The Cross Goes North: Processes of Conversion in Northern Europe, AD 300-1300

Front Cover
Martin Carver
Boydell Press, 2005 - History - 588 pages
2 Reviews
In Europe, the cross went north and east as the centuries unrolled: from the Dingle Peninsula to Estonia, and from the Alps to Lapland, ranging in time from Roman Britain and Gaul in the third and fourth centuries to the conversion of peoples in the Baltic area a thousand years later. These episodes of conversion form the basic narrative here. History encourages the belief that the adoption of Christianity was somehow irresistible, but specialists show the underside of the process by turning the spotlight from the missionaries, who recorded their triumphs, to the converted, exploring their local situations and motives. What were the reactions of the northern peoples to the Christian message? Why would they wish to adopt it for the sake of its alliances? In what way did they adapt the Christian ethos and infrastructure to suit their own community? How did conversion affect the status of farmers, of smiths, of princes and of women? Was society wholly changed, or only in marginal matters of devotion and superstition? These are the issues discussed here by thirty-eight experts from across northern Europe; some answers come from astute re-readings of the texts alone, but most are owed to a combination of history, art history and archaeology working together. MARTIN CARVER is Professor of Archaeology, University of York.
  

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Contents

The Politics of Conversion in North Central Europe
15
How do you pray to God? Fragmentation and Variety
29
Processes of Conversion in Northwest Roman Gaul
61
Roman Britain a Failed Promise
89
Votive Deposits and Christian Practice in Late Roman Britain
109
Archaeology and Early Church
127
Romanitas and Realpolitik in Cogitosus Description of the Church
153
Early Medieval Cornwall
171
Design and Meaning in Early Medieval Inscriptions in Britain
327
The Mysteries of Christ in AngloSaxon
351
The Life of St Willibrord
371
Desire Conversion and Reform
397
From a Late Roman Cemetery to the Basilica Sanctorum Cassii
415
From Late Antiquity to Merovingian Times
429
Carolingian Times between Rhine and Elbe
443
Christian Symbols and Scandinavian Women
463

Early Medieval Parish Formation in Dumfries and Galloway
195
AngloSaxon Pagan and Early Christian Attitudes to the Dead
229
The Adaptation of the AngloSaxon Royal Courts to Christianity
243
The Control of Burial Practice in middle AngloSaxon England
259
Three Ages of Conversion at Kirkdale North Yorkshire
289
minster by the Scandinavian lord Orm Gamalson in the eleventh
292
Streanxshalch Strensall and Whitby
311
The Neglected
483
Runestones and the Conversion of Sweden
497
The Scandinavian Animal Styles in Response to Mediterranean
531
The Role of Secular Rulers in the Conversion of Sweden
551
An English Saint in Scandinavia
565
Index
581
Copyright

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