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The population of the eighth century had not recovered from losses of __. River, which served as __, and villages, were separated by forests, swamps, and mountain ridges. __ covered the European landscape and provided building and heating materials as well as game.__ of the land was cultivated. __ and __ were necessary to supplement the European diet.
- plagues of 6th and 7th centuries
- Hunting and fishing
- a. Cultivation was difficult in early middle ages
- i. Not easy to clear forests and prepare ground for planting
- ii. Germans thought trees= sacred
- 1. Christianity did not change attitude
- iii. Heavy soils not easily plowed
- iv. Methods worked against significant crop yields
- 1. Land remained unplanted every other year to regain fertility, but still produced low yields
- a. European weather improved
- b. Natural disasters
- i. Low yields= little surplus
- ii. Drought/ too much rain= meager harvests, famine, dietary deficienciesà disease and low life expectancy