By Barbara W. Tuchman
The 14th century offers us again contradictory photos: a glittering time of crusades and castles, cathedrals and chivalry, and a gloomy time of ferocity and religious affliction, an international plunged right into a chaos of warfare, worry and the Plague. Barbara Tuchman anatomizes the century, revealing either the nice rhythms of background and the grain and texture of family lifestyles because it used to be lived.
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Additional info for A Distant Mirror: The Calamitous 14th Century
The evangelists do give us the name of the place of the cruciﬁxion. All of them agree that it was called Golgotha, the Hebrew or Aramaic word for skull, and all provide the Greek translation kranion (‘cranium’) (Mark : ; Matthew : ; John : ; and Luke : –– although Luke, mindful of the sensitivities of his Greek readers, spares them the barbarous Hebrew word). It is not surprising that such a sinister place-name caught the attention of these writers, but its use implies that they expected readers to know where it was.
Consequences of Constantine, – : In the course of , Constantine defeated the Eastern Emperor Licinius at Chrysopolis, and thus united the Roman Empire under his sole rule. Within a few months, he had given instructions for extensive work to be undertaken on the site on the eastern side of the city where Hadrian’s buildings stood. There are three major sources that describe these works, and that go back to Constantine’s own times. The second source is provided by the same Eusebius of Caesarea, and in particular by his Life of Constantine, which was composed towards the end of the s, with further information in his sermon at the dedication of the church on September and in a formal oration in praise of Constantine.
Jerome, Commentary on Matthew : (SC , ); Cesarius, Ps-Augustine, sermo : (PL . ); Paschasius, Expositio in Matthaeum : (CCCM . .
A Distant Mirror: The Calamitous 14th Century by Barbara W. Tuchman