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One of Choice's Outstanding Academic Titles for 2012
"Accomplished historian Ruiz examines festivals in Spain from approximately 1200 to the mid-17th century. Starting from the premise that these events conveyed social, political, and ideological content, the author argues effectively that a close analysis over time of various festivals and related traditions--e.g., those associated with royal entries and visits to major municipalities; royal births, weddings, and funerals; Corpus Christi and Carnival--improves historians' understanding of changes in political processes and culture. . . . The book provides information and insight that anthropologists, students of Spanish literature, and historians of Spain and colonial Spanish America will draw upon for many years."--Choice
"[O]ne may recommend the present study as a labour of love--a detailed and interesting introduction to that colourful world of chivalry which, as he confesses, has captivated the author since his youth."--James Casey, European History Quarterly
"Ruiz is . . . a master storyteller. The chroniclers who originally recounted these festivities and processions in loving detail intended to recreate for their readers a complete vision of the clothing, music, food, decorative arches, dances, and jousts that constituted them, and Ruiz has done the same service for us."--Jodi Campbell, English Historical Review
"This study brings to the forefront the Iberian Peninsula, a geographical area usually neglected in the studies of these celebrations, while it informs, enlightens, and entertains. A great read."--Candelas Gala, European Legacy
"In this engaging book, Teofilo Ruiz shows himself to be a supreme master of ceremonies. Taking as his point of departure the travels of Philip II of Spain, he places the ceremonies and festivities with which the king was everywhere greeted into the general context of Iberian festive practices and traditions. While describing numerous festive occasions with a wealth of colorful detail, the book makes a valuable contribution to our understanding of continuity and change in Spanish political, social, and cultural life between the High Middle Ages and the seventeenth century."--Sir John Elliott, University of Oxford
"This book opens a new chapter in our current understanding of Spanish ceremonial life. And except for books published in Spanish, it virtually stands alone. It spans two broad periods of time, contrasting and comparing the Middle Ages with the early modern era, and does so in an engagingly, very appealing manner. Ruiz's study is both original and important."--Richard L. Kagan, Johns Hopkins University