Medieval Foundations of the Western Intellectual Tradition, 400-1400

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Yale University Press, 1999 - History - 388 pages
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This magisterial book is an analysis of the course of Western intellectual history between A.D. 400 and 1400. The book is arranged in two parts: the first surveys the comparative modes of thought and varying success of Byzantine, Latin-Christian, and Muslim cultures, and the second takes the reader from the eleventh-century revival of learning to the high Middle Ages and beyond, the period in which the vibrancy of Western intellectual culture enabled it to stamp its imprint well beyond the frontiers of Christendom.

Marcia Colish argues that the foundations of the Western intellectual tradition were laid in the Middle Ages and not, as is commonly held, in the Judeo-Christian or classical periods. She contends that Western medieval thinkers produced a set of tolerances, tastes, concerns, and sensibilities that made the Middle Ages unlike other chapters of the Western intellectual experience. She provides astute descriptions of the vernacular and oral culture of each country of Europe; explores the nature of medieval culture and its transmission; profiles seminal thinkers (Augustine, Anselm, Gregory the Great, Aquinas, Ockham); studies heresy from Manichaeism to Huss and Wycliffe; and investigates the influence of Arab and Jewish writing on scholasticism and the resurrection of Greek studies. Colish concludes with an assessment of the modes of medieval thought that ended with the period and those that remained as bases for later ages of European intellectual history.
 

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Medieval foundations of the western intellectual tradition 400-1400

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

This is the first book in what promises to be an exciting new series. It will seek to provide "a chronological account of the intellectual life and the development of ideas in Western Europe from the early medieval period to the present day." Read full review

Medieval foundations of the western intellectual tradition, 400-1400

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

This is the first book in what promises to be an exciting new series. It will seek to provide "a chronological account of the intellectual life and the development of ideas in Western Europe from the early medieval period to the present day." Read full review

Contents

The Carolingian Renaissance
66
Celtic and Old French Literature
79
Byzantium
113
The Renaissance of the Twelfth Century
175
Courtly Love Literature
183
Goliardic Poetry Fabliaux Satire
200
Later Medieval Literature
213
Cistercians and Victorines
225
Scholasticism and the Rise of Universities
265
The Logica
274
Reception
319
Poverty the Just Price
326
Regnum and Sacerdotum
335
Conclusion
352
Notes
360
Index
370

Franciscans Dominicans and Later
234
Heresy in the Twelfth and Thirteenth
245

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About the author (1999)

Marcia L. Colish is Frederick B. Artz Professor of History at Oberlin College, Ohio.

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