and a third in
1187. These were the great Crusades, though five others were undertaken
during the thirteenth century. Jerusalem was taken and lost. The
Christians quarreled with one another and with the Greeks, though with the
Saracens they established somewhat friendly relations, and a mutual
respect arose. The armies which went were composed of all kinds of people
--lords, knights, merchants, adventurers, peasants, outlaws--and a spirit
of adventure and a desire for personal gain, as well as a spirit of
religious devotion, actuated many who went. In 1204 the Venetians diverted
the fourth crusade to the capture of Constantinople, and established there
an outpost of their great commercial empire. The history of the crusades
we do not need to trace. The important matter for our purpose was the
results of the movement on the intellectual development of western Europe.

RESULTS OF THE CRUSADES ON WESTERN EUROPE. In a sense the Crusades were an
outward manifestation of the great change in thinking and ideals which had
begun sometime before in western Europe. They were at once both a sign and
a cause of further change. The old isolation was at last about to end, and
intercommunication and some common ideas and common feelings were being
brought about. Both those who went and those who remained at home were
deeply stirred by the movement. Christendom as a great international
community, in which all alike were interested in a common ideal and in a
common fight against the infidel, was a new idea now dawning upon the mass
of the people, whereas before it had been but little understood.

The travel to distant lands, the sight of cities of wealth and power, and
the contact with peoples decidedly superior to themselves in civilization,
not only excited the imagination and led to a broadening of the minds of
those who returned, but served as well to raise the general level of
intelligence in western Europe. Some new knowledge also was brought back,
but that was not at the time of great importance. The principal gain came
in the elimination forever of thousands of quarreling, fighting noblemen,
[27] thus giving the kingly power a chance to consolidate holdings and
begin the evolution of modern States; in the marked change of attitude
toward the old problems; in the awakening of a new interest in the present
world; in the creation of new interests and new desires among the common
people; in the awakening of a spirit of religious unity and of national
consciousness; and especially in the awakening of a new intellectual life,
which soon found expression in the organization of universities for study
and in more extensive travel and geographical exploration than the world
had known since the days of ancient Rome. The greatest of all the results,
however, came through the revival of trade, commerce, manufacturing, and
industry in the rising cities of western Europe, with the consequent
evolution of a new and important class of merchants, bankers, and
craftsmen, who formed a new city class and in time developed a new system
of training for themselves and their children.

THE REVIVAL OF CITY LIFE. The old cities of central and northern Italy, as
was stated above, continued through the early Middle Ages as places of
some little local importance. In the eleventh century they overthrew in
large part the rule of their Prince-Bishops, and became little City-
Republics, much after the old Greek model. Outside of Italy almost the
only cities not destroyed during the period of the barbarian invasions
were the episcopal cities, that is cities which were the residences of

Outside of Italy the present cities of western Europe either rose on the
ruins of former Roman provincial cities, or originated about some
monastery or castle, on or adjacent to land at one time owned by monks or
feudal lord. An ever-increasing company of peasants, themselves little
more than serfs in the beginning, huddled together in such places for the
protection afforded, and a walled feudal town eventually resulted (R. 94
a). This later, in one way or another, secured its freedom from monastic
control or feudal lord, and evolved into the free city we know to-day.
Originally each little city was a self-sustaining community. The farming
and grazing lands lay outside, while the people were crowded compactly
together within the protecting town walls. The need for walls that could
be manned for defense, gates that could shut out the marauder, the narrow,
dirty streets, and the lack of any sanitary ideas, all alike tended to
keep the towns small. [28] The insecurity of life, the constant warfare,
the repeated failures or destruction of crops without and want within, and
the high death-rate from disease, all kept down the population. A town of
a thousand people in the early Middle Ages was a place of some importance,
while probably no city outside of Italy, excepting Paris and London, had
ten thousand inhabitants before the year 1200. In all England there were
but 2,150,000 people, according to the Domesday Survey (1086), while to-
day the city of London alone contains nearly three times that number.

All the elements of a typical mediaeval town are seen here--the walls for
defense, the watch-towers, the churches, the tall cathedral, the castle,
and the high houses huddled together.]

After about the year 1000 a revival of something like city life begins to
be noticeable here and there in the records of the time (R. 94 a), and by
1100 these signs begin to manifest themselves in many places and lands. By
1200 the cities of Europe were numerous, though small, and their
importance in the life of the times [29] was rapidly increasing (R. 94 b).

THE RISE OF A CITY CLASS. As the mediaeval towns increased in size and
importance the inhabitants, being human, demanded rights. Between 1100 and
1200 there were frequent revolts of the people of the mediaeval towns
against their feudal overlord, and frequent demands were made for charters
granting privileges to the towns. Sometimes these insurrections were put
down with a bloody hand. Sometimes, on the contrary, the overlord granted
a charter of rights, willingly or unwillingly, and freed the people from
obligation to labor on the lands in return for a fixed money payment.
Sometimes the king himself granted the inhabitants a charter by way of
curbing the power of the local feudal lord or bishop. The towns became
exceedingly skillful in playing off lord against bishop, and the king
against both. In England, Flanders, France, and Germany some of the towns
had become wealthy enough to purchase their freedom and a charter at some
time when their feudal overlord was particularly in need of money. These
charters, or birth certificates for the towns, were carefully drawn and
officially sealed documents of great value, and were highly prized as
evidences of local liberty. The document created a "free town," and gave
to the inhabitants certain specified rights as to self-government, the
election of magistrates--aldermen, mayor, burgomaster--the levying and
payment of taxes, and the military service to be rendered. Before the
evolution of strong national governments these charters created hundreds
of what were virtually little City-States throughout Europe (R. 95).

In these towns a new estate or class of people was now created (R. 96), in
between the ruling bishops and lords on the one hand and the peasants
tilling the land on the other. These were the citizens--freemen,
bourgeoisie, burghers. Out of this new class of city dwellers new social
orders--merchants, bankers, tradesmen, artisans, and craftsmen--in time
arose, and these new orders soon demanded rights and obtained some form of
education for their children. The guild or apprenticeship education which
early developed in the cities to meet the needs of artisans and craftsmen
(R. 99), and the burgh or city schools of Europe, which began to develop
in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, were the educational results
of the rise of cities and the evolution of these new social classes. The
time would soon be ripe for the mysteries of learning to be passed
somewhat farther down the educational pyramid, and new classes in society
would begin the mastery of its symbols.

(From Smith, W. R., _Educational Sociology_, p. 176)
The concave pyramid suggests comparative numbers. Formal education began
at the top, and has slowly worked downward.]

THE REVIVAL OF COMMERCE. The first city of mediaeval Europe to obtain
commercial prominence was Venice. She early sold salt and fish obtained
from the lagoons to the Lombards in the Valley of the Po, and sent trading
ships to the Greek East. By the year 1000 Venetian ships were bringing the
luxuries and riches of the Orient to Venice, and the city soon became a
great trading center. There the partially civilized Christian knight
"spent splendidly," and the Bohemian, German, and Hunnish lords came [30]
to buy such of the luxuries of the East as they could afford. By 1100
Venice was a free City-State, the mistress of the Adriatic, and the trade
of the East with Christian Europe passed over her wharves. From the
Crusades she profited greatly, carrying knights eastward in the great
fleet she had developed, and carpets, fabrics, perfumes, spices, dyes,
drugs, silks, and precious stones on the return voyage. From Tana and
Trebizond her traders penetrated far into the interior. Her ships and
merchants "held the Golden East in fee." By 1400 she was the wealthiest
and most powerful city in Europe.


Genoa in time became the great rival of Venice. Marseilles also developed
a large trade in the Mediterranean and with the north. From these three
cities trade routes ran to the cities of Flanders, England, and Germany,
as is shown in the map below. By the thirteenth century, Augsburg,
Nuremburg, Magdeburg, Hamburg, Luebeck, Bremen, Antwerp, Ghent, Ypres,
Bruges, and London were developing into great commercial cities. Despite
bad roads, bad bridges, [31] bad inns, "robber knights" and bandits, the
commerce once carried on by Rome with her provinces was reviving. Great
fairs, or yearly markets, came to be held in the large interior towns, to
which merchants came from near and far to display and exchange their
wares, and, still more important, from the standpoint of advancing general
education, to exchange ideas and experiences. The "luxuries" displayed at
these markets by traveling merchants from the south--salt, pepper, spices,
sugar, drugs, dyestuffs, glass beads, glassware, table implements,
perfumes, ornaments, underwear, articles of dress, silks, velvets,
carpets, rugs--dazzled and astounded the simple townspeople of western
Europe. These fairs became educational forces of a high order.

THE REVIVAL OF INDUSTRY AND BANKING. The trading of articles at seaports
and at the interior city fairs came first, and this soon worked a
revolution in industry. Instead of agriculture being almost the only
occupation, and the feeding of the local population the only purpose, with
only such arts and industries practiced as were needed to supply the wants
of the townsmen, it now became possible to create a surplus to barter at
the fairs for luxuries from the outside. Local industries, heretofore of
but little importance, now developed into trades, and the manufacture of
articles for outside sale was begun. At first manufacturing was very
limited in scope, and confined largely to local handicrafts or the
imitation of imported articles, but later new and important industries
arose--the glass industry in Venice, the gold and silver industry of
Florence, the weaving industry at Mainz and Erfurt, and the wool industry
of Flanders. The craftsman and artisan, as well as the merchant and
trader, were now developed in the towns, and soon became important members
of the new social order. As serfs and villeins [32] were set free from the
land [33] they came to the towns, adding more members to the new
industrial classes (R. 96). From 1200 on there was a great revival of
industry in western Europe, and by 1500 merchants and craftsmen had won
back the place once held by merchants and craftsmen in Roman life and

At Florence a banking class arose, and instead of barter, banks and the
use of money and credit were developed. From Florence this system
gradually extended to the other commercial cities. Gradually the mediaeval
objection to the taking of interest for the use of money, which the Church
had forbidden in the early Middle Ages as "usury" and wicked, was
overcome, and Italian bankers and merchants led the world in the
establishment of that credit which has made modern trade and industry
possible. With money once more in general use as a measure of value, the
Arabic system of notation in use for commercial transactions, and credit
at reasonable interest rates provided as a basis for finance, an era in
trade and commerce and manufacturing set in unknown since the days of
Roman rule. Order, security, and a wider extension of educational
advantages now were needed, and nothing contributed more to securing these
than the growth of wealth and manufacturing industries in the towns, and
the extension of commerce and the use of money throughout the country.
Nothing tends so powerfully to demand or secure these things as the
possession of wealth among a people.

EDUCATION FOR THESE NEW SOCIAL CLASSES. With the evolution of these new
social classes an extension of education took place through the formation
of guilds. [34] The merchants of the Middle Ages traded, not as
individuals, nor as subjects of a State which protected them, for there
were as yet no such States, but as members of the guild of merchants of
their town, or as members of a trading company. Later, towns united to
form trading confederations, of which the Hanseatic League of northern
Germany was a conspicuous example. These burgher merchant guilds became
wealthy and important socially; [35] they were chartered by kings and
given trading privileges analogous to those of a modern corporation (R.
95); they elbowed their way into affairs of State, and in time took over
in large part the city governments; they obtained education for
themselves, and fought with the church authorities for the creation of
independent burgh schools; [36] they began to read books, and books in the
vernacular began to be written for them; [37] they in time vied with the
clergy and the nobility in their patronage of learning; they everywhere
stood with the kings and princes to compel feudal lords to stop warfare
and plundering and to submit to law and order; [38] and they entertained
royal personages and drew nobles, clergy, and gentry into their honorary
membership, thus serving as an important agency in breaking down the
social-class exclusiveness of the Middle Ages. In these guilds, which were
self-governing bodies debating questions and deciding policies and
actions, much elementary political training was given their members which
proved of large importance at a later time.

In the same way the craft guilds rendered a large educational service to
the small merchant and worker, as they provided the technical and social
education of such during the later period of the Middle Ages and in early
modern times, and protected their members from oppression in an age when
oppression was the rule. With the revival of trade and industry craft
guilds arose all over western Europe. One of the first of these was the
candle-makers' guild, organized at Paris in 1061. Soon after we find large
numbers of guilds--masons, shoemakers, harness-makers, bakers, smiths,
wool-combers, tanners, saddlers, spurriers, weavers, goldsmiths,
pewterers, carpenters, leather-workers, cloth-workers, pinners,
fishmongers, butchers, barbers--all organized on much the same plan. These
were the working-men's fraternities or labor unions of mediaeval Europe.
Each trade or craft became organized as a city guild, composed of the
"masters," "journeymen" (paid workmen), and "apprentices." The great
mediaeval document, a charter of rights guaranteeing protection, was
usually obtained. The guild for each trade laid down rules for the number
and training of apprentices, [39] the conditions under which a
"journeyman" could become a "master," [40] rules for conducting the trade,
standards to be maintained in workmanship, prices to be charged, and dues
and obligations of members (R. 97). They supervised work in their craft,
cared for the sick, buried the dead, and looked after the widows and
orphans. Often they provided one or more priests of their own to minister
to the families of their craft, and gradually the custom arose of having
the priest also teach something of the rudiments of religion and learning
to the children of the members. In time money and lands were set aside or
left for such purposes, and a form of chantry school, which later evolved
into a regular school, often with instruction in higher studies added, was
created for the children of members [41] of the guild (R. 98).

