A World Lit Only by Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance: Portrait of an Age Short Essay - Answer Key

William Manchester
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1. Discuss the overview of Part I, "The Medieval Mind."

In Part I, "The Medieval Mind," Manchester reveals a basic characterization of the medieval period. Much of the information does not line up with contemporary historical opinion of the day. It is clear that the main movements in this section were not realized by Europe as a whole but rather by a select group of elites, many of which belonged to the church.

2. What does Manchester say about the term "Dark Ages?"

Manchester emphasizes that the period between 400 A.D. and 1000 A.D. should continue to be called the "Dark Ages" despite the fact that historians have not used this term for decades. It was a miserable, squalid time. The Roman Empire had fallen. Manchester asserts that the term "Dark Ages" may also refer to the fact that there is little recorded history about this time.

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