By Jacques Le Goff

During this ground-breaking new study,Jacques Le Goff, arguably the top medievalist of his iteration, offers his view of the primacy of the center a while within the improvement of eu history.

  • "[A] really good and worthy publication. This provocative overview from a life of scholarship may help us to put ourselves, not only territorially, yet in that different worthy portion of historical past: time." The Guardian
  • "A e-book that by no means fails to be informative, readable and provocative. Le Goff... has been the bravest and better of champions for medieval heritage. This book... is in each feel an inspiration." BBC heritage Magazine
  • Praised by means of in demand figures in Europe and historical past together with: Rt Hon Christopher Patten, CH, Former Member of the eu fee, and Neil Kinnock, Vice-President, ecu Commission.

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Extra info for The birth of Europe : 400-1500

Sample text

Gregory the Great, who was born in about 540 and died in 604, belonged to a patrician Roman family. In 573, as a prefect, he proved his worth as an organizer of the town’s food supplies. In his patrimonial estates, in Sicily, he created six monasteries and then himself retired to a seventh, in Rome, on the Caelius. Pope Pelagius II ordained him Deacon and sent him to Constantinople as a resident ambassador. When he reluctantly became pope in 590, at a time of serious flooding by the River Tiber and a Black Death the conception of europe 19 epidemic in Rome (‘‘there is also a Europe of natural catastrophes’’), he organized resistance, both material and spiritual, to these scourges.

Although Otto’s creation lost real power in the course of the Middle Ages, it nevertheless provided the basis for an institution and authority which, unlike Charlemagne’s empire, was relatively long-lived, according to European standards. The name given to this empire of his was the Germanic Holy Roman Empire. This conveyed first the sacred nature of the empire and secondly that it was the Roman Empire’s successor, with Rome as its capital. Thirdly, it underlined the preeminent role that the Germans played in this institution.

At first it was Byzantium. Several factors increased the distance that separated Latin and Byzantine Christians: Byzantine claims to dominate the whole of Christendom, Latin as well as Greek, along with Byzantium’s refusal to acknowledge the bishop of Rome, together with the difference of its liturgical language (Greek, not Latin) and various theological divergences. An extremely important decision taken by the Latin Church aggravated matters. The Byzantine world was rocked by the quarrel over images, which began with a bout of iconoclasm (a rejection of images) between 730 and 787.

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