Topic: 14th Century European Crisises
Order Description
Essay 1 focuses on the crises of the 14th century as a backdrop or foundation for the development of the Renaissance. The 14th century was characterized by a series of crises, all profound in their own ways, which resulted in a watershed in which the cultural patterns of the Middle Ages were disrupted and in many ways seriously undermined. For example, the faith of Europeans was tested by the Black Death and the political and religious conflicts of the papacy. The Hundred Years’ War also caused great turmoil and put stresses on state finances and taxation. At the same time, crop failures, economic problems, and peasant revolts added to the misery. By the end of the century, feudalism was all but dead, faith in the church had declined, and religiosity had given way to a great degree to pessimism and the fear of death. The old was gone for good as national monarchies developed in France and England. But, while Northern Europe was ravaged by one affliction after another, in Italy, after the plague subsided, the Italian cities flourished, economic activity and a new commercial class prospered, and a new culture and society emerged.
In a 4–6 page essay (1000-1500 words), discuss and analyze the main crises that occurred in 14th century Europe. Which of these do you think was the most traumatic for medieval society? Why do you think so? Support your opinions with properly cited information from your assigned reading and viewing. Your essay should include:
An introduction, including a thesis sentence
A body, in which you develop your topic and support your argument
A conclusion highlighting the main points of your essay

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