Life in a Medieval City Short Essay - Answer Key

Frances and Joseph Gies
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1. How did the Romans influence the area that is now France?

Roman officials and soldiers took over several villages and transformed them into army fortifications. This allowed safer trading, giving rise to merchants, increased commerce, and a larger population.

2. What series of events led to the "Dark Ages?"

Roman influence waned and the Christian church became much more powerful. Tribes such as the Vandals rose to power and sacked many towns, causing chaos and a decline in population. Finally, Islamic influence and the threat of religious war also contributed to what would become the Dark Ages.

3. In the tenth and eleventh centuries, what helped cement the growth of bourgs?

Bourgs grew due to improvements in agriculture, such as the use of the horse rather than ox, and the invention of the heavy plow. They also grew because of advances in mining, resulting in an inflow of money into bourgs.

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