GOLSCO
Books Online Store
UK | Germany
books   baby   camera   computers   dvd   games   electronics   garden   kitchen   magazines   music   phones   software   tools   toys   video  
 Help  
Books - History - Historical Study - Early Church History 02

1-20 of 24       1   2   Next 20
Featured ListSimple List

  • Historiography (favr)  (list)
  • Reference (favr)  (list)
  • Revolutionary (favr)  (list)
  • Study & Teaching (favr)  (list)
  • Go to bottom to see all images

    Click image to enlarge

    Genesis 1-11 (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)
    by Andrew Louth, Marco Conti
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 April, 2001)
    list price: $40.00 -- our price: $26.40
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (4)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful!
    Wonderful work and scholarship. Easy enough for the lay person, yet a wonderful tool for the scholar. This is a great way for Christians to learn what the early Church from the beginning believed when the Church was one Catholic Church. I highly recommend this to all Christians from all denominations.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A fine addition. . .
    . . .to the Ancient Christian Commentary series.

    I have commented on other volumes in this series, and have not been uncritical when I felt that criticism was necessary.With "Genesis 1-11", the editors made a positive effort to provide "Ancient Christian" thought on this most difficult portion of Scripture.In addition, the decision by the General Editor(s) to divide Genesis into two volumes, using chapters 11 and 12 as the dividing points made a great deal of sense.

    All in all, recommended.

    5-0 out of 5 stars excellent jumping off points
    This book provides very helpful starting points for further investigation for all of the audiences the editors target.To me, the prior review boils down to: "wish the editors had included more authors, more context, more critical comment on the ancient commentators and were willing to post caveats about how modern ecumenical and hisorical and critical approaches might make the reader think twice if she/he only knew".

    I can't imagine the size of the volumes or the hopelessly ineffective lover of others or of God who would have the time to navel-gaze enough to read the volume (let alone the entire series). Except for the fact that I am an assistant pastor (though also an attorney), I don't believe I qualify for the target audience the previous reviewer suggests would adore this work...nevertheless I do, and the other Volumes in this series. ... Read more

    Isbn: 083081471X
    Sales Rank: 76205
    Subjects:  1. Bible    2. Bible - Commentaries - Old Testament    3. Bible.    4. Commentaries    5. Genesis I-XI    6. O.T    7. O.T.    8. Old Testament - Single Book Studies    9. Religion    10. Religion - Commentaries / Reference   


    $26.40

    Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)
    by Joseph T. Lienhard
    Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 September, 2001)
    list price: $40.00 -- our price: $26.40
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (1)

    3-0 out of 5 stars I appreciate what the series is trying to do. . .
    . . .but I believe that the Pentateuch has been given short shrift.

    I completely understand the rationalization behind dividing Genesis into two volumes (1-11 and 12-50).What I cannot understand is the rationalization behind throwing the remaining four books into a single volume.

    I realize that the very nature of parts of Exodus, Leviticus, parts of Numbers and parts of Deuteronomy would make a commentary of this type far more difficult -- but there is a great deal of narrative in those books as well, upon which the Fathers did, in fact, comment.

    I got the impression that this volume was assembled perhaps too hastily.It just doesn't contain the wealth of information that is found in many of the other books.

    I'll continue purchasing the series, of course -- but this volume does not represent the best of what "Ancient Christian Commentaries" has to offer. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0830814736
    Sales Rank: 74834
    Subjects:  1. Bible    2. Bible - Commentaries - Old Testament    3. Bible - Study - Old Testament    4. Bible.    5. Christianity - Theology - History    6. Commentaries    7. Exodus    8. Leviticus    9. Numbers    10. O.T    11. O.T.    12. Old Testament Commentary    13. Religion    14. Religion - Commentaries / Reference   


    $26.40

    Matthew: 1-13 (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)
    by Thomas C. Oden
    Hardcover (01 September, 2003)
    list price: $40.00
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France

    Isbn: 1579580386
    Sales Rank: 1798795
    Subjects:  1. Bible - Commentaries - New Testament    2. New Testament Commentary    3. Religion    4. Religion - Commentaries / Reference   


    Mark (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)
    by Thomas C. Oden
    Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
    Library Binding (01 September, 1998)
    list price: $65.00 -- our price: $65.00
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (5)

    4-0 out of 5 stars The first published volume. . .
    . . .of an amazing series of commentaries.

    This commentary on Mark's Gospel, from the perspective of the Fathers of the Church is a long-awaited and much needed reference for Christians eager to explore the Scriptures as they were seen by those who used them in the earliest days of the Christian faith.If the rest of the series lives up to the standard of "Mark", we have a lot to look forward to.

    Only in the "Computer Age" could such a project be feasibly undertaken.Kudos to Oden and company for their effort.

    Highly Recommended.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A place to start, not to end
    This volume (and I wager the rest of the series) is useful if one approaches it with the right perspective.Certainly, this book is not (and could never be) a substitute for reading and examining the Church Fathers and their considerations on Scripture.However, if one uses this work more for quick reference and leads, it can be most helpful.After all, the sheer volume of the Fathers' works prevents even the most learned patristics scholar from remembering who commented on what verse.As an example, I have used this volume to quickly find some comments on the verse regarding rendering unto Caesar what is Caesar's - seeing some of the comments listed, I then went to the source and read the Fathers' comments in context.This volume, then, is a tool (perhaps a shortcut) to find certain texts that may be of use.

    Is this volume comprehensive?No.But, even in its current state, it is over 200 pages (when the Gospel of Mark, in the New American version, is about 35 pages) - trying to collect all the commentary by the Fathers would extend the length much more.As such, it is a starting point, useful for quick reference.It should not be held to a higher standard than that.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Selected conservative spin on the Fathers
    Hmmmm.... J.I. Packer, Thomas Oden, and Timothy George giving "advance praise."My first question, after seeing that Intervarsity Press was the publisher of this series, was, "What areconservative evangelicals doing reading the Fathers?"After perusingthe Mark commentary, I can see that they haven't, at least in any diverseway.The idea that the "Fathers" were a monolithic entity whowere in agreement on "exegesis" runs throughout this book, aswell as the Romans volume.Any trained exgete will know that this ismadness--there has only been one period in the church when views andscholarship were more multifarious than the present age: the Patristicperiod!

