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History 371: Medieval History

Dr. Nicholas Pappas
Sam Houston State University

The basic texts for this course is:


Course Description

This course will investigate the history of Europe and the Near East from the breakup of the Roman Empire to the dawn of the Renaissance. It will study the political, economic, social, and cultural development of the three successor civilizations of classical Greece and Rome--Byzantium, Islam and Western Christendom, with particular emphasis on the latter. It will look at how these civilizations arose and interacted in both peace and war. Among the topics to be covered in the course will be: the end of the ancient world; the Rise of Christianity; the era of migrations; the Germanic successor kingdoms; the Catholic Church in the West, the Carolingian Empire, the Vikings, Feudalism and Manorialsim, Holy Roman Empire Versus the Papacy, Byzantium and its civilization, the rise of Islam and its civilization, the advent of the Turks; the Crusades; the Medieval Kingdoms; the aristocracy and middle class in the Middle Ages; church and culture in the High Middle Ages; later islam and the Byzantine Commonwealth; the Mongols; and the crises of the 14th Century and the beginnings of the Renaissance. The course will also attempt to assess the impact of these and other subjects upon today's world.

Class Schedule and Procedure

1. The class schedule will consist of two 80-minute sessions each week. Each session is allotted to lectures by the instructor, while a portion of each session occasionally will be devoted to questions and discussion.
2. Lectures will both supplement and complement reading assignments.
3. Lecture outlines, maps , lecture notes and other supplementary readings will be distributed to students on the web.
4. Text and Web Readings are given on a weekly basis. Two-to three-page essays will be assigned from the readings four times during the semester.
5. Attendance: Students are expected to regularly attend lectures and participate actively in classroom discussions. Attendence will be taken regularly. Since there is no penalty for absences, there will be no excused absences.







Student Requirements

Essays: Four two-to-three-page essays will be assigned during the semester. These essays will be based upon questions given on selected readings. Students are expected to express their reaction and answer each question in a two-to-three-page, typed,and double spaced paper, which is about 500 to 700 words on E-Mail. The lowest of four essay scores will be dropped. The three remaining essays will count 150 points towards the course grade
Examinations: Four exams will be presented during the semester. Each examination will include one essay section. The lowest of the four exam scores will be dropped. Each examination will count 100 points toward the course grade. In total the three examinations will count 150 points toward the course grade. Since the lowest of the four exams will be dropped, no makeup exams will be given. No dropping of the fourth and final exam will be accepted.
Geography Quizzes: Twelve brief geography Quizzes will be presented and are scheduled in the course outline. The two lowest of twelve geography quiz scores will be dropped. Each quiz will count for 10 points for a total of 100 points toward the course grade.



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