Medieval Religion

Religion in the medieval period is frequently depicted as a "time of ignorance and superstition," defying reason and logic. While Christianity and its denominations made up the majority of medieval religion, Germanic paganism and Islam also existed.

3,195 Questions

Where does a clergyman live in medieval times?

Monastery. They were all priests since the Catholic church was the only church.

2nd answer: That is overly simplistic and not necessarily accurate. It is correct that monks lived in monasteries, but priests were not necessarily monks, and many monks were not priests.

All but the smallest villages had a church and a priest in residence. The priest would have had a house in the village (and a fairly nice one, by village standards) and enough of a cash income to support themselves in considerable comfort (again by village standards). Most priests would have been able to afford a household servant for cooking and basic chores. This money came from the tithe, a mandatory contribution of 10 percent of agricultural products to the parish in which the crops were grown.

Churches in towns and cities would have also had clergy in residence, with a more complex organization. This clergy would have obviously lived in town.

Who are the sinners in the vestibule of hell?

I assume from the terminology that this relates to the Comedia of Dante Alighieri.

The sinners in the Vestibule (Described in Canto III) are the Futile those "whose lives knew neither praise nor infamy" (ibid l. 36) and including "that caitiff angel-crew/Who against God rebelled not, nor to Him/Were faithful, but to self alone were true" (ibid ll. 37-9).

These figures represent those without conviction either to good or bad. They are represented following a banner that wildly flaps around in the same way that their opinions and values shifted in life.

The only identified figure is "The coward spirit of the man/Who made the great refusal;" (ibid ll. 60-1) it is uncertain who this represents although it has been suggested that it is Pope Celestine V who abdicated the papacy in favour of Boniface VIII who Dante hated; it has also been suggested as an identifier for Pilate who condemned Christ despite believing His innocence.

How did the roman catholic church help keep education from disappearing during the middle ages?

The Catholic Church needed priests who could say mass and read the Bible, and monks who could copy Bibles. It kept monastery schools to train these people. Most of the schools in Western Europe of the Early Middle Ages were monastic schools of this type.

I want to point out, however, that the Catholic Church was not the only institution teaching people. The Byzantine Empire had a system of state run primary schools that operated down to the village level and taught both boys and girls, partly so all their soldiers could be literate. Also, the best schools in the West during the first 300 years or so of the Middle Ages were run by the Celtic Church, which was later absorbed by the Catholic Church. For example, around 550 AD, Cor Tewdws (Theodosius College), in Wales had 2000 students. And there were state run schools; Beverley Grammar School, in Yorkshire, was opened in 700 AD as a state run School, and remains open to this day.

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How are monks and monasteries are related?

Monks always lived in monasteries, which were divided into Abbeys (headed by an abbot) and Priories (smaller places headed by a prior).

Both words come from the Greek word monos, meaning "alone". The earliest Christian monks were solitary hermits living in desert areas of the Middle East; gradually they began to build small communities and live together, but kept the name monastes or monk.

The Cistercian Order in England attempted to preserve this way of life by choosing to build monasteries in remote, secluded and wilderness areas, particularly on the Yorkshire moors. There they could live in a community, but "alone" from the outside world.

What did monks sing in the middle ages?

The Holy Offices (Church services) attended eight times every day consisted of hymns, canticles, versicles and responses and prayers - but mainly the 150 psalms from the Bible's Book of Psalms.

All of these were sung in Latin, which was the language of education and literature throughout the Medieval period. Novice monks not only had to learn Latin, but also the tunes for all of the elements of every service, which were sung without music.

Some of these elements were very short, others were very long. An example of a very short piece is this Marian anthem:

Assumpta est Maria in caelum, gaudent angeli. Laudantes benedicunt Dominum.

The Catholic practice of what began during the Middle Ages?

Celibacy? it was formally nailed down during the Council of Trent, which solidified a variety of church practices and was talked about by catechists as though it was something current- like the UN or Watergate (then brand new) not something historical such as Gettyburg address or an obsolete treaty. They used to say- The Council of Trent decrees... present tense! the Council of Trent took place in Italy ( not England) in Elizabethan days! OK, Shakespeare survives too, but that"s literature, not religious doctrine.

Why is it so hard for people to realize how truly wonderful God is?

