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The Middle ages

Art during The Middle Ages was largely commissioned by the church as most of the general population were peasants. The most well known pieces were stained glass windows and intricate mosaics.  Although many refer to this time period as the "Dark Ages", if you take a look at the artwork created during this time, it speaks to a highly creative and intelligent people. Medieval, Gothic and Romanesque are the types of art most often associated with The Middle Ages.

Did you know?

Roger Bacon was a 13th century Franciscan friar who, in his Epistola de Secretis Operibus Artis et Naturae, et de Nullitate Magiae (Letter on the Secret Workings of Art and Nature, and on the Vanity of Magic) wrote that in the future “cars can be made so that without animals they will move with unbelievable rapidity,” and “flying machines can be constructed so that a man sits in the midst of the machine revolving some engines by which artificial wings are made to beat the air like a flying bird.”Bacon’s other predictions included submarines, diving suits, steamships and telescopes.

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Below is some basic information on The Middle Ages and its characteristics and influences. If you would like to print off a copy of this page along with samples of art from this period, you can download the The Middle Ages Summary above.

Quick Facts:
  • Called the Middle Ages because it was in the middle of the fall of Rome and the rise of the Renaissance

  • Art was focused on religion, contained shadows and light, was more realistic

  • Included Medieval, Gothic and Romanesque Art

Characteristics and/or Types of Art:
  • Frescoes

  • Stained glass

  • Sculptures

  • Mosaics

  • Cathedrals

  • Mosques

  • The Catholic church

  • Feudalism

  • The Crusades

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