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A World Lit Only by Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance: Portrait of an Age Chapter Summary & Analysis - Chapter I, The Medieval Mind Summary

William Manchester
This Study Guide consists of approximately 37 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of A World Lit Only by Fire.
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Chapter I, The Medieval Mind Summary and Analysis

William Manchester, the popular historical author and biographer, sets out a depiction of the demise of the medieval world and the rise of the Renaissance in three parts. Part I, "The Medieval Mind" provides a quick and highly polemical characterization of the medieval period that does not line up with contemporary historical opinion of its day. The chapter begins with Manchester emphasizing that the period between 400 A.D. and 1400 A.D. should still be called the "Dark Ages" despite the fact that historians have set aside this term for decades. It was a miserable, squalid time. The Roman Empire had fallen, destroying by barbarian tribes who would rule for forty generations.

The Dark Ages represented a stark decline in standards of living, with peasants struck constantly by famines, plague, the Black Death, and tumultuous climatic changes. Criminal...

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This section contains 693 words
(approx. 3 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our A World Lit Only by Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance: Portrait of an Age Study Guide
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A World Lit Only by Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance: Portrait of an Age from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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