The First Thousand Years

Book Details

Author  Robert Louis Wilken
Publisher  Yale University Press
Publication Date   November 12, 2013
ISBN  0300198388
Pages  416

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Description

How did a community that was large invisible in the first two centuries of its existence go on to remake the civilizations it inhabited culturally politically and intellectually Beginning with the life of Jesus Robert Louis Wilken narrates the dramatic spread and development of Christianity over the first thousand years of its history and shows how it constituted one of the most profound revolutions the world has known Book jacket How did a community that was largely invisible in the first two centuries of its existence go on to remake the civilizations it inhabited culturally politically and intellectually Beginning with the life of Jesus Robert Louis Wilken narrates the dramatic spread and development of Christianity over the first thousand years of its history Moving through the formation of early institutions practices and beliefs to the transformations of the Roman world after the conversion of Constantine he sheds new light on the subsequent stories of Christianity in the Latin West the Byzantine and Slavic East the Middle East and Central Asia Through a selected narration of particularly noteworthy persons and events Wilken demonstrates how the coming of Christianity set in motion one of the most profound revolutions the world has known This is not a story limited to the West rather Christian communities in Ethiopia Nubia Armenia Georgia Persia Central Asia India and China shaped the course of Christian history The rise and spread of Islam had a lasting impact on the future of Christianity and several chapters are devoted to the early experiences of Christians under Muslim rule Wilken reminds us that the career of Christianity is characterized by decline and attrition as well as by growth and expansion Ten years in the making and the result of a lifetime of study this is Robert Louis Wilken s summa a moving reflective and commanding account from a scholar at the height of his powers

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