The Clashing of Cultures and Religions (1352–1526)

  • Philip Longworth


In 1352 an earthquake damaged the ramparts of the harbour town of Gallipoli, facilitating its capture by the Turks. Thus the Ottoman Sultans gained their first base on the continent of Europe. The arrival of the Turks and their subsequent advances presented Christendom with a cultural and religious, as well as a political challenge. Yet Christendom itself remained divided. In the decades that followed, the longstanding differences between Catholics and Orthodox proved irreconcilable. The Orthodox camp itself tended to division between the proponents of asceticism and of more worldly views, while Catholics split between the devotees of rival Popes, and soon faced a serious religious rebellion in Bohemia. At the same time linguistic separatism first emerged as a cultural and political force, and Latin began its long decline as a Catholic lingua franca. This was also the age of the Black Death. Yet, for all these threats and divisions, the later fourteenth and fifteenth centuries were not devoid of opportunities for Eastern Europe.


Fifteenth Century Fourteenth Century Rival Pope Bubonic Plague Great Schism 
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Copyright information

© Philip Longworth 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • Philip Longworth
    • 1
  1. 1.McGill UniversityMontrealCanada

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