APPRENTICESHIP EDUCATION. For centuries after the revival of trade and
industry all manufacturing was on a small scale, and in the home-industry
stage. There was, of course, no machinery, and only the simple tools known
from ancient times were used. In a first-floor room at the back, master,
journeymen, and apprentices working together made the articles which were
sold by the master or the master's wife and daughter in the room in front.
The manufacturer and merchant were one. Apprentices were bound to a master
for a term of years (R. 99), often paying for the training and education
to be received, and the master boarded and lodged both the apprentices and
the paid workmen in the family rooms above the shop and store.

The form of apprenticeship education and training which thus developed,
from an educational point of view, forms for us the important feature of
the history of these craft guilds. With the subdivision of labor and the
development of new trades the craft-guild idea was extended to the new
occupations, and a steady stream of rural labor flowing to the towns was
absorbed by them and taught the elements of social usages, self-
government, and the mastery of a trade. Throughout all the long period up
to the nineteenth century this apprenticeship education in a trade and in
self-government constituted almost the entire formal education the worker
with his hands received. The sons of the barbarian invaders, as well as
their knightly brothers, at last were busy learning the great lessons of
industry, cooeperation, and personal loyalty. Here begins, for western
Europe, "the nobility of labor--the long pedigree of toil." So well in
fact did this apprentice system of training and education meet the needs
of the time that it persisted, as was said above, well into the nineteenth
century (Rs. 200, 201, 242, 243), being displaced only by modern power
machinery and systematized factory methods. During the later Middle Ages
and in modern times it rendered an important educational service; in the
later nineteenth century it became such an obstacle to educational and
industrial progress that it has had to be supplemented or replaced by
systematic vocational education.

INFLUENCE OF THESE NEW MOVEMENTS. We thus see, by the end of the twelfth
century, a number of new influences in western Europe which point to an
intellectual awakening and to the rise of a new educated class, separate
from the monks and clergy on the one hand or the nobility on the other,
and to the awakening of Europe to a new attitude toward life. Saracen
learning, filtering across from Spain, had added materially to the
knowledge Europe previously had, and had stimulated new intellectual
interests. Scholasticism had begun its great work of reorganizing and
systematizing theology, which was destined to free philosophy, hitherto
regarded as a dangerous foe or a suspected ally, from theology and to
remake entirely the teaching of the subject. Civil and canon law had been
created as wholly new professional subjects, and the beginnings of the
teaching of medicine had been made. Instead of the old Seven Liberal Arts
and a very limited course of professional study for the clerical office
being the entire curriculum, and Theology the one professional subject, we
now find, by the beginning of the thirteenth century, a number of new and
important professional subjects of large future significance--subjects
destined to break the monopoly of theological study and put an end to
logistic hair-splitting. The next step in the history of education came in
the development of institutions where thinking and teaching could be
carried on free from civil or ecclesiastical control, with the consequent
rise of an independent learned class in western Europe. This came with the
rise of the universities, to which we next turn, and out of which in time
arose the future independent scholarship of Europe, America, and the world
in general.

We also discover a series of new movements, connected with the Crusades,
the rise of cities, and the revival of trade and industry, all of which
clearly mark the close of the dark period of the Middle Ages. We note,
too, the evolution of new social classes--a new Estate--destined in time
to eclipse in importance both priest and noble and to become for long the
ruling classes of the modern world. We also note the beginnings of an
important independent system of education for the hand-workers which
sufficed until the days of steam, machinery, and the evolution of the
factory system. The eleventh and twelfth centuries were turning-points of
great significance in the history of our western civilization, and with
the opening of the wonderful thirteenth century the western world is well
headed toward a new life and modern ways of thinking.


1. Why is it that a strong religious control is never favorable to
originality in thinking?

2. Show how the work of the Nestorian Christians for the Mohammedan faith
was another example of the Hellenization of the ancient world.

3. Would it be possible for any people anywhere in the world today to make
such advances as were made at Bagdad, in the late eighth and early ninth
centuries, without such work permanently influencing the course of
civilization and learning everywhere? To what is the difference due?

