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As a means of recording the passage of time, the 14th century was a century lasting from January 1, 1301, through December 31, 1400. The term is often used to refer to the 1300s, the century between 1300 and 1399. It is estimated that the century witnessed the death of more than 45 million lives from political and natural disasters in both Europe and the Mongol Empire. West Africa and the Indian Subcontinent experienced economic growth and prosperity.
In Europe, the Black Death claimed 25 million lives – wiping out one third of the European population – while the Kingdom of England and the Kingdom of France fought in the protracted Hundred Years' War after the death of Charles IV, King of France led to a claim to the French throne by Edward III, King of England. This period is considered the height of chivalry and marks the beginning of strong separate identities for both England and France as well as the foundation of the Italian Renaissance and Ottoman Empire.
In Asia, Tamerlane (Timur), established the Timurid Empire, history's third largest empire to have been ever established by a single conqueror. Scholars estimate that Timur's military campaigns caused the deaths of 17 million people, amounting to about 5% of the world population at the time. Synchronously, the Timurid Renaissance emerged. In the Arab world, historian and political scientist Ibn Khaldun and explorer Ibn Battuta made significant contributions. In India, the Bengal Sultanate got divided from the Delhi Sultanate, a major trading nation in the world. The sultanate described by the Europeans as the richest country to trade with. The Mongol court was driven out of China and retreated to Mongolia, the Ilkhanate collapsed, the Chaghatayid dissolved and broke into two parts, and the Golden Horde lost its position as a great power in Eastern Europe.
In Africa, the wealthy Mali Empire, a global leader of gold production, reached its territorial and economic height under the reign of Mansa Musa I of Mali, the wealthiest individual of the medieval times, and according to various sources as history's ever.
- The transition from the Medieval Warm Period to the Little Ice Age.
- Beginning of the Ottoman Empire, early expansion into the Balkans.
- Early 14th century: Attributed to Kao Ninga Monk Sewing is made. Kamakura period. It is now kept at the Cleveland Museum of Art.
- An account of Buddha's life, translated earlier into Greek by Saint John of Damascus and widely circulated to Christians as the story of Barlaam and Josaphat, became so popular that the two were venerated as saints.
- Singapore emerges for the first time as a fortified city and trading centre of some importance.
- Islam reaches Terengganu, on the Malay Peninsula.
- The Hausa found several city-states in the south of modern Niger.
- The poet Petrarch coins the term Dark Ages to describe the preceding 900 years in Europe, beginning with the fall of the Western Roman Empire in 476 through to the renewal embodied in the Renaissance.
- Iwan vault, Jamé Mosque of Isfahan, Isfahan, Persia (Iran), is built.
- Work begins on the Great Enclosure at Great Zimbabwe, built of un-cemented, dressed stone. The city's population is now between 10,000 and 40,000.
- 1309: King Jayanegara succeeds Kertarajasa Jayawardhana as ruler of Majapahit.
- 1309–1377: The Avignon papacy transfers the seat of the Popes from Italy to France
- The Great Famine of 1315-1317 kills millions of people in Europe.
- 1318–1330: An Italian Franciscan friar, Mattiussi, visited Sumatra, Java, and Banjarmasin in Borneo. In his record he described the kingdom of Majapahit.
- 1320: Władysław I the Elbow-high is crowned King of Poland which leads to its later unification
- 1323: Malietoafaiga ordered cannibalism to be abolished in Tutuila, now known as American Samoa.
- 1325: Forced out of previous locations, the Mexica found the city of Tenochtitlan
- 1327: Tver Uprising against the Golden Horde
- 1328: Tribhuwana Wijayatunggadewi succeeds Jayanegara as ruler of Majapahit.
- Beginning of the Renaissance in Italy
- 1335: The death of the Ilkhan Abu Said causes the disintegration of the Mongol rule in Persia.
- 1336: The Vijayanagara Empire is founded in South India by Harihara I.
- 1337: The Hundred Years' War begins when Edward III of England lays claim to the French throne.
- 1346: English forces led by Edward III defeat a French army led by Philip VI of France in The Battle of Crécy, a major point in the Hundred Years' War which marks the rise of the longbow as a dominant weapon in Western Europe.
