Skip to main content

Medieval Europe: Introduction

What was Medieval Europe?

The Medieval period followed the fall of the Roman Empire, which officially ended in 476 AD. Often referred to as the Middle Ages, this period in Europe lasted from around 500 to 1500 AD. Historians usually subdivide the Middle Ages into three separate periods. The early Middle Ages, often called the Dark Ages, marked the very beginning of the Middle Ages. The Dark Ages lasted until around 1050. This name was the result of a number of historians believing that the tribes of 'barbarians' who invaded the Roman Empire were ignorant and less civilised than the Romans. In more recent times, however, this claim has become the subject of much debate.

The high Middle Ages generally refers to the period 1050 to 1250 AD. This period was named according to the belief that it was during this time that the Medieval period was at its height. The late Middle Ages refers to the few centuries leading up to modern times. Unlike the end of the Viking Age (793-1066 AD), the end of the Middle Ages is not marked by a single, definitive event. Read more...

Library Resources

25 Reasons You’ll Be Glad You Don’t Live In Medieval Times

Timeline

Did you know?

The Middle Ages