    The particular sort of scholarship as well as the conservative(read: unrepresentative of biblical scholarship as a whole) intent of theseries is indicated in a cover blurb from Richard John Neuhaus (NOT aconservative evangelical).Can you detect the ideological underpinnings ofthe ACCS from this perjorative sentence?: "In the desert of biblicalscholarship that tries to deconstruct or get behind the texts, thepatristic commentators let the pure, clear waters of Christian faith flowfrom its scriptural source."Goodness, is that really what is goingon in the ACCS?Which Fathers, may I ask--Origen?Universally ignored ormaligned in conservative seminaries (the largest of which in the world I ama product), Origen is one of the few really interesting voices in the ACCS,but only his least "dangerous" commentary is allowed in theseries, it seems.Same for the Cappadocians, and many others.In anyevent, it is no "commentary" at all--which manuscripts were beingcommented on?Were these all from exegetical works, or were the exerptsfrom the Fathers taken from letters, sermons (polemics) and such?Whythese comments, and not others?Is this ALL the Fathers had to say on theissues?Certainly, only a selection could be presented, but again, whythese comments arranged in this way? A possible answer: these support thereadings of the biblical texts the editors wanted to promulgate.

    Sadly, these questions go unanswered, I am afraid.None of thediversity and dissent of the first centuries of the faith shine through inthis volume, and that is what is needed in any deeper reading of theFathers.Early Christian writings can indeed shake up our complacentscholarship and our spiritually devoid lives, but not if they are packagedin such a mundane way.Ideologically-driven scholarship is immediatelysuspect.I predict that this laborious project will gather dust on thelibrary shelves of mainstream centers of scholarship and seminaries, ifthey bother to spend budgeted money on it at all after the IPOs hit thebookstores of the world, blaze for a while (nice, slick covers on thesevolumes), and fade away.

    In all, avoid the steep price for these books,unless you want high-dollar Sunday School literature.And it's too bad,too--this is a great idea for a commentary set.Maybe Doubleday ought totake over the idea from IVP; they gave us the Anchor Bible series anddictionaries.Now THAT would be something to be reckoned with.

    Next. ... Read more

    Isbn: 157958036X
    Sales Rank: 347002
    Subjects:  1. Bible - Commentaries - New Testament    2. Christianity - History - General    3. New Testament Commentary    4. Religion    5. Religion - Commentaries / Reference    6. Biblical concordances & commentaries    7. Biblical studies, criticism & exegesis   


    $65.00

    Romans (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)
    by Gerald Lewis Bray, Gerald Bray
    Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 December, 1998)
    list price: $40.00 -- our price: $26.40
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (8)

    4-0 out of 5 stars A place to begin
    The ACCS series, of which this volume on Romans is a part, is a place to begin in terms of patristic commentary, not a place to end.If this series had claimed to be an in-depth and comprehensive collection on the Church Fathers' statements on Scripture, then many of the critiques leveled at it would be justified.However, these negative reviews are aiming at a straw man.

    The ACCS series provides selected commentary by various thinkers in the early centuries of Christianity regarding the various books of the Bible.Even with its selectivity, these books are hundreds of pages long (compared to the at most thirty or so pages of the actual Scriptural text).To try and be as comprehensive as some reviewers seem to be demanding, the volume on Romans would no doubt have to be at least three large volumes itself.

    The series creators hoped these volumes could help encourage cross-denominational discussion with these formative thinkers.It is a starting place for thinking and discussing, not the end.Perhaps the best use of these volumes are as time-savers.Even the best Patristics scholar will not have the location of every comment on a particular Scripture verse by the Fathers right of the top of his/her head.And they may not want to spend the time of going through the index of, say, every volume in the Ante-Nicene, Nicene, and Post-Nicene Fathers series (all, what, 28 of them?).Instead, the scholar can look quickly at this volume from the ACCS, looking to see what various Fathers had to say, then go to the original document to see the topic in context, where the various commentaries can be compared.Certainly, the ACCS volume on Romans is useful for that.

    If one is looking for every comment from every Church Father on Scripture, this is not the series for you.But, then again, that's not what this series intended to be in the first place.But, as a starting place for further research, it is excellent.

    1-0 out of 5 stars disappointing
    This series is disappointing.I simply did not find the comments from the Fathers very illuminating presented in this context.This was not what I expected.

    I would advise anyone who finds modern biblical scholarship unhelpful to immerse himself in the Fathers directly and in the original context.If we then read the scriptures adopting, if only for the moment, their mindset, their presuppositions, and their methods, the scriptures will be openned up to us in a new and fruitful way.

    We moderns can find allegorical interpretation, for example, somewhat farfetched.But it is clear to me that some of what the apostles intended to teach cannot be understood from a strictly literal reading of the text.The apostles themselves do not take a concrete, literal approach to interpreting the Old Testament.Imitating the thought processes of the Fathers, who are much closer culturally to the apostles, opens our eyes to more of the New Testament's message.

    In the final analysis, it is difficult to fully comprehend the gospel message presented in the scriptures without realizing that the early Church, for which the New Testament was written, believed in baptismal regeneration, the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist (understood as sacrificial) and the Church as an organic structure put in place by the apostles.

    If the authors of this series had fully appreciated this I think they might taken the plunge into the stream instead of dousing themselves with thimblefuls of water.

    A final comment on the choice of the RSV. The major defect of this fine translation is the tendency to downplay the messianic implications of Old Testament texts, that is to "recover" some "original" text from the accretions of subsequent interpretations.Many of the texts that are interpreted messianicly in the New Testament are translated in such a way as to obscure rather than highlight this possiblity.A similar problem arises in the New Testament with the choice of "it" rather than "He" for the Holy Spirit.I'm not sure what alternative the editors had for this problem.

    1-0 out of 5 stars What a shame
    The translations go on unabated, and I really hate to give this volume a bad review.It is such a good idea. But this terribly abridged and oddly selected series of translations (good translations, I have to say, that is the one star) is not the way to go about it.We need a REAL and BROAD set of ancient Christian commentaries.These won't do. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0830814914
    Sales Rank: 318872
    Subjects:  1. Bible    2. Bible - Commentaries - New Testament    3. Bible - Study - New Testament    4. Bible.    5. Christianity - History - General    6. Commentaries    7. N.T    8. N.T.    9. New Testament - Single Book Studies    10. Religion    11. Religion - Commentaries / Reference    12. Romans   


    $26.40

    1-2 Corinthians (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture. New Testament, 7)
    by Gerald Lewis Bray, Thomas C. Oden
    Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 October, 1999)
    list price: $40.00 -- our price: $26.40
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (4)

    4-0 out of 5 stars An excellent addition. . .
    . . .to an excellent series.

    Paul's two letters to the Corinthian church are illuminated by the commentary of many of the Fathers of the Early Church -- both East and West.For those unfamiliar with this series, such commentary provides an excellent understanding of "how" the Early Church interpreted Scripture.

