Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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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.

Subscriptions: Brill.com

Early modern period

(3,337 words)

Author(s): Behringer, Wolfgang
1. Definition The early modern period (Ger. Frühe Neuzeit, Ital. prima età moderna; there is no corresponding term in French) is a daughter of the modern age, both as a term and in content, and shares its beginning and numerous features with it. One of the preconditions for this is the conceptual triad of splendid antiquity, the dark Middle Ages, and radiant early modernity, the latter initially as a rebirth of antiquity, then as the age of invention and voyages of discovery, growing far beyond the knowledg…
Date: 2016-09-26

Earth

(1,851 words)

Author(s): Sieglerschmidt, Jörn
1. Key concepts and their history Prehistoric and ancient terminological categories pervaded early modern concepts of earth. Like other elements (fire, air, water), earth was part of creation myths, coming about through the overcoming of chaos by separation and the ordering (Order (system)) of the elements (often also the separation of heaven and earth, light and darkness). Gender allocations also played an important part in the binary tetradic structure of the premodern doctrines of elements, substan…
Date: 2016-09-26

Earth, history of

(996 words)

Author(s): Kempe, Michael
In his commentary on Genesis (1535-1545), Martin Luther touched upon a process of decay of the earth in the context of salvation history. In this view, the growing incidences of erosion and natural catastrophe corresponded with the accumulation of human sin, so that the earth had now become “an aged man” ( ein alter greys) [1. 619]. Similar views are expounded, echoing the classical topos of the mundus senescens (Latin “ageing world”), in many geogonies (stories of the formation of the earth) and earth histories of the Renaissance, and in many Genesis comm…
Date: 2016-09-26

Earthquake

(2,658 words)

Author(s): Glaser, Rüdiger | Rohr, Christian
1. Introduction 1.1. The geotectonic causes of earthquakesEarthquakes are expressions of ongoing tectonic processes that are caused by sudden releases of pressure. They can be classified by location, either as intraplate disturbances on faults like the Rhine Rift Valley, or as interplate earthquakes, where two tectonic plates meet and subduct, or by depth, as shallow-focus or deep-focus quakes. Most damage is done by relatively weak but shallow earthquakes. Along faults, visible slippages of several meters can occur.The so-called mainshock is often preceded by smaller f…
Date: 2016-09-26

Earth sciences

(12 words)

See Earth, history of | Geography | Geology | Mineralogy
Date: 2016-09-26

Easement

(4 words)

See Land rights
Date: 2016-09-26

East Asian societies

(8,901 words)

Author(s): Mittag, Achim | Mathias, Regine | Eggert, Marion
1. IntroductionIn China, Japan andKorea, the now common expression for society (Chinese shehui, Japanese shakai, Korean sahoe) which was not used specifically until the second half of the 19th century, consists of the two Chinese signs for "temple of earth", ( she) and “assembly” ( hui). The “temple of earth”, where the local deity of a village was worshiped [35], refers to the great importance of religious imaginations and practices for the social connection within the family as well as within associations, neighborhood networks, municipalities, secret…
Date: 2016-09-26

Ecclesiastical law

(6,053 words)

Author(s): Weitzel, Jürgen | Klippel, Diethelm | Synek, Eva
1. Foundations of Catholic and Protestant Ecclesiastical LawThe ecclesiastical law of the early modern period is characterized by the loss of the religious unity that shaped the MA. In a revolutionary departure [2. 503] following the Lutheran Reformation in 1517, alongside the law of the Roman Catholic Church, summarized in the  Corpus Iuris Canonici, there now stood a different basic understanding of the role of law in the church. The recognition of Protestant teaching as having equal rights (in the 1555 Peace of Augsburg, 1555) and the extensi…
Date: 2016-09-26

Ecclesiastical sociology

(5 words)

See Ecclesiastical statistics
Date: 2016-09-26

Ecclesiology

(3 words)

See Church
Date: 2016-09-26

Eclogue

(4 words)

See Pastoral poetry
Date: 2016-09-26

École Polytechnique

(1,002 words)

Author(s): Dhombres, Jean
1. Foundation and conceptual orientation Unlike the practical schools of engineering of the  Ancien Régime, the institution founded in Paris during the French Revolution as the École centrale des travaux publics in 1794,and renamed École Polytechnique (its name to this day) the following year, taught mathematical and scientific theory as the basis for engineering and technical professions. Their theorization of professional training was a model that led the way across Europe. During the 19th century, profes…
Date: 2016-09-26

Ecology

(3 words)

See Environment
Date: 2016-09-26

Economic order

(2,081 words)

Author(s): Goldschmidt, Nils
1. TerminologyAn economic order can be understood as the totality of all formal and informal rules that apply to the organizational structure and operation of a national economy and the associated economic processes, along with all the institutions responsible for the design, governance, and administration of the political economy (Economy, political) [12]. The economic order can be thought of as the economic form, realized historically or currently, in which particular economic processes actually take place; it can also be interpreted as a spe…
Date: 2016-09-26

Economic policy

(2,479 words)

Author(s): Goldschmidt, Nils
1. GeneralThe object of economic policy is the systematic action of political and especially state agents with the purpose of influencing economic processes. An existing state of the economic situation (economy, political) considered unsatisfactory is to be brought closer to a target state by means of economic policy [2]. Unlike the economic order, economic policy does not focus on the entire organizational structure of the economy but on individual measures, their functionalities and interaction. Nevertheless economic policy and economic …
Date: 2016-09-26

Economics, classical

(5 words)

See Classical economics
Date: 2016-09-26

Economy

(6,783 words)

Author(s): Plumpe, Werner | Köster, Roman
1. IntroductionBetween the 15th and 19th centuries, the economy – understood as an umbrella term for the material replication of human life and the specific nature of the associated material exchange relationships – underwent a dramatic process of change. This change cannot be reduced to obvious phenomena like the increase in manufactured goods and services and the associated rise in the general level of prosperity, the proliferation of technological knowledge, and the expansion of trade. In fact…
Date: 2016-09-26

Economy, political

(6,189 words)

Author(s): Plumpe, Werner | Köster, Roman
1. DefinitionThe term  political economy has three overlapping meanings:1) As used in Old Europe, the term originally meant the internal economic and social constitution of a systematic order structured and guaranteed by authority;  as yet no distinction was made or even possible between the particular analytic and normative meanings (Oeconomica of Old Europe).2) Subsequently (and in part contrary to this older meaning [45]) the term came to denote the theory of economic relationships and their configuration (actual or potential) at the hands of politi…
Date: 2016-09-26

Ecotype

(1,664 words)

Author(s): Langthaler, Ernst
1. Bridge between Nature and SocietyBesides institutions of political and economic control, social and cultural anthropologists speak of ecotypes in the sense of  “system(s) of energy transfers from the environment to man” as major forces driving the developmeent of rural society. The term  ecotype originated in biology [14] and was later applied to human populations; it denotes a dual adaptation: of society (Society (community)) to the natural environment – for example by choosing native crop plants and livestock – , and of nature to the…
Date: 2016-09-26

Ecphrasis

(4 words)

See Picture description
Date: 2016-09-26
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