Medieval Religion

Unlike religion in the modern world, medieval religion had deep significance and central importance in the lives of most individuals and nations. There was hardly any concept of a secular nation where religion did not play any role in the affairs of the state. Since medieval religion had an official status, there was not any tolerance for divergence of religious views. Thus persecution in the name of religion was common during the medieval times.

Albigensians – Carthusian Religion


The Cathars (Albersians) were a very well established Christian Sect inĀ  France who rivalled the Catholic Church. Read more about the Albigensians – Carthusian Religion >>

Famous Medieval Popes

Famous Medieval Popes, Pope Gregory I, Pope Leo III, Pope Nicholas I, Pope Leo IX, Pope Urban II, Pope Alexander III, Pope Innocent III Read more about the Famous Medieval Popes >>

Medieval Cathedral

Peterborough Medieval Cathedral Norman Design

Medieval Cathedrals were commonly very grand structures that dominated medieval cities and towns Read more about the Medieval Cathedral >>

Medieval Church

Medieval Church

The grand Church architecture styles of medieval times include the Byzantium, Romanesque and Gothic building styles.       Read more about the Medieval Church >>

Medieval Monasteries

Tatev Medieval Monastery

Medieval monasteries were based on 6th century rules set up by St. Benedict, a complex of several buildings where Monks or Nuns lived. Read more about the Medieval Monasteries >>

Pope Urban II

Pope Urban II

Among the most notable feats of the Papal career of Pope Urban II's reign was his attempts to organise a crusading campaign against the Muslim control of Jerusalem. Read more about the Pope Urban II >>

Protestant Reformation

Posting of 95 theses by Martin Luther in Protestant Reformation

The Protestant Reformation resulted in the breakup of the Western Christian church into two parts. Read more about the Protestant Reformation >>

Medieval Religion

Medieval religion had central importance throughout medieval times. Medieval times begin with the collapse of the Roman Empire and by then medieval religion in the form of Christianity had established itself throughout Europe.


This central importance of medieval religion continued to exert itself through middle and late medieval times, although by the end of the medieval times religious authorities had begun to lose their influence.

Thus the history of medieval times is virtually dominated by religion.

Medieval Religion * The Church

Throughout the medieval times, the Church had central importance in Europe and the Pope enjoyed the authority equal to rulers.

During the early medieval times, this authority was even higher than rulers, considering that Europe was in a fragmented state.

However, during the middle and late medieval times, various disputes arose between the rulers and the Pope, in addition to schisms within religion itself, resulting in a gradual decline in the authority of the Church.

Medieval Art was Influenced by religion

Medieval Religious *Beliefs

Medieval religious beliefs were important to ordinary people during medieval times.

A common man was expected to follow the dictates of religion and any diversion could cost his life.

This was particularly true when the institution of the Inquisition was established in Spain and various other parts of Europe.

Witch Being Burned at the Stake

Superstitions were common part of medieval religious beliefs and this gave rise to such practises as witch hunting and burning of heretics.

The Spanish Inquisition

Religions Types

By the end of the seventh century, Christianity had established itself in most parts of Europe as a result of the efforts of missionaries.

However, the Viking invasions of the eighth and ninth centuries resulted in the introduction of paganism in England and thus had its impact on medieval religion.

Viking Longboats viking raids near land 1

The Norman Conquest of England in 1066 once again converged the Anglo-Saxon religious system and the religious practises of Normandy.

In 1054, Great Schism occurred in medieval religion which split the Church into Eastern and Western Churches. Further types of medieval religions followed during the late medieval times as a result of Reformation.

Norman Conquest

Norman Conquest

Religion in Everyday Life

Medieval religion had importance in the everyday lives of the people. During the medieval times, churches were constructed in every settlement and village.

Religious festivals were important part of the public life and ordinary people often went on pilgrimages to the shrines of the famous saints.

Due to the dominance of religious beliefs, persecution of Jews and heretics was also common.

The Great Schism of 1054

Medieval Religion Summary

During the medieval times, medieval religion had central importance in the private and public lives of the people.

Kingdoms had official religion due to which diversity of religious views was not tolerated.

Church enjoyed supreme importance during the early and middle medieval times but by the end of the late medieval times, this authority had begun to erode away.

The Council of Constance - The Great Schism 1378