Islam had a profound effect on Europe from 1000 -1750 AD. At the height of his empire, Suleiman the Great pushed as far as Veinna in Europe. Islam was certainly a catalyst to European culture, politics and economic endeavors. Throughout Islam’s interaction with Europe, Muslim culture continued to affect Europe, while their Economic and Political impacts fluctuated.
Muslim education changed European culture and politics drastically. Not only did they build libraries and universities in Spain, but their cities became cultural centers. One such city is Cordoba, one of the richest and most sophisticated cities in Europe at the time. They shared their architecture as well as their poetic styles. Europeans discovered how the Muslims and Byzantines had preserved the culture of classical civilization. They noticed that this advanced Muslim society, which in part inspired the Renaissance. But, Muslim education had some disastrous affects too. After Muslim Ottoman Turks defeated the Byzantines in 1453, Christian children were taken from Europe and enslaves as Janissaries. They were taught the Muslim ways as well as how to use guns.
Although how they imparted their culture on Europe differed greatly as time wore on, Islam continued to impact European culture. Europe and Islam always had some sort of contact during this period, whether it be something good such as profitable trade, or horrific such as re-educating of children. They introduced many changes in the culture too. One of the most profound impacts Islam had on Europe was the reintroduction of Aristotle, Plato and Socrates.
Islam’s economic affect on Europe was also quite profound. They introduced new crops as well as new agricultural technology. Because of Islam, trade increased. Muslim traders brought goods and innovations from Asia and the Middle East via the Silk Road. Inventions brought by the Muslim traders enabled Europeans to establish their own trade with China.
Many changes in culture, economic and political systems were caused by religion: Muslim religious ideas seeping into European Culture and Europeans pushing it away in acts like the Crusades. Although Islam began the millennium with a prominent position in Muslim Spain, it eventually fell to Christianity. This political and religious conflict was furthered with the Crusades, after which the people seemed to loose trust in the Pope and turned to the King as their supreme ruler.
Culturally, Islam’s educational institutes had a substantial affect on Europe, even leading to sensational affairs such as the renaissance. Economically, Trade networks with Muslims enabled Europe to institute new innovations. Politically, events such as the Crusades changed Europe’s leadership. Muslim culture continued to affect Europe, while Islam’s Economic and Political impacts had differing, but important effects at various times throughout 1000 to 1750 AD.