Monasteries and Monastic Orders: 2000 Years of Christian Art and Culture

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Kristina Krüger, Rolf Toman
Atlasbooks Dist Serv, 2008 - Architecture - 431 pages
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How did the monks, nuns, and hermits live? What rules did they agree to obey? To what extent were they able to uphold those ideals in reality? What was the relationship between the monasteries and worldly authorities? And what was the source of the power that the religious orders were able to exercise in political affairs at various times? Are the remarkable cultural accomplishments of the cloisters simply the fruits of great self-discipline, or did they also result from a privileged way of life? Who were the men and women who entered monasteries? Knowledgeable responses to these and many other questions, in conjunction with opulent illustrations, make this an impressive volume that is destined to become a standard on the subject.

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The earliest Christian monastic communities were founded as hermit colonies in Egypt in the early fourth century. In the sixth century, the Benedictine order modified certain ascetic practices, and ... Read full review


Pachomius Anthony
Benedict of Nursia

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About the author (2008)

Art historian Kristina Krüger is a specialist in the art and architecture of the Middle Ages. Her research and publications, focusing in particular on the relationship between architecture and liturgy, make her the ideal author for this book.

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