Events and ideas: 1345-1500

December 24, 1999


1348 Black Death (below) arrives in Europe, ultimately killing much of the population.

1378 Great Schism begins with rival popes in Avignon and Rome 1381 Poll tax sparks English Peasants revolt 1397 Birth of Johannes Gutenberg, inventor of moveable type printing

1415 England's Henry V defeats the French at the battle of Agincourt

1431 Joan of Arc burnt at stake (right)

1441 Portuguese begin African slave trade

1453 Fall of Constantinople ends Byzantine Empire/ End of Hundred Years' War

1453 English Wars of the Roses begin

1485 The Wars of the Roses end

1492 Columbus reaches America

1494 Pope Alexander VI divides non-Christian world between Spain and Portugal.


1353 Giovanni Boccaccio completes the Decameron, a series of narrative poems.

1370 French musician Guillaume de Machaut composes first polyphonic Mass.

1377 Condemnation of English religious reformer John Wycliffe.

1445 Birth of Sandro Botticelli.

1452 Birth of Leornado da Vinci

1465 First printed music produced

1475 William Caxton prints first book in English language

1483 Birth of Luther

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