    This series is a "must have" for all serious students of the Bible or of Church History.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Buy it only if...
    A few things to note in reading this book...

    1. It is a resource of quotes, for the most part. So, it's not like a typical commentary, where you can read the passage of Scripture, then read the "commentary" and have an idea of what's being said. This book is full of quotes (a few lines long) related to each passage.

    2. Which leads me to the second point... Usually, when you have a commentary you know the author's bias-- whether he/she is conservative, liberal, their theological leanings, etc., and you can make like adjustments when reading. Not so here. You will need to be somewhat versed in Church History (or have access to a book) in order to distinguish the sound theology of these individuals from the not-so-sound/heretical theology. And, it's possible (as was the case with Origen, for instance) that some of what they say is sound and some is way, way off... You just need to have some tool to make that distinction.

    3. This book is very helpful, nonetheless, because we often forget that the ancient Christians struggled with the essentials doctrines of the faith for hundreds of years... and were versed in Scripture (although some of them get lost in allegory, etc.). It is both helpful-- and respectful-- I think, to know what these fore-runners in the faith said.

    Buy the book-- but only if you already have some other commentaries (or resources) you can consult.

    4-0 out of 5 stars The Church FATHERS
    Any book which meets its aim to present the thoughts of the church "Fathers" (as this book does) deserves to be evaluated on its stated intentions.Does this volume do an admirable and coherent job ofoffering Christianity's earliest theologians' thoughts on the letters toCorinth?Absolutely.Is it reasonable to expect views from this period tobe in sync with intricate theological statements written hundreds (eventhousands) of years later?Of course not.Walking through these earlyreflections on Scripture with the Fathers creates a fresh sense thatChristianity is rooted in history, and that Christianity has an observablehistorical development of its own.Fascinating, on its own merits.Alsoof merit is the opportunity to have multiple historical sources availablein the same volume.Who likes to pick up and put away dozens of books at atime? ... Read more

    Isbn: 0830814922
    Sales Rank: 215944
    Subjects:  1. Bible    2. Bible - Commentaries - New Testament    3. Bible.    4. Christianity - History - General    5. Commentaries    6. Corinthians    7. N.T    8. N.T.    9. New Testament - Single Book Studies    10. Reference    11. Religion    12. Religion - Commentaries / Reference   


    $26.40

    Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)
    by Mark J. Edwards
    Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 May, 1999)
    list price: $40.00 -- our price: $26.40
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (1)

    3-0 out of 5 stars New Testament VOL. VIII
    This collection of ancient "Christian" commentators is well done, it is on the NT books of GALATIANS, EPHESIANS and PHILIPPIANS. It is beautifully printed and formatted. The binding isa cheap glue injection, much of the volume does not lay open. Printed on acid-free paper, though not ANSI certified.

    322 pages give the readings (comments) upon these 3 books by such notables as Chrysostom, Jerome, Ambrosisater, Hilary of Poitiers, Origen, Fulgentius, Theodoret, Augustine, et al. Most notable are comments by Marius Victorinus (which comments are not easy to examine elsewhere), his comments alone (even in translation) are worth the price of the book.

    The text is nicely laid out, and is easy to use. But it is not for scholarly use (largely) as the comments are ALL translated into English, not in their original Greek or Latin. Too bad, if the original texts would have been added, then this would have been a 5 star book! As it is, one can only get a general idea of each commentators meanings -- being totally reliant upon the translations of the editors.

    Such an ecumenical agenda, causes users to wonder why such and such a translation was made, certain Greek and Latin phrases were rendered in such a way as to be suspicious. Thus without the original texts, the work cannot be tested. Again too bad, as a collection in the original languages with English translation would have been very very useful.

    Too general, too subdued. Pretty book though. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0830814930
    Sales Rank: 355860
    Subjects:  1. Bible    2. Bible - Commentaries - New Testament    3. Bible.    4. Christianity - History - General    5. Commentaries    6. Ephesians    7. Galatians    8. N.T    9. N.T.    10. New Testament - Single Book Studies    11. Philippians    12. Religion    13. Religion - Commentaries / Reference   


    $26.40

    Colossians, 1-2 Thessalonians, 1-2 Timothy, Titus, Philemon (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)
    by Peter Gorday, Thomas C. Oden
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 April, 2000)
    list price: $40.00 -- our price: $27.20
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (2)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Very good commentary
    For those who desire to learn what the ancient Church believed, this commentary is for you. Whether a lay person or scholar, it is wonderful in seeing what the early Church believed, what united them, and some of thier disagreements. You can also check the dates of the fathers listed to see when they wrote these things. This is especially helpful when seeing a disagreement about certain passages. You can see what was held earlier and when the departure took place, etc. Highly recommended for all Christian libraries. Just a side note. Those who like higher criticism may not like these commentaries because the early fathers were not higher critics. Higher criticism does not come about until the 19th and 20th centuries based upon evolutionary presuppositions. With this in mind, I think that a higher critic who reads these may not agree with the teachings of the fathers, but should appreciate what they wrote based upon their historical and literal presuppositions that the Bible is the very word of God.

    5-0 out of 5 stars What Christians REALLY Think
    This series is probably the best commentary on Scripture in print, ever! This is not a commentary by some johnny-come-lately, nor a revisionist approach to Christianity. This is the best synthesis of how the earlyChristians understood not only Scripture, but Christianity itself. Whetherone is Catholic or Protestant, all the doctrinal issues of the Reformationand Counter-Reformation are moot. Here, every early Christian who reflectedon the Sacred Word has a say. What one discovers (if it weren't alreadyself-evident) is that Scripture itself is a pluralistic undertaking. Theidea of using Scripture as a two-edged sword is joyfully not to be found. Aplurality of meanings comes alive, all of which are viable, some moremeaningful "now" perhaps than "later," but ever open tofurther insight and understanding. Those who want a book to support theirpre-understanding will not enjoy this book or this series. Rather, thosewho have come to understand that Scripture is a tool of the Church and agift of the Holy Spirit, ever alive and anew to each and every age, willfind nuances and ideas never thought before. It doesn't invalidate one'spredisposition; it just opens the Holy Book to the immensity within it andoutside of it. Therefore, it is for "spiritual" people, not for"dogmatic" people. Oh, there's plenty of "orthodoxy" inthese pages, but the truth is seen symphonically, not as a solo instrument.Any Christian who ever hoped that an ancient commentary and lectio divinacould come together, and haven't found it: Look no farther. This is it! ... Read more

