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21. The Middle Ages, Volume I, Sources
22. A History of Medieval Spain
23. The History of Medieval Europe
24. World History Medieval And Early
25. A History of Medieval Christianity:
26. Canonical Collections of the Early
27. The New Cambridge Medieval History
28. A Brief History of Medieval Warfare
29. Papal Letters in the Middle Ages
30. The Oxford History of Medieval
31. An Economic and Social History
32. Medieval History For Dummies (For
33. The Cambridge History of Later
34. The Cambridge History of Medieval
35. General Issues in the Study of
36. The History of the Medieval World:
37. The New Cambridge Medieval History,
38. The Penguin Atlas of Medieval
39. The Cambridge History of Medieval
40. A History of Everyday Life in

21. The Middle Ages, Volume I, Sources ofMedieval History
by Brian Tierney
Paperback: 384 Pages (1998-08-17)
-- used & new: US$23.95
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Asin: 0073032891
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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This volume of translated source materials from the late Roman Empire to the mid-15th century introduces students to the diversity of medieval culture, covering all aspects of medieval life--social, religious, economic, intellectual, institutional. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

4-0 out of 5 stars Better than some.
This is a fairly standard collection, and better than some I've seen.Nonetheless, one should be aware of the following:
* The entire Norse and Icelandic literature is omitted.
* Anglo-Saxon poetry also omitted.
* Welsh and Gaelic literature is MIA.
* As with narrative textbooks on the Middle Ages in Europe, it basically omits Iberia and anything east of Venice (with a few exceptions from Constantinople).In other words, it omits most of the territory and most of the population of Europe in that period.
* It follows the current Very Annoying custom of these readings collections: citing where the translations come from, but not the actual source document itself.At times one cannot know, from this text, who wrote what one is reading.I tell you truly, it is moronic to tell me who translated something, while not telling me what they translated it from.Moronic, despicable, and it teaches the students exactly the wrong thing about scholarship and citation.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great
The book was in great condition, it was a older version then we used in class, but it stil works. It also arrived a little later then I was hoping for.

5-0 out of 5 stars Professor Tierney's research pays off for you!
Brian Tierney has collected so many excellent primary sources.If you are interested in what people of that time thought about or wrote, by all means get anything by Tierney.If you are a history student or teacher, these gems will enliven the discussion in the classroom and will even challenge your ideas of modernity.Enjoy! ... Read more

22. A History of Medieval Spain
by Joseph O'Callaghan
Paperback: 736 Pages (1983-08)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$29.64
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Asin: 0801492645
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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A comprehensive narrative history which should prove useful to teachers, students, and general readers in European history. It gives primacy to political events without neglecting institutional, social, and cultural matters. Recommended in Laura Berquist Medieval English amp Spanish Hist/Geog/Lit Syllabus, Laura Berquist Medieval European Hist/Geog/Lit Syllabus Author: Joesph F. O Callaghan Grades: 9 and up Number of Pages: 728 Paperback Publisher: Cornell University ISBN 0-8014-9264-5 ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

5-0 out of 5 stars The foundations for modern Spain defined
O'Callaghan provides a highly approachable history that looks at the multiple invaders that helps define Spain's emerging national character in the post-Roman world.In the south, the Andalusia cultural capital, Cordoba, rivaled Baghdad and laid claim to some of the foremost Muslim and Jewish scholars, who, amongst other things, safeguarded the works of the ancient Greeks; whereas in the north, the Castilian-Leon kingdom, in broadening political franchise to include that of the emerging merchant class, developed one of the first representative governments in modern European history: the Cortes. In the end, Ferdinand and Isabella oversaw a societal transformation that cast aside a feudal past and set in motion a centralized empire and culture which soon came to dominate much of the world.

5-0 out of 5 stars A vital text on a re-emerging topic
Previous reviews have decried this book for lack of readability; this is a pity, the purpose of this book was not to be for light summer reading, but to provide information on a previously obscure topic.Current authors writing about Medieval Spain still cite this book as the go-to reference, period.
The book encompasses the entire history of Spain from the fall of the Roman Empire to the reign of Fernando and Isabel.If you needed one book on this subject it would be this one, especially as a reference work.

4-0 out of 5 stars Classic Standard Text
This is the classic standard text and the best one volume overview of the period.Spanish history available in english tends to be broken down into ghetto sub-subjects making it difficult to arrange the period information relative to each other.This book will give you a general framework to organize the information of this period.Dry reading but useful to the thoughtful reader.This volume is inadeuqate as a sole source of medieval Spanish history but should serve as a base to branch out to the readily available historical alleys.

3-0 out of 5 stars A good reference but a tough read
The major problem with this book is that it tends to get bogged down in narrative without enough analytical insight.The result is that the reader is faced with hundreds of pages of which kings fought which, married whom and so on.While there is commentary on which events are more important than others and why, it is a little sparse.I read all but the last 100 pages or so as I just ran out of steam.However, as a person who is interested in Spain and Spanish history, I plan to keep it on my shelf for reference purposes.

The book is sensibly divided into major historical time periods (i.e. Visigothic, Caliphate, etc) that give a good organizational framework.Each time period typically has two chapters.The first is more or less a historical narrative and is usually the more difficult to get through.The second is an often interesting discussion of the social and political institutions of both Christian and Islamic Spain.For example, there is a chapter that outlines the major officials of the Umayyad caliphate, their roles, powers, prejudices and so on.

