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Edited by Brian C. Brewer and David M. Whitford

Those who have a passing knowledge of John Calvin’s theology and reforms in Geneva in the sixteenth century may picture the confident and mature theologian and preacher without appreciating the various events, people, and circumstances that shaped the man. Before there was Protestantism’s first and eminent systematic theologian, there was the French youth, the law student and humanist, the Protestant convert and homeless exile, the reluctant reformer and anguished city leader. Snapshots of the young Calvin create a collage that give a bigger picture to the grey-bearded Protestant reformer. Eleven scholars of early-modern history have joined in this volume to depict the people, movements, politics, education, sympathizers, nemeses, and controversies from which Calvin immerged in his young adulthood.

A Humanist in Reformation Politics

Philipp Melanchthon on Political Philosophy and Natural Law

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Mads L. Jensen

This book is the first contextual account of the political philosophy and natural law theory of the German reformer Philipp Melanchthon (1497-1560). Mads Langballe Jensen presents Melanchthon as a significant political thinker in his own right and an engaged scholar drawing on the intellectual arsenal of renaissance humanism to develop a new Protestant political philosophy. As such, he also shows how and why natural law theories first became integral to Protestant political thought in response to the political and religious conflicts of the Reformation. This study offers new, contextual studies of a wide range of Melanchthon's works including his early humanist orations, commentaries on Aristotle's ethics and politics, Melanchthon's own textbooks on moral and political philosophy, and polemical works.

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Per Pippin Aspaas and László Kontler

The Viennese Jesuit court astronomer Maximilian Hell was a nodal figure in the eighteenth-century circulation of knowledge. He was already famous by the time of his celebrated 1769 expedition for the observation of the transit of Venus in northern Scandinavia. However, the 1773 suppression of his order forced Hell to develop ingenious strategies of accommodation to changing international and domestic circumstances. Through a study of his career in local, regional, imperial, and global contexts, this book sheds new light on the complex relationship between the Enlightenment, Catholicism, administrative and academic reform in the Habsburg monarchy, and the practices and ends of cultivating science in the Republic of Letters around the end of the first era of the Society of Jesus.

Riches and Reform

Ecclesiastical Wealth in St Andrews, c.1520-1580

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Bess Rhodes

The Scottish Reformation is often presumed to have had little economic impact. Traditionally, scholars maintained that Scotland’s late medieval church gradually secularised its estates, and that the religious changes of 1560 barely disrupted an ongoing trend. In Riches and Reform Bess Rhodes challenges this assumption with a study of church finance in Scotland’s religious capital of St Andrews, a place once regarded as the ‘cheif and mother citie of the Realme’. Drawing on largely unpublished charters, rentals, and account books, Riches and Reform argues that in St Andrews the Reformation triggered a rapid, large-scale, and ultimately ruinous redistribution of ecclesiastical wealth. Communal assets built up over generations were suddenly dispersed through a combination of official policies, individual opportunism, and a crisis in local administration, leading the post-Reformation churches and city of St Andrews into ‘poverte and decay’.

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Edited by Stephen J. Hunt

The growth of the megachurch (generally defined as a regular attendance of over 2,000 people) is undoubtedly one of the most exceptional religious trends of recent times, certainly within the Christian sphere. Spreading from the USA, megachurches have now become common globally - reaching different national and cultural contexts. The edited volume Handbook of Megachurches offers a comprehensive account of the subject from various academic perspectives: sociology, religious studies, religious history and religious studies among them. Topics covered include: the historical developments and growth, typologies, theology, popular culture, revivalism, social engagement, and the manifestation of megachurches in such countries as Canada, Russia, India and Africa.

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Edited by Adrian Guiu

John Scottus Eriugena (d. ca. 877) is regarded as the most important philosopher and theologian in the Latin West from the death of Boethius until the thirteenth century. He incorporated his understanding of Latin sources, Ambrose, Augustine, Boethius and Greek sources, including the Cappadocian Fathers, Pseudo-Dionysius, and Maximus Confessor, into a metaphysics structured on Aristotle’s Categories, from which he developed Christian Neoplatonist theology that continues to stimulate 21st-century theologians.
This collection of essays provides an overview of the latest scholarship on various aspects of Eriugena’s thought and writings, including his Irish background, his use of Greek theologians, his Scripture hermeneutics, his understanding of Aristotelian logic, Christology, and the impact he had on contemporary and later theological traditions.

