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As the title implies, New Approaches to Ilkhanid History explores new methodologies and avenues of research for the Mongol state in the Middle East. Although the majority of the Ilkhanate was situated in Iran, this volume considers other regions within the state and moves away from focusing on the center and the Ilkhanid court. New consideration is given to the source material, particularly how they have been composed, but also how the sources can inform on the provinces of the Ilkhanate. Several authors also examine lower-tier personages, groups, and institutions.
Contributors include: A.C.S. Peacock; Kazuhiko Shiraiwa; Christopher P. Atwood; Stefan Kamola; Qiu Yihao; Koichi Matsuda; Judith Kolbas; Reuven Amitai; Na'ama O. Arom; Timothy May; Michael Hope; Pier Giorgio Borbone; Dashdondog Bayarsaikhan; Dmitri Korobeinikov.
In this book, Volodymyr Koloda and Serhiy Gorbanenko discuss the important role of agriculture in the socio-economic development of the Khazar Khaganate and its influence on neighboring peoples. Drawing on the methods of the natural sciences (such as palaeobotany, archeozoology, soil science, palaeoclimatology), the volume focuses on how agriculture became the basis of the economy of the Khazarian populace. Comparative analysis suggests a significant influence of the agricultural traditions of the Saltiv population on the neighboring tribes of the Eastern Slavs, such as Severians mentioned in the annals (the Romny culture of Left-Bank Ukraine) and Slavs on the Don (the Borshevo culture).
Saʿdi of Shiraz and the Aesthetics of Desire in Medieval Persian Poetry
Beholding Beauty: Saʿdi of Shiraz and the Aesthetics of Desire in Medieval Persian Poetry explores the relationship between sexuality, politics, and spirituality in the lyric output of Saʿdi Shirazi (d. 1282 CE), one of the most revered masters of classical Persian literature. Relying on a variety of sources, including unpublished manuscripts, Domenico Ingenito reads the so-called “inimitable smoothness” of Saʿdi’s lyric style as a serene yet multifaceted window onto the uncanny beauty of the world, the human body, and the realm of the unseen.

The eight chapters of the book constitute the first attempt to study Sa‘di’s lyric meditations on beauty in the context of the major artistic and intellectual trends of his time. By mining unexplored connections between Islamic philosophy and mysticism, between obscene verses and courtly ideals of love, Ingenito approaches Sa‘di’s literary genius from the perspective of sacred homoeroticism and the psychology of performative lyricism in their historical context.
The concept, practice, institution and appearance of ‘the state’ have been hotly debated ever since the emergence of history as a discipline within modern scholarship. The field of medieval Islamic history, however, has remained aloof from most of these debates. Rather it tends to take for granted the particularity of dynastic trajectories within slow-changing bureaucratic contexts. Trajectories of State Formation promotes a more critical and connected understanding of state formation in the late medieval Sultanates of Cairo and of the Timurid, Turkmen and Ottoman dynasties. Projecting seven case studies onto a broad canvas of European and West-Asian research, this volume presents a trans-dynastic reconstruction, interpretation and illustration of statist trajectories across fifteenth-century Islamic West-Asia.

The contributors are: Georg Christ, Kristof D’hulster, Jan Dumolyn, Albrecht Fuess, Dimitri J. Kastritsis, Beatrice Forbes Manz, John L. Meloy, Jo Van Steenbergen, and Patrick Wing.
Maritime Power Networks in World History
Empires of the Sea brings together studies of maritime empires from the Bronze Age to the Eighteenth Century. The volume aims to establish maritime empires as a category for the (comparative) study of premodern empires, and from a partly ‘non-western’ perspective. The book includes contributions on Mycenaean sea power, Classical Athens, the ancient Thebans, Ptolemaic Egypt, The Genoese Empire, power networks of the Vikings, the medieval Danish Empire, the Baltic empire of Ancien Régime Sweden, the early modern Indian Ocean, the Melaka Empire, the (non-European aspects of the) Portuguese Empire and Dutch East India Company, and the Pirates of Caribbean.
Politics, Art, Spirituality in the Kingdom of Vaspurakan
This book is dedicated to an outstanding architectural monument of medieval Armenia – the church of the Holy Cross, built in the tenth century on the island of Ałt‘amar on Lake Van, and a UNESCO world heritage site. This jewel of architecture has been researched mainly from an art historical perspective. The current multi-author volume offers diverse studies aimed at placing the construction of the church in its proper historical, political, religious, and spiritual context. It explores the intellectual climate in the Kingdom of Vaspurakan during the reign of its founder, King Gagik Arcruni, the Kingdom’s relations with Byzantium and the Abbasids, analyzes local historiography, biblical exegesis, hagiography, veneration of the True Cross, and royal ideology. Novel interpretations of architectural features and sculptural decorations close the volume.