- 1347–1351: The Black Death kills around a third of the population of Europe.
- 1347: Adityawarman moved the capital of Dharmasraya and established the kingdom of Malayupura in Pagarruyung, West Sumatra.
- 1348: The 6.9-magnitude 1348 Friuli earthquake centered in Northern Italy was felt across Europe. Contemporary minds linked the quake with the Black Death, fueling fears that the Biblical Apocalypse had arrived.
- 1350: Ramathibodi I establishes the Ayutthaya Kingdom.
- 1350: Hayam Wuruk, styled Sri Rajasanagara, succeeds Tribhuwana Wijayatunggadewi as ruler of Majapahit; his reign is considered the empire's 'Golden Age'. Under its military commander Gajah Mada, Majapahit stretches over much of modern-day Indonesia.
- 1356: The Imperial Diet of the Holy Roman Empire headed by Emperor Charles IV issues the Golden Bull of 1356, establishing various constitutional aspects of the Empire, the most significant being the electoral college to elect future emperors.
- 1356: The Diet of the Hansa is held in Lübeck, formalising what up until then had only been a loose alliance of trading cities in northern Europe and officially founding the Hanseatic League.
- 1357: Scotland retains its independence with the signing of the Treaty of Berwick, thus ending the Wars of Scottish Independence.
- 1357: In the Battle of Bubat, the Sundanese royal family is massacred by the Majapahit army by the order of Gajah Mada; the death toll includes Sundanese king Lingga Buana and princess Dyah Pitaloka Citraresmi, who committed suicide.
- 1363: The Battle of Lake Poyang, a naval conflict between Chinese rebel groups led by Chen Youliang and Zhu Yuanzhang, takes place from August to October, constituting one of the largest naval battles in history.
- 1365: The Old Javanese text Nagarakertagama is written.
- 1366: Tepanec Tlatoani Acolnahuácatl accepts Acamapichtli as the first tlatoani of Tenochtitlan for the Mexica Empire.
- 1368: The end of the Mongol Yuan Dynasty in China and the beginning of the Ming Dynasty.
- 1371: The Battle of Maritsa, the Serbs are defeated by the Ottomans, with most of Serb nobility being killed.
- 1377: Majapahit sends a punitive expedition against Palembang in Sumatra. Palembang's prince, Parameswara (later Iskandar Syah) flees, eventually finding his way to Malacca and establishing it as a major international port.
- 1378: The Great Schism of the West begins, eventually leading to three simultaneous popes.
- 1378: Battle of the Vozha River between Russians and Mongols.
- 1378–1382: Ciompi Revolt occurs in Florence.
- 1380: Russian principalities defeat the Golden Horde at the Battle of Kulikovo.
- 1381: John Wycliffe is dismissed from the University of Oxford for criticism of the Roman Catholic Church, thus the Lollardy movement rises in England.
- 1381: Peasants' Revolt in England.
- 1382: Khan Tokhtamysh captures Moscow.
- 1382: Barquq ٌrise to power to start the Burji dynasty, the Circassian Mamuluk Dynasty in Egypt.
- 1385: Battle of Aljubarrota between Portugal and Castile. Portugal maintains independence.
- 1385: Union of Krewo between Poland and Lithuania.
- 1389: Battle of Kosovo between Serbs and Ottoman Turks; Prince Lazar, Sultan Murad I and Miloš Obilić are killed.
- 1389: Wikramawardhana succeeds Sri Rajasanagara as ruler of Majapahit.
- 1391: Anti-Jewish pogroms spreads throughout Spain and Portugal, and many thousands of Jews are massacred.
- 1392: Taejo of Joseon establishes the Joseon Dynasty.
- 1396: The Battle of Nicopolis, in which the Ottomans defeat a large crusader army composed of knights and men-at-arms by the kingdoms of Hungary, France, the Holy Roman Empire, England and Wallachia.
- 1396: The Second Bulgarian Empire ends, with the capture of the last stronghold fortress of Vidin and its king Ivan Sratsimir by the Ottomans.
- 1397: The Kalmar Union is established, uniting Norway, Sweden and Denmark into one kingdom.
