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The Cambridge History of Medieval Political Thought c.350-c.1450 (The Cambridge History of Political Thought) First Edition Edition
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This volume contains approximately 20 chapters. The first three cover what the authors call foundations- the first chapter on Christian doctrine by Henry Chadwick (always a pleasure to read) and the following two on Greek and Roman political theory and Roman Law respectively. These are excellent introductions to the medieval developments in these fields. The following chapters trace the emergence of the Byzantine Empire (D.M. Nichol), the slow unraveling of the Western Roman Empire and the rise of the barbarian kingdoms (R.A. Markus & others) in France and Germany particularly.
Sections III and IV of the work cover the development of the rise of Church and Papacy in the West and its conflict with the various states that came into existence as the Carolingian empire came into existence. The cultural background of the political ideas behind a unified Church and empire is covered in two of these chapters, followed by an excellent chapter by Janet Nelson on kingship and empire. I.S. Robinson contributes a very brief chapter, 'Church and papacy'. For this period he has written a much larger and longer survey, (but fascinating) published separately as The Papacy, 1073-1198: Continuity and Innovation. (Cambridge:Cambridge University Press, 1990).Read more ›