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Eleventh Century History

1000 World population 300 million. Scandinavia and Hungary converted to Christianity. Leif Ericson lands in North America, calling it Vinland. Gunpowder invented in China.

1009 Muslims destroy Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem.

1010 The Tale of Genji, the book usually considered as the world’s first novel, by Shikibu Murasaki, lady in waiting to the empress of Japan. Nile frozen over – also happened in 829.

1014 Brian Boru defeats the Vikings at Clontarf, Ireland.

1023 Paper money printed in China.

1050 Birth of the Yiddish language, formed out of the meeting between old French and old Italian dialects with admixture of Hebrew words.

1054 East-West schism in Christianity, the final split separating the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic after centuries of disagreement. In this year Pope Leo IX and Patriarch Michael Cerularius excommunicated each other.

1066 William the Conqueror, from Normandy in France, invades England, defeats last Saxon king, Harold II, at Battle of Hastings.

1068 Construction on Cathedral in Pisa begins.

1073 Pope Gregory VII attacks the problem called simony, the buying and selling of offices in the church, such as paying a large fee to be named bishop. He then decreed an end to marriage among the clergy.

1077 Windsor Castle built.

1086 Shen Kua of China writes about the magnetic compass, relief maps and the origins of fossils.

1088 First modern university established in Bologna, Italy. Universities developed over centuries as “stadiums.”

1095 At Council of Clermont, Pope Urban II calls for holy war to wrest Jerusalem from Muslims, launching the First Crusade the next year. Gilbert Crispin’s “A Friendly Disputation” published – a series of discussions on the opposing arguments of faiths between him and a Jew from Mainz.

1096 First Crusade begins, first of eight until 1291.

1099 Crusaders capture Jerusalem.

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