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How the Irish Saved Civilization: The Untold Story of Ireland's Heroic Role From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of Medieval Europe (The Hinges of History) Paperback – Unabridged, February 1, 1996
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Top Customer Reviews
As a kid growing up in Ireland I remember our primary school teacher telling us about the important work carried out by Irish monks beginning in the sixth century, where they preserved and copied many important works of the ancient Western canon and slowly helped to re-illuminate Europe during the Dark Ages. Since then I've always preserved a certain curiosity about the story at the back of my mind. As a colonized people, Ireland's indigenous culture was suppressed for centuries, so could it be true that in a pre-colonial period the Irish had helped to save Western civilisation? When I saw this book on the shelf I bought it straight away.
In fairness, I should have been more circumspect. The reviews on the back cover used phrases like "shamelessly engaging, effortlessly scholarly" [Thomas Keneally]; "lyrical, playful ... entirely engaging" [NY Times]; "entertainingly told" [Sunday Telegraph] which should have rung all sorts of warning bells. Keneally (who should know better) is accidentally correct when he uses the term "effortlessly scholarly" since it's plain as day that no scholarly effort at all went into this researchless mess. I have not the space here to describe the crazed prose flowing from Cahill's out-of-control pen, nor the arm-chancing shallowness of his unbearable pseduo-intellectualism. With little of any substance to comment on, much of the book's intellectual pedigree can be can be judged from the prose style alone. Cahill plainly takes himself quite seriously as a scholar, but the mask just keeps slipping. The following are some examples.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a fantastic book. It tells of how God used the Irish to shape and maintain His church in a way that many do not know of. Read morePublished 2 days ago by Tyler Williams
. As with all authors, Cahil is writing a midst his research, he also writes from his presuppositions, which in a couple of places the reader could get the wrong idea. Read morePublished 7 days ago by Orthodox Book Club
Wonderfully opinionated history told in magnificently vigorous prose. I cannot wait to read the rest of the series!Published 15 days ago by Anglican Gator
A little slow and wayward in it's writing but a fun and interesting book nonetheless.Published 1 month ago by Richard M. Duffy
Besides this being one the most interesting books I've ever read I was also very impressed with the writing skills of this author. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Don
One of the best books on Christianity and its history you'll ever find. Very informative and written simply and clearly enough that the reader can easily understand what it says... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Elkgrove West