The Early Middle Ages, 284–1000

Open Yale


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Major developments in the political, social, and religious history of Western Europe from the accession of Diocletian to the feudal transformation. Topics include the conversion of Europe to Christianity, the fall of the Roman Empire, the rise of Islam and the Arabs, the "Dark Ages," Charlemagne and the Carolingian renaissance, and the Viking and Hungarian invasions.

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Cosa impari in questo corso?

Christian Roman Empire
Barbarian Kingdoms
Survival in the East
Frankish Society


Lecture 1 Course Introduction: Rome’s Greatness and First Crises

Lecture 2 The Crisis of the Third Century and the Diocletianic Reforms

Lecture 3 Constantine and the Early Church

Lecture 4 The Christian Roman Empire

Lecture 5 St. Augustine’s Confessions

Lecture 6 Transformation of the Roman Empire

Lecture 7 Barbarian Kingdoms

Lecture 8 Survival in the East

Lecture 9 The Reign of Justinian

Lecture 10 Clovis and the Franks

Lecture 11 Frankish Society

Lecture 12 Britain and Ireland

Lecture 13 Monasticism

Lecture 14 Mohammed and the Arab Conquests

Lecture 15 Islamic Conquests and Civil War

Lecture 16 The Splendor of the Abbasid Period

Lecture 17 The Crucial Seventh Century

Lecture 18 The Splendor of Byzantium

Lecture 19 Charlemagne

Lecture 20 Intellectuals and the Court of Charlemagne

Lecture 21 Crisis of the Carolingians

Lecture 22 Vikings / The European Prospect, 1000