For more than 1,000 years the Byzantine emperors reigned over a fabulously wealthy, glittering world. Thomas F. Mathews surveys this great Medieval culture--the bridge between classical antiquity and the Renaissance. From the Caucasus to Constantinople, from pagan Roman portraits to Christian icons, Mathews uses the latest research to lead an unforgettable tour of a splendid empire. 122 illustrations, 106 in color.
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Byzantium provided the foundation for art and philosophy throughout the Middle Ages. Mathews (art history, New York Univ.), the author of several books on early Christian and Byzantine art, adds his insights into this influential culture in this survey for lay readers. Attempting to place Byzantine art in the context of its setting, Mathews approaches his subject thematically, with chapters including a bit of Byzantine history and architecture and different applications of art in Byzantine society. There is an interesting chapter on everyday, secular decorative art encompassing depictions of country life and fashion in the palace. Though this is an overview?wonderfully illustrated by color photos, maps, and diagrams, with a nice timeline at the end?the academic text is not easy reading. Recommended for larger public and most academic libraries.?Karen Ellis, Baldwin Boettcher Lib., Humble, TX
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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