Belief in God

Here are opinions on this potentially contentious question:

  • Free Will. The gift from God is also the curse to Man. The Fall of Man is based on Free Will. Without Free Will, we would be robots. With Free Will, we are children, always looking for freedom. God's provisions are enough to make us thankful at times, but our nature (also God-like, "in His image") is to want more, and so we are surly, driven, miserable (not all of us, and not all the time). When "bad things" happen, it only reinforces that juvenile idea that our Father in Heaven is a tyrant, an ogre, a slavemaster. It opens up possibilities like, "He doesn't care." It feeds our own stunted egos so we say things like, "I'm good" and "I don't deserve this kind of treatment." What people don't understand is that "God will have mercy on whom He will have mercy" and that "the sun shines on the wicked as well as the good."
  • 2 Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.
  • There are many answers to this, but to me the most obvious is there are a lot of things about our existence that are'NT so wonderful. If we are to believe that God is all knowing and all loving and caring, then we need to ask why he thought it necessary to create aids, leprosy, childhood cancers etc. We also need him to explain whether He gets any pleasure in killing hundreds of thousands of people in tsunamis and earthquakes. It's all very well to have cute posters on the wall with furry kittens and lovely waterfalls and the words "God is love" on them but there are two sides to every coin. Millions of people around the world go through their day being loving caring law abiding considerate people and gain pleasure from the beauty of nature without needing a supernatural being to explain everything.
  • Probably because there are many gods for the many different religions. Hinduism is different than Christianity, which most people on this post seem to be. There are many gods in Hinduism. Religion is quite diverse in Africa and South America amongst the variety of tribes, each believing in different things. And the variety of beliefs found on the planet probably lends itself to the conclusion that there is not true god (unless, all of us have misinterpreted sacred texts, signs, etc.). There are those who have a problem with blind faith. I have never had (and doubt I will) the "I've seen the light" moment. As a scientist, God cannot be conclusively proven to exist or not. On a psychological basis, religion was a way to explain unknown phenomen (i.e. early Greeks - lightening from Zeus) as well as an explanation for origins (something most people desperately need to identify with). With all these, and other ideas floating around in one's head, it is very hard to have the blind faith that some people have. In the end it comes down to probably a combination of genetics and experience whether on truly believes or not.
  • The answer is so simple, one needs to seek the proper perspective. Example: Three of the world's top experts in problem solving are hired to research a megacorporation's situation. They are told they will be made wealthy beyond imagination if they resolve the corporation's problem. They all agree to seclude themselves and study the problem until there is a perfert solution. The problem is placed on a table in front of them. Immediately two of them recognise the problem and instantly realize that it will take all three of them to work out the resolution. Unfortunately the third expert does not recognize the problem. The other two proceed to explain and describe the problem in minute detail. No matter how hard they try the third expert just does not recognize it. Why would ne not be able to. Simply, he does not want to. As the problem is of such a nature that it can only be recognized from one angle or perspective which is NOT his perspective. And since he insists on seeing it from his perspective he WILL NOT therefore want to see it. As many insist that GOD be what they want HIM to be or they will not even accept HIS existence they -WILL NOT- even accept HIS existence. They also insist that anyone who is willing to deal with GOD based on WHOM GOD is and not what they want HIM to be is ignorant and stupid. It all boils down a spirit of pride which cemented itself to a selfish decision that if HE ain't what I want HIM to be then I will not accept HIM. Simply put - it's my way or not all.
  • "No one comes to the lord except by me." Sounds pretty "my way or no way" to me. I am assuming from the original question the writer is talking about "GOD" the Christian God. There has been over 10,000 major religions in the history of humanity. Many have had multiple Gods or NO God or concepts of creation that are almost beyond our imagination. As a concept, GOD is wonderfull but he/she/it/they is also terrible. It has been the driving force behind humanitys best and worst moments and can be such a huge force in peoples life that it may as well be true (for them). But when you begin to look at even some of the facts it is very easy to find it hard to believe GOD to be wonderful ... or even there.
  • Because god isn't right for everyone. Some people don't believe in god. That's their own decision, each to their own.
  • Because they didn't see or talk to God.
  • Assuming the original question is referencing the God of the Bible, then the Corinthians is the correct answer Biblically: 2 Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. A small "g" in the word god in this verse is referencing Satan. (To answer question #3) According to scripture, this is satans time to rule the earth supernaturally. It is his turn to try and take as many souls as possible with him in the end. His function in life is to do anything and everything possible to keep people blinded and from knowing the truth. The truth being that there really IS "the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God". This is why it is so hard for people to realize how truly wonderful God is.
  • Why? Because people are prideful and refuse to believe that someone greater than them has given them life, health, love and whatever else they need. People are so wrapped up in themselves that they don't even open their heart to the fact that God is real and in existence. What have you got to lose by believing in God and his wonder? You have an eternity to lose just for NOT believing!

