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Hannah W. Matis

In The Song of Songs in the Early Middle Ages, Hannah W. Matis examines how the Song of Songs, the collection of Hebrew love poetry, was understood in the Latin West as an allegory of Christ and the church. This reading of the biblical text was passed down via the patristic tradition, established by the Venerable Bede, and promoted by the chief architects of the Carolingian reform. Throughout the ninth century, the Song of Songs became a text that Carolingian churchmen used to think about the nature of Christ and to conceptualize their own roles and duties within the church. This study examines the many different ways that the Song of Songs was read within its early medieval historical context.
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Ihr Gott kämpft jeden Tag für sie

Krieg, Gewalt und religiöse Vorstellungen in der Frühzeit der Kreuzzüge (1095–1187)

David Crispin

Handelte es sich bei den frühen Kreuzzügen nach den Maßstäben ihrer Zeit um besonders gewalttätige Kriege? Welche Rolle spielten religiöse Vorstellungen für die Praxis der Kriegführung und die historische Erinnerung?

Bereits die frühesten Darstellungen des Ersten Kreuzzugs beinhalten nicht nur überaus drastische Darstellungen kriegerischer Gewaltexzesse, sondern auch zahlreiche Erzählungen vom wundersamen Wirken Gottes im Kampf, das den Kreuzfahrern zu blutigen, unwahrscheinlichen Triumphen verhilft. Diese Erfolgsgeschichte von der gottgeleiteten Eroberung Jerusalems diente auch dazu, neue Krieger für weitere Kreuzzugsunternehmungen zu gewinnen. Das Buch geht der Frage nach, ob es sich hierbei vor allem um ein Konstrukt der Chronisten handelt oder sich in den betreffenden Quellen auch Vorstellungen der Kreuzfahrer spiegeln, die Einfluss auf die Praxis der Kriegführung und das Ausmaß der Gewalt hatten.
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The Use of Canon Law in Ecclesiastical Administration, 1000–1234 explores the integration of canon law within administration and society in the central Middle Ages. Grounded in the careers of ecclesiastical administrators, each essay serves as a case study that couples law with social, political or intellectual developments. Together, the essays seek to integrate the textual analysis necessary to understand the evolution and transmission of the legal tradition into the broader study of twelfth century ecclesiastical government and practice. The essays therefore both place law into the wider developments of the long twelfth century but also highlight points of continuity throughout the period.

Contributors are Greta Austin, Bruce C. Brasington, Kathleen G. Cushing, Stephan Dusil, Louis I. Hamilton, Mia Münster-Swendsen, William L. North, John S. Ott, and Jason Taliadoros.
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George Dimitri Sawa

The present volume consists of translated anecdotes, on musicological and socio-cultural topics, from al-Iṣbahānī’s Kitāb al-Aghānī al-Kabīr ( The Grand Book of Songs) with annotations and commentaries. It deals with musical rhythmic and melodic modes, technical terms and treatises; music instruments; composition techniques and processes; education and oral/written transmissions; vocal and instrumental performances and their aesthetics; solo and ensemble music; change and its inevitability; musical and textual improvisations; ṭarab and the acute emotions of joy or grief; medieval dances; social status. Though extracts from The Grand Book of Songs have been translated in European languages since 1816, this work presents a much larger and more comprehensive scope that will benefit musicologists, medievalist and Middle Eastern scholars as well as the general reader.
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Hamza Malik

In The Grey Falcon, Hamza Malik offers an account of the life and teaching of the twelfth century scholar and Sufi of Baghdad, and eponym of the Qadiri order, Shaykh ʿAbd al-Qādir al-Jīlānī (1077-1166). The question of whether Jīlānī was a Sufi, or simply a scholar appropriated by later Sufis as has been sometimes suggested, is tackled through an analysis of his three most popular works, the Ghunya li Ṭālibī Ṭarīq al-Ḥaqq, the Futūḥ al-Ghayb, and the Fatḥ al-Rabbānī. Malik identifies and presents Jīlānī’s Sufi thought and theological stance, and furthermore attempts to paint a picture of the character and personality of Jīlānī, as might be ascertained solely from the works analysed.
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Early Sunnī Historiography