1-0 out of 5 stars Inadequate
O'Callaghan's history of the Iberian peninsula, though exhausting in its detail, falls prey to typical western biases and employes the fallacious traditional historiography of Iberia, emphasizing the "Re"-Conquest and a supposed "move towards unity."This approach is woefully inadequate for understanding the events of Medieval Iberial, and fosters an unfair appraisal of the Muslim culture that flourished there for centuries.Additionally, O'Callaghan has managed to, through his exceedingly dry prose, completely emasculate this otherwise exciting and vibrant subject.In all my years as a history student, I have never read another text from which I retained so little; my classmates concur on the matter.Therefore, I wholeheartedly denounce this text. ... Read more

23. The History of Medieval Europe (Penguin History)
by Maurice Keen
Paperback: 352 Pages (1991-09-12)
list price: US$16.00 -- used & new: US$8.89
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Asin: 0140136304
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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This is a fascinating, three-dimensional picture of the politics, society and religion of medieval Europe, the age that had as its great theme the unity of Christendom. Maurice Keen examines tribal wars, the Crusades, the growth of trade and the shifting patterns of community life as villages grew into towns and towns into sizeable cities. He explores how Papal victories, by blurring the distinction between temporal and spiritual matters, eventually undermined the spiritual authority of the Church. And he discusses how the Hundred Years War escalated from a feudal dispute into a full-scale national conflict, until, by the mid-fifteenth century, changing economic and social conditions had transformed the unity of Christendom into merely a pious phrase. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars An Excellent Starting Point
In just over 300 very readable pages the author provides an excellent overview of Medieval Europe with plenty of leads for a deeper inquiry. Well worth the time.

4-0 out of 5 stars An excellent beginning to Medieval studies.
I thought that Mr. Keen's book was an excellent read for the student of Medieval history.His accounts and insights of medieval religious and political thought were throughly explained. The author spends a great dealof time on the complex relationships of the Papacy, England, France,Germany, and Italy with each other. The one negative about the book is thatthe author spends practically no time on medieval Spain. The bibliographywas good, though it should be updated. Overall a good short work forsomeone to get a good basic understanding of Medieval history. ... Read more

24. World History Medieval And Early Modern Times: California Edition
by Douglas Carnine
Hardcover: 558 Pages (2006-12-31)
list price: US$76.52 -- used & new: US$39.45
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Asin: 0618532943
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars One of the better textbooks out their in this subject area
This is one of the better textbooks to come out for World History at the Middle/Jr. High School level. I was on the adoption committee for a major school district in So. Cal. Of the eleven submissions it was one of the books that immediately stood out for organization, clarity of language, access for struggling readers and the broad range of available supplemental materials. I have been very pleased with the ease with which my students are able to read and comprehend the content. My only wish is that their was some more depth. If anyone is familiar with the Across the Centuries series from Houghton-Mifflin it was very good with depth but not the easiest read. This book does have a tendancy to sacrifice depth for readability. It could be a bit more balanced. Otherwise, no complaints. A solid text for this subject. My one suggestion is that if you are looking at adoption for a program/school/district, etc. Consider the whole series Gr. 6-8 as each one builds upon skills and concepts presented in the previous title. ... Read more

25. A History of Medieval Christianity: Prophecy and Order
by Jeffrey Burton Russell, Douglas W. Lumsden
Paperback: 205 Pages (2000-08)
list price: US$26.95 -- used & new: US$25.99
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Asin: 0820445118
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This volume, a general history of the church in the Middle Ages, pays close attention to the spiritual, intellectual, and institutional aspects of medieval Christianity. From its beginnings, the church has existed in a state of tension between two forces: the spirit of order and the spirit of prophecy. The spirit of order attempts to reform humanity and human institutions; the spirit of prophecy attempts to transform them into the world of God. This tension created a balance within the church that kept it from forgetting the nature of basic religious experience while continuing to remain sensitive to the needs of society. ... Read more

26. Canonical Collections of the Early Middle Ages (Ca.400-1140: A Bibliographical Guide to the Manuscripts and Literature (History of Medieval Canon Law)
by Lotte Kery
Hardcover: 384 Pages (1999-12)
list price: US$54.95 -- used & new: US$54.92
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Asin: 0813209188
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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In this first volume of the new History of Medieval CanonLaw series, Lotte Kry presents a bibliographical survey of thechronological and systematic canonical collections in the Latin Westfrom the beginnings of Christianity to Gratian's Decretum(ca. A.D. 1140). Divided into three large chronological periods-EarlyMedieval, Carolingian, and Gregorian Reform-the book includes acatalogue of early medieval canonistic manuscripts and valuableinformation about them. For each collection, Kry has described itstype and contents, the time and place of compilation, and whenpossible, its author. In addition, full bibliographies have beenprovided for each collection. ... Read more

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3-0 out of 5 stars For specialists
Titles of 190 collections. Extremely brief details on the author, dates, contents, and editions, plus citations for bibliographies that cite them. ... Read more

27. The New Cambridge Medieval History (7 Volume Set)
Hardcover: 8186 Pages (2006-04-24)
list price: US$1,774.99 -- used & new: US$1,440.66
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Asin: 0521853605
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Written by leading international scholars and incorporating the very latest research, the Cambridge Medieval History is the essential reference tool for anyone interested in the medieval world. Originally published between 1911 and 1936, and now out of print, it has been replaced by The New Cambridge Medieval History which presents a reliable, detailed history from late antiquity to c. 1500. Published in seven volumes, with Volume IV divided into two parts, it provides a unique, authoritative guide to medieval life and thought. ... Read more

28. A Brief History of Medieval Warfare
by Peter Reid
Paperback: 620 Pages (2008-03-04)
list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$0.50
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Asin: 0786720719
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Quick and accessible introduction to a moment in history.

