1st Edition

Power and Faith Politics and Religion in Western Europe from the Tenth to the Thirteenth Century

By Richard Huscroft Copyright 2023
    464 Pages 8 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    464 Pages 8 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Examining the developments in the political and religious landscape of Western Europe between the tenth and thirteenth centuries, Power and Faith explores the origins of dominant nation Sates and religious institutions in the West emerged out of the fractured and fragmented post-Carolingian world.

    As a foundational text for those new to the period, the book offers a clear chronological framework for understanding and analysing the emerging polities of Western Europe and an examination of the influence of the Papacy and the Crusades across Christian life and culture. Mixed with careful consideration of major social and economic themes including urbanisation, rural revolution, and the role of women in politics, religion, and society, the book gives a uniquely comprehensive overview of political and religious developments in Western Europe during a neglected yet fundamentally significant period.

    The book is divided into six parts, part one sets out the scope and aims of the book and discusses the sources used. Parts two and six provide overviews of the political and religious states of affairs in Europe at the start and end of the period respectively. Framed by these sections, the book is divided into three chronologically-ordered parts each containing three chapters, the first offers a brief account of the main historiography of the period concerned, the second provides a thorough account and analysis of the main political developments across Europe during it and the third explores the main religious changes.

    Power and Faith is an essential introductory guide for students and researchers interested in politics, religion, and society in Western Europe during the middle ages.





              Power and Faith in Western Europe in About 900

              How Do We Know? Sources and Interpretations


    PART 1: THE TENTH CENTURY, c.890-c.1020

    1. The Social and Economic Context
    2. Power: The Political Framework, c.890-c.1020
    3. The East Frankish Kingdom and the Renewal of Empire

      The West Frankish Kingdom and the Challenge of Survival

      Britain and Ireland: Kingdoms and Peoples

      Southern Europe: The Multicultural Experience in Iberia and Italy

      Frontier Europe: Christians and Pagans in the North and East

    4. Faith: The Church in Western Europe, c.890-c.1020
    5. The Papacy: Too Corrupt to Matter?

      Bishops and Monks: Local Power in Cathedrals and Cloisters

      Priests and People: Popular Practice and Everyday Belief


      PART 2: THE ELEVENTH CENTURY, c.1020-c.1120

    6. The Social and Economic Context
    7. Power: The Political Framework, c.1020-c.1120
    8. Germany: Royal Authority and Mighty Rebellion

      France: Petty Kings and Potent Princes

      Britain and Ireland: Conquest and Survival

      Southern Europe: Spanish Kings and Norman Knights in Iberia and Italy

      Frontier Europe: Life on the Edge in the North and East

    9. Faith: The Church in Western Europe, c.1020-c.1120
    10. The Papacy: Revival and Reform

      The New Monasticism

      Popular Piety and Shades of Belief

      The First Crusade and its Aftermath: Beginner’s Luck?


      PART 3: THE TWELFTH CENTURY, c.1120-c.1220

    11. The Social and Economic Context
    12. Power: The Political Framework, c.1120-c.1220
    13. Germany: Staufen, Welf and the Struggle for Imperium

      France: A Real Kingdom at Last

      Britain and Ireland: Civil Wars and Fights for Supremacy

      Southern Europe: Reconquista and State Building in Iberia and Italy

      Frontier Europe: Westernisation in the North and East

      1. Faith: The Church in Western Europe, c.1120-c.1220

      The Papacy: Schisms and Supremacy

      Preachers and Friars: The Reinvention of Orthodoxy

      Religion, Renewal and the Laity

      Muslim Revival and the Crisis of Crusading

      Closer to Home: Crusading in Europe and the Battle with Heresy


      Further Reading



      Richard Huscroft is Head of History at Westminster School, London. His interests are rooted in different aspects of European Medieval history, as is reflected in his publications including England’s Jewish Solution (2006), Ruling England, 1042-1217 (2016) and Tales From the Long Twelfth Century (2017).