    Isbn: 0830814949
    Sales Rank: 256511
    Subjects:  1. Bible    2. Bible - Commentaries - New Testament    3. Bible.    4. Christianity - History - General    5. Commentaries    6. Epistles    7. N.T    8. N.T.    9. Religion    10. Religion - Commentaries / Reference   


    $27.20

    James, 1-2 Peter, 1-3 John, Jude (Ancient Christian Commentary on Scripture)
    by Gerald Lewis Bray, Thomas C. Oden, Gerald Bray
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    Hardcover (01 September, 2000)
    list price: $40.00 -- our price: $26.40
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (1)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent!
    This is a great resource for Christians of all denominations. Simple, and clear enough for the lay person and yet still technical enough for the theologian and pastor. For those who desire to know the mind of the Church when there was only one Holy Catholic Church will find this commentary set excellent. In these comments you will see what was important as essential to the Church, what was considered secondary and up to individuals and individual churches and what united them as the One Catholic Church of Jesus Christ. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0830814965
    Sales Rank: 63235
    Subjects:  1. Bible    2. Bible - Commentaries - New Testament    3. Bible - Study - General    4. Bible - Study - New Testament    5. Bible.    6. Catholic Epistles    7. Commentaries    8. N.T    9. N.T.    10. New Testament Commentary    11. Religion    12. Religion - Biblical Studies   


    $26.40

    Documents of the Christian Church
    by Henry Bettenson
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (01 June, 1970)
    list price: $16.95 -- our price: $16.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (8)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Superb reference for the Catholic, Anglican, or Protestant
    You'll be amazed at how much is provided in just over 450 pages. A vast amount of the essential writings of Western Christianity are collected here: early church fathers, heretics, synods, councils, popes, eucharistic treatises, various dogmas, monastic rites, scholasticism, reformers, etc. As I noted, this is largely focused on Western Christianity with little on Eastern Orthodoxy...which is good because if Eastern Orthodoxy were included, then much material would have to be sacrificed. Bettenson was the Bishop of London, which explains the great amount of Anglican writings included; however, Catholics and Protestants (mainly Lutherans, Calvinists, Baptists, and Methodists) are well covered. The 3rd edition includes contemporary issues such as ecumenism, feminist theology, liberation theology, and contraception. Even though feminist theology has become largely irrelevant and liberation theology has proven useless, they are still important to understand as products (relics?) of the 20th century, although feminist theology will surely become even more radicalized and continue in a cultish fashion among the academic "elite."

    All in all, this is an essential reference book of primary sources for those studying the history of Christian doctrines. This, of course, should be supplemented with secondary sources such as Robert Louis Wilken (Roman Catholic), Jaroslav Pelikan (Greek Orthodox), and Henry Chadwick (Anglican)...the big three of early church studies.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful for the Study of Western Christianity
    There are several ways that one may study history.Firstly, one may read secondary sources: books about a particular period or event.Secondly, one may buy volumes of primary sources, using copious amounts of time to painstakingly go through each volume.Thirdly, one may read a one-volume collection of texts that are considered to represent the major trends in the historical period they represent.This book falls into the third category.

    Documents of the Christian Church is wonderfully organized: thematically by historical period.Hence, one reads the early Christian apologists of the 2nd century and then immediately after that one reads of the theologies of martyrdom; one reads of the disputes over the incarnation of Christ before one reads about debates over tansubstantiation; one reads Vatican II documents before one reads liberation theologies.The writings of saints and heretics, Doctors and others, popes, councils and relevant non-Christian writers all appear between the covers of this book.

    Of course, it ought to be noted that the excerpts are sometimes tremendously short - only a few lines or so.However, each reference is cited so that the curious reader who wants to go and read volumes of primary texts can do so; for those less inclined to do so, this book is an excellent first-hand introduction to the development/s of Christian thought.

    However, the documents are largely confined to the Western church.The documentary history of the Eastern churches is largely absent for almost 1000 years: between 1054 (the Great Schism between the Eastern and the Western church) and the beginning of the ecumenical movement in the 20th century.So, if the reader wants to learn about the Palamite controversy or the Hesychast revival or the monastic influence of the Russian Orthodox monks, one will have to look elsewhere (although, I confess, I do not know where).

    Nonetheless, this is an excellent compilation.The reader will learn plenty about recent theological developments, including various perspectives on sexuality, sex and gender, social work, feminist theology and liberation theology.How many of these more recent theological movements and trends will prove to be of long-lasting import remains to be seen, but since they are relevant now, it is important for the reader to be somewhat familiar with them.

    All things considered, this is a wonderful collection.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Essential
    If you want to know more about the history of the church, and you want to read the original documents, this is the book.This book will take you deeper into doctrine origination and debate throughout the history of the church.There are many typed of documents represented from Augustine to more modern documents on Jesuits.I appreciate the fact they do some limited notes for you to help you understand dates, but otherwise leave you to figure out for yourself what these documents mean, and if they are valid or not.It leaves it up to you, not someone telling you what they think.Good compilation & scholarship.

    Joseph Dworak ... Read more

    Isbn: 0195012933
    Sales Rank: 642482
    Subjects:  1. Christianity - History - General    2. Church history    3. Religion - General    4. Sources   


    $16.95

    Bible and the Liturgy
    by Jean Danielou
    Hardcover (01 January, 1956)
    list price: $18.95
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France

    Isbn: 0268000182
    Sales Rank: 930384
    Subjects:  1. Religion   


    The First Six Hundred Years: The First Six Hundred Years (Christian Centuries)
    by Jean Danielou, Henri Marrou
    Hardcover (December, 1983)
    list price: $39.50
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France

    Isbn: 0809102757
    Sales Rank: 1244595
    Subjects:  1. Christianity - History    2. Religion - Church History   


    Historical Theology: An Introduction to the History of Christian Thought
    by Alister E. McGrath
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (01 April, 1998)
    list price: $47.95 -- our price: $47.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (6)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A good trip through the history of ideas...
    There are many ways to study theology -- topically, by denominational structure, by particular theologians, etc. One of the more common approaches, and still a popular one, has been to study theology through the historical development of ideas, beliefs and doctrines.Alister McGrath's book, 'Historical Theology: An Introduction to the History of Christian Thought' is one such text.Following a brief introduction, it is divided into four broad historical sections:The Patristic Period (100 - 451), the Middle Ages and Renaissance (500 - 1500), the Reformation and Post-Reformation (1500 - 1750), and finally, the Modern Period (1750 - the present).

