Late Antiquity: A Guide to the Postclassical World (Harvard University Press Reference Library)

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9780674511736: Late Antiquity: A Guide to the Postclassical World (Harvard University Press Reference Library)

The first book of its kind, this richly informative and comprehensive guide to the world of late antiquity offers the latest scholarship to the researcher along with great reading pleasure to the browser. In eleven comprehensive essays and in over 500 encyclopedic entries, an international cast of experts provides essential information and fresh perspectives on the history and culture of an era marked by the rise of two world religions, unprecedented political upheavals that remade the map of the known world, and the creation of art of enduring glory.

By extending the commonly accepted chronological and territorial boundaries of the period--to encompass Roman, Byzantine, Sassanian, and early Islamic cultures, from the middle of the third century to the end of the eighth--this guide makes new connections and permits revealing comparisons. Consult the article on "Angels" and discover their meaning in Islamic as well as classical and Judeo-Christian traditions. Refer to "Children," "Concubinage," and "Divorce" for a fascinating interweaving of information on the family. Read the essay on "Barbarians and Ethnicity" and see how a topic as current as the construction of identity played out in earlier times, from the Greeks and Romans to the Turks, Huns, and Saxons. Turn to "Empire Building" to learn how the empire of Constantine was supported by architecture and ceremony.

Or follow your own path through the broad range of entries on politics, manufacturing and commerce, the arts, philosophy, religion, geography, ethnicity, and domestic life. Each entry introduces readers to another facet of the postclassical world: historic figures and places, institutions, burial customs, food, money, public life, and amusements. A splendid selection of illustrations enhances the portrait.

The intriguing era of late antiquity emerges completely and clearly, viewed in a new light, in a guide that will be relished by scholars and general readers alike.

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Review:

Late antiquity--that period of history between 250 and 800 C.E.--was a unique and notable era, when the Roman and Sassanian empires spanned a great arc from the Atlantic coasts of Europe and Morocco across the Mediterranean, into the Balkans, and through the Middle East as far as Afghanistan. Historians have tended to dismiss this era as the decline and fall, and little more. In contrast, the editors of Late Antiquity (all esteemed professors at Princeton) make a great case for this era as the source from which our modern culture sprung. During that time, Constantinople and Baghdad came into being, and paganism took hold of people's imaginations so strongly that it's still with us today. "Much of what was created in that period still runs in our veins," they say, such as the codification of Roman law, the Jewish Talmud, the basic structure and doctrine of the Christian church, and the birth of Islam.

There are learned essays on topics such as Islam, the Christian triumph, and sacred landscapes; habitat, war, and violence; and empire building; as well as a timely piece on barbarians and ethnicity. But these essays, fine though they are, make up but a small fraction of the volume. The lion's share belongs to the alphabetical guide, an A-to-Z encyclopedia of more than 500 entries on items such as almsgiving, angels, bathing, circus factions, contraception, eunuchs, dendrites, Huns, monks, prayer, and pornography. With erudition and clarity, these editors redefine late antiquity, and provide a remarkable source of information for students, sages, history buffs, and antiquity enthusiasts. --Stephanie Gold

About the Author:

G. W. Bowersock is Professor Emeritus of Ancient History at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton.

Peter Brown is Philip and Beulah Rollins Professor of History, Emeritus, at Princeton University.

Oleg Grabar was Professor Emeritus of Islamic Art and Architecture at the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey.

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Book Description HARVARD UNIVERSITY PRESS, United States, 1999. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book. This is a comprehensive guide the world of late antiquity. In 11 essays and over 500 encyclopedia entries, an international cast of experts provides essential information and fresh perspectives on the history and culture of an era by the rise of two world religions, unprecedented political upheavals that remade the map of the known world, and the creation of art of enduring glory. By extending the commonly accepted chronological and territorial boundaries of the period - the encompass Roman, Byzantine, Sassanian, and early Islamic cultures, from the middle of the third century to the end of the eighth - this guide makes new connections and permits revealing comparisons. Consult the article on Angels and discover their meaning in Islamic as well as classical and Judeo-Christian traditions. Refer to children, concubinage, and divorce for an interweaving information on the family. read the essay on Barbarians and ethnicity and see how a topic as current as the construction of identity played out in earlier times, from the Greeks and Romans to the Turks, Huns, and Saxons. Turn to Empire Building to learn how the empire of Constantine was supported buy architecture and ceremony. Or follow your own path through the broad range of entries on politics, manufacturing and commerce, the art, philosophy, religion, geography, ethnicity and domestic life. Each entry introduces readers to another facet of the postclassical world: historic figures and places, institutions, burial customs, food, money, public life, amusements. This work should be of interest to scholars and general readers alike. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9780674511736

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Book Description HARVARD UNIVERSITY PRESS, United States, 1999. Hardback. Book Condition: New. New.. Language: English . Brand New Book. This is a comprehensive guide the world of late antiquity. In 11 essays and over 500 encyclopedia entries, an international cast of experts provides essential information and fresh perspectives on the history and culture of an era by the rise of two world religions, unprecedented political upheavals that remade the map of the known world, and the creation of art of enduring glory. By extending the commonly accepted chronological and territorial boundaries of the period - the encompass Roman, Byzantine, Sassanian, and early Islamic cultures, from the middle of the third century to the end of the eighth - this guide makes new connections and permits revealing comparisons. Consult the article on Angels and discover their meaning in Islamic as well as classical and Judeo-Christian traditions. Refer to children, concubinage, and divorce for an interweaving information on the family. read the essay on Barbarians and ethnicity and see how a topic as current as the construction of identity played out in earlier times, from the Greeks and Romans to the Turks, Huns, and Saxons. Turn to Empire Building to learn how the empire of Constantine was supported buy architecture and ceremony. Or follow your own path through the broad range of entries on politics, manufacturing and commerce, the art, philosophy, religion, geography, ethnicity and domestic life. Each entry introduces readers to another facet of the postclassical world: historic figures and places, institutions, burial customs, food, money, public life, amusements. This work should be of interest to scholars and general readers alike. Bookseller Inventory # AAH9780674511736

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