For over 150 years, from 1314 to 1485, England fought an almost continuous war with its neighbors. This period saw an unprecedented supremacy of the English army over those of its enemies. Reid proposes that the key to English success lay in its preparations and in its style of warfare, interweaving his analysis with a dramatic telling of the main events on land and at sea. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars A Brief History of Medieval Warfare: Seemingly hundreds of names and dozens of battles and countless dynastic connections abound
War is hell!. It is hell now in the cesspools of Iraq and Afghanistan; it was also hellish in the high middle ages of the 14th-15 centuries. Author Peter Reid is a major general (retired) in the British Army who is also a commentator on military affairs for the BBC. In over 600 closely printed pages he presents a panoramic view of the sanguinary conflicts of this bloody period which ran from 1314 to 1485
Themost interesting part of the book was the introductory chapters wherin the author surveys how soldiers of the era dressed for battle, were provisioned, fought and were paid. There were no real standing armies in this time of nascent nationalistic aspirations. Battle was fought hand to hand and you looked your enemy in the eye before you tried to kill him. Recovery from wounds was rare; cruelty was prevalent.
The history begins with the battle of Crecy in 1314. This important battle was won by the outnumbered English troops fighting in France under the great warrior/monarch Edward III. The English longbow proved decisive as literally hundreds of thousands of arrows would be launched against the enemy. The French knights and their crossbowmen were soundly defeated.
The English would also do well using the longbow under the inspired leadership of King Henry V in the famed battle of Agincourt in 1415.
Reid recounts the key battles, plots and strategy used by England and France during the long 100 years war which lasted from 1337 to 1453. The English were finally defeated losing their French territories in Aquitaine, Normandy but holding on to Calais. Outstanding warriors of the war were Joan of Arc and Edward the Black Prince of England. Almost 2/3 of the book deals with this crucial European war. The English grew weary of the endless war as dynastic struggles and domestic affairs became more important. The war ended with France triumphant. The French had ended their civil wars, developed defensive weapons and improved armor to withstand the assault of arrows.
Reid also discusses the War of the Roses fought between the Houses of York and Lancaster (first called the War of the Roses by Sir Walter Scott in the nineteenth century). The wars ended with the victory of Edward IV and the York faction. Edward IV was also successful in defeating the Duke of Buckingham who sought tousurp his throne. He became King of England in 1483.
The book ends with a discussion of Richard III's murder of the princes in the Tower of London and his defeat at the hands of Henry Tudor. Richard was killed at Bosworth Field in 1485. Henry Tudor was crowned as Henry VII begining the Tudor dynasty which lasted until the death of Elizebeth I in 1603.
Reid has done his military homework in a well researched book. He has included short biographies of the key players and provided a glossary of military terms in use during the medieval era. His style is dry and the reader can doze off among recountings of all the carnage. The book will appeal to military history buffs. Reid provides maps to help explain the action.
... Read more

29. Papal Letters in the Middle Ages (History of Medieval Canon Law)
by Detlev Jasper, Horst Fuhrmann
Hardcover: 225 Pages (2001-06)
list price: US$39.95 -- used & new: US$39.92
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Asin: 0813209196
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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This second volume in the History of Medieval Canon Law series discusses the earliest papal decretals, covering the period from the end of the fourth century to the end of the ninth century. In contrast to earlier scholarly works, which usually skim over the beginnings of the papal decretal tradition and the earliest collections containing them, the authors begin with the first papal letters and thoroughly describe their transmission and reception into the canonical tradition up to Gratian's Decretum (1140).They examine the letters of twenty-five popes from Siricius (384-399), whose pontificate undoubtedly produced the first known papal decretal in 385, to Stephen V (885-891). ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Highly useful
Brief, detailed footnotes, excellent information on the origin of Decretals under Pope Siricius and regarding the Pseudo-Isidorian Decretals. Excellent source for historians. ... Read more

30. The Oxford History of Medieval Europe
Paperback: 416 Pages (2002-03-07)
list price: US$18.95 -- used & new: US$9.56
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Asin: 0192801333
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Covering a thousand years of history, this volume tells the story of the creation of Western civilization in Europe and the Mediterranean. Now available in a compact, more convenient format, it offers the same text and many of the illustrations which first appeared in the widely acclaimed Oxford Illustrated History of Medieval Europe.Written by expert scholars and based on the latest research, the book explores a period of profound diversity and change, focusing on all aspects of medieval history from the empires and kingdoms of Charlemagne and the Byzantines to the new nations which fought the Hundred Years War.The Oxford History of the Medieval World also examines such intriguing cultural subjects as the chivalric code of knights, popular festivals, and the proliferation of new art forms, and the catastrophic social effect of the Black Death.Authoritative and eminently readable, this book will entertain as much as it will educate. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (6)

3-0 out of 5 stars Not great, but not terrible either
I've been looking around for a while for a good single volume history of the middle ages, and I thought that this would be a good candidate.After finishing it, I think I'll keep looking.Let me briefly sum up why this book is not exceptional, and why it isn't as bad as some previous reviewers imply.