    In his introduction, McGrath traces the various sources and types of theology - biblical studies, philosophy, pastoral issues, and church history all provide insights into this.The development of historical theology as a discipline began in the Reformation era, when it became important to understand not only the doctrines and dogmatic principles of the church, but also how they came to be developed and instituted.Historical theology is an important pedagogic and critical tool, useful for creating a greater understanding of our present situations.

    McGrath's chapters on the Patristic and Middle Ages periods look at the wider church ideas, developments of the creeds, canon of scripture, and early ecclesial structures along with the development of key ideas and key theologians.In addition to this, McGrath presents case studies, which include the various historical heresies (Donatism, Pelagianism, etc.) and various philosophical problems (arguments for the existence of God).Included here are discussions of the impact of Celtic Christianity and monastic institutions on the overall development of theology.

    After these periods, into the Renaissance, Reformation, Post-Reformation and Modern periods, the book is predominantly Western in outlook.Beginning with Scholasticism and the philosophical Humanism of the Renaissance beginning to influence general intellectual life inside and outside of the church, McGrath continues with the various Reformations (not all were the same), including the Catholic Reformation (often termed the Counter-Reformation).The influence of the Enlightenment and theological movements since then include a long list of -isms, including Feminism, Marxism, Modernism and Postmodernism, Postliberalism, Romanticism, Liberal Protestantism, and Evangelicalism (among others!).Case studies in these include the key controversies of ideas in the Reformation, quests for the Historical Jesus, political influences in the theological debates, and the growing influence of the two-thirds world on the theological scene.

    McGrath's final case study is on the issue of method in theology in the modern period -- the starting point as well as the purpose is continually questioned, and McGrath highlights issues drawing from Schleiermacher, Tillich, Rahner, Barth, Lindbeck and Guttierez.Immediately following this (indeed, this section could be the beginning of another book, a companion to this text), McGrath addresses the issue of 'Where next?' for the student and reader.McGrath includes an extensive list of suggested further readings, divided by period, topic, and other helpful groupings.

    McGrath is a good writer and educator -- this book is accessible to most readers, not assuming a great background in history, philosophy or theology; however, the more background one has, the better the experience of reading this book.It is a survey, which means it does not go into great detail, but it does include a fairly thorough introduction to all of the major and many of the side issues of theology through the 2000 years of Christian history.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Seminary Student
    I have to read this book for my church history class and I have found it to be a very good resource.The author presents the material in a highly readable format but it is not immature writing either.There are brief explanations about key figures throughout the churches history and these help you relate theologies with their proponents.This is a well written book that is highly insightful.

    Pros:
    Well written
    Based on historical documents
    Very in-depth

    Cons:
    Not for personal reading

    4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent for study of historical theolgoy
    McGrath is a leading scholar in our day, and this book shows why. While obviously very informed in his area of study, his writing is alive and easily accessible to the reader just wading into the study of historical theology. There are excerpts of original writings from different issues in church history, all of which are framed by McGrath's helful explanation, summary, and commentary. Definitely worth having. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0631208445
    Sales Rank: 46270
    Subjects:  1. Christianity - Theology - General    2. History    3. Religion    4. Theology   


    $47.95

    Jerome: His Life, Writings, and Controversies
    by J. N. D. Kelly
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (01 August, 1998)
    list price: $24.95 -- our price: $15.72
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (5)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Concise, Detailed and Readable
    It is difficult to imagine a more challenging task for a church historian to undertake than to write a biography of St. Jerome in only 353 pages.J.N.D. Kelly's biography is magnificent in the amount of material it covers, in very readable style, in so short a length.

    The difficulty of the biography is inherent in the diversity of Jerome's life.He spent time living in both the eastern and western empires, and he lived through a remarkable series of transitions in church and empire.He was educated in Rome in the middle of the fourth century.He spent two years with the desert fathers in Syria.He lived in Antioch during the time when the church in Antioch was divided among three factions.Returning to Rome, he became Bible teacher and spiritual advisor to a group of highly educated upper class Roman women.From there, he returned to the east, establishing a new monastery in Bethlehem, where one of the women he knew in Rome (Paula) established a convent.His life spanned a time frame from 331 to 420, ranging from a time of persecution, through controversy over the views of Arians, Origen and Pelagius, and through the siege of Rome in 410.He held opinions about St. Ambrose (whom he hated), St. John Chrysostom (a follower of a different bishop in Antioch and thus an adversary), and St. Augustine (who sought out Jerome through letters, taking great care to avoid offending the temperamental but warm hearted Jerome, and who encountered conflict nonetheless but eventually became a close friend and ally against the Pelagians).

    Kelly did an admirable job of assembling information from Jerome's extensive writings and from other historians' earlier work about Jerome.His book is remarkably well written and detailed, and it is nonetheless concise.

    However, in the process of covering Jerome's life and thought in so few pages, Kelly necessarily omitted much background material.Some of Jerome's life would seem almost nonsensical without knowing more of the historical context than is given in this biography.For example, Kelly described Jerome as moving into a Syrian desert monastic community with his ever expanding library and a group of copyists.To someone with a familiarity with the Egyptian desert hermits, thinking of them as solitaries who only interacted with each other on Sunday, that might sound preposterous.However, the Syrian monks of the same era were more communal than those in Egypt, meeting together every day for prayer.Kelly did not offer the pages of explanation of the desert fathers and mothers that would have helped to make sense of that.

    Similarly, Kelly devoted limited space to background information about the Roman education system.Kelly explained that Jerome would have studied rhetoric, and that he probably learned little Greek and little philosophy while in Rome.Later, Kelly discussed Paula, Marcella, and other upper class Roman ladies who were educated in the Latin and Greek poets and the Bible, and at least some of whom decided to learn Hebrew so that they could chant the Psalms in the original language.A more thorough discussion of the Roman education system of that day would have helped to make more sense of both Jerome's and the women's lives.

    Similarly, Kelly provided fairly limited information about monasticism in Bethlehem and Jerusalem, and about the siege of Rome in 410.

    However, if Kelly had included background material to explain fourth and early fifth century Rome, Antioch, Bethlehem, Jerusalem, desert fathers and mothers, and the decline and fall of the Roman Empire, he would have produced a book of at least the length of Peter Brown's biography of St. Augustine or Homes Dudden's 2 volume biography of St. Ambrose.Whether there would have been a market for another such lengthy biography of a fourth century saint is uncertain.