What was the role of a medieval priest?

To hold church services for the townspeople and people of the manor

Why did people find it difficult to change religions in the middle ages?

For many people, there was no alternative but the Church in which they were raised.

What was the purpose and history of medieval banners?

Today the word "banner" is used generally for any type or shape of flag or large poster; in medieval times it meant a very specific and particular type of flag and was just one of many different kinds: banners, banderoles, gonfalons, gonfanons, pennons, pennoncells, standards, streamers, and guidons.

Most people are unaware that there were many different grades of knight, each rank being allowed to carry (or have someone else carry) a specific and strictly-controlled type of flag.

At the very bottom of the grade system were knights bachelor, originally landless and therefore poor knights who had little or no experience of battle. They carried a pennoncelle attached to their spear - a small square or rectangular flag with two, three or more triangular tails on the edge opposite the spear; many of these can be seen on the Bayeux Tapestry carried by Norman knights. Higher grades of knight bachelor carried a pennon, usually a flag about 3 feet long and triangular in shape.

On becoming an experienced and trusted knight banneret, the knight was entitled to remove these triangular tails, leaving just the square or rectangular flag which was called a banner, carrying the same device as shown on the shield. This was carried in different sizes by increasingly higher grades of knight and might be fringed around the edge.

The next level of knights were of very high status and included royalty, their male relatives and most trusted barons. They carried (actually someone else carried for them) flags called standards, which were extremely long, narrow, tapering and swallow-tailed at the end. A royal standard could be 33 feet long. They did not display coats of arms, but the animal or other crests, livery colours, badges and mottoes of the family.

The purpose of the banner was to indicate the presence of a prticular knight on the battlefield; it served as a rallying-point for his own household troops and (since it symbolised the man himself) its loss was considered extremely shameful. It was from these banners that heralds in the opposing armies could identify the coats of arms (and therefore the names) of the important knights in the enemy ranks and where they were positioned.

What did church officials in medieval Europe wear?

It depends what you mean by "Church officials". All official members of the Roman Church, including pupils attending Church schools, were classed as clergy or clerics and all of them should have had their hair cut in the "Roman tonsure" with a bald spot at the crown of the head, indicating their status.

For all grades of secular (non-monastic) cleric, the basic garment was an alb - a white linen tunic with long sleeves and a hem reaching to the ankles. What was worn over this depended on grade; deacons, archdeacons, priests, bishops and archbishops all had specific garments indicating their status or the service they were about to conduct. University students and their masters wore a special type of closed cloak called a cappa clausa.

In the monasteries, the basic item was a woollen habit or tunic, worn over a linen shirt (except for the Cistercians, who disallowed underwear). This habit indicated the Order to which the person belonged: natural undyed off-white wool for Cistercians or Carthusians, black for Cluniacs and Benedictines). To this was added a cowl of the same material, or sometimes a hooded cloak.

It would take too long to specify all the different types of garment worn by everyone from doorkeeper to Pope; just explaining the clothes worn by a priest is an entire answer in itself.

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Where did medieval monks eat?

Originally they ate only in a refectorium (refectory, also called the "frater") which was usually sited on the south side of the cloister range, next to the kitchens and with facilities for washing hands just outside in the cloister walk (ambulatory).

Inside the refectory the long tables were arranged around the edges of the room, with the monks sitting close to the walls so that those appointed as servers could move freely around the central space.

Meals were always eaten in total silence, with a monk appointed as "weekly reader" standing at a reading desk with a Bible or other religious text at one side of the room - he would read passages throughout the meal so that the monks not only fed their bodies, but also their souls.

As time went on many monasteries began to relax the rules forbidding the eating of meat, but this was never permitted to take place in the refectorium. Another room called a misericord ("a mercy" in Latin) was reserved for the eating of meat when this was allowed, which was generally limited to a few monks at a time.

During meals and at other times when silence was imposed, communication was entirely by sign language. The Monastic sign languages are the oldest recorded sign language in the world.

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Was Thomas Becket a monk?

Thomas Becket was initially educated at Merton Priory before joining the household staff of Archbishop Theobald of Canterbury, where he showed a talent for administration. He was a clerk in minor orders at this time; he was appointed archdeacon of Canterbury in 1154 before being made Chancellor of England by king Henry II. On the death of Theobald in 1161, Becket was made Archbishop of Canterbury.