- Giotto di Bondone, Italian painter (c. 1267–1337)
- Simone Martini, Italian painter (1284 – c. 1344)
- Stephen of Perm, Russian icon painter (1340–1396)
- John Kukuzelis, Byzantine composer, singer and reformer of Orthodox Church music (c. 1280–1360)
- Philippe de Vitry, French composer, music theorist and poet (1291-1361)
- Filippo Brunelleschi, Italian architect and engineer
- Henry Yevele, prominent English architect responsible for the building of many important structures in London (1320-1400)
- Jiao Yu, Chinese general and author of the Huolongjing military treatise
- Liu Bowen, Chinese general, court advisor, philosopher, and co-editor of the Huolongjing (1311–1375)
- Dante Alighieri, Italian poet and writer (1265–1321)
- Francesco Petrarca (Petrarch), Italian poet and writer (1304–1374)
- Giovanni Boccaccio, Italian poet and writer (1313–1375)
- Geoffrey Chaucer, English poet and writer (1343 - 1400)
- Guillaume de Machaut, French composer and poet (c. 1300–1377)
- Hafiz, Persian poet (c. 1310–1379)
- William Langland (ca. 1332 – ca. 1386) is the conjectured author of the English dream-vision Piers Plowman
- Juan Manuel, Prince of Villena, Spanish author (1282–1349)
- Christine de Pizan, French writer (1364–1430)
- Shi Nai'an (1296—1372), Chinese writer; author of Water Margin
- Luo Guanzhong (1330–1400), Chinese writer; author of Romance of the Three Kingdoms
- Johannes Gutenberg (1398–1468), German printer and inventor; author of Gutenberg Bible
Scientists and Philosophers
- Ibn Khaldun, historian and historiographer
- Narayana Pandita,Indian Mathematician
- Mahendra Sūri,Indian Astronomer
- William of Ockham, English Franciscan friar and philosopher (c. 1285–1347)
- Ibn Taymiyyah, Islamic scholar, theologian and logician
- John Wycliffe, Biblical translator, theologian, philosopher (1320-1384)
- Mansa Musa (d. 1337), King of the Mali Empire. During his reign Mali was the source of almost half the world's gold.
- Amda Seyon I (1314–1344), Emperor of Ethiopia. Consolidated the power of his domain beyond the Ethiopian highlands, initiating a long era of Christian proselytization and integration of peripheral areas.
- Alauddin Khalji, Afghanized Turk emperor, ruling from Delhi over South Asia, crushing Mongol invasions and Rajput rebellions
- Chen Youliang, Chinese rebel leader, emperor of Chen Han and nemesis to Zhu Yuanzhang (the Hongwu Emperor)
- Timur (1336–1405), Central Asian warlord and founder of the Timurid Dynasty.
- Hongwu Emperor (1328–1398), founder of the Ming dynasty in China.
- Muhammad bin Tughluq, Emperor of India
- Osman I (1258–1326, Osman Gazi or Osman Bey or Osman I or Osman Sayed II) leader of the Ottoman Turks, founder of the dynasty that established and ruled the Ottoman Empire.
- Robert the Bruce (1274–1329) King of Scotland, victor in the First War of Scottish Independence against invasion by the Kingdom of England.
- Edward II (1284–1327) of Caernarfon, was King of England from 1307 until he was deposed in January 1327.
- Roger de Mortimer, 1st Earl of March (1287–1330) an English nobleman, was for three years de facto ruler of England, after leading a successful rebellion against Edward II.
- Charles I of Hungary (1288–1342), military, diplomatic and financial reformer, restoring the Kingdom of Hungary to power.
- Ivan I of Moscow (1288–1340), called The Moneybag, was Prince of Moscow, who made his principality most powerful state in Russia.
- Henry IV of England, King from 1399 until his death in 1413
- Isabella of France (c. 1295–1358), queen consort and regent of the Kingdom of England.
- Stephen Uroš IV Dušan of Serbia (1308–1355), Emperor of the Serbs and Greeks.
- Casimir III of Poland (1312–1377), expansionist and financial reformer.
