Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

Get access Subject: History

Executive editor of the English version: Graeme Dunphy

The Encyclopedia of Early Modern History is the English edition of the German-language Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. This 15-volume reference work, published in print between 2005 and 2012 and here available online, offers a multi-faceted view on the decisive era in European history stretching from ca. 1450 to ca. 1850 ce. in over 4,000 entries.
The perspective of this work is European. This is not to say that the rest of the World is ignored – on the contrary, the interaction between European and other cultures receives extensive attention.

New articles will be added on a regular basis during the period of translation, for the complete German version see Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit Online.

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(952 words)

Author(s): Behringer, Wolfgang
1. DefinitionThe challenge was a ritualized (Ritual) form of private “declaration of war,” to test the readiness of competitors in everyday life (Everyday world) to defend their honor. In early modern Europe it was a basic form for the settling of interpersonal conflicts and social control. Documentation is found in the huge number of trial procedures before the lower territorial courts of law.In local Weistum[7. 58–60], village orders and Police the challenge was subsumed either under “crimes, acts of violence, and injuries” (High Court of Augsburg 1534) [1. Bd. 1, 199f.] or under…
Date: 2019-03-20

Chamber court, Imperial

(5 words)

See Reichskammergericht
Date: 2019-03-20

Chamber court, Imperial

(5 words)

See Reichskammergericht
Date: 2015-08-26


(874 words)

Author(s): Buchner, Thomas
The term chamberer (Ger. Störer) was applied in the early modern period to people who practiced a trade (Industrial trades and crafts) without having the authority to do so by dint of belonging to a guild or with the permission of the authorities. Known by different terms throughout Europe (Fr. faux ouvriers or chambrelans, Dutch beunhazen, Ger. also Bönhasen, Stimpler or Pfuscher), the chamberer is attested from the late Middle Ages into the 19th century.Even though first complaints by guilds against non-guild craftsmen are attested in Germany as early as the 14th c…
Date: 2019-03-20


(1,005 words)

Author(s): Pečar, Andreas
The office of chamberlain (Lat. camerarius or cubicularius) was one of the most important court officials of the European princely courts from the early Middle Ages onward. It is attested already among the Visigoths and the Merovingians and has even older precursors in the royal household of the East Roman imperial court [8. 496 f.]. It was originally in the hands of the chamberlain that responsibility lay for the running of the household of the prince . In the course of the Middle Ages this narrowed down - partly because of the increasing signifi…
Date: 2019-03-20

Chamber music

(1,508 words)

Author(s): Mautner, Hendrikje
1. IntroductionFrom the first appearance of the term chamber music around the middle of the 16th century to the middle of the 19th, the understanding of the concept changed from a form of vocal and instrumental music-making and performance associated with the court, to an autonomous form of instrumental music with the highest aesthetic standards. In the string quartet of Vienna Classicism (Classics, European), it gave the world a mode of instrumentation that assumed the highest status in the hierarchy of musical genre.Hendrikje Mautner2. The context of court music and early re…
Date: 2019-03-20


(2,345 words)

Author(s): Sieglerschmidt, Jörn
1. Definition and overview Contingency and chance are concepts by which, since the dawn of history, people have sought to understand the world, especially the vicissitudes and shocks of life and natural phenomena. The two belong to the same field of meaning, with contingency denoting the fundamental openness or indeterminacy of human existence and its history. Chance, meanwhile, is invoked in specific circumstances, for instance to explain particular events.Historically speaking, the concept of chance has manifested itself in various guises that considerably exp…
Date: 2019-03-20


(1,468 words)

Author(s): Menk, Gerhard
1. Definition and originIn the modern era, the chancellery was the executive organ that carried out the will of a prince or a municipal government (Council [administrative]); it represented the highest central institution for the government of a body politic and until the separation of the executive and the judiciary in the late 18th century, the highest judicial office. The staffing of a chancellery depended on the size of the territory. There was an enormous difference between the staff of a chan…
Date: 2019-03-20


(13 words)

See Chancellery | Curator | Imperial Chancellery | Justice, Minister of
Date: 2019-03-20

Change, religious

(6 words)

See Religious change
Date: 2019-03-20

Change, technological

(7,281 words)

