The Early Middle Ages, 284–1000

Course Number
HIST 210
About the Course

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.

Course Structure

This Yale College course, taught on campus two times per week for 50 minutes, was recorded for Open Yale Courses in Fall 2011.

Syllabus

Professor
Paul Freedman, Chester D. Tripp Professor of History
Description

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.

Texts

Central Texts

Charlemagne’s Courtier: The Complete Einhard. ed. Paul Edward Dutton, Broadview Press, 1998.

Gregory of Tours: The Merovingians. ed. Alexander Callander Murray, Broadview Press, 2006.

Procopius, The Secret History. ed. Richard Atwater, University of Michigan Press, 1961.

Wickham, Chris, The Inheritance of Rome: A History of Europe from 400 to 1000. Viking, 2009.

Richards, Julian, The Vikings: A Very Short History. Oxford University Press, 2005.

Course Packet

Augustine, Confessions, ed. James Joseph O’Donnell. Oxford University Press, 1992.

Berkey, Jonathan Porter, The Formation of Islam: Religion and Society in the Near East, 600-1800. Cambridge University Press, 2003.

Brown, Peter, The World of Late Antiquity: AD 150-750. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1971.

The Burgundian Code: Book of Constitutions or Law of Gundobad, ed. Katherine Fischer Drew. University of Pennsylvania Press, 1972.

Fichtenau, Heinrich, The Carolingian Empire. Blackwelll, 1957.

Jones, A.H.M., Constantine and the Conversion of Europe. English Universities Press, 1948.

Rule of St. Benedict, ed. Ruth J. Dean. Blackwell, 1964.

Requirements

Short paper, mid-term exam, and long research paper.

Grading

Short paper: 20%
Mid-term exam: 30%
Long research paper: 40%

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Course Books and Other Related Titles

Yale University Press offers a 10% discount on the books used in HIST 210 that it publishes, as well as on other related titles. A portion of the proceeds from your purchases will be donated for the ongoing support and development of the Open Yale Courses program.