- Joan of the Tower (1321–1362) a.k.a. Joan of England, was the first wife and Queen consort of David II of Scotland. She was born at the Tower of London and was the youngest daughter of Edward II of England and Isabella of France.
- David II of Scotland (1324–1371) King of Scots, son of King Robert the Bruce by his second wife, Elizabeth de Burgh (d. 1327), was born at Dunfermline Palace, Fife.
- Edward III (1327–1377) King of England. His claim to the throne of France resulted in the Hundred Years' War.
- Edward, the Black Prince (1330–1376) or Edward of Woodstock, Prince of Wales, KG, was the eldest son of King Edward III of England and Philippa of Hainault, and father to King Richard II of England.
- Philip VI of France (1293-1350), called the Fortunate, was King of France from 1328 to his death and was the first king of France from the House of Valois.
- John II of France (1319-1364), called the Good, was King of France from 1350 to his death and a member of the House of Valois.
- Charles V (1338–1380), called the Wise, was King of France from 1364 to his death and a member of the House of Valois.
- Charles VI of France (1368-1422), called the Mad, had a reign troubled by his controlling uncles during his minority and Charles' bouts of insanity, was King of France from 1380 to his death and a member of the House of Valois.
- Louis the Great of Hungary (1342–1382), was King of Hungary, Croatia, Dalmatia, Jerusalem, Sicily and Poland from 1370. He led campaigns From Lithuania to Southern Italy, From Poland to Northern Greece. He had the greatest military potential of the century with his enormous armies (often over 100,000 men.)
- Charles IV (1346–1378), King of Bohemia. One of the most powerful men in Europe.
- Dmitry I of Moscow (1350-1389), Grand Duke of Moscow. His nickname, "Donskoy" (i.e., "of the Don"), alludes to his great victory against the Tatars in the Battle of Kulikovo (1380) which took place on the Don River.
- Margaret I of Denmark, Danish regent and from 1389 regent of the united monarchies of Denmark, Norway and Sweden
- Richard II (1367–1400), was the King of England from 1377 until he was deposed in 1399.
- Tvrtko I (1338–1391), was the ban of Bosnia from 1353–1377 and later the king of Bosnia, from 1377–1391.
Inventions, discoveries, introductions
- List of 14th century inventions
- Music of the Ars nova
- The technique of knitting
- Foundation of the University of Cracow
- Chinese text the Huolongjing by Jiao Yu describes fire lances, fire arrows (rockets), rocket launchers, land mines, naval mines, bombards, cannons, and hollow cast iron cannonballs filled with gunpowder, and their use to set ablaze enemy camps.
- First pound lock in Europe reportedly built in Vreeswijk, Netherlands in 1373
- Black Death, Encyclopaedia Britannica
- Nanda, J. N (2005). Bengal: the unique state. Concept Publishing Company. p. 10. 2005. ISBN 978-81-8069-149-2.
Bengal [...] was rich in the production and export of grain, salt, fruit, liquors and wines, precious metals and ornaments besides the output of its handlooms in silk and cotton. Europe referred to Bengal as the richest country to trade with.
- Thad Morgan, "This 14th-Century African Emperor Remains the Richest Person in History" Archived 2019-05-01 at the Wayback Machine, History.com, March 19, 2018
- Davidson, Jacob (July 30, 2015). "The 10 Richest People of All Time". Time. Archived from the original on August 24, 2015. Retrieved January 5, 2017.
- Macdonnel, Arthur Anthony (1900). " Sanskrit Literature and the West.". A History of Sanskrit Literature. New York: D. Appleton and Co. p. 420.
- Ricklefs (1991), page 18
- Kern, J.H.C., (1907), De wij-inscriptie op het Amoghapāça-beeld van Padang Candi(Batang Hari-districten); 1269 Çaka, Tijdschrift voor Indische Taal-, Land-, en Volkenkunde.
- Drs. R. Soekmono; et al. (1988) . Pengantar Sejarah Kebudayaan Indonesia 2, 2nd ed (5th reprint ed.). Yogyakarta: Penerbit Kanisius. p. 72.
- Richardson, Douglas, Plantagenet Ancestry, Baltimore, Md., 2004, p.23, ISBN 0-8063-1750-7
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