The Black Death Begins in EuropeFor seven years, a plague spread across Europe and decimated 60% of the European population. The disease was called bubonic plague, caused by fleas carrying disease while traveling by rat. The disease was characterized by boils protruding from the skin and bursting, causing the victim to bleed out and die. As well as this, pneumonic plague was another disease people got from the same strain, causing their lungs to liquify inside of them. The plague lasted for seven years, but was destructive.
May 30, 1431
Joan d'Arc Burned at the StakeJoan d'Arc was nineteen when she was burned at the stake for her crimes against the nation of England. She successfully led a peace riot during the siege of Orlèans and is credited with saving the city. Joan was accused and found guilty of heresy, and was sentenced to death by the stake. She, however, did not die of being burnt, but by smoke inhalation. This caused the cardinal of Winchester to actually order her to be burnt a second time.
Johannes Gutenberg Completes the Printing PressThe printing press had already been invented before this, by the Chinese, but Europeans take credit for movable type printing. By adapting a wine press, Gutenberg created the idea of moving a circle with type on it to change the typing. The invention of the printing press was revolutionary because it caused books to be mass printed. People were becoming more literate because of this. The first book printed in mass was a version of the Bible in German.
Michelangelo Begins the Sistine ChapelMade of gold and plaster, the high arching ceilings of the Sistine Chapel had begun being painted by Michelangelo in 1508. It is currently one of the most famous interior spaces in the world. Michelangelo was commissioned by the Catholic church to paint nine central scenes from the Book of Genesis. The most central painting on the ceiling is The Creation of Adam. The ceiling took four years for Michelangelo to finish painting, and he had to paint these images upside down.
Oct 31, 1517
Martin Luther's 95 ThesesMartin Luther nailed a scroll written in Latin to the door of a church. The scroll was a list. It was a list of things the Catholic church had been doing wrong and needed to fix. This scroll, called the 95 Theses, became a wildly popular idea, and people began to take heart to Martin Luther's ideas and to follow him. This launched the Protestant Reformation.
CrusadesA series of holy wars committed by Christians. The Crusades were fought in response to Muslim expansion across western Europe. The goals of the war for the Christians were to reclaim the land of Palestine and to conquer pagan areas. Crusading declined during the Protestant Reformation. It was directly related to the fall of the papacy.
Renaissance BeginsA series of philosophical, scientific, and artistic reforms that changed the way people lived all across Europe. The Renaissance began in south Italy and moved north due to technological advancements of the time. People began exploring language and becoming more literate due to the printing press. People studied art and philosophy based on the Greeks. The humanist way of thinking spread, focusing on the individual and not the group.
Hundred Years' WarA struggle between the succession of the French throne between France and England. Constantly on and off, the war lasted for about 116 years. Edward III of England felt that he had a legitimate claimant to the French throne post Charles IV's death, and this sparked conflicts over true royal succession. The turning point of the war was the siege of Orleans, saved by Joan d'Arc's relief force.