    Kelly's work is complete and detailed in covering information unique to Jerome.The absence of background material is not disappointing if it is read together with - or after - other authors who have covered that background.Some of these can be found in Kelly's detailed footnotes.Others include biographies of other fourth century church fathers, including Peter Brown's biography of St. Augustine and Homes Dudden's biography of St. Ambrose. Other helpful sources of background information include recent books about desert monasticism, such as Joseph Patrich, "Sabas, Leader of Palestinian Monasticism: A Comparative Study in Eastern Monasticism, Fourth to Seventh Centuries" (Dumbarton Oaks Studies, No 32, 1995).

    5-0 out of 5 stars Thorough, Readable Biography of Key Christian
    Having known Jerome as famous translator of Bible into Latin, this text intrigued because of subject and author.Neither disappointed.

    Jerome is fascinating and complex individual.Into himself, and wanting recognition, as we all do, Jerome realizes success and admiration from some circles, but resistance from others.

    His consistent ties to celibacy and monasticism were fascinating as well as his history with Origen.

    There is much to explore here in this well written work:the ties with Augustine and Pelagius are fascinating, as well as his commentaries.

    The student of early church history will find this intriguing and enlightening work to contemplate and encourage continued ventures into this period of church history.

    Kelly is major contributor of our times in this valuable area.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Thorough, Readable Biography of Key Christian
    Having known Jerome as famous translator of Bible into Latin, this text intrigued because of subject and author.Neither disappointed.

    Jerome is fascinating and complex individual.Into himself, and wanting recognition, as we all do, Jerome realizes success and admiration from some circles, but resistance from others.

    His consistent ties to celibacy and monasticism were fascinating as well as his history with Origen.

    There is much to explore here in this well written work:the ties with Augustine and Pelagius are fascinating, as well as his commentaries.

    The student of early church history will find this intriguing and enlightening work to contemplate and encourage continued ventures into this period of church history.

    Kelly is major contributor of our times in this valuable area. ... Read more

    Isbn: 156563084X
    Sales Rank: 504685
    Subjects:  1. Antiquities & Archaeology    2. Bibles - Other    3. Biography & Autobiography    4. Christianity - Theology - General    5. Fathers Of The Church (Christianity)    6. General    7. Literature: Classics    8. Religion - General    9. Religious   


    $15.72

    Rise of Christianity
    by W.H.C. Frend
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (01 April, 1986)
    list price: $36.00 -- our price: $23.76
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (7)

    5-0 out of 5 stars An Important Place to Start
    This is not an easy book to read, because it is not a shallow treatment of its subject; it's densely written and highly detailed.

    But it is the book that you should start with, because, given the degree of religious partisanship that attends this subject, it's crucial that your first exposure come from a trustworthy source.To all appearances, Frend is such a source; he writes without apparent bias, with abundant humanity, and he ends each chapter with a staggering bibliography of the primary and secondary sources on which he's relied.In fact, the bibliography itself is worth the price of the book.

    I predict that if you purchase this book, it will become the standard by which you judge other Church histories.

    4-0 out of 5 stars You Have to Really "Want It"
    When I was on the high school football team, breaking my back in the summer drills, my coaches would yell encouragement at us to work hard, for the victories in the fall."Come on guys, you've gotta' really want it!"The same could be said for the Rise of Christianity. It is a bit of a grind, but when you are done, it will seem worthwhile.

    Frend is certainly a master historian.His prose flows smoothly from one topic to the next, and he has a great grasp of primary sources.This book, however is not for the beginner.There are numerous instances where Frend will try to clarify a point by some reference to another event, which, to a beginner, may or may not shed light.

    He also uses the John Wayne philosophy of"listen and listen tight, `cause I'm only gonna' say this once" when he describes a new theological idea.Because it took me several months to get through the book, I found my index worn out by having to refresh my memory on Apollinarianism, or Pelagianism, or any of the other myriad -isms in Christian history.This slowed me down quite a bit.

    Like those summer two-a-day training camps in high school, getting through it did prove to be rewarding.The bibliography is great, the time line is very nice, and the book will be a well-used reference in the future.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent survey of the first 600 years of Christianity
    Fantastic work, that while historical in nature shows respect for most all of the various factions, sects, 'heresies', etc. during this critical time in the development of the world's top religion (in headcount).I suggest reading it with 'The Other Bible' as a reference book, along with a standard canonical bible.... one can put the non-canonical texts and gospels in perspective with the currently accepted versions, including which sects favored the use of various texts and interpretations.I had to laugh at Frend's description of Paul as 'that indefatigable little man'...surely an understatement for Paul's tireless missions to establish Christianity outside the Jewish race.I can think of no better historical overview and analysis of a very complex topic. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0800619315
    Sales Rank: 132268
    Subjects:  1. 30 (ca.)-600, Early church    2. Christianity - History - General    3. Church history    4. Primitive and early church, ca    5. Primitive and early church, ca. 30-600    6. Religion    7. Religion - Church History   


    $23.76

    A History of Christianity, Volume 1: Beginnings to 1500 (Revised)
    by Kenneth S. Latourette
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (15 October, 1975)
    list price: $24.95 -- our price: $24.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (4)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Badly Dated
    Readers should be aware that this study was first publishedin 1953, and despite light revision reflects the state of scholarship half a century ago.We've learned a LOT about the history of Christianity since then, and many of the sweeping assumptions of this book (e.g., in the ghastly section entitled "The Darkest Hours: The Great Recession, A.D. 500-950") have been thoroughly discredited.The bibliographies for each section don't include works published in the past half century (despite the so-called revision).Even the very language is dated, with its grandiose, sweeping style, capitalization of popes, etc.This book perpetuates a great many old myths, making the job of historians of religion just that much harder.There are now much better books on the market.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Quick Review
    This work is an important 20th century contribution.An outstanding two-volume series!

    Of all the histories of Christianity, this one is very clear and engaging to read.I love his writing style.It is really,really worth every penny!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Superb -- but readable -- scholarship
    Latourette does a masterful job of presenting a comprehensive history of the Christian religion in a readable form.This is an overview of the subject from the time of Christ to just before the Reformation (Vol. 2picks up after 1500).Latourette doesn't just focus on the Western worldor on institutional religion, but on Christianity in Asia, Africa, and theMiddle East, some of the personalities behind the history, and on popularmovements within Christianity (some of which - such as monasticism - becameinstitutions in their own right).This is an excellent scholarly overviewon an enormous topic that makes it interesting for the average reader. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0060649526
    Sales Rank: 76787
    Subjects:  1. Christianity - History - General    2. Church history    3. Religion - General    4. Religion / Church History   


    $24.95

    A History of Christianity, Vol. 2
    by Kenneth S. Latourette
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (15 October, 1975)
    list price: $24.95 -- our price: $24.95
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (4)

    2-0 out of 5 stars Badly Dated
    Readers should be aware that this study was first publishedin 1953, and despite light revision reflects the state of scholarship half a century ago.We've learned a LOT about the history of Christianity since then, and many of the sweeping assumptions of this book (e.g., in the ghastly section entitled "The Darkest Hours: The Great Recession, A.D. 500-950") have been thoroughly discredited.The bibliographies for each section don't include works published in the past half century (despite the so-called revision).Even the very language is dated, with its grandiose, sweeping style, capitalization of popes, etc.This book perpetuates a great many old myths, making the job of historians of religion just that much harder.There are now much better books on the market.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Quick Review
    This work is an important 20th century contribution.An outstanding two-volume series!

