The Age of Confessional Division, 1550-1618

January 6, 2018 | Author: Anonymous | Category: Social Science, Political Science
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The Age of Confessional Division, 1550-1618 The West CHAPTER 14

The Population Recovery • Consistent population growth, after 1480 • Permanent shift in demographic and economic power, from Mediterranean to northwest Europe • Shift from subsistence farming to commercial agriculture fueled population and economic growth

The Prosperous Villages • Decline of serfdom created relative economic freedom for peasantry • Successful commercial agriculture depended upon a free labor supply, access to capital, and proximity to markets • Growth of rural population created a new underclass of vagabonds

The Regulated Cities • Cities grew, due to migration from country • Dramatic social and economic divisions grew • Increasing regulation of social and economic life by urban governments • Expansion of charity and welfare organizations

The Price Revolution • Population growth led to demand outstripping supply, especially for essentials • Prices multiplied by five- or six-fold • Real wages declined, and fixed incomes and government revenues were eroded • Influx of gold and silver from colonies and debasement of currencies encouraged inflation

Establishing Confessional Identities • Promotion of distinct confessional institutions, beliefs, behaviors and cultures • Union between political and religious authorities development of state religion • Clerical disciplining of non-conformity • Catholic ritual identity depended upon a repertoire of gestures • Protestant ritual identity depended upon a demonstration of sociability

Policing the Family • The patriarchal ideal served the needs of church and state - the authority of a husband and father reflected that of king and clergy • Evolution of a new type of family - smaller, physically and economically independent • Development of new attitude towards children - greater emphasis on education, welfare and discipline

Suppressing Popular Culture • Reformation or abolition of non-Christian practices in European culture • Active promotion of reformed religious practices and values • Broadening of the cultural gap between the élite and the broad mass of society

Hunting Witches • Intensification of persecution of alleged witches • The logic of witchcraft beliefs implied that a bad ending was caused by bad intentions • Belief in diabolism helped explain events that could not be understood • Ca. 100,000 people were accused of witchcraft and around half of them were executed • Ca. 80 percent of accused witches were women

The Confessional States • Fundamental principle of rulership - one king, one faith, one law • Presence of a significant religious minority in a state led to tension, suspicion and even civil war • Emergence of religious fanaticism fueled political assassinations and massacres

The French Wars of Religion and the Dutch Revolt • Conflicts bred from competition for political power, between religious rivals • Development of an international Protestant alliance between Dutch rebels, French Huguenots and the English • French instability allowed Spain to become the dominant power in Europe • Dutch Revolt strained the military and economic resources of Spain to breaking point

Literature in the Age of Confessional Division • Vernacular languages replaced Latin as literary languages • Political and religious turmoil prompted questioning about humanity and the meaning of life • Remarkable period of literary creativity - Spanish Golden Age and Elizabethan Renaissance

The Dream World of Emperor Rudolf • Pressure of maintaining the ideal of a universal empire, in the face of political and religious instability • Rudolf II (r.1576-1612) created a fantasy of unity at his court in Prague • Lack of firm control from the emperor exacerbated religious conflicts within the empire

The Renaissance of PolandLithuania • Power of nobility had encouraged religious diversity • Cultural and commercial contacts with Italy enhanced the appeal of Catholicism • In the decentralized political system, the Catholic Church provided a unifying institution and culture

The Development of Imperial Russia • Dukes of Moscow became the tsars of Russia, creating an authoritarian state • Imitation of Byzantine style and assertion of continuity with Imperial Rome • Ivan IV (1533-1584) weakened power of nobility and ruled through terror • Romanov dynasty, in 1613, founded after chaos of early seventeenth century

The Divisions of the West • Demographic and economic pressures eroded confidence and security • Emergence of confessional states, based upon a union of political and religious authority • Division of the West into religiously driven national camps • Development of political alliances, based upon common beliefs

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