Encyclopedia Of The Medieval World - 2 Volume set

ISBN: 0816046905

Category: Nonfiction

Tag: Encyclopedias


Posted on 2009-09-28. By anonymous.

Description


Edward D. English "Encyclopedia Of The Medieval World - 2 Volume set"
Facts on File | English | 2005-02 | ISBN: 0816046905 | 920 pages | PDF | 29,6 MB


From Booklist
Having already published Encyclopedia of the Middle Ages,by Matthew Bunson, in 1995 (now out of print), Facts On File offers this new work by a professor of medieval history at the University of California-Santa Barbara. It covers the time period from the late antique world to about 1500 C.E and includes events, people, institutions, and culture in western and eastern Europe, Scandinavia, North Africa, Byzantium, and the Near East. The 2,000 entries discuss significant people, art, politics, literature, religion, economics, law, science, and warfare in an A-Z format. The articles range in length from a few sentences to one page. All have numerous cross-references and a list of further reading that includes both current and classic articles and books. The articles are aimed at students in high school and college so the language is direct and all concepts are explained. There are also 122 black-and-white illustrations, 19 maps, and 33 genealogical charts of the ruling houses of Europe. The volumes conclude with detailed lists of all the rulers of the various kingdoms, a 50-page bibliography, and a comprehensive index.
Reflecting recent scholarship, topics such as ecology, labor, and women are discussed much more fully than in earlier reference sources. Entries are interdisciplinary and refer to non-European and non-Christian cultures. For example, Universities and schools and Wills and testaments compare Christian ideas and practices to those in Judaism and Islam. Other articles, such as Kabbala and Kalam, bring out various aspects of Judaism and Islam. However, there are no overview articles on Christianity or the Catholic Church, or on medieval literature and poetry. Students will have to know the names of individual popes, saints, literary works, and so on. Some articles are curiously missing important see also references. For example, the brief Barbarians and barbarian migrations has no cross-references to Franks, Vandals, and other related entries.

The interdisciplinary nature of the articles and the way they compare Christian, Jewish, and Islamic ideas and practices make them invaluable for students who want to see how medieval cultures contrasted. Librarians will have to weigh this set against other reference sources, such as the Greenhaven Encyclopedia of the Middle Ages (2003) or The Middle Ages: An Encyclopedia for Students (Scribner, 1996). The former is less expensive but not as comprehensive, while the latter, though based on the scholarly Dictionary of the Middle Ages (Scribner, 1982), is written for students from middle school and up. Librarians will also need to consider whether to replace Encyclopedia of the Middle Ages. The newer work is recommended to high-school, college, and public libraries that want to update or broaden their history reference collections. Merle Jacob

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