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The Medieval German University: Transformation And Innovation

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Chapter Summary

The real university history of medieval Germany began in the 14th century and in the four faculty form. Social barriers - legitimized through status and privileges - stood in the way of the expected formal under-ordering among the masters of arts. The history of German universities was and remained, however, tied to the ruling powers, above all to the territorial ruling lord, his court, and his state. Nevertheless, through the variety of yearly new people attending university something like a 'market-supply pressure' was created for local princes, cities, and churches. This accelerated a modernization in the Empire and the territories at the change of the 15th to 16th centuries, a real time of transition, transformation, and innovation. Unlike in western and southern Europe, where very often the higher faculties dominated, often before the law faculties, German universities educated up to 80 or more percent men of liberal arts.

Keywords: innovation; liberal arts; Medieval German university; Roman church; transformation; transition

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