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5.10: Conclusion

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  • All of the large-scale patterns described above took a long time to develop; it was not as if there were small medieval kingdoms one year and major, centralized states the next. Likewise, many historians totally reject the idea of the gunpowder "revolution" because it took well over a century from the fifteenth well into the sixteenth centuries to really come to fruition. Instead, what is evident in hindsight is that centralized states with legal control and the right to raise taxes over their entire territories began in earnest during this period, introducing new legal and political patterns that would only expand in the centuries that followed. Likewise, while gunpowder may have taken a long time to fully transform warfare and state finances, there can be no question that it did so in the long run.

    Image Citations (Creative Commons):

    Siege of Orleans: public domain

    Habsburg lands: public domain

    Ottoman Empire - Esemono, public domain

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