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27 Jul

Religion in the High Middle Ages

The period of the High Middle Ages was marked by great influence of the Christian principles in all aspects of life of all medieval social classes. Under Pope Innocent III (c. 1161-1216) the Papacy reached its height but the High Middle Ages also saw the conflict between the Church and European monarchs known as the Investiture Controversy.

Despite its influence and power the Catholic Church felt threatened by the heretic movements and desperately tried to root them out mostly with propaganda of newly established mendicant orders (Franciscans, Dominicans) as well as with inquisitorial trials. The period of the High Middle Ages was also marked by the final separation between the Latin and Orthodox Church with mutual excommunication in 1054 which came to be known as the East-West Schism or the Great Schism. The relations between both Christian Churches were afterwards hostile.

Among the most important events of the High Middle Ages were the Crusades. The First Crusade was launched by Pope Urban II to help the Byzantine Empire against the Seljuk Turks and to free the Holy Land from the Muslims in 1096.

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