The Medieval Natural World (Seminar Studies In History)

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9781408248898: The Medieval Natural World (Seminar Studies In History)
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How did medieval people make sense of their surroundings, and how did this change over the years as understanding and knowledge expanded?

This new Seminar Study is designed to familiarise students of medieval history with the ways in which medieval people interpreted the world around them – how they rationalised their observations, and why they developed the models for understanding that they did. Most importantly, it shows how ideas changed over the medieval period, and why. With extensive primary source material, this book builds up a picture using medieval encyclopedias, prose literature and poetry, records of estate management, agricultural treatises, scientific works, annals and chronicles, as well as the evidence from art, architecture, archaeology and the landscape itself.

An excellent introduction for undergraduate students of Medieval history, or for anyone with an interest in the medieval natural world.

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Richard Jones offers a concise, thematically arranged guide to the fundamental background to medieval life and thought, together with a selection of contemporary documents from sources such as encyclopedias, bestiaries and scientific works.

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Looked at through modern western eyes, the medieval natural world seems an alien and yet captivating place. Richard Jones here offers a concise, thematically arranged guide to this fundamental background to medieval life and thought, together with a rich selection of contemporary documents whose sources include medieval encyclopaedias, literary prose and poetry, bestiaries and other scientific works.

 

Considering evidence from art, architecture, archaeology, and the landscape itself as well as the written sources the book asks:

 

-    How did medieval writers build upon classical perceptions of the natural world?

-    How and why did their conceptual and functional models of the natural world change across the period c. 600-1500?

-    What role did their own observations play in making sense of their surroundings?

 

Also including a chronology, who’s who of key figures, guides to further reading and a full colour plate section, The Medieval Natural World is ideal for students and interested readers at all levels looking for an introduction to a growing field in the study of medieval history.

 

RICHARD JONES is Senior Lecturer in Landscape History at the Centre for English Local History, University of Leicester.  His other books include Medieval Villages in an English Landscape: Beginnings and Ends; Deserted Villages Revisited; Thorps in a Changing Landscape; Manure Matters: Historical, Archaeological and Ethnographic Perspectives; and Sense of Place in Anglo-Saxon England.

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9781138835207: The Medieval Natural World (Seminar Studies)

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ISBN 10: 113883520X ISBN 13: 9781138835207
Publisher: Routledge, 2016
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