At no time was Thomas Becket a monk, nor was he ordained a priest before becoming Archbishop. His "seat" was at Canterbury Cathedral Priory, where many priests, clerics and monks were based - it functioned both as a monastery for the monks and as a secular church for the local population.

At the time of his murder, the monks were in the cathedral and about to sing Vespers - because he was not a monk, Becket was not among them but he requested them to continue even in the knowledge that knights had come to kill him.

What religion dominated life in the Middle Ages?

The dominant religion in the Middle Ages depended on where you were. In most of Europe, it was Christianity, and in the Middle East and North Africa, for most of the Middle Ages, it was Islam. There were places where both were about equally important, such as Spain.

Why was medieval music played by monks?

Medieval monks (not the same thing as Friars) spent around one third of their time attending 8 daily church services, which were called the liturgy, Opus Dei (the work of God) or Holy Offices. These consisted of prayers and hymns, but the major part of every service was chanting the Psalms in Latin.

The 150 Psalms in the Bible were seen as a ready-made hymn book and over the course of a week the monks in any one monastery would have chanted all 150, starting again on Sunday night. These Psalms were chanted in Plainsong (also known as Gregorian Chant), without any musical accompaniment. New monks would have to learn the tunes for all 150 Psalms, as well as learning Latin so they could understand exactly what they were singing.

The monk in charge of services (usually called the Sacrist or Sacristan) was also responsible for composing the tunes used for the Psalms, which he would do with the aid of a small portable organ. The monks would have to spend time learning any new tunes he devised. Sometimes the monk in charge of the Infirmary would ask for music to be played for the sick and elderly - this could be on a harp or some other instrument.

So music was played by monks, but not in their services.

What does a manor house look like?

You phrased your question in the present tense, which will provide a different answer to "What did manor houses look like in medieval times?"

There are very few remaining manor houses today that have not been reconstructed, added to or obliterated by later (post-medieval) alterations. Most places called a manor house today are actually later re-builds on the site of a medieval manor.

Manor houses were originally rectangular, built of stone, with tiny windows and a lower and upper floor. The ground floor was for storage (the undercroft) while the upper floor was divided into a hall, chambers and a solar (sun room) with perhaps a larger window.

Stairs, often external, led up to a door on the upper floor, while a larger door led straight into the undercroft.

This would be the living area for a nobleman (knight) and his family. Around the house would be many other building of timber and thatch: kitchen, workshops, barn, stables and byres, pigsty and living quarters for servants. The entire complex would be surrounded by a bank and ditch with a timber palisade, or later by a stone wall.

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What happened on February 6 1481?

Catholic AnswerThe first auto-da-fé was held in Seville on February 6, 1481, this was the first official act of the newly minted Spanish Inquisition instituted by the Catholic monarchs of Spain. This inquisition only had authority over Catholics and it was primarily to root out Jews and Muslims who had "converted" to Catholicism for political reasons but had not really had a conversion of heart, so to speak-Catholic in name only.

What are facts about thomas becket?

Thomas Becket was born in Cheapside, a mercantile area of London.

He was the son of a man who sold cloth.

His mother and father came from different towns in Normandy.

His education, which included riding and manners, was provided by a friend of his father's.

He attended universities.

He went on missions to Rome for the Archbishop of Canterbury.

He was made Archdeacon at Canterbury Cathedral.

The Archbishop recommended him to the office of Lord Chancellor, to which King Henry II appointed him.

He was a good friend of the King, who made him Archbishop of Canterbury.

He was a bit too serious about religion for the king, and defended the authority of the Church when the king wanted to reduce it for his own benefit.

He was stubborn.

He was murdered by four knights who attacked him with swords as he prayed, during Vespers at Canterbury Cathedral.

Once every Century, on the centennial anniversary of his death, whoever has gone to sleep in the room over the main gate of St. Augustine's Abbey has been waked by the sound of a ghostly procession of monks carrying his body into the abbey to prepare it for burial. (You won't find this in the history books, but the locals say this is true.)

There is a secret society of three people who guard the secret of where the stone is that was covered by his blood and removed from the floor of the cathedral for safety. (More folk history.)

His shrine, at which he was buried, became the most important pilgrim destination in Britain.
1.hes a boy

2.he has hair

3.he has a mum or did

4.he has a dad or did

5.he has seen a girl

6.he has seen a boy

7.he has seen a door

8.he is called thomas

9.he has eyes

10.he has a mouth


1) Thomas Beckett was born in 1118 in Cheapside, London.

2) He was the archbishop of Canterbury in 1162.

