By William Manchester

ISBN-10: 0316082791

ISBN-13: 9780316082792

From stories of chivalrous knights to the barbarity of trial through ordeal, no period has been a better resource of awe, horror, and sweetness than the center a long time. In handsomely crafted prose, and with the grace and authority of his notable present for narrative heritage, William Manchester leads us from a civilization tottering on the point of cave in to the grandeur of its rebirth--the dense explosion of power that spawned a few of history's maximum poets, philosophers, painters, adventurers, and reformers, in addition to a few of its such a lot mind-blowing villains--the Renaissance.

Using purely secondary resources, Manchester plunges readers into the medieval frame of mind in a charming, marvelously vibrant well known heritage that humanizes the tumultuous span from the darkish a long time to the sunrise of the Renaissance. He delineates an age while invisible spirits infested the air, whilst tolerance was once obvious as treachery and "a mafia of profane popes desecrated Christianity." along with re-creating the onerous lives of standard humans, the Wesleyan professor of background peoples his tapestry with such figures as Leonardo, Machiavelli, Lucrezia Borgia, Erasmus, Luther, Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. Manchester ( The fingers of Krupp ) devotes a lot consciousness to Magellan, whose globe-straddling voyage shattered Christendom's implicit trust in Europe because the middle of the universe. His portrayal of the center a long time as a time whilst the powerful and the clever flourished, whereas the inventive, the cerebral and the unlucky suffered, earrings real.

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Additional info for A World Lit Only by Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance - Portrait of an Age

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If war took a man even a short distance from a nameless hamlet, the chances of his returning to it were slight; he could not identify it, and finding his way back alone was virtually impossible. Each hamlet was inbred, isolated, unaware of the world beyond the most familiar local landmark: a creek, or mill, or tall tree scarred by lightning. There were no newspapers or magazines to inform the common people of great events; occasional pamphlets might reach them, but they were usually theological and, like the Bible, were always published in Latin, a language they no longer understood.

Peter’s Square in Rome at the time of the coronation of Pope Sixtus V, in 1585. Painting from the Sala Sistina. The Granger Collection, New York. Page 134 Martin Luther. Painting by Lucas Cranach. Alinari/Art Resource, NY. Page 138 Pope Leo X. Painting by Raphael. Alinari/Art Resource, NY. Page 147 Emperor Charles V (Carlos I of Spain). Painting by Titian. Alinari/Art Resource, NY. Page 155 The Reformation Monument, Geneva. Page 177 John Calvin. Painting, artist unknown. Alinari/Art Resource, NY.

D. 900. Therefore tandem hitching was impossible. Peasants labored harder, sweated more, and collapsed from exhaustion more often than their animals. Surrounding them was the vast, menacing, and at places impassable, Hercynian Forest, infested by boars; by bears; by the hulking medieval wolves who lurk so fearsomely in fairy tales handed down from that time; by imaginary demons; and by very real outlaws, who flourished because they were seldom pursued. Although homicides were twice as frequent as deaths by accident, English coroners’ records show that only one of every hundred murderers was ever brought to justice.

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A World Lit Only by Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance - Portrait of an Age by William Manchester

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