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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(1,094 words)

Author(s): Klein, Birgit E.
1. Definition The earliest use of the term  ghetto dates from the 16th century, when the Jews of Venice were forced in 1516 to move into the Ghetto Nuovo, a foundry distict (Ital.  gettare, “cast”) [8. 23 f.]. Until the early 19th century, the Italian term was apparently limited to the Italian Peninsula, but outside Italy it also  de facto denoted a separate, compulsorily isolated neighborhood outside of which Jews were not allowed to live. Conversely, though, not every neighborhood inhabited primarily by Jews (Jewish society) can be called a ghetto,…
Date: 2019-03-20


(1,240 words)

Author(s): Naphy, William
The “geography” of life after death represented one of the major areas of theological dispute in the Reformation. Particular concerns included the fate of the souls of the dead and the nature of the relationship between the dead and the living (cf. Eschatology). Belief in ghosts was a point that distinguished Protestants from Catholics almost as clearly as belief in the Mass or the primacy of the Pope (Faith).In the decades running up to the Reformation, there was general agreement regarding the dead and “their” ghosts. Although the dead could not physicall…
Date: 2019-03-20


(750 words)

Author(s): Seidel, J. Jürgen
The Gichtelians trace their theosophical and pansophical ideas back to Johann Georg Gichtel (1638–1710) (Theosophy, Pansophism), who drew in turn on the ideas, especially the three-principles theory, of Paracelsus (1493/1494–1541) and the Görlitz mystic Jakob Böhme (1575–1624) (see Mysticism). Gichtel published the first complete edition of Böhme’s works in Amsterdam in 1682 (Behmenism).Born in Regensburg in 1638, Gichtel became a lawyer, but he was banished from his home town because of his polemic against the church; from 1668 until his dea…
Date: 2019-03-20


(710 words)

Author(s): Gareis, Iris
The word  gift has two meanings. In the figurative sense, it denotes a skill based on a natural aptitude, such as the gift of eloquence. In the literal sense, it means something that is given. In the latter sense, gifts are a cross-cultural phenomenon. In the religious sphere, a gift in the form of a sacrifice is directed toward the sphere of the divine and is generally understood as a response to a gift already bestowed on the believers. A gift may be unconditional or may imply and require reciprocity (this distinction is reflected in German usage, where Schenkung is an unconditional donat…
Date: 2019-03-20


(3 words)

See Spices
Date: 2019-03-20

Girls, education of

(16 words)

See Childhood | Education | Femininity | Gender roles | Girls’ school
Date: 2019-03-20

Girls’ school

(1,866 words)

Author(s): Rutz, Andreas
1. General Until the 20th century, European women and girls were excluded from higher education (Bildung; gymnasium [school] and university). However, from the late Middle Ages on, they could receive elementary education, religious instruction, and training in handiwork in elementary schools; this was generally a coeducational setting. It was primarily moral and religious thinking within the pedagogical discourse that led to demands for single-sex educational environments as early as the Middle Ag…
Date: 2019-03-20


(3,536 words)

Author(s): Reith, Reinhold
1. Definition Physically speaking, glass is a frozen, supercooled liquid. Its viscosity makes it easy to shape but susceptible to breakage. Its most important property is its translucency. Natural or mineral glass (obsidian) is produced by volcanic activity. Artificial glass is made by fusing a mixture of sand, potash and lime at a temperature exceeding 1,400 C (2,550 F) and then shaping it while it is hot and viscous. Small decorative items were already being cast in Egypt by around 3000 BCE, and…
Date: 2019-03-20

Global commodity

(2,351 words)

Author(s): Häberlein, Mark
1. Definition In the early modern period, a great variety of commodities were traded, but only a limited range of them can be called global commodities in the sense that they played a significant role in intercontinental trade in quantity and value. There were several reasons for this. Danger of spoilage imposed limits on trade in many foodstuffs and other perishable goods (Foodstuffs, conservation of), as did transportation costs of goods whose price differential between place of origin and final destination was small.Varying consumer preferences (Consumption) and tastes a…
Date: 2019-03-20


(10 words)

See Concluding chapter 02. Global Interaction and Global History | World history
Date: 2016-09-21

Global interaction

(4,508 words)

Author(s): Bley, Helmut | König, Hans-Joachim
1. Introduction and concept The history of the early modern period is the history of the first modern global society. It is still commonplace to interpret it as a period of untrammeled European expansionism. This, however, is uncritically to project the ascendancy of the highly industrialized states of Europe and the United States back into earlier periods, ignoring the fact that this ascendancy only came about in the late 19th century (Industrialization). Through haste and generalization, the slave…
Date: 2019-03-20

Global trade

(11 words)

See Global commodity | Trade territory | World economy
Date: 2019-03-20


(1,330 words)

Author(s): Mokre, Jan
1. Introduction A globe (from the Latin  globus) is a model with maps applied, representing a celestial body (in particular the planet Earth, but also other planets or the Earth’s Moon) or the celestial sphere that appears to surround the Earth (the firmament). They bear witness to geographical and astronomical concepts through history (Geography; Astronomy), and to skilled artistic design, artisanal manufacture, and commercial production. They were intended to document and disseminate scientific knowl…
Date: 2019-03-20

Glorious Revolution

(2,068 words)

Author(s): Lottes, Günther
1. The term The Glorious Revolution is the name given to the regime change that took place in 1688/89 in the Kingdom of England, when leading figures from both political groupings in the House of Commons (the Whigs and the Tories) invited William of Orange [7] (husband of the elder daughter of King James II, Mary Stuart) to take the crown as William III, and the legitimate ruler James II found himself with no alternative but to quit the country. Such an account, admittedly, reflects a purely English perspective. James defended his real…
Date: 2019-03-20


(871 words)

Author(s): Rohmer, Ernst
1. Definition In Aristotle’s Poetics, “gloss” (Greek  gl ō ssa; Lat. glossa, verbum peregrinum, verbum gentilium; New Lat. glosa; French  glose; Italian  glossa) denoted an archaic or dialectal word used by a poet as literary embellishment. The Roman rhetorician Quintilian characterized a gloss as the type of word through which  barbarolexis (“a barbarizing expression”) was realized. However, in his Etymologiae of around 600, Isidore of Seville no longer saw a gloss as an individual word, but as the combination of a word in need of clarification (le…
Date: 2019-03-20


(3 words)

See Gemmology
Date: 2019-03-20

Gnomic discourse

(957 words)

Author(s): Peil, Dietmar
The term “ gnomic” comes from the Greek  gn ō me (“insight,” “aphorism”) and refers, depending on the context, either to the human power of cognition or to the results thereof. The rhetorical use of the term in Greek goes back to Isocrates (4th century BCE), when he recommends the use of excerpts from the poets; however it was first defined in the rhetorical textbooks of the pseudo-Aristotelian  Rhetorica ad Alexandrum, and in the works of Aristotle himself. For them,  gnōme was a universally applicable proverb or epigram (in various syntactic forms), memorable in its br…
Date: 2019-03-20

Gnosis, gnosticism

(4 words)

See Hermeticism
Date: 2019-03-20