The publisher’s blurb for Marilyn Dunn’s new book claims that it is ‘the first work on the subject to combine a historical approach with insights provided by ethnography and anthropology’. As is often the case with publisher’s statements, this is something of an exaggeration.
The later 16th century in Italy was a period of 'mental stagnation' wrote G. R. Elton.(1) This highly questionable statement apparently set in motion the entire research project from which the present group of essays emerged (p. 76, n. 64); they contest its validity.
In March 1208 Pope Innocent III proclaimed a crusade against Raimon VI, count of Toulouse, and the ‘Provençal heretics’ supposedly infesting the comital lands between the Garonne and Rhöne Rivers. All those ‘signed with the cross’ were offered the same rights and privileges as crusaders journeying to the Holy Land.
In spite of the time period implied in her subtitle, Ann Thomson’s book covers debates about the materiality of the soul from 1650 to the early 19th century. She deals with a vast range of thinkers – primarily in England and France, but also in the Netherlands.
Most medievalists would be able to cite an example of the close parallels in symbolic thinking about the city and world in the Middle Ages, whether along the lines of ideas of Rome as caput mundi or Augustine’s Two cities.
Over the past 15 years Joseph Bergin has produced two monographs on French bishops which are notable for their ambitious scopes and for their contributions to our understanding of the French Church in the 17th century.(1) His new work Church, Society and Religious Change in France, 1580–1730 is an even more monumental study that only a scholar with his past ac
The growth of academic interest in the ‘Iberian Atlantic World’ during the last decade has also witnessed the expansion of scholarship on the presence of, and role played in it by, Judeoconversos (or ‘New Christians’): the descendants of Jews who were converted (often by force) to Christianity in the 14th and 15th centuries.
This is the book about German Orientalism I felt I could not and did not want to write, and I am very grateful to Ian Almond for having produced it.
'Suggestive’, ‘methodical’ and ‘witty’ are words rarely applied to the same book, but Steffen Patzold’s study of Carolingian ideas about bishops demonstrates all three qualities. Granted, Patzold’s tome cannot hide its origins as a Habilitationsschrift: it is a 660-page brick of a book, of a size and weight that might see it confiscated at airports alongside liquids and sharp objects.
Shortly before he left them, Christ told his disciples that the end of the world was imminent, and would be heralded by a time of tribulation. There would be wars, plagues, famines and false prophets. It would also be a time of evangelical enterprise, during which the word of God would be carried to the ends of the earth.