4. What were the chief obstacles to Europe adopting at once the learning
from Mohammedan Spain, instead of waiting centuries to discover this
learning independently? 5. Why did Aristotle's work seem of much greater
value to the mediaeval scholar than the Moslem science? What are the
relative values to-day?

6. Why should the light literature of Spain be spoken of as a gay
contagion? Did this Christian attitude toward fiction and poetry continue

7. In what ways was the _Sic et Non_ of Abelard a complete break with
mediaeval traditions?

8. How did the fact that Dialectic (Logic) now became the great subject of
study in itself denote a marked intellectual advance? What was the
significance of the prominence of this study for the future of thinking?

9. What was the effect on inquiry and individual thinking of the method of
presentation used by Saint Thomas Aquinas in his _Summa Theologica_?

10. How do you explain the all-absorbing interest in scholasticism during
the greater part of a century?

11. State the significance, for the future, of the revival of the study of
Roman law: (a) intellectually; (b) in shaping future civilization.

12. How do you explain the Christian attitude toward disease, and the
scientific treatment of it? Has that attitude entirely passed away?

13. Why was it such a good thing for the future of civilization in England
and France that so many of its nobility perished in the Crusades?

14. State a number of ways in which the Crusade movements had a beneficial
effect on western Europe.

15. Show how the revival of commerce was an educative and a civilizing
influence of large importance. 16. Would the organization of commerce and
banking, and the establishment of the sanctity of obligations in a
country, be one important measure of the civilization to which that
country had attained? Illustrate.

17. Show how the development of industry and commerce and the accumulation
of wealth tend to promote order and security, and to extend educational

18. Contrast a mediaeval guild and a modern labor union. A guild and a
modern fraternal and benevolent society.

19. Why did apprenticeship education continue so long with so little
change, when it is now so rapidly being superseded?

20. Does the rise of a new Estate in society indicate a period of slow or
rapid change? Why is such an evolution of importance for education and


In the accompanying _Book of Readings_ the following selections are

85. Draper: The Moslem Civilization in Spain.
86. Draper: Learning among the Moslems in Spain.
87. Norton: Works of Aristotle known by 1300.
88. Averroes: On Aristotle's Greatness.
89. Roger Bacon: How Aristotle was received at Oxford.
90. Statutes: How Aristotle was received at Paris.
(a) Decree of Church Council, 1210 A.D.
(b) Statutes of Papal Legate, 1215 A.D.
(c) Statutes of Pope Gregory, 1231 A.D.
(d) Statutes of the Masters of Arts, 1254 A.D.
91. Cousin: Abelard's _Sic et Non_.
(a) From the Introduction.
(b) Types of Questions raised for Debate.
92. Rashdall: The Great Work of the Schoolmen.
93. Justinian: Preface to the Justinian Code.
94. Giry and Reville: The Early Mediaeval Town.
(a) To the Eleventh Century.
(b) By the Thirteenth Century.
95. Gross: An English Town Charter.
96. London: Oath of a New Freeman in a Mediaeval Town.
97. Riley: Ordinances of the White-Tawyers' Guild.
98. State Report: School of the Guild of Saint Nicholas.
99. England, 1396: A Mediaeval Indenture of Apprenticeship.


1. Contrast the state of civilization in Spain and the rest of Europe
about 1100 (85, 86).

2. Considering Aristotle's great intellectual worth (88) and work (87), is
it to be wondered that the mediaevals regarded him with such reverence?

3. Do we today accept Abelard's premise (91 a) as to attaining wisdom?
Would his questions (91 b) excite much interest to-day?

4. How do you explain the change in attitude toward him shown by the
successive statutes enacted (90 a-d) for the University of Paris?

5. Would the extract from Roger Bacon (89) lead you to think him a man
ahead of the times in which he lived? Why?

6. Did scholasticism represent the innocent intellectual activity, from
the Church point of view, pictured by Rashdall (92)?

7. What were the main things Justinian hoped to accomplish by the
preparation of the great Code, as set forth in the Preface (93)?

8. Characterize the mediaeval town by the eleventh century (94 a). What
was the nature of the progress from that time to the thirteenth century
(94 b)?

9. What were the chief privileges contained in the town charter of
Walling-ford (95), and what position does it indicate was held by the
guild-merchant therein?

10. What does the oath of a freeman (96) indicate as to social conditions?

11. State the chief regulations imposed on its members by the White-
Tawyers' Guild (97). Compare these regulations with those of a modern
labor union, such as the plumbers. With a fraternal order, such as the

12. What is indicated as to the educational advantages provided by the
Guild of Saint Nicholas, in the city of Worcester, by the extract (98)
taken from the Report of the King's Commissioner?

