Protestant Reformation and Christian Religious Authority

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European countries went through a great amount of changes during the 1500 and 1800. In countries such as Western Europe, England, France, Germany, and the Netherlands, economic developments were very noticeable. (508) With a growing population, Europe was introduced to new foods and the most popular being the potato, which during this time had the pleasure as being seen as an aphrodisiac. (508) Although some diseases continued to spread, some of the better-nourished populations were able to resist the spread of most diseases. The last outbreak occurred in London in 1660, and by the mid 1720s diseases were as non-existing.

Natural resources became available to merchants in Europe. European entrepreneurs had to find new ways to manufactured goods, which was encouraged by capitalism. The English parliament had to share authority with rulers and in other areas, based on Divine Theory, which states King’s authority came from God, monarchs ruled. This theory also states that to disobey the King was to disobey God. (511)

Math and science played a major part in the scientific revolution. These traditions were based in Greek mathematics and had been carried on by scientist in Muslim lands such as Nasir al-Din in the 13th century. The greatest scientist of this era was Isaac Newton during 1642-1727 an English mathematician who created modern fields of science. He discovered mathematical laws for gravity and made discoveries of light.

Natural laws of politics were discovered by English philosopher John Locke (516). He served as the bases for absolute monarchy and attacked the divine right theories. He believes that people are a product of their environment. This weakened the influence of organized religion (519). In medieval Europe, the Catholic Church was very influential as they defined many different aspects of society, such as art, politics, and science. During 1450 to 1750 what power the church had began to go away, and scientist began to challenge the...
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