A Study of the Tārīkh of Khalīfa b. Khayyāṭ

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Tobias Andersson

In Early Sunnī Historiography, Tobias Andersson presents the first full-length study of the earliest Islamic chronological history extant: the Tārīkh ( Chronicle) of the Basran ḥadīth scholar and historian Khalīfa b. Khayyāṭ al-ʿUṣfurī (d. 240/854). The book examines how Khalīfa worked as a historian in terms of his social and intellectual context, selection of sources, methods of compilation, arrangement of material and narration of key themes in comparison to the wider historiographical tradition. It shows how Khalīfa’s affiliation with the early Sunnī ḥadīth scholars of Basra is reflected in his methods and concerns throughout the Tārīkh, while also highlighting similarities to other histories compiled by ḥadīth scholars of the third/ninth century.
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Crusade scholarship has exploded in popularity over the past two decades. This volume captures the resulting diversity of approaches, which often cross cultures and academic disciplines. The contributors to this volume offer new perspectives on topics as varied as the application of Roman law on slavery to the situation of Muslims in the Latin East, Muslim appropriation of Latin architectural spolia, the roles played by the crusade in medieval preaching, and the impact of Latin East refugees on religious geography in late medieval Cyprus. Together these essays demonstrate how pervasive the institution of crusade was in medieval Christendom, as much at home in Europe as in the Latin East, and how much impact it carried forth into the modern era.
Contributors are Richard Allington, Jessalynn Bird, Adam M. Bishop, Tomasz Borowski, Yan Bourke, Sam Zeno Conedera, Charles W. Connell, Cathleen A. Fleck, Lisa Mahoney, and C. Matthew Phillips.
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Authority and Control in the Countryside looks at the economic, religious, political and cultural instruments that local and regional powers in the late antique to early medieval Mediterranean and Near East used to manage their rural hinterlands. Measures of direct control – land ownership, judicial systems, garrisons and fortifications, religious and administrative appointments, taxes and regulation – and indirect control – monuments and landmarks, cultural styles and artistic models, intellectual and religious influence, and economic and bureaucratic standard-setting – are examined to reconstruct the various means by which authority was asserted over the countryside. Unified by its thematic and spatial focus, this book offers an array of interdisciplinary approaches, allowing for important comparisons across a wide but connected geographical area in the transition from the Sasanian and Roman to the Islamic period. Contributors: Arezou Azad and Hugh Kennedy, Sobhi Bouderbala, Michele Campopiano, Alain Delattre, Jessica Ehinger, Simon Ford, James Howard-Johnston, Elif Keser-Kayaalp, Marie Legendre, Javier Martínez Jiménez, Harry Munt, Annliese Nef and Vivien Prigent, Marion Rivoal and Marie-Odile Rousset, Gesa Schenke, Petra Sijpesteijn, Peter Verkinderen, Luke Yarbrough, Khaled Younes.
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First published as a special issue of the journal Medieval Encounters (vol. 23, 2017), this volume, edited by Josefina Rodríguez-Arribas, Charles Burnett, Silke Ackermann, and Ryan Szpiech, brings together fourteen studies on various aspects of the astrolabe in medieval cultures. The astrolabe, developed in antiquity and elaborated throughout the Middle Ages, had a variety of uses, amongst which timekeeping, surveying, and astrological applications were the most common. It was also associated with power and luxury in many Muslim and Christian courts, where astrologers (frequently Jews) used it to forecast the future of the kingdom. By considering sources and instruments from Muslim, Christian, and Jewish contexts, this volume provides state-of-the-art research on the history and use of the astrolabe throughout the Middle Ages.
Contributors are Silke Ackermann, Emilia Calvo, John Davis, Laura Fernández Fernández, Miquel Forcada, Azucena Hernández, David A. King, Taro Mimura, Günther Oestmann, Josefina Rodríguez-Arribas, Sreeramula Rajeswara Sarma, Petra G. Schmidl, Giorgio Strano, Flora Vafea, and Johannes Thomann.