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  1. The Early Middle Ages or Early Medieval Period, sometimes referred to as the Dark Ages, is typically regarded by historians as lasting from the late 5th or early 6th century to the 10th century. [note 1] They marked the start of the Middle Ages of European history .

  2. › wiki › Middle_AgesMiddle Ages - Wikipedia

    The Early Middle Ages witnessed the rise of monasticism in the West. The shape of European monasticism was determined by traditions and ideas that originated with the Desert Fathers of Egypt and Syria. Monastic ideals spread to Western Europe in the 5th and 6th centuries through hagiographical literature such as the Life of Anthony.

  3. Jump to navigation Jump to search. The Early Middle Ages were a period in European history. They lasted from the 5th century to the 10th century. They were followed by the High Middle Ages and the Late Middle Ages. These were called the “Middle” Ages because they came between ancient history and modern history.

  4. The main article for this category is Early Middle Ages. The purpose of this category is to provide narrower grouping of events, personages, and places into their more specific traditional third division of the overall Middle Ages. Some entities will necessarily span more than one of these categories.

  5. The early Middle Ages saw the creation and adoption of the modern Welsh name for themselves, Cymry, a word descended from Common Brittonic combrogi, meaning "fellow-countrymen". [65] [66] It appears in Moliant Cadwallon ( In Praise of Cadwallon ), a poem written by Cadwallon ap Cadfan 's bard Afan Ferddig c. 633, [67] and probably came into use a self-description before the seventh century. [68]

    • Overview
    • Sassanid conquest
    • Arab conquest
    • Feudal states in 9th-11th centuries

    In the history of Azerbaijan, the Early Middle Ages lasted from the 3rd to the 11th century. This period in the territories of today's Azerbaijan Republic began with the incorporation of these territories into the Sasanian Persian Empire in the 3rd century AD. Feudalism took shape in Azerbaijan in the Early Middle Ages. The territories of Caucasian Albania became an arena of wars between the Byzantine Empire and the Sassanid Empire. After the Sassanid Empire was felled by the Arab Caliphate, Alb

    In 252-253 AD, Caucasian Albania was conquered and annexed by the Sassanid Empire. It became a vassal state, but retained its monarchy; however the Albanian king had no real power and most civil, religious, and military authority lay with the Sassanid marzban. After the Sassanids

    According to local tradition, Christianity entered Caucasian Albania in the 1st century through St. Elisæus of Albania, a disciple of St. Thaddeus of Edessa. The first Christian church in South Caucasus was established in Caucasian Albania by St. Elishe in the village of Kish in

    During the Sassanid period, two types of land ownership in Albania were common: hereditary land ownership, dastgerd, and conditional land ownership, khostak. Dastgerd emerged with the collapse of communal land ownership, and was distributed among the ruling class by the state. Kh

    Al-Walid sent a group of his men north across the river Aras under Salman ibn Rabiah, and to Nakjavan under Habib b. Maslama. Habib ended up with a treaty calling for tribute and jezya and kharaj taxes from the population of Nakjavan, while the army of Salman moved on Arran and c

    Under the Rashiduns and early Umayyads, the administrative system of the late Sassanid period was largely retained. Each quarter of the state was divided into provinces, the provinces into districts, and the districts into sub-districts. Then the caliphate created the Emirate sys

    The previously slow-growing rice industry began to grow rapidly and began to play a more important role in the economic life of Azerbaijan. In the ninth and tenth centuries, rice cultivation was widespread in Shabran, Shirvan, Sheki and Lankaran regions. Cultivation of flax and c

    As a result of the weakening of the military-political power of the Arab caliphate, and the growing tendency to disobey the central government, some provinces seceded from the Caliphate in the ninth and-tenth centuries. Feudal states such as Shirvanshahs, Shaddadids, Sallarids and Sajids emerged in the territory of Azerbaijan.