13. Does a comparison of Readings 99, 201, and 242 indicate a static
condition of apprenticeship education for centuries?


* Adams, G. B. _Civilization during the Middle Ages_.
Ameer, Ali. _A Short History of the Saracens_.
* Ashley, W. J. _Introduction to English Economic History_.
Cutts, Edw. L. _Scenes and Characters of the Middle Ages_.
* Gautier, Leon. _Chivalry_.
* Giry, A., and Reville, A. _Emancipation of the Mediaeval Towns_.
Hibbert, F. A. _Influence and Development of English Guilds_.
* Hume, M. A. S. _The Spanish People_.
* Lavisse, Ernest. _Mediaeval Commerce and Industry_.
* MacCabe, Jos. _Peter Abelard_.
* Munro, D. C., and Sellery, G. E. _Mediaeval Civilization_.
Poole, R. L. _Illustrations of Mediaeval Thought_.
* Rashdall, H. _Universities of Europe in the Middle Ages_, vol. I.
Routledge, R. _Popular History of Science_.
Sandys, J. E. _History of Classical Scholarship_, vol. i.
Scott, J. F. _Historical Essays on Apprenticeship and Vocational
Education_. (England.)
* Sedgwick, W. J., and Tyler, H. W. _A Short History of Science_.
Taylor, H. C. _The Mediaeval Mind_.
Thorndike, Lynn. _History of Mediaeval Europe_.
Townsend, W. J. _The Great Schoolmen of the Middle Ages_.



EVOLUTION OF THE _STUDIUM GENERALE_. In the preceding chapter we described
briefly the new movement toward association which characterized the
eleventh and the twelfth centuries--the municipal movement, the merchant
guilds, the trade guilds, etc. These were doing for civil life what
monasticism had earlier done for the religious life. They were collections
of like-minded men, who united themselves into associations or guilds for
mutual benefit, protection, advancement, and self-government within the
limits of their city, business, trade, or occupation. This tendency toward
association, in the days when state government was weak or in its infancy,
was one of the marked features of the transition time from the early
period of the Middle Ages, when the Church was virtually the State, to the
later period of the Middle Ages, when the authority of the Church in
secular matters was beginning to weaken, modern nations were beginning to
form, and an interest in worldly affairs was beginning to replace the
previous inordinate interest in the world to come.

We also noted in the preceding chapters that certain cathedral and
monastery schools, but especially the cathedral schools, [1] stimulated by
the new interest in Dialectic, were developing into much more than local
teaching institutions designed to afford a supply of priests of some
little education for the parishes of the bishopric. Once York and later
Canterbury, in England, had had teachers who attracted students from other
bishoprics. Paris had for long been a famous center for the study of the
Liberal Arts and of Theology. Saint Gall had become noted for its music.
Theologians coming from Paris (1167-68) had given a new impetus to study
among the monks at Oxford. A series of political events in northern Italy
had given emphasis to the study of law in many cities, and the Moslems in
Spain had stimulated the schools there and in southern France to a study
of medicine and Aristotelian science. Rome was for long a noted center for
study. Gradually these places came to be known as _studia publica_, or
_studia generalia_, meaning by this a generally recognized place of study,
where lectures were open to any one, to students of all countries and of
all conditions. [2] Traveling students came to these places from afar to
hear some noted teacher read and comment on the famous textbooks of the

From the first both teachers and students had been considered as members
of the clergy, and hence had enjoyed the privileges and immunities
extended to that class, but, now that the students were becoming so
numerous and were traveling so far, some additional grant of protection
was felt to be desirable. Accordingly the Emperor Frederick Barbarossa,
[3] in 1158, issued a general proclamation of privileges and protection
(R. 101). In this he ordered that teachers and students traveling "to the
places in which the studies are carried on" should be protected from
unjust arrest, should be permitted to "dwell in security," and in case of
suit should be tried "before their professors or the bishop of the city."
This document marks the beginning of a long series of rights and
privileges granted to the teachers and students of the universities now in
process of evolution in western Europe.

THE UNIVERSITY EVOLUTION. The development of a university out of a
cathedral or some other form of school represented, in the Middle Ages, a
long local evolution. Universities were not founded then as they are to-
day. A teacher of some reputation drew around him a constantly increasing
body of students. Other teachers of ability, finding a student body

Facebook Google Reddit Twitter Pinterest