Le livre est consacré à l'un des plus importants monuments architecturaux de l'Arménie médiévale, l'église de la Sainte-Croix construite au Xe siècle sur l'île d’Ałt‘amar sur le lac de Van. Elle est inscrite sur la liste du patrimoine mondial de l'UNESCO. Ce joyau de l'architecture arménienne a été étudié principalement dans la perspective de l’histoire de l’art. Le présent volume multi-auteurs propose une diversité d’approches qui placent la construction de cette église dans le contexte historique, politique, religieux et spirituel. Il étudie l’ambiance intellectuelle du Royaume du Vaspurakan durant le règne de son fondateur, le roi Gagik Arcruni, les relations du Royaume avec Byzance et les Abbassides, il analyse l’historiographie locale, l’exégèse biblique, l’hagiographie, le culte de la Vraie Croix et l’idéologie royale. De nouvelles interprétations des particularités architecturales et des décors sculptés achèvent le volume.
Contributors are Krikor Bélédian, Jean-Claude Cheynet, Patrick Donabédian, Bernard Flusin, Tim Greenwood, Gohar Grigoryan, Armen Kazaryan, Davit Kertmenjyan, Sergio La Porta, Jean-Pierre Mahé, Zaroui Pogossian, Robert Thomson (†), Alison Vacca, Edda Vardanyan.
Shahnama Studies III focuses on the hugely successful afterlife of the Shahnama or Book of Kings, completed by the poet Firdausi around 1010 AD. This long epic grew out to be an icon of Persian culture and served as a source of inspiration for art and literature, leaving its traces in manifold ways. The contributors to this volume each treat an aspect of the rich legacy of the Shahnama and offer new insights in Shahnama manuscript studies, the illustration of the Shahnama, the phenomenon of later epics, and the Shahnama in later texts and contexts.
Author: Anya H. King
Since antiquity, musk has been a valued perfume and medicine. Because the musk deer only lives in Central Eurasia, people in other locations had to trade for its musk. For medieval Islamic civilization, musk became the most important of all aromatics. The musk trade thus illuminates the nature of medieval Asian trade and musk's cultural effects on the Islamic world. Scent from the Garden of Paradise: Musk and the Medieval Islamic World examines the history of musk from its origins in Asia to its uses in the medieval Middle East, surveys the Islamic literature on musk, and discusses the roles of musk in perfumery and medicine, as well as the symbolic importance of musk in Islam.
Author: Adam Knobler
This book examines the relationship between medieval European mythologies of the non-Western world and the initial Portuguese and Spanish voyages of expansion and exploration to Africa, Asia and the Americas. From encounters with the Mongols and successor states, to the European contacts with Ethiopia, India and the Americas, as well as the concomitant Jewish notion of the Ten Lost Tribes, the volume views the Western search for distant, crusading allies through the lens of stories such as the apostolate of Saint Thomas and the stories surrounding the supposed priest-king Prester John. In doing so, Knobler weaves a broad history of early modern Iberian imperial expansion within the context of a history of cosmologies and mythologies.
Dogs in Medieval and Early Modern Art, Literature, and Society
The ubiquity of references to dogs in medieval and early modern texts and images must at some level reflect their actual presence in those worlds, yet scholarly consideration of this material is rare and scattered across diverse sources. This volume addresses that gap, bringing together fifteen essays that examine the appearance, meaning, and significance of dogs in painting, sculpture, manuscripts, literature, and legal records of the period, reaching beyond Europe to include cultural material from medieval Japan and Islam. While primarily art historical in focus, the authors approach the subject from a range of disciplines and with varying methodology that ultimately reveals as much about dogs as about the societies in which they lived.
Contributors are Kathleen Ashley, Jane Carroll, Emily Cockayne, John Block Friedman, Karen M. Gerhart, Laura D. Gelfand, Craig A. Gibson, Walter S. Gibson, Nathan Hofer, Jane C. Long, Judith W. Mann, Sophie Oosterwijk, Elizabeth Carson Pastan, Donna L. Sadler, Alexa Sand, and Janet Snyder.