    • Sources
    • History
    • Geography
    • Economy
    • Demography
    • Society
    • Kingship
    • Warfare
    • Religion
    • Art

    As the first half of the period is largely prehistoric, archaeology plays an important part in studies of early Medieval Scotland. There are no significant contemporary internal sources for the Picts, although evidence has been gleaned from lists of kings, annals preserved in Wales and Ireland and from sources written down much later, which may draw on oral traditions or earlier sources. From the 7th century there is documentary evidence from Latin sources including the lives of saints, such as Adomnán's Life of St. Columba, and Bede's Ecclesiastical History of the English People. Archaeological sources include settlements, art, and surviving everyday objects. Other aids to understanding in this period include onomastics (the study of names) – divided into toponymy (place-names), showing the movement of languages, and the sequence in which different languages were spoken in an area, and anthroponymy(personal names), which can offer clues to relationships and origins.

    By the time of Bede and Adomnán, in the late seventh century and early eighth century, four major circles of influence had emerged in northern Britain. In the east were the Picts, whose kingdoms eventually stretched from the river Forth to Shetland. In the west were the Gaelic (Goidelic)-speaking people of Dál Riata with their royal fortress at Dunadd in Argyll, with close links with the island of Ireland, from which they brought with them the name "Scots", originally a term for the inhabitants of Ireland. In the south was the British (Brythonic) Kingdom of Alt Clut, descendants of the peoples of the Roman-influenced kingdoms of "The Old North". Finally, there were the English or "Angles", Germanic invaders who had overrun much of southern Britain and held the Kingdom of Bernicia (later the northern part of Northumbria), in the south-east, and who brought with them Old English.

    Physical geography

    Modern Scotland is half the size of England and Wales in area, but with its many inlets, islands and inland lochs, it has roughly the same amount of coastline at 4,000 miles. Only a fifth of Scotland is less than 60 metres above sea level. Its east Atlantic position means that it has very heavy rainfall: today about 700 cm (276 in) per year in the east and over 1,000 cm (394 in) in the west. This encouraged the spread of blanket peat bog, the acidity of which, combined with high level of wind...


    Roman influence beyond Hadrian's Wall does not appear to have had a major impact on settlement patterns, with Iron Age hill forts and promontory forts continuing to be occupied through the early Medieval period. These often had defences of dry stone or timber laced walls, sometimes with a palisade. The large numbers of these forts has been taken to suggest peripatetic monarchies and aristocracies, moving around their domains to control and administer them. In the Northern and Western Isles th...


    This period saw dramatic changes in the geography of language. Modern linguists divide the Celtic languages into two major groups, the P-Celtic, from which Welsh, Breton and Cornish derive and the Q-Celtic, from which comes Irish, Manx and Gaelic. The Pictish language remains enigmatic, since the Picts had no written script of their own and all that survives are place names and some isolated inscriptions in Irish ogham script. Most modern linguists accept that, although the nature and unity o...

    Lacking the urban centres created under the Romans in the rest of Britain, the economy of Scotland in the early Middle Ages was overwhelmingly agricultural. Without significant transport links and wider markets, most farms had to produce a self-sufficient diet of meat, dairy products and cereals, supplemented by hunter-gathering. Limited archaeological evidence indicates that throughout Northern Britain farming was based around a single homestead or a small cluster of three or four homes, each probably containing a nuclear family, with relationships likely to be common among neighbouring houses and settlements, reflecting the partition of land through inheritance. Farming became based around a system that distinguished between the infield around the settlement, where crops were grown every year and the outfield, further away and where crops were grown and then left fallow in different years, in a system that would continue until the 18th century.The evidence of bones indicates that...

    There are almost no written sources from which to re-construct the demography of early Medieval Scotland. Estimates have been made of a population of 10,000 inhabitants in Dál Riata and 80–100,000 for Pictland. It is likely that the 5th and 6th centuries saw higher mortality rates due to the appearance of bubonic plague, which may have reduced net population.The known conditions have been taken to suggest it was a high fertility, high mortality society, similar to many developing countries in the modern world, with a relatively young demographic profile, and perhaps early childbearing, and large numbers of children for women. This would have meant that there were a relatively small proportion of available workers to the number of mouths to feed. This would have made it difficult to produce a surplus that would allow demographic growth and more complex societies to develop.

