"To attain the impossible, one must attempt the absurd" - Miguel de Cervantes
The Middle Ages started in the year 476 A.D. A little after the fall of the Roman Empire. Europe and Asia were very different back then. They were just getting to discovering things we take for granted now. For example, in 800 A.D. Charlemagne was introducing the concept of education for all in Europe with Monks as teachers. Later in the time period, people would travel all across Europe and Asia for aromatic spices along the Silk Road, things you would get nowadays by driving five minutes to the nearest grocery store.
During the high Middle Ages, christians went on many military exploits to take the holy land back from the Islamic peoples. These exploits were called the crusades. The crusades brought their previous government system, feudalism tumbling down. Everybody was on an even playing field now, a king could be killed just as much as a peasant could. People who went to crusade for the church saw so many different ways of life and cultures on their expeditions. This led to people building up a new kind of government system and thinking in different ways.
Around 1500 A.D. a time period know as the Renaissance or " rebirth" spread a wave of knowledge, both artistic and theological through the continent of Europe. This had a huge liberating effect on the people. The Renaissance traditionally began in the early 15th century around the time when the Medici family came to power in Italy and Johannes Gutenberg was inventing the printing press. Later, the Ottoman Empire conquered the Byzantines. In 1845 Henry VII starts the reign of the house of Tudor in England. One year later, Botticelli finishes painting The Birth of Venus. When Columbus discovers the Americas he marks the beginning of the Age of Exploration.
The beginning of the high Renaissance is traditionally marked by the completion of Leonardo da Vinci's fresco, The Last Supper. In 1498 Vasco da Gamma arrived in India after sailing around the southern tip of Africa from Portugal. In 1503 the Mona Lisa is painted. Later, Michelangelo begins his work on painting the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. in 1517 Martin Luther sparks the Protestant Reformation. Two years later, Ferdinand Magellan starts his voyage around the world. Around this time the art of sculpture was flourishing in Italy. There were many influential artists during this era including Michelangelo, Donatello, Leonardo da Vinci, and Raphael. And if you were wondering, yes that's who the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles are named after.
Mannerism started in 1527. This was the end of the renaissance, but it was still very important to how life is today. The first major event was when Charles V sacked Rome. Then, in 1534 King Henry VIII creates his own church so he could divorce and remarry and in 1558, his daughter Elizabeth I becomes Queen. This starts the transition between the Renaissance and the Elizabethan Era. That same year the Spanish armada loses to the English navy. Later, William Shakespeare built his Globe theater. And in 1610 Galileo discovers the moons of Jupiter enlarging our view of the universe just a little bit more.