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Inventions of the Middle Ages

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3.81  ·  Rating Details  ·  37 Ratings  ·  8 Reviews
The middle ages have often been depicted as a period in which life had few comforts. Diet and health were poor, learning was preserved only for the select few through the monasteries and even the nobility had to do without. Nonsense, says the great medieval scholar Chiara Frugoni, in this delightful examination of the many inventions we owe to the Middle Ages. This ‘backwa ...more
Hardcover, 185 pages
Published 2007 by Folio Ltd (first published 2001)
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Michael O.
Apr 06, 2012 Michael O. rated it it was ok
This book is a bit light on substance, though there are some fun anecdotes, and I'm fairly sure a few of the explanations were convenient myths. Many of the entries are far too brief, and too much space is used up by technologies imported but not invented in the European Middle Ages.

However, it is a beautiful tome, and the many colored plates, mostly examples of the various inventions as illustrated in medieval art, are interesting and well-chosen. Were it larger it would make a great coffee tab
...more
Stefaan Van ryssen
Starts strongly but loses depth towards the end, as if the author wanted to get the whole thing over with. Notes are exceptionally thorough. Illustrations fabulous. OTOH, I would have expected a bit more answers to the questions why? and how?
Roberta
Molto interessante come libro, ma non approfondisce abbastanza. Da piccole nozioni interessanti che possono essere spunti per letture più approfondite.
Jen
I really thought I'd love this book

Medieval history + inventions (should)= happy Jen.

But it was so brief on each "invention," it was somewhat laughable. The author was more concerned about showing the neat art each object was in than actually discussing the invention itself. This made it a very pretty book, but not a very insightful one.

Skip it. (or just get it for the pictures...they are pretty cool)
Paulfozz
An interesting book, especially for someone used to reading history books from a British perspective. Seemed in a few places to swing between quick overviews and quite dense information a little more than I'd like but mostly was good to read and the illustrations were good to look at. Beautiful textured paper in this folio edition too, which made the reading experience quite special.
Scott
Jul 22, 2009 Scott rated it really liked it
A quick, lively introduction to the medieval world, that, at 145 pages (not including notes), won't bury the cursory reader. The original book was in Italian and the author is very italy-centric with little being discussed or acknowledged beyond. The large number of mediveal paintings, sculpture, etc. and detail reproduced in itself make the book worth reading.
Jerry Ozaniec
The book was obviously intended for an Italian audience so loses a little bit in translation. However it is fascinating and full of excelent information even if limited primarily those things originating in Italy.
PWRL
Aug 27, 2012 PWRL marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012-new
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