Power In The Middle Ages

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Historians believe that there have been four driving desires that have motivated human behavior throughout all of history: the desire to know, exist, create, and to have power. Although one can see the impact of all these forces throughout European history, this essay will focus on the desire to have power. In the Crusades, Renaissance, Reformations, and Age of Exploration there were many struggles for power. Sometimes the power struggle was for religion and other times it was over land and resources. Almost all of the wars fought and the lives lost were ultimately over a desire to rule over one another. Power can come in many forms, some areknowledge, riches, land, and resources. During the middle ages began the Crusades. The Crusades was…show more content…
The Renaissance was throughout the 1400’s and was primarily spread throughout the now wealthy Italian city-states (Discussion notes, January 16). The general hierarchy of people during this time period granted the church leaders the most power, followed by kings and queens, wealthy landowners, knights, and peasants (Discussion notes, January 18). This hierarchy allowed for those on top to benefits from those directly below, thereby keeping their economic power. Aside from this hierarchy of power, woman in society were also seen as lesser beings. Women did not have the same rights as men, in this was men had power over women because they could control them. In this time period if a woman did not have a man, she would most likely be poor, since they could not work or own land. This systematic oppression allowed men to have women bend to their will. A quote from the DWC On Wifely Duties reads, “I think we may infer that since women are by nature weak they should diligently care for things concerning the household” (DWC 10.7 (“On Wifely Duties”). This writing done by Francesco Barbaro describes how women should act to please men and to ease their lives (DWC 10.7 (“On Wifely Duties”). In this time period men had power over women, and wanted to keep this power so they could have a simple, easy, and peaceful lives. Men kept this power over women by…show more content…
The Portuguese and the Spanish started this time of exploration that lasted from the 1400s to the 1700s. The driving forces of these explorations was to gain land and to find the best route to India, so that they could be successful in trade. Both the Spanish and the Portuguese desired power whether it be in the form of knowledge, silks and spices, or to colonize new places. Christopher Columbus was one of the most influential voyagers during this time period, as he was hired by Spain (Discussion notes, February 13). The first Island Columbus landed on he named San Salvador (DWC 10.3 (“Christopher Columbus”). Columbus goes on to state that he, “took some of the natives by force, in order that they might learn and might give me information of whatever there is in these parts” (DWC 10.3 (“Christopher Columbus”). Columbus clearly states that he captured natives to get from them information as to where he could go that would be of benefit to him. Queen Isabel and King Ferdinand sent Columbus on this mission and the missions following his first to conquer. Land is power and unfortunately the native people had to suffer and die, because of the desire for power. When the Spanish landed in a new place they intended to exploit resources and make slaves so that they would have a bigger
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