In Medieval Europe the church had enormous power, but throughout the 16th century the Catholic church collided with change. Climatologists such as David Rind and Jonathan Overpeck have hypothesised that these three events are interlinked.
Moreover, the Qing dynasty 's success in dealing with the crisis made it more difficult for it to consider alternative responses when confronted with severe challenges from the West in the 19th century.
War ravaged Europe for almost the entirety of the century with no major state avoiding war in the 's. Puritanism, which has been seen as a significant reflection of a contracting economy, was not a prime feature of the second half of the century, though mercantilism was.
It was thought the Earth was the center of the solar system and all the planets and celestial objects suns and stars revolved around it. The Protestant and Roman Catholic Reformations brought passionate debate of an unsettling kind. There were various controversies regarding the "general crisis" thesis between historians.
The existence of vigorous Jewish communities—at times persecuted, as in Poland inbut in places such as Amsterdam secure, prosperous, and creative—only serves to emphasize the essential fact: Europe and Christendom were interchangeable terms.
For the majority, the source of truth about the world could be found literally in the Bible giving the church heavy influence upon the people.