    Of all the histories of Christianity, this one is very clear and engaging to read.I love his writing style.It is really,really worth every penny!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Superb -- but readable -- scholarship
    Latourette does a masterful job of presenting a comprehensive history of the Christian religion in a readable form.This is an overview of the subject from the time of Christ to just before the Reformation (Vol. 2picks up after 1500).Latourette doesn't just focus on the Western worldor on institutional religion, but on Christianity in Asia, Africa, and theMiddle East, some of the personalities behind the history, and on popularmovements within Christianity (some of which - such as monasticism - becameinstitutions in their own right).This is an excellent scholarly overviewon an enormous topic that makes it interesting for the average reader. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0060649534
    Sales Rank: 359424
    Subjects:  1. Christianity - History - General    2. Church history    3. Religion - Church History    4. Religion / Church History   


    $24.95

    On the Incarnation: The Treatise De Incarnatione Verbi Dei
    by Athanasius, St. Anhanasius, St. Athanasius
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (01 June, 1975)
    list price: $10.95 -- our price: $8.76
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (9)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Gift, Embodied
    It is a shame that more people haven't read this book; after the New Testament, Athanasius' De Incarnatione Verbi Dei (On the Incarnation of the Word) is the most important synthesis of Christian thought up through the 4th century and has remained one of the most foundational of all Christian texts ever written.All later Christian thought on the sacraments and artwork (particularly icons) would eventually be an extension of the Christian teaching on the Incarnation; this work, then, not only shapes the basis of later Christian thought, but also determines its trajectory.

    This is a simple work.Some of this is due to the work of the translator, breaking up the work into short sections and translating it into contemporary English without sacrificing its content; the majority of it has to do, however, with Athansius' own desire: to communicate simply the profound message of God-become-man.C. S. Lewis contributes a wonderful introduction, noting correctly that we would all do better to "read the old books", such as this one.

    In short, Athanasius writes that "God became man so that man might become god".If taken out of its context, such a quote could easily be misinterpreted; it should be understood, however, in this way: by God's taking on a human body, the human body has been brought up into the very life of God.Rather than denigrating physical, created matter, the Incarnation vindicates its being created.The body then, is now understood as the site of the most profound of meanings: its being given life now and, at a future time, being given life again.

    Understandings of the Incarnation as being purely juridical, with effects relegated to an ethereal world of purely legal justification, find no place here.Athanasius also does not focus upon the death of Christ or his sufferings as ends in and of themselves.Rather, the Incarnation is victory over death - death *not* being a curse but, instead, the natural result of man's turning away from God (the hermeneutic that Athanasius provides for understanding the Apostle Paul's writings is both fascinating and beautiful).The Incarnation opens us up to union with God, which is most perfectly demonstrated in the union of Christ to God the Father: their wills in perfect communion with each other, in and through love.

    In this work, Athanasius strikes a perfect balance between the profound and the simple that is not often found in theological writings.We do well, as Lewis notes, to read the old books.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Mandatory Reading
    St. Athansius gives us the Orthodox understanding of the Incarnation of the Word and our redemption in Him. This book is essential reading for anyone interested in the Fathers of the Church or the Orthodox understanding of salvation.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A treasure.
    This is a true treasure of Christian literature. For the modern reader, names like "Athanasius" can be a bit daunting. Surely his book would be too deep and complicated to understand fully. How relavent is it to our own day anyhow?
    Like C.S. Lewis points out in his introduction to the work, often the men of ancient times put things more clearly and without the bothersome "-isms" of modern thinking.
    This book is encouraging to the Christian and welcoming to those who do not yet know Christ. Athanasius' sense of God's love for man, and his logic that explains how God showed that love is quite breathtaking. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0913836400
    Sales Rank: 176954
    Subjects:  1. Christianity - Theology - Christology    2. Early works to 1800    3. Incarnation    4. Religion    5. Theology   


    $8.76

    The Crusades : A Short History
    by Jonathan Riley-Smith
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (10 September, 1990)
    list price: $18.95 -- our price: $12.89
    (price subject to change: see help)
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (5)

    5-0 out of 5 stars An up to date review of the history of the Crusades
    The previous reviewer is far more interetested in anti-Catholic bigotry than in the current state of historical scholarship on the Crusades.Dr. Riley-Smith's book is up to date while the previous work of Runciman (and others) is considered passe by the professional historian.Unfortunately, people with an axe to grind rarely are interested in the facts when their cherished preconceptions are in jeopardy.

    Dr. Riley-Smith's book covers not only the medieval Crusades but also other religious wars in the later historic times.He demonstrates the complex motivations of the major figures in these various conflicts and shows that their primary concern had been religious, not economic or imperialistic.There is no "cover up" of some of the darker aspects of the Crusades, but Riley-Smith has a better understanding of the 'sitz im leben' of the Medieval world than many previous writers on this subject. Dr. Riley Smith is careful not to judge people from another time by modern standards. He dispels a number of myths that men like Runciman have unfortunately perpetuated.

    This is an excellent review book for the general topic of religious wars since the Middle Ages.For more information, see these books:

    The Oxford Illustrated History of the Crusades

    The First Crusade and the Idea of Crusading (Middle Ages Series)

    The First Crusaders, 1095-1131

    What Were the Crusades? (Forthcoming)

    The New Cambridge Medieval History: Volume 4, c. 1024 - c. 1198, Part 1 (Forthcoming)

    2-0 out of 5 stars One reason for the Reformation
    From its onset at the end of the 11th century, the Crusading movement was a war by Roman Catholicism against its Muslim, and later its Orthodox and Protestant, neighbors.While the current pope of Rome has admitted to having recognized sinfulness in the history of these Roman aggressions against the older Orthodox Chruch of the east and upon the Muslims, Riley-Smith has written that any apology for the Crusades would be misplaced, because the Roman Catholic institution itself is incapable of doing wrong.One supposes, then, that Riley-Smith thinks Urban II's _ex cathedra_ teaching that anyone killed on crusade would go directly to Heaven, never mind the medieval Latin innovation of Purgatory, is unquestionable.In short, kill some Orthodox (e.g., by torturing the patriarch of Antioch to death) or die denuding Jerusalem of its indigenous population (i.e., committing genocide -- as the soldiers of the First Crusade did), and you go straight to Heaven!Really, Mr. Riley-Smith!