3) He died on the 29th December 1170.

4)He was canonized by Pope Alexander, July 12, 1194.

5) He is also known as Thomas a Becket.
He was A friend of Thomas Becket

He died in December 29 in 1170
Thomas Becket Facts:

1.Born December 21st in 1118.

2.died December 29th in 1170


4.Also Known as: Thomas a Becket

5.Thomas a Becket was declared a martyr, and in 1173, he was canonized by Pope 6.Alexander on July 12, 1174

7.Thomas Becket was famous as: the Archbishop of Canterbury

8.Position: Archbishop of Canterbury from 1162 to 1170

9.The monks were afraid that Becket's body might be stolen.

10.Becket's bones were moved to a new gold-plated and bejewelled shrine behind the high altar.

What did miller do during the middle ages in Europe?

Millers operated mills that ground grain into flour. Some of the millers also made bread from the flour.

What is a monk strap?

A monk strap is the nonfunctional strap at the ankle of a man's shoe overlaying the throat.

What was the structure of the roman catholic church in the middle ages?

The structure of the roman catholic church in the middle ages was first the pope, then the cardinals, then the bishop, the priest, and the monks and nuns.

Did Thomas son of Pocahantus have any children And if so are there any desendants of Thomas alive today?

Yes, according to Wikipedia under the entry 'Pocahontas.' Several renowned personalities claim ancestry to her, as you can discover in this section...

My dad, his siblings and cousins are 13th generation great grandchildren, my sisters, siblings and cousins are 14th and my daughter and her cousins, 15th. My dad had an aunt named Pocahontas, who went by the name of Pokie. I remember her always staying at the Pontchartrain Hotel in New Orleans when visiting.

What was wine called in medieval times?

It depends who is speaking. In Middle English, spoken by peasants, merchants, craftsmen and tradesmen, wine was called licour, raspice, win, roche, vernage, rinish, and various other names depending on the type of wine and where it came from. German and French wine was imported to England in large amounts.

A nobleman would call it algarde, antioche, blanc, charrie, chaudel, clary, especerie, flurir, gascoign, gilofre, ipocras, maddok, maumerie, malmsey, osey, piment, primice, romeny, tyr, vernage or simply vin, again depending on the specific type and place of origin of the wine. Especerie was spiced wine, primice was newly-made wine that had not matured.

Why did churches have doom paintings in medieval times?

Church wall paintings covered a wide range of religious subjects: Heaven and hell, the lives of the Saints, Bible stories, the life and crucifixion of Christ, the Virtues overcoming the Vices and so on.

The point of all of these was to illustrate these subjects for people who could not read; paintings of the Last Judgement helped the priest to communicate the Bible message to an audience who could not read about it for themselves.

Very few original medieval wall paintings survive today, but thanks to the work of E W Tristram a large number have been recorded and published in his three books on the subject.

What was a serf?

Serfs were the lowest level of workers in most areas of medieval Europe, though in some there were slaves, who were at a lower level. Serfs were not slaves, but were not free to leave the land where they worked. Their obligation with their feudal lord was mutual; he had obligations to them, to provide a place and protect them, just as they had obligations to him, to give a part of the crop, or later, money for rent. Serfs could not be bought or sold. They belonged to the land, not the lord. If the lord sold the land, they went with it. The new owner did not have the option of moving them off the land.

Most serfs worked in agriculture, and lived on the land. Some lived in towns or villages, and formed the lowest level of laborers there. They could be cooks helpers, or even cooks. They could work in such trades as weaving. Miners were serfs of a sort. They could be masons' helpers. They did not usually occupy positions that involved mastery of a craft, such as the master masons, or the best cooks, who worked entirely for hire and were free. The serfs without plots of land were called villeins, a word related to the word village.

Various customs in various places allowed the serfs to become free, meaning they could leave the land they were born on and go elsewhere. In some cases, when a king needed to populate a new port, for example, they could be freed by running away and staying in the new town for a year. In other cases, such as after the Black Death, they were bribed off their land to farm lands of other lords that had been depopulated. The result is that serfdom ended in some places several generations before the end of the Middle Ages. The technicalities of ending serfdom took longer; for example, serfdom was technically legal in Scotland for four hundred years after it had died out nearly everywhere in the country. And in some places, such as Russia, it remained in practice into the nineteenth century.

Loosely, the term serf might be applied to anyone of peasant class, including laboring freemen, cottars, villeins, bordars, and even slaves. This use should be considered rather imprecise, however.

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