As far as the history goes, it's generally accurate.The chapter about Europe's invasion of the Mediterranean was the only one that I noticed significant inaccuracies in; the contract between Christian and Arabic culture was extremely exaggerated.Rosemary Morris is under the common impression that the Muslims during the Middle Ages were extremely advanced and tolerant peaceful multiculturalists who were suddenly invaded by Western Christians who were ignorant, intolerant, and reveled in violent slaughter.This depiction is extremely inaccurate, as (1) the Muslims were just as (or more) violent (they provoked the "invasion" by the Christians by taking the land from the Christians, who were attempting to reconquer land that had belonged to Christendom for centuries), (2) the superior culture the Muslims supposedly possessed was neither superior (it was significantly behind the West in nearly every field besides classical philosophy) nor their own (the ofter cited exampled of Muslim advances in mathematics, medicine, etc. were the product of the heretical Christian groups, Jews, and Persians whom they conquered), and (3) the Muslims were just as prone to slaughter all the inhabitants of cities they conquered (especially the Turks), destroy churches in their territory, and periodically butcher Christian monks and pilgrims as the crusaders were to do the same to the Muslims.The Western Christians were neither so bad as Morris' chapter makes them out to be, nor were the Muslims as good as she claims.Of course, her claims are mirrored in most histories since Gibbon, Voltaire, etc. made their revisionist, anti-Catholic histories, so she's hardly to blame for mirroring a great deal of scholarly work.The problem isn't so much that she does, but that she tends to emphasize these mistakes more than most authors, and it's quite irksome.

The main problem with the history is not what is incorrect, but what is included and what is left out.Several of the authors of this book do not posses a skill which is critical for history writers; the ability to determine what information needs to be included and what information is superfluous.While adding interesting anecdotal stories adds greatly to the enjoyability of history books, and is essential to popular histories (which this book seems to be trying to be), the writers of this book seem to be trying to do that, but end up giving useless bits of information that are neither interesting nor relevant to the history.I'm not sure if they're supposed to be inside jokes, or if the authors really think we care about some of the obscure details they throw in, but there really isn't space for things like that in a 500 page history that covers the entire history of the Middle Ages.They're already pressed for space without wasting it on worthless details.On the flip side, there is an appalling lack of detail concerning English history.I'm not sure if the authors were intentionally trying to avoid showing a preference for England (writing an Oxford history and all) and overcompensated, or what, but the lack of discussion of English history in a history of Europe in the Middle Ages is really quite shocking.I would also have liked to see a bit more discussion of Byzantine history.It's not nearly so neglected as English history, but it certainly could have used a bit more detail.I thought at first that they were trying to focus mostly on Western Christendom (e.g. Catholic Christendom), but then they went off on a massive discussion of the history of Arabic, Turkish, and Persian civilization, so I'm not sure why Byzantium wasn't covered in very much detail.Finally, I would have liked to see a bit more discussion of theology and philosophy.Many of the historical events discussed are unintelligible unless one understands what was going on in the fields of theology and philosophy.Surely some discussion of the theological divergence between the West and East is in order in a book like this?

All of this would be forgivable, however, if the book were fun to read.I'm willing to tolerate small historical inaccuracies or oversights made by authors of popular histories; it's the price we pay for their rhetorical skills.The prose in this book, however, is atrocious.Historians are frequently accused of being horrific bores, and this book simply cements this stereotype.This book is certainly not fun to read by any stretch of the imagination.Some portions of the book are so muddled it is difficult to understand what point the author is trying to make.Poor prose is excusable in academic publications; it's the price we pay for their scholarship.This book is, however, neither a scholarly success nor an enjoyable read.The history aspect is mediocre, and does not even begin to make up for the poor writing abilities demonstrated by all of the authors.A few of the authors are tolerable, but for the most part it is positively dreary.Brown and Vale are particularly dull.I have no doubt that they are excellent professors and lecturers, but their writing skills leave much to be desired.

I wouldn't recommend this book, but I gave it three stars because I don't know what other book to recommend it its place.A previous reviewer recommend Belloc's Crisis of Civilization, but, while it is a brilliant book, it is not really a history of the Middle Ages, and spends only 75ish pages on the whole period.Belloc's is a far superior book, but if you want to learn about the Middle Ages, it's not really ideal.This book is not great by any stretch of the imagination, but if you're really interested in learning about the Middle Ages, I guess it's not the worst place to start.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent Basic Introduction.
This survey of the history of Medieval Europe consisting of separate topical essays in chapter form and is an excellent basic introduction.In such a short volume it is difficult to provide a fully comprehensive look at Medieval Europe, but this book comes close.

It should be read by any reader either embarking on the study in detail of the Medieval Europe or one who has read a couple in-depth treatments but desires an overview.

Overall this book is a solid introduction to some of the most important historiography and is an excellent fundamental introduction.I highly recommend it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Oxfprd History
Good Book to take an overall look at Medieval History, pleased with the time it took to get it and the condition of the book>

3-0 out of 5 stars Thorough some places, spotty others
I am not a historian, and I read this trying to fill in holes in my background. It is not for the faint of heart -- paragraphs run on for pages, and a certain willingness to plow into deep details is assumed.

My major reservation about the book is its leaving out major British events -- surprising for an Oxford history. Alfred the Great is mentioned in one sentence. William's conquest of England in another sentence. No mention at all is made of the Battle of Hastings, or even the Magna Carta!

4-0 out of 5 stars Good overview of Medieval Europe and the Mediterranean basin
According to George Holmes, editor of _The Oxford History of Medieval Europe_, "western civilization was created in medieval Europe." Much of modern thought and culture, including the modern nation state, ideas of popular sovereignty, modern parliaments, banking, universities that award degrees, and the literary form of the novel, has its origins in the struggles and society of the medieval centuries. Since 1500 nothing comparable to the shattering and rebirth of the West that happened between the years 400 and 900 has occurred, nor has arisen anything as fundamentally novel and distinct as the culture that grew up around the cathedrals, universities, royal courts, and commercial cities between the years 900 and 1500.

