Saturday, April 28, 2007

1235 - 1285

1235. Frederick II employs Michael Scot to translate the writings of Aristotle from Greek into Latin.

1236. Anesthesia is pioneered by the Dominican friar Theodoric of Lucca, who teaches at Bologna.

1237. Mongol forces use gunpowder and possibly firearms to conquer much of eastern Europe.

1247. Headstone in Yorkshire commemorates the life of Robert, Earl of Huntington, known as Robin Hood.

1249. Roger Bacon fights to make science part of the curriculum at Oxford.

1252. The Inquisition uses instruments of torture for the first time.

1258. A flagellant movement arises in Europe following widespread famine and disease.

Gulistan. Sa'Di. Persian. 1258. Poem. Collection of lyrics; moral reflections; witty, sweet; kings, dervishes, contentment, love, youth, old age, social duties. Stories and philosophical sayings. "Rose Garden."

1259. China's Song armies make the first known use of firearms that propel bullets.

1259. France's Chartres Cathedral is consecrated after 66 years of construction.

The Circle of Chalk. Anonymous. Chinese. 1259/1368. Play. Concubine's lover is murdered by his wife. She blames the murder on the concubine. Whose child? King decrees that baby be placed in circle. Concubine and wife contest for the baby. However, the concubine will not pull on the baby. Therefore, the king awards the baby to the concubine, the real mother.

Summa theologica. Thomas Aquinas. Middle Ages. 1265/74. Philosophy. "Summary of All Theology." Uses the methodology of Aristotelian logic. Systematizes and quotes from works of classical and early Christian thinkers. Evidence for the nature of God and the universe, moral philosophy, and the role of Jesus and the Sacraments. Uses logical arguments in matters of reason. Uses revelation through scripture and Church pronouncement.

1267. Roger Bacon, the first truly modern scientist, describes the magnetic needle and reading glasses.

Romance of the Rose, Part 2. Jean DeMeun. 1275. Poem. Part two is a series of satires against friars, superstitions and glorifying women in courtly love.

Gesta Romanorum (Deeds of the Romans). Anonymous. Latin collection of tales. Possibly composed in England. 1275? Popular in the Middle Ages. 100 to 200 tales. Episodes assigned to the reign of a Roman emperor. Little real history. "Moral" or application after each tale, but not a religious work. Chaucer and Shakespeare drew on it.

1277. Roger Bacon is imprisoned for heresy.

1280. Marco Polo visits Hangchow and finds it an eastern Venice.

1284. Rats are so prevalent in Europe that a story appears about a piper who leads children into a hollow because townspeople have refused to pay him for piping their rats into the river.

1285. A smog problem develops as Londoners burn soft coal for heat and cooking.

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