    The primary unit of social organisation in Germanic and Celtic Europe was the kin group. The mention of descent through the female line in the ruling families of the Picts in later sources and the recurrence of leaders clearly from outside of Pictish society, has led to the conclusion that their system of descent was matrilineal. However, this has been challenged by a number of historians who argue that the clear evidence of awareness of descent through the male line suggests that this more likely to indicate a bilateralsystem of descent, where descent was counted through both male and female lines. Scattered evidence, including the records in Irish annals and the images of warriors like those depicted on the Pictish stone slabs at Aberlemno, Forfarshire and Hilton of Cadboll in Easter Ross, suggest that in Northern Britain, as in Anglo-Saxon England, society was dominated by a military aristocracy, whose status was dependent in a large part on their ability and willingness to fight...

    In the early Medieval period, British kingship was not inherited in a direct line from previous kings, as would be the case in the late Middle Ages. There were instead a number of candidates for kingship, who usually needed to be a member of a particular dynasty and to claim descent from a particular ancestor.Kingship could be multi-layered and very fluid. The Pictish kings of Fortriu were probably acting as overlords of other Pictish kings for much of this period and occasionally were able to assert an overlordship over non-Pictish kings, but occasionally themselves had to acknowledge the overlordship of external rulers, both Anglian and British. Such relationships may have placed obligations to pay tribute or to supply armed forces. After a victory, sub-kings may have received rewards in return for this service. Interaction with and intermarriage into the ruling families of subject kingdoms may have opened the way to absorption of such sub-kingdoms and, although there might be lat...

    At the most basic level, a king's power rested on the existence of his bodyguard or war-band. In the British language, this was called the teulu, as in teulu Dewr (the "War-band of Deira"). In Latin the word is either comitatus or tutores, or even familia; tutores is the most common word in this period, and derives for the Latin verb tueor, meaning "defend, preserve from danger". The war-band functioned as an extension of the ruler's legal person, and was the core of the larger armies that were mobilised from time to time for campaigns of significant size. In peace-time, the war-band's activity was centred on the "Great Hall". Here, in both Germanic and Celtic cultures, the feasting, drinking and other forms of male bonding that kept up the war-band's integrity would take place. In the epic poem Beowulf, the war-band was said to sleep in the Great Hall after the lord had retired to his adjacent bedchamber. It is not likely that any war-band in the period exceeded 120–150 men, as no...

    Pre-Christian religion

    Very little is known about religion in Scotland before the arrival of Christianity. The lack of native written sources among the Picts means that it can only be judged from parallels elsewhere, occasional surviving archaeological evidence and hostile accounts of later Christian writers. It is generally presumed to have resembled Celtic polytheism. The names of more than two hundred Celtic deities have been noted, some of which, like Lugh, The Dagda and The Morrigan, come from later Irish myth...

    Early Christianisation

    The roots of Christianity in Scotland can probably be found among the soldiers and ordinary Roman citizens in the vicinity of Hadrian's Wall. The archaeology of the Roman period indicates that the northern parts of the Roman province of Britannia were among the most Christianised in the island. Chi-Rho inscriptions and Christian grave-slabs have been found on the wall from the 4th century, and from the same period the Mithraic shrines (known as Mithraea) which existed along Hadrian's Wall wer...

    Celtic Christianity

    Celtic Christianity differed in some in respects from that based on Rome, most importantly on the issues of how Easter was calculated and the method of tonsure, but there were also differences in the rites of ordination, baptism and in the liturgy. Celtic Christianity was heavily based on monasticism. Monasteries differed significantly from those on the continent, and were often an isolated collection of wooden huts surrounded by a wall. Because much of the Celtic world lacked the urban centr...

    From the 5th to the mid-9th centuries the art of the Picts is primarily known through stone sculpture, and a smaller number of pieces of metalwork, often of very high quality. After the conversion of the Picts and the cultural assimilation of Pictish culture into that of the Scots and Angles, elements of Pictish art became incorporated into the style known as Insular art, which was common over Britain and Ireland and became highly influential in continental Europe and contributed to the development of Romanesquestyles.

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