This book is an anthology and is divided into eight sections; an editor's forward and an editor's postscript, both by Holmes, and six chapters, each by a different author and each concerned with a different era and region of medieval Europe (chapters focus on either the Mediterranean basin or northern Europe beyond the Alps and the Pyrenees). In addition to the text there were a number of plates depicting medieval art and around twenty very helpful maps throughout the book.

Chapter one was on the transformation of the Roman Mediterranean into that of the early medieval era (400 to 900) and was by Thomas Brown. Main themes are the rise and long, slow decline of the Byzantine Empire and what Brown called the "age of invasions," the upheaval in the region caused by the arrival of Germanic peoples (notably the Lombards, the most devastating), the Slavs, the Persians (a revitalized Persian empire, though eventually defeated by Emperor Heraclius, did lead to a failure of the Byzantines to reestablish authority over Italy and the Balkans), and the Arabs. Islam had phenomenal success due to the struggle between the Persians and the Byzantines, the abilities and dedication of its soldiers, the political prowess of the early caliphs, the simple appeal of its doctrines, and the political and religious alienation of Byzantium's subjects. Also of great importance was the growing power and independence of the pope (thanks in large part due to the Franks, beginning with Charlemagne), vital in creating a distinctive Western Europe, different politically, ecclesiastically, and culturally from Byzantium (other factors in fostering a distinct Western identity were the collapse of land trade routes and the growing linguistic cleavage).

Chapter two dealt with northern Europe in the Dark Ages (400 to 900) and was written by Edward James. In this period the north found "its own voice," as thanks to the spread of Christianity (and writing) northerners began to produce their own written record, allowing the north to emerge "into the light of history" for the first time, as Romanization (the spread of writing, ideas of law and government, and Greek and Latin knowledge) continued ironically after the collapse of the actual Roman Empire. As with the preceding chapter much of this section dealt with the invasions of various peoples, largely Germanic (James preferred the term migrations). James also discussed the social structure of the various barbarian kingdoms, the importance of the kin-group as a social and legal institution, the evolution of Latin in the region, and the impact of the Vikings.

Chapter three was written by David Whitton and focused on the society of northern Europe in the High Middle Ages (900-1200). Major themes were what Whitten called the "lineaments of power," the complex nature of feudalism; the intricate web of duties, obligations, vassalage, and tenure between kings, nobility, and the men under them and the medieval arms race of castle building and producing expensively equipped knights, caused not by Viking or Magyar invasions (which had ended) or a decline in the economy (which was recovering quite well) but by the anxiety of lords to consolidate, maintain, and even expand their power and domains. Also covered was the evolution of monasticism, the nature of papal authority in northern Europe, and the twelfth-century Renaissance.

Chapter four (by Rosemary Morris) was titled "northern Europe invades the Mediterranean," an apt name as it chronicled the intervention of northern European powers into Italy, lands of the "Byzantine Commonwealth" (lands under the authority of Constantinople or within its powerful cultural orbit), and the Islamic world (notably in Spain - the beginnings of the Reconquista - and of course the Crusades). I found the comparison between Christian settlers and their society and their treatment of non-Christian subjects in Spain and in Outremer - the Christian conquered areas of the Holy Land - quite fascinating. A fantastic chapter, Morris covered the decline of the Abbasid caliphate in Baghdad, the rise of independent Muslim states, the subsequent reunification of Islam in the twelfth century as a direct result of Christian involvement in the Middle East, and the polarization of Muslim and Christian religious attitudes (away from earlier more tolerant ones) particularly in Spain. Also covered were issues of church reform and the development of long distance trade.

Chapter five was by Peter Denley and focused on the Renaissance Mediterranean. Too much was covered to adequately summarize here, but I found Denley's assertions that the early voyages of exploration by Vasco da Gama and others had deep medieval routes (though of course their results produced a profound break with the middle ages) and however revolutionary humanist and Renaissance ideas were, their origins (particularly two elements, chivalric and religious in nature) were firmly rooted in medieval culture.

Chapter six dealt with civilization in northern Europe from 1200 to 1500 and was by Malcolm Vale. Major themes included the evolution of the ceremonies and symbols of royalty, the rise and fall of various royal dynasties (that got a little dry), the evolution of the papacy and monasticism, and a discussion of chivalry and of medieval literature.

I found the book interesting and a good overview. Some parts were more interesting than others but all in all I found it a valuable read. I would have liked more detail on some issues but it was intended to be fairly broad in scope.
... Read more

31. An Economic and Social History of Later Medieval Europe, 1000-1500
by Steven A. Epstein
Paperback: 302 Pages (2009-04-27)
list price: US$28.99 -- used & new: US$24.66
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Asin: 052170653X
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This book examines the most important themes in European social and economic history from the beginning of growth around the year 1000 to the first wave of global exchange in the 1490s. These five hundred years witnessed the rise of economic systems, such as capitalism, and the social theories that would have a profound influence on the rest of the world over the next five centuries. The basic story, the human search for food, clothing, and shelter in a world of violence and scarcity, is a familiar one, and the work and daily routines of ordinary women and men are the focus of this volume. Surveying the full extent of Europe, from east to west and north to south, Steven Epstein illuminates family life, economic and social thought, war, technologies, and other major themes while giving equal attention to developments in trade, crafts, and agriculture. The great waves of famine and then plague in the fourteenth century provide the centerpiece of a book that seeks to explain the causes of Europe's uneven prosperity and its response to catastrophic levels of death. Epstein also sets social and economic developments within the context of the Christian culture and values that were common across Europe and that were in constant tension with Muslims, Jews, and dissidents within its boundaries and the great Islamic and Tartar states on its frontier. ... Read more

32. Medieval History For Dummies (For Dummies (History, Biography & Politics))
by Stephen Batchelor
Paperback: 404 Pages (2010-07-21)
list price: US$19.99 -- used & new: US$13.33
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Asin: 0470747838
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Is your knowledge of The Crusades less than tip-top? Maybe you're curious about Columbus, or you're desperate to read about the Black Death in all its gory detail? Whatever your starting point, this expert guide has it all - from kings, knights and anti-Popes, to invasion, famine, the Magna Carta and Joan of Arc (and a few rebellious peasants thrown in for good measure!). Get ready for a rip-roaring ride through the political, religious and cultural life of the Middle Ages, one of the most talked-about periods in history.


Medieval History for Dummies includes:

Part I: The Early Middle Ages
Chapter 1: The Middle Ages: When, Where, What, Who?
Chapter 2: The end of Rome and the not so ‘Dark Ages'.
Chapter 3: Angles, Saxons and Feudalism.
Chapter 4: The Carolingians grab their chance.
Chapter 5: Charlemagne - A new empire is born.

Part II: The Making of Europe
Chapter 6: The (Holy Roman) Empire Strikes Back.
Chapter 7: East Meets West: Islam in the Western Mediterranean.
Chapter 8: The Vikings: A threat from the north.
Chapter 9: Schism: The Church splits itself in two.
Chapter 10: The Normans:  The ‘real' Middle Ages begin.

Part III: ‘Holy War': Crusading at home and abroad.
Chapter 11: Crusade: A call to arms.
Chapter 12: The First Crusade
Chapter 13: England vs France & Pope vs Emperor
Chapter 14: The Second Crusade & The ‘Crusades at Home'
Chapter 15: Richard vs Saladin: The Third Crusade
Chapter 16: The later Crusades and other failures.

Part IV: Parliament, Priories, Provisions & Plague
Chapter 17:  John, Henry, Rudolf & Edward.
Chapter 18: Monks & Merchants: The new power brokers
Chapter 19: The Papacy on Tour: Avignon and the Anti-Popes
Chapter 20: ‘God's Judgement?': The Black Death

Part V: The End of the Middle and the start of discovery.
Chapter 21: One Hundred Years of War
Chapter 22: The Peasants are Revolting
Chapter 23: Agincourt, Joan of Arc & the French recovery
Chapter 24: Columbus & The New World

Part VI: The Part of Tens
Chapter 25: Ten Rubbish Kings
Chapter 26: Ten Curious Medieval Pastimes
Chapter 27: Ten Great Castles
Chapter 28: Ten People Who Changed The World
Chapter 29: Ten Great Books (To read next)

... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars medieval history for dummies
easily read.interesting little tidbits.good explainations typical for dummies book.i like them a lot. ... Read more

33. The Cambridge History of Later Medieval Philosophy: From the Rediscovery of Aristotle to the Disintegration of Scholasticism, 1100-1600
Paperback: 1056 Pages (1988-07-29)
list price: US$103.00 -- used & new: US$84.00
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Asin: 0521369339
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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This is a history of the great age of scholastism from Abelard to the rejection of Aristotelianism in the Renaissance, combining the highest standards of medieval scholarship with a respect for the interests and insights of contemporary philosophers, particularly those working in the analytic tradition. The volume follows on chronologically from The Cambridge History of Later Greek and Early Medieval Philosophy, though it does not continue the histories of Greek and Islamic philosophy but concentrates on the Latin Christian West. Unlike other histories of medieval philosophy which divide the subject matter by individual thinkers and emphasise the parts of more historical and theological interest, this volume is organised by those topics in which recent philosophy has made the greatest progress. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

3-0 out of 5 stars average...but informative
the overall presentation and framework are sound, scholarly; perhaps due to different viewpoints from various authors, the materials are treated unevenly--some subject matters are in depth, captivating; others are sypnotic, dull at best. overall, this obscure topic was illuminated in a professional, responsible manner. contains a trove of great bibliography and references for research...

5-0 out of 5 stars A Massive Piece of Work
This book is a massive piece of work edited by Anthony Kenney, Jan Pinborg and the late Norman Kretzmann. Moreover, Eleonore Stump is an associate editor of this text as well. The book itself is over 1000 pages. It is a history of late medieval philosophy from about 1100 to 1600. The book is essentially a series of essays that deal with the various philosophical trends, ideas, issues, etc. that were prevalent within the aforementioned dates. The book deals with Aristotelian logic, logic in the middle ages (semantic theory), logic in the high middle ages, metaphysics and epistemology, natural philosophy, philosophy of mind and action, ethics, politics, and scholasticism. Thus, the reader of this text will gain a greater understanding about Abelard and old logic to free will and free choice to God's knowledge of future contingents, and much more. The Islamic philosophers and their influences and ideas are covered as well as the Jesus society philosophers of the late reformation period (i.e. Molina, Suarez, etc.). The text itself is not for the beginning philosophy student, thus the contributors expect their readers to have some back ground knowledge in the issues at hand. This book is meant for the serious student of this period. Therefore, if you love to study the philosophers of the Medieval period, then you will love the detail that this book provides. I highly recommend it.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Classic for Medievalists
Top medieval scholars edited this collection of essays by other top medieval scholars which brings to light some of the best thought regarding this important, but oft-neglected period in the history of philosophy.While nearly twenty years old, these essays are as enduring as the figures of which they are about. must for any serious student of the scholastic period of medieval philosophy. ... Read more

34. The Cambridge History of Medieval Political Thought c.350-c.1450 (The Cambridge History of Political Thought)
Paperback: 816 Pages (1991-10-25)
list price: US$58.00 -- used & new: US$53.99
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Asin: 0521423880
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This volume offers a comprehensive and authoritative account of the history of a complex and varied body of ideas over a period of more than one thousand years. A work of both synthesis and assessment, The Cambridge History of Medieval Political Thought presents the results of several decades of critical scholarship in the field, and reflects in its breadth of enquiry precisely that diversity of focus that characterized the medieval sense of the "political," preoccupied with universality at some levels, and with almost minute particularity at others. Among the vital questions explored by the distinguished team of contributors are the nature of authority, of justice, of property; the problem of legitimacy, of allegiance, of resistance to the powers that be; the character and functions of law, and the role of custom in maintaining a social structure. ... Read more

35. General Issues in the Study of Medieval Logistics: Sources, Problems And Methodologies (History of Warfare, V. 36)
Hardcover: 302 Pages (2005-12-01)
list price: US$160.00 -- used & new: US$95.85
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Asin: 9004147691
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Logistics is a central concern for military strategists, but the study of logistics in the past entails far more than merely military aspects. The study of resources and their production, distribution and consumption in pre-modern societies, of road-networks and communications, and of transportation, is an essential precondition, so that the study of logistics is also the study of pre-industrial social, economic and spatial organisation. This volume presents a series of papers dealing with the methodological, technical and historical issues associated with the study of logistics in all its aspects, and in particular demonstrates the value of modern computer-modelling and of integrating archaeological, historical and environmental research techniques and agendas into a common project. ... Read more

36. The History of the Medieval World: From the Conversion of Constantine to the First Crusade
by Susan Wise Bauer
Hardcover: 746 Pages (2010-02-22)
list price: US$35.00 -- used & new: US$18.48
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Asin: 0393059758
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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A masterful narrative of the Middle Ages, when religion became a weapon for kings all over the world.From the schism between Rome and Constantinople to the rise of the T'ang Dynasty, from the birth of Muhammad to the crowning of Charlemagne, this erudite book tells the fascinating, often violent story of kings, generals, and the peoples they ruled.

In her earlier work, The History of the Ancient World, Susan Wise Bauer wrote of the rise of kingship based on might. But in the years between the fourth and the twelfth centuries, rulers had to find new justification for their power, and they turned to divine truth or grace to justify political and military action. Right thus replaces might as the engine of empire.

Not just Christianity and Islam but the religions of the Persians and the Germans, and even Buddhism, are pressed into the service of the state. This phenomenon--stretching from the Americas all the way to Japan--changes religion, but it also changes the state. 18 illustrations; 100 maps. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (14)

5-0 out of 5 stars the most efficient way on self-education
I extremely enjoyed these books. Susan Wise Bauer successfully accumulatedthe most important events of human history in only two books. The stories are well supported with facts. These books are indeed an excellent resource on having a general idea about the history of humanity.

2-0 out of 5 stars Hardly worth the paper
While not utterly terrible, this book is a huge disappointment. It is a disjointed quasi-narrative that jumps back and forth among four areas: Europe, the Middle East, India, and China. For the most part, these four places have no connection but for the coincidence of occuping the same place on the timeline. Each chapter is a superficial romp, dealing only with kings and generals. The narratives all sound the same after a while: (1) Upstart kills the ruler, (2) upstart (usuallly) sucks as the new ruler, (3) someone else kills the new ruler, etc. This is the worst type of "history from above"; you would think that the events of the world were dictated by the whim of a few individuals. To call this book superficial is generous; I just can't think of a better word at the moment.

The only reason that I didn't give the book one star is that the author does write well--to bad what she writes isn't worth reading. I'm sure you can find better uses for your time and money.

Not recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars Catching Up on the Education I Missed
I think I missed a lot of vital information when I was young, so I've spent the rest of my life trying to catch up. This book was a big help. Ms. Bauer's approach to history is chronological and personal. This is exactly what I like. If you prefer to read history that tracks societies or ideas in aggregate, you may want a different book.

The main thing I learned from this book is the nature of religion. I was raised to consider religious ideas on their own, as if they were the result of people wondering about life, suggesting answers. Medieval history proves that religion did not develop this way. All the major religions owe their existence to rulers, men who designed or re-tooled the doctrines to preserve the rulers' power. We only have these ideas to argue about because they once served someone's earthly ambitions. [see Bauer's last page on the conversion of Constantine]

I find this fascinating. It's possible for people to burn with passion, thinking they are caring for their own needs, when in fact they are serving someone else's desire for power. And the person served may have died several centuries ago, but the practice survived.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very well done
After spending too much of my life on technology and engineering, I have been spending my last 10 years reading History for Fun.It is my pleasure and my passion.
I'm still learning a lot about history so I can't claim to be an expert.
I can't claim that Bauer is "correct". But at this point, I read multiple histories from multiple authors to generate my own view.

But Bauer's book is a great place to start to get a readable over-view of "medieval" history to allow one to start to drill down into areas and times of particular interest.(Or maybe just get enough to move on to the next era.)

But this, by far, is the most readable history books that cover such a long period of time over such a wide area (the whole earth).


The chapters average around 10 pages.Each chapter will cover a period of about 20-50 years in a particular area (Western Europe, Middle East, India, Korea, Japan, China, etc).It makes a nice nugget.As time change, an area may be "West Francia", "Spain", or "North Africa".
Each chapter is relatively self-contained, as much as possible, within the context of a 600 page continuing narrative.Each chapter is easy to read, fascinating, and there always seems to be a little "humor" in the background.

This is a narrative; about kings, queens, popes, dukes, eunuchs, states, nations, wars... "Classic narrative history", it doesn't spend any time talking about what it meant to be a young boy in Korea in 814 or marriage rites in Persia or bathing habits in France. (Thank God.)

Susan Bauer is a great writer, but paired with Norton Press, it makes a great book.The production is just great.
Each chapter has at least one map.The map covers the area being discussed in the chapter.Every city, river, tribe, clan, state mentioned within the text is marked on the map.(There were a few little slip-ups but it became a game for me, as I love maps).There are so few productions that take the time to make sure that a map relates to the text and the text relates to the map.

The other great production part of the book is that there are 2 different footnotes.Footnotes that reference original sources are placed in the back of the book; footnotes that are really sidelines, are at the bottom of the page.I hate books that mix source references and side notes; it is just lazy publishing. But Norton does Bauer's work well.Side-lines, and there are not that many, are at the bottom of the page; you don't have to switch back and forth.(A sign the publisher cared about people actually trying to read the book.)

Third great feature of the book is that each chapter ends with a timeline, actually parallel timelines that cover major events and rulers in surrounding areas.It allows one to re-anchor the last 10-15 pages into the bigger context of time and space.
It is a long book, but if you have any interest in understanding the world between 400-1100, I think this is a great place to start.I wish this had been available 10 years ago.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good breadth and depth for a history of Europe
This thick and heavy book tells the story of the Europe from the time of Constantine to the First Crusade. The book covers all corners of Europe, and even reaches beyond to other world powers that influenced Europe - including India, China, and others.

Now, as you might expect with a book that has a very broad reach, it cannot go into depth on the entire world. (Unless it is going to be as large as the building.) What this book seems to me to be is a history of Europe, and a very good one. It contains a lot of interesting details, and I liked the breadth and depth that the author took. It's a good book, well worth your time reading. ... Read more

37. The New Cambridge Medieval History, Vol. 2: c. 700-c. 900
Hardcover: 1082 Pages (1995-09-29)
list price: US$230.99 -- used & new: US$219.41
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Asin: 052136292X
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This volume of The New Cambridge Medieval History covers most of the period of Frankish and Carolingian dominance in western Europe.It was one of remarkable political and cultural coherence, combined with crucial, very diverse and formative developments in every sphere of life.Adopting an interdisciplinary approach, the authors examine the interaction between rulers and ruled, how power and authority actually worked, and the society and culture of Europe as a whole.The volume is divided into four parts. Part I encompasses the events and political developments in the whole of the British Isles, the west and east Frankish kingdoms, Scandinavia, the Slavic and Balkan regions, Spain, Italy, and those aspects of Byzantine and Muslim history which impinged on the west between c. 700 and c. 900.Parts II, III and IV cover themes and topics concerning church and society, and cultural and intellectual developments. ... Read more

38. The Penguin Atlas of Medieval History (Hist Atlas)
by Colin McEvedy
 Paperback: 96 Pages (1968-04-30)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$4.62
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Asin: 0140708227
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39. The Cambridge History of Medieval English Literature
Paperback: 1070 Pages (2002-05-06)
list price: US$67.99 -- used & new: US$63.15
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Asin: 0521890462
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This is the first full-scale history of medieval English literature in nearly a century. Thirty-three contributors provide information on a vast range of literary texts and the conditions of their production and reception. The volume also contains a chronology, full bibliography and a detailed index. This book offers the most extensive account available of the medieval literatures so drastically reconfigured in Tudor England. It will prove essential reading for scholars of the Renaissance as well as medievalists, and for historians as well as literary specialists. ... Read more

40. A History of Everyday Life in Medieval Scotland (A History of Everyday Life in Scotland)
by Edward J. Cowan, Lizanne Henderson
Paperback: 352 Pages (2010-12-31)
list price: US$40.00 -- used & new: US$40.00
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Asin: 0748621571
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The editors recount the daily behaviors, experiences, and beliefs of the Scottish people from early times to 1600. They establish the character of everyday life in Scotland as it developed over time and within specific contexts. Despite focusing on the mundane, the editors also heed the experience of war, famine, environmental disaster, and other disturbances, assessing long-term processes of change in religion, politics, and economic and social affairs. In showing how the extraordinary impinged on the everyday, this book draws on every possible kind of evidence, including a diverse range of documentary sources; artefactual, environmental, and archaeological materials; and the published work of many disciplines. Contributors respect a variety of Scottish voices and reveal the nature of daily life across rank, class, gender, age, religion, and ethnicity. They mark the differences between Highland and Lowland, Western Isles and Northern Isles, inland and coastal, and urban and rural, and they trace the influence of language, whether Gaelic, Welsh, English, Pictish, Norse, Latin, or Scots. Particularly fascinating are advances brought about by trading and migration. Taken as a whole, this portrait introduces a brand new perspective on medieval Scotland, with implications for all areas of historical scholarship.

... Read more

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