    For a more balanced account of these events by someone with no axe to grind, try Steven Runciman's three-volume history of the Crusades.Runciman was an Anglican, that is, a western Christian, yet he preceded John Paul II in seeing Orthodoxy as the chief victim of this vile "holy war" movement.It's amazing that works such as Riley-Smith's were still published at the end of the twentieth century.

    3-0 out of 5 stars A Good Introduction to the Crusades
    As the back of this book states, this is a very concise account of the history of the crusading movement that occurred from the 12th to the 18th century. Riley-Smith really knows his stuff and his writing style is lucid and the book flows well.

    This is somewhat of a survey book, in that the reader gets a good overview of the Crusades. The text goes beyond a survey however, in that there are vast amounts of names, places and dates. I read this book for a class on this topic, and I had some problems with the amount of minutiae that Riley-Smith included in this book. I'm just starting to learn about this topic; so obscure names are tough to slog through. What saves the book is that it is still possible to come away with a good understanding of the general themes of the text. I was amazed at the number of crusading campaigns that were undertaken, and not just in Palestine. There were movements in the Baltic, in Germany, and in North Africa. The attempts by the Spaniards to get the Moors out of Spain was considered a crusade, as was attempts to put down heresies against the Catholic Church in France.Eventually, the Church saw heresy as more of a threat against Christianity than the Muslim menace in the East. It is also interesting to see how the Church escalated the promises of indulgences to get people to go on crusade. I wasn't too happy about the author's tendency to skip about and play loose with his timeline. It made for some fairly confusing reading.

    A tough book for a beginner, but it does have moments of brilliance. It probably is a good starting point for this topic, but since it is the first book I've read on the topic, I'm guessing on this point. Informative. ... Read more

    Isbn: 0300047002
    Sales Rank: 7911
    Subjects:  1. Crusades    2. History - General History    3. Medieval    4. History / Medieval   


    $12.89

    A History of the Crusades: Volume 1, The First Crusade and the Foundation of the Kingdom of Jerusalem
    by Steven Runciman
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
    Paperback (03 December, 1987)
    list price: $26.99
    US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France
    Reviews (12)

    5-0 out of 5 stars On The Crusades, The Best Is Still Good Enough
    Sir Steven Runciman's monumental study has held its appeal for over 50 years.These books have two main merits beyond the author's literary gifts.As a Byzantinist, he situates the Crusades in both European and Middle Eastern contexts, giving due attention to Muslim Arabs and Turks, Greeks, Armenians and other Eastern Christians, and he uses Eastern sources quite well.Most other histories simply treat the crusading era as an episode in Europe's development.Runciman's richly rewarding narrative combines storytelling with analysis of historical controversies.It is not a complete tale of the Crusades, since he omits wars against Muslim Spain, Eastern Slavs, Christian heretics, and crusading episodes after the fall of Acre in 1291.But this "limited" focus on the eastern Mediterranean makes the work tighter and more coherent; later historians like J. Riley-Smith and K. Setton retain much of Runciman's analytical framework.Volumes 2 and 3 on the Kingdoms of Jerusalem and Acre are also superb, but they seem less novel after the unprecedented events of the First Crusade. The most intriguing alternatives on the Crusades present non-Christian views, e.g. A. Maalouf, "The Crusades Through Arab Eyes" and F. Gabrieli, "Arab Historians of the Crusades." A. Oz, "Crusade" is heartrending fiction about First Crusaders' zest for massacring Jews en route to the Holy Land.

    1-0 out of 5 stars A great example of why people dislike history
    I purchased these books laregely based on the recommendations here at Amazon.However, I was extremely dissappointed in them.I stopped reading after book one.Perhaps my problem was in my expectations.I was looking for an excellent narrative on the crusades.These read more like a reference/text book.

    The pages are THICK with information.However, the failure of the author is that he just doesn't "tell" the story.In a single page he can introduce 5 locations and 10 people, 8 of whom are dead before the page is finished.If you are looking for detailed information on the crusades, I can only assume that it is likely in these tomes.If you are looking for the story of the crusades, you won't find it here.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Worst of Both Worlds
    This, with volumes II and III, is the definitive history of the Crusades.Runciman refrained from opinion, but is very clear about the background of the Crusades. From the first century, the Holy Land was in Christian hands, and Christians and Jews dwelt together in relative peace. In the eighth century Arab Muslims conquered the Holy Land, but mostly left Christians and Jews alone to live their own lives. But toward the end of the first millenium, Seljuk Turks moved into this area and persecution began.Pilgrimages, which had been conducted from the first century were forbidden, and it was dangerous for Christians to enter the domain of the Turks.
    The main story begins with the call of Pope Urban for an army to take back the Holy Land so that pilgrimages might resume.Runciman shows how the pope's vision was not to be implemented. Almost the only armies that responded were Franks from what is today France and Germany. Those Franks had undergone mass baptism several centuries earlier when their king, Clovis, had been converted. Their conversion appears to have been incomplete, and they were not only warlike, but accustomed to raiding their neighbors, looting and killing and destroying the land. On their way to the Holy Land they passed through the Christian country of Byzantium and caused no end of trouble for the Byzantines. When they arrived in the Holy Land, they drove the Muslims out and established several "Christian" kingdoms which endured in an unstable peace until the Muslims grew stronger and reconquered the land and drove out the Frankish princes.As C. S. Lewis remarked, after reading Runciman's account, both sides were a bunch of thugs, except for Saladin. ... Read more

    Isbn: 052134770X
    Sales Rank: 240410
    Subjects:  1. Crusades    2. Europe - General    3. History    4. History - General History    5. History: World    6. Medieval    7. Medieval World History (Circa 450 - Circa 1450)    8. Middle East - General    9. Reference    10. History / Middle East   


    1-20 of 24       1   2   Next 20
    Prices listed on this site are subject to change without notice.
    Questions on ordering or shipping? click here for help.

    Top 

     
    Books - History - Historical Study - Early Church History 02   (images)

    Images - 1-20 of 24       1   2   Next 20
    Click image to see details about the item
    Images - 1-20 of 24       1   2   Next 20