The Middle Ages

Major events and time periods from Chapters 9 & 10.

The Middle Ages in Europe

Byzantine Empire

330 - 1453

The easter half of the Roman Empire became known as the Byzantine Empire in 330 and would last a thousand years after the Fall of Rome in 476.

Early Middle Ages

Approx. 476 - Approx. 900

The Reconquista on the Iberian Peninsula

Approx. 718 - 1492

The time period during which Spanish and Portuguese kingdoms rose to defeat Muslim forces and drive them out of Spain.

Feudalism Exists in Europe

Approx. 900 - Approx. 1500

High Middle Ages

Approx. 0901 - Approx. 1250


1096 - 1270

Many crusades took place over this time period, but the 1st-4th are the most important. See the timeline below for more information.

Late Middle Ages

Approx. 1251 - Approx. 1500

Hundred Years' War

1337 - 1453

Fought between England and France over the right to the French throne. It was actually a series of wars fought between the two nations, not one continuous battle.

The Black Death

Approx. 1346 - Approx. 1353

The Black Death (Bubonic Plague) struck Europe and killed more than 1/3 of the population.

Important Events of the Middle Ages

The Fall of Rome


The city of Rome fell when Odoacer defeated Romulus.

Clovis conquers Gaul


Clovis, the king of the Franks, conquered the old Roman province of Gaul.

Charlemagne crowned emperor

December 25, 800

Charlemagne was crowned emperor of the Holy Roman Empire on Christmas Day by Pope Leo III.

Holy Roman Empire divided

August 843

Charlemagne's empire was divided into thirds by three of his grandsons who had fought amongst themselves for control.

Norman Invasion of England


William of Normandy (Normandy is in France) invaded England and won control of the throne. Known as William the Conqueror, he tied the nobility of France with the nobility of England. Tensions would grow over who had the right to rule either region.

Pope challenges Emperor


Pope Gregory VII stated that laypeople (non-clergy) such as Emperor Henry IV could no longer appoint people to church offices. Henry was eventually excommunicated and had to ask forgiveness from the Pope.

Magna Carta


King John was forced to sign the Magna Carta by the English nobility. This guaranteed protection of the law and trial by jury for English citizens and that the king could not collect money from the nobles without their approval.

Model Parliament


Edward I established the Model Parliament, the British legislative body that represented every county, district, and city.

Battle of Orleans


Joan of Arc, a french peasant girl, led the French to victory in this battle.

The Crusades

The First Crusade

Approx. 1096 - Approx. 1099

Crusaders from Europe were urged by Pope Urban II to fight Muslims in the Holy Lands after Seljuk Turks captured Jerusalem in 1071 and threatened the Byzantine Empire. They defeated the Muslims and recaptured Jerusalem. They divided the conquered lands into four Crusader states: Edessa, Antioch, Tripoli, and Jerusalem.

The Second Crusade

Approx. 1147 - Approx. 1149

Christians marched to the Holy Lands to win back the Crusader state of Edessa from the Muslims (it was captured by the Muslims in 1144), but were unsuccessful.

The Third Crusade

Approx. 1189 - Approx. 1192

This crusade began after Saladin captured Jerusalem from the Christians in 1171. It is famous because of the rivalry between Richard the Lion-Hearted of England and Saladin. The Crusaders saw some success early on, but were never able to regain control of Jerusalem. Saladin and Richard agreed to a truce which would allow Christian pilgrims to visit the holy places in Jerusalem.

The Fourth Crusade

1202 - 1204

Crusaders left to regain control of Jerusalem yet again, but in order to pay the Italian traders who transported them, the Crusaders attacked the Byzantine City of Zara. The Crusaders then sacked Constantinople (a Christian city at the time). This greatly weakened the Byzantine Empire.

The Ottoman Empire

Osman rises to power


Osman was the first ruler of the Ottoman Empire, which would eventually control a vast territory.

Ottoman Empire

1299 - 1923

Ottomans conquer Constantinople


This was the end of the Byzantine Empire.

Suleyman I becomes Sultan


Under Suleyman I the Ottomans produced great art, architecture, and literature. He is often called Suleyman the Magnificent. He also organized a legal code that would govern all the Ottoman Empire.