Author(s): Reith, Reinhold | Popplow, Marcus
1. The concept and historiographic traditions 1.1. Earlier approachesIn studies of the history of technology, the term  technological change has largely replaced  technological  progress [53]. In historical studies of technology and economics, the latter – often hand in hand with the identification of technological “revolutions” – usually appeared in combination with the paradigm of  productivity in the exploration of economic growth. This perspective – in the tradition of Taylorism or even more of Fordism – focused …
Date: 2019-03-20


(2,926 words)

Author(s): Schneider, Herbert
1. Forms before the 16th centuryChanson (French; ‘song’) denotes the abundance of profane monophonic songs of thetroubadours and trouvères of the 13th century and the type of profane polyphonic song to French texts dating from the 14th to the 16th centuries. From the 17th century, chanson came to refer to simple, strophic songs that were sung by a solo voice, sometimes with a simple accompaniment, in courtly and various degrees of bourgeois contexts. Until the late 19th century, such songs were preserved in an ev…
Date: 2019-03-20


(4 words)

See Order (system)
Date: 2019-03-20


(1,340 words)

Author(s): Wald, Melanie
1. ConceptThe term chapel (Latin/Italian  cappella; German Kapelle) and its derivative office titles “Kapellmeister” (“chapel master”) and “chaplain” have their roots in Christian Western Europe. They underwent several significant shifts in meaning over a thousand-year terminological history, such that depending on period and context, chapel may refer either to an architectural object, a spiritual, intellectual, or administrative entity, or a musical one.The origins of the term can be traced back to the use in the 7th century of the Latin cappella to denote the “cape” of St…
Date: 2019-03-20


(1,432 words)

Author(s): Lüsebrink, Hans-Jürgen
1. TerminologyFrom the 16th to the 19th centuries in Europe, much sale of print media, printed ephemera, musical scores, books, newspapers, and gazettes took place not through the established book trade, but through the chapman, an itinerant peddler selling goods on the streets or from door to door. The chapman was particularly prevalent in rural areas, where he would peddle printed works together with a plethora of other commodities, in particular petty wares, paper, clocks, writing utensils, an…
Date: 2019-03-20


(1,502 words)

Author(s): Walther, Gerrit
1. ConceptAt the beginning of the early modern period, the Greek term charaktḗr (‘stamp’ or ‘engraving’), which Patristic writers includingAugustine had been the first to introduce into literary Latin, had an abstract and technical meaning. As in the writings of Aristotle’s pupil Theophrastus, it denoted both a permanent mark, distinguishing feature, or symbol, and a prevailing moral quality [5]. The combination of the two senses proved so inspiring and fruitful that by the end of the 18th century, ‘character’ had undergone a rapid change of meaning in…
Date: 2019-03-20


(2,140 words)

Author(s): Bleidick, Dietmar
1. General significance The making of charcoal from wood at a charcoal-burning, carbonization or pyrolysis site by means of controlled heating or burning with a regulated supply of air was already known in the high cultures of antiquity. With the spread of work with ore and metal working in the Bronze and Iron Ages charcoal became the most important fuel (cf. Fuels and illuminants) and retained this position until the middle of the 19th century, when it was successively displaced in the European industrial nations by black coal or coke.In Europe of the High Middle Ages the product…
Date: 2019-03-20


(1,634 words)

Author(s): Spehr, Christopher
1. Concept and definitionCharity is a key concept in Christian-Jewish ethics and is based on the biblical statements about love. Fundamental to charity is the relationship between the love of God, which has its basis in the New Testament double commandment of love (Mark 12.28-34) and is interpreted in different ways in the history of theology. The commandment to love God (Deut 6.4f.) and to love one's neighbor (Lev 19.18) becomes summarized in the Christian love commandment, the highest commandment…
Date: 2019-03-20


(819 words)

Author(s): Hering Torres, Max Sebastián
The origin of the French term “charivari” is disputed [5], but the most common etymological explanation traces charivari back to late-Latin  caribaria or Greek karēbaría (“a heavy head,” “headache”). Charivari is the term used in the late Middle Ages but also the early modern period for the censure and sanction rituals (Ritual) practiced by the urban or the rural population, which were prompted by infringements of social mores. Charivari were common across Europe (Ger. Katzenmusik or Tierjagen, Bavarian Haberfeldtreiben, Span. cencerrada, Eng. “rough music”; Ital. scampanata) [4…
Date: 2019-03-20


(6 words)

See Aeronautics | Balloon flight
Date: 2019-03-20
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