- Thomas Head, Speculum
"For its humane and learned approach to its enormous canvas, as well as for the cogency with which it penetrates at speed to the essentials of a vanished historical epoch, this History of the Church in the Middle Ages deserves a very wide audience indeed."
- Barrie Dobson, English Historical Review
"To have written a scholarly and very readable history of the Western Church over a millennium is a remarkable tour de force, for which Donald Logan is to be warmly congratulated."
- C.H Lawrence, The Tablet
"A feat of historical synthesis, most confident in its telling of the coming of Christianity. Books like Logan's are needed more than ever before."
- Miri Rubin, TLS
In this fascinating survey, F. Donald Logan introduces the reader to the Christian church, from the conversion of the Celtic and Germanic peoples to the discovery of the New World. He reveals how the church unified the people of Western Europe as they worshipped with the same ceremonies and used Latin as the language of civilized communication. From remote, rural parish to magnificent urban cathedral, A History of the Church in the Middle Ages explores the role of the church as a central element in determining a thousand years of history.
This new edition brings the book right up to date with recent scholarship, and includes an expanded introduction exploring the interaction of other faiths - particularly Judaism and Islam - with the Christian church.
The renowned historian and critic Jonathan Kirsch presents a sweeping history of the Inquisition and the ways in which it has served as the chief model for torture in the West to this day. Ranging from the Knights Templar to the first Protestants; from Joan of Arc to Galileo; from the Inquisition's immense power in Spain after 1492, when the secret tribunals and torture chambers were directed for the first time against Jews and Muslims, to the torture and murder of hundreds of thousands of innocent women during the Witch Craze; and to the modern war on terror—Kirsch shows us how the Inquisition stands as a universal and ineradicable reminder of how absolute power wreaks inevitable corruption.
For four hundred years, Americans have wrestled with and fought over two concepts that define the nature of the nation: the proper relation between church and state and between a free individual and the state. These debates began with the extraordinary thought and struggles of Roger Williams, who had an unparalleled understanding of the conflict between a government that justified itself by "reason of state"-i.e. national security-and its perceived "will of God" and the "ancient rights and liberties" of individuals.
This is a story of power, set against Puritan America and the English Civil War. Williams's interactions with King James, Francis Bacon, Oliver Cromwell, and his mentor Edward Coke set his course, but his fundamental ideas came to fruition in America, as Williams, though a Puritan, collided with John Winthrop's vision of his "City upon a Hill."
Acclaimed historian John M. Barry explores the development of these fundamental ideas through the story of the man who was the first to link religious freedom to individual liberty, and who created in America the first government and society on earth informed by those beliefs. The story is essential to the continuing debate over how we define the role of religion and political power in modern American life.