Power through Education

Monastic and cathedral schools were the leading institutions in medieval Western Europe tasked with the dissemination of education. These schools were generally reserved for wealthy sons of noble birth, while village schools operated in certain cities and towns, allowing various social classes greater accessibility to education. Some women were also able to receive an education during the Middle Ages; they were typically educated in convents.
Classes were typically taught by clerics during this time period, and the curriculum was heavily centred on the Christian faith. Learning Latin was also of utmost importance, as showcased by the two Latin-language manuscripts on display in this case: the twelfth-century Psalter and the fifteenth-century Satires.
Universities were an invention of the later Middle Ages. The two great universities of this period, which served as models for many others, were the University of Bologna (established in 1088) and the University of Paris (established in 1150). The latter is where Thomas Aquinas, the author of the incunable displayed in this case, taught during the thirteenth century.
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