Medieval and Renaissance History
The Great Pox
The French Disease in Renaissance Europe
Hardcover ISBN: 0300069340
A weighty study exploring the impact of the French Disease (also known as The Great Pox or syphilis to later generations) in renaissance Europe. The medical history concentrates on the reactions of the doctors and others to the "new" disease, particularly in Italy but with comparisons to other part of Europe, identifies patients from the vast archives of charitable and sanitary institutions, and follows the development of confusion among the intellectual elite as the disease threw accepted medical theory out the window. Includes illustrations. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World
Paperback ISBN: 0609809644
A thought-provoking re-evaluation of Genghis Khan's rise to power sheds light on the revolutionary reforms the conqueror instituted throughout his empire--including religious freedom, diplomatic immunity, and the creation of the Silk Road free-trade zone--as well as on his uniting of the East and West, which set the foundation for the nation-states and global economic systems of the modern era. Reprint. 60,000 first printing.
Under Crescent and Cross
The Jews in the Middle Ages
Hardcover ISBN: 0691033781
Did Muslims and Jews in the Middle Ages cohabit in a peaceful "interfaith utopia?" Or were Jews under Muslim rule persecuted, much as they were in Christian lands? Rejecting both polemically charged "myths," Mark Cohen offers a systematic comparison of Jewish life in medieval Islam and Christendom--the first in-depth explanation of why medieval Islamic-Jewish relations, though not utopic, were less confrontational and violent than those between Christians and Jews in the West.
Knights of God
Paperback ISBN: 0892812214
For nearly 200 years, until their suppression in 1312 on charges of heresy and magical practices, the Order of the Poor Knights of the Temple of Solomon--better known as the Templars--were the most formidable and feared fighting machine in Christendom. Besides their military prowess they also possessed immense wealth and political power, becoming bankers and credit brokers to medieval Europe and the allies of kings and popes. Drawing on contemporary chronicles and original texts, as well as the immense secondary literature, Edward Burman paints a vivid picture of this extraordinary organization of warrior monks and its passage into myth and legend.
The Game of Courting and the Art of the Commune of San Gimignano, 1290-1320
Hardcover ISBN: 0691012105
The erotic frescoes adorning a chamber in San Gimignano's communal bell tower are among the most fascinating surviving examples of secular art from the late Middle Ages. Despite their fame, neither these frescoes--which include scenes of two lovers in a bathtub and Aristotle ridden by his seductress--nor those of the commune council hall have been well understood as products of the communal culture they represent. Here Jean Campbell explores the sources and significance of the images on these walls by constructing an interdisciplinary microhistory of an early Italian commune. Her investigation addresses notions of nobility, personal display, and public space, describing how the game of courting colored urban life in the age of Dante. This book considers the imagery of San Gimignano not primarily as an illustration of political theory, but rather as a manifestation of a vibrant poetic culture that was politically engaged. Campbell identifies a point of tension in the banning of a popular game that originated in courtly pastimes and involved the exchange of love tokens and role reversals in which women became the aggressors. She argues that while the commune attempted to suppress this game when it appeared spontaneously and outside its proper ritual context, civic leaders embraced those aspects of a larger courtly game that lent their commune nobility and vigor. They, like leaders elsewhere in Italy, imagined the sovereignty of their commune in the space where the private world of courtly ceremony met the public realm of the commune.