History of the Middles Ages - 1st semester


a) To become aware of the diverse set written and unwritten sources available ze for the study of the Middle Ages and the main trends of the current research on the subject;
b) To develop an effective knowledge of the Middle Ages in Western Europe, with the understanding of the political, administrative, social, religious and cultural backgrounds;
c) To grasp the outline of the process of consolidation of the Medieval West, with its crises and progress between 5th and 15th centuries;
d) To develop analytical and critical skills for the study of historical sources
e) Develop oral presentation and writing skills, mobilizing concepts and vocabulary used in medieval history.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

João Luís Inglês Fontes


Weekly - 4

Total - Available soon

Teaching language



Not applicable


-Michel Balard (et al.), A Idade Média no Ocidente. Dos Bárbaros ao Renascimento, Lisboa, Publicações D. Quixote, 1994
-Jérome Baschet, La civilisation féodale. De l´an Mil à la colonisation de l´Amérique, 3ª ed rev e actual., Paris, Flammarion, 2006 (ed. brasileira, A civilização feudal. Do ano mil à colonização da América, São Paulo, Ed. Globo, 2006)
- Alain Ducellier (et al.), A Idade Média no Oriente. Bizâncio e o Islão: dos Bárbaros aos Otomanos, Lisboa, D. Quixote, 1994
- Jacques Le Goff, Jean-Claude Schmitt (dir.), Dictionnaire raisonné de l’Occident médiéval, Paris, Fayard, 1999 (ed. brasileira Dicionário temático do Ocidente medieval, Bauru, Edusc, 2002)
- Peter Linehan (et al.) (eds.), The medieval world, Londres, Routledge, 2001

Teaching method

- Lectures (50%) and practical classes with continuous classroom assessment (50%).
In class teaching

Evaluation method

Elaboration of 2 practical written essays in the classroom: commentary of a historiographical text and of a historical source (20% and 30%, respectively), written examination (50%).
Attendance to practical classes is required for the full-time students; absence will lead to a penalization of 5% to 10% in the final individual mark.

Subject matter

Module 1. The historiography of the Middle Ages, 1950-2015

Module 2. The political and military crisis in the Lower Empire and the installation of the Barbarians.

Module 3. Ascension and decline of the barbarian kingdoms.

Module 4. The Byzantine Empire; the rise and consolidation of Islam (5th -11th centuries)

Module 5. Carolingian Europe.

Module 6. Territorialization of power: the era of castles. The German imperial dream.

Module 7. The slow rise of the feudal monarchies.

Module 8. The vitality of a civilizational area (12th - 14th centuries)

Module 9. An epoch of crisis and reconstruction (14th - 15th centuries)

Module 10. The East and West (12th-15th centuries)


Programs where the course is taught: