Medieval World, Wars in the

Medieval warfare may be described as the wars fought in Europe or by Europeans between the fall of Rome (476 CE) and the French campaigns in Italy (1494–1498 CE), where gunpowder weapons lay waste to traditional fortifications. The lack of a strong central authority or state largely defined the resulting distributed power structure. Wars in the medieval era were conducted largely by feudal levies, that is, the combined retinues of the martial aristocracy, sometimes augmented by mercenaries. Within “medieval” Europe, there was a great diversity of land wars that include the wars of Charlemagne (770–814), the Anglo-Saxon wars (5th–11th c.), Viking raids (8th–10th c.), some of the Mongol invasions (13th c.), the Crusades in the Middle East (11th–13th c.), the rise of the Ottoman Empire ...

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