What did it mean to be a women in Europe from Medieval to Early Modern times?

When the historian Catherine Macaulay stated in her History of England, ‘the invidious censures which may ensue from striking into a path of literature rarely trodden by my sex……will not keep me mute in the cause of liberty.’ she was expressing her resentment well-educated, independent thinking women of Europe felt toward the perceived inferiority of their sex. Matters of political and intellectual importance were considered a man’s domain from medieval to the 18th century. Women were considered subordinate due to the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church,  where Eve was the cause of all sin! Influences of traditional medical and Greek philosophy also depicted woman as a ‘deformity’ or an imperfect man […]

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The 16th century Reformation & the elevation of women

The Catholic Church’s long held beliefs were rocked by the many changes of the 16th Century Reformation. Puritans in the 17th Century sought continued reform and idealized the church be rebuilt in the purest form of the 1st century, as established by Christ himself. Puritan theology endorsed an intense individual spiritual connection to God, without the need for the middle man, the priest, so fundamental in the Catholic religion to the ever sought after salvation. The Puritan was considered competent, conscientious and responsible, and believed only he needed await God’s special grace for salvation. Puritan worship was autocratic, hierarchical, and departed ways from the […]

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