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Chapter 10 Learning Guide - The Worlds of European Christendom

Terms in this set (50)

In Europe, technological breakthroughs first became apparent in agriculture as Europeans adapted to the very different environmental conditions. They made heavy wheeled plow that could handle dense soils of Northern Europe. To pull the plow, Europeans began to rely on horses rather than oxen and to use iron horseshoes and a more efficient collar. In addition, Europeans developed a new three-field system of crop rotation, which allowed considerably more land to be planted at any one time. These were the technological foundations for a more productive agriculture that could support the growing population of European civilization, and especially its urban centers. Beyond agriculture, Europeans began to tap non-animal sources of energy in a major way. A new type of windmill. The water-driven mill was more important. The Romans had used mills largely to grind grain, but their development was limited, given that few streams flowed all year and many slaves were available to do the work. By 9th century, water mills were becoming more evident in Europe. In early 14th century, a concentration of 68 mills dotted a 1 mile stretch of the Seine River near Paris. In addition to grinding grain, mills provided power for sieving flour, tanning hides, making beer, sawing wood, making iron, and paper. Devices such as cranks, flywheels, camshafts, and complex gearing mechanisms, when combined with water or wind power, enabled Europeans of the High Middle Ages to revolutionize production in a number of industries. Technological borrowing also was evident in war. Gunpowder was invented in China, but Europeans were first to use it in cannons.