1. The Great Schism of 1054 dividing Christianity into the Roman Catholic Church and Eastern Orthodox branches.
2. The Crusades (1095-1291).
3. Muslim expansion and conquest of India (1190-1200) and the reign of Islamic empires in the Middle East and parts of Europe.
4. Printing on movable type of the Gutenberg Bible in 1455.
5. Church patronage of the arts, and of universities and learning.
6. Martin Luther's posting of the 95 Theses to the church door in Wittenberg in 1517, beginning the Reformation.
7. Colonization and the Christian missionary period, responsible for the spread of Christian faith to North and South America, Africa and Asia.
8. In 1620, English Puritans settle in Plymouth, Mass., the first of many immigrants seeking religious freedom. Religious freedom becomes the cornerstone of American democracy.
9. The ideas of 19th-century thinkers including Darwin, Marx, Nietzsche and Freud that challenge traditional belief.
10. The ongoing anti-Semitism and persecution of Jews culminating in the Holocaust and the establishment of the state of Israel in 1948.
© 2014 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers