The History of the Medieval World: From the Conversion of Constantine to the First Crusade

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9780393059755: The History of the Medieval World: From the Conversion of Constantine to the First Crusade
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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. 4 illustrations; 46 maps

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About the Author:

Susan Wise Bauer is a writer, educator, and historian. Her previous books include the Writing With Ease, Writing With Skill, and Story of the World series from Well-Trained Mind Press, as well as The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home, The Well-Educated Mind: A Guide to the Classical Education You Never Had, Rethinking School, The Story of Western Science: From the Writings of Aristotle to the Big Bang Theory, and the History of the World series, all from W. W. W. Norton. She has a Ph.D. in American Studies from the College of William & Mary in Virginia, as well as an M.A. in seventeenth-century literature and a Master of Divinity in Ancient Near Eastern Languages and Literature. For fifteen years, she taught literature and composition at the College of William and Mary.

From AudioFile:

Following on her HISTORY OF THE ANCIENT WORLD, Bauer tackles the history of the medieval world, from the fourth century through the First Crusade at the end of the eleventh century. The flowing narrative traces parallel stories through Europe, Asia, and the Americas, artfully weaving them together and highlighting the similarities in the development of each region. John Lee deftly navigates the dense text with his steady, controlled reading, and his clear enunciation and even pace make the somewhat overwhelming scope of the text easier to digest. The narrative style of Bauer's work transitions well to audio, although the maps and time lines that are sprinkled throughout the written text are sorely missed. The interspersed author's notes, while necessary, are the only disruption in the flow of this detailed historical account. E.N. AudioFile 2010, Portland, Maine

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