Contributors: David Albertson, Joel Barstad, John Contreni, Christophe Erismann, John Gavin, Adrian Guiu, Michael Harrington, Catherine Kavanagh, A. Kijewska, Stephen Lahey, Elena Lloyd-Sidle, Bernard McGinn, Ernesto Sergio Mainoldi, Dermot Moran, Giulio D’Onofrio, Willemien Otten, and Alfred Siewers

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Edited by Andrew Fear and Jamie Wood

A Companion to Isidore of Seville presents nineteen chapters from leading international scholars on Isidore of Seville (d. 636), the most prominent bishop of the Visigothic kingdom in Hispania in the seventh century and one of the most prolific authors of early medieval western Europe.
Introductory studies establish the political, religious and familial contexts in which Isidore operated, his key works are then analysed in detail, as are some of the main themes that run throughout his corpus. Isidore's influence extended across the entire Middle Ages and into the early modern period in fields such as church governance and pastoral care, theology, grammar, science, history-writing, and linguistics – all topics that are explored in the volume.

Contributors: Graham Barrett, Winston Black, José Carracedo Fraga, Santiago Castellanos, Pedro Castillo Maldonado, Jacques Elfassi, Andrew Fear, Amy Fuller, Raúl González Salinero, Jeremy Lawrance, Céline Martin, Thomas O'Loughlin, Martin J. Ryan, Sinéad O'Sullivan, Mark Lewis Tizzoni, Purificación Ubric Rabaneda, Faith Wallis, Immo Warntjes, and Jamie Wood.

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Edited by Samantha Kahn Herrick

Hagiography and the History of Latin Christendom, 500-1500 shows the historical value of texts celebrating saints—both the most abundant medieval source material and among the most difficult to use. Hagiographical sources present many challenges: they are usually anonymous, often hard to date, full of topoi, and unstable. Moreover, they are generally not what we would consider factually accurate. The volume’s twenty-one contributions draw on a range of disciplines and employ a variety of innovative methods to address these challenges and reach new discoveries about the medieval world that extend well beyond the study of sanctity. They show the rich potential of hagiography to enhance our knowledge of that world, and some of the ways to unlock it.

Contributors are Ellen Arnold, Helen Birkett, Edina Bozoky, Emma Campbell, Adrian Cornell du Houx, David Defries, Albrecht Diem, Cynthia Hahn, Samantha Kahn Herrick, J.K. Kitchen, Jamie Kreiner, Klaus Krönert, Mathew Kuefler, Katherine J. Lewis, Giovanni Paolo Maggioni, Charles Mériaux, Paul Oldfield, Sara Ritchey, Catherine Saucier, Laura Ackerman Smoller, and Ineke van ‘t Spijker.

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Gerd Althoff

Gerd Althoff´s new book collects fifteen of his more recent contributions, most of them previously published in German, which elucidate the functioning of prestate societies. Examples from the Frankish and later German realm (800-1200) are used to clarify how rules and political rituals governed behavior in the power games between kings, churchmen and nobles. Such rules (Spielregeln) and rituals guided public and private behavior despite the fact that they existed only as unwritten customs. The long-overlooked significance of this way of establishing order has sparked a vivid and controversial international discussion in the last decades which continues today.

Waiting for the End of the World

European Dimensions, 950–1200

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Tsvetelin Stepanov

The French president Charles de Gaulle spoke of a Europe “from the Atlantic to the Urals”. Europe was spatially formed with these topographic parameters from the late 10th century onwards, with the massive Christianization of its inhabitants. At that time, however, all three monotheistic religions already had a steady presence there. Could such a macro-space be thought-and-narrated from a macro-perspective, in view of its medieval past? This has already been done through common ʻdenominatorsʻ such as the Migration Period, wars, trade, spread of Christianity. Could it also be seen through a common religious-philosophical and spiritual phenomenon – the Anticipation of the End of the world among Christians, Muslims, and Jews? This book gives a positive answer to the last question.