Customer Reviews for

A World Lit Only by Fire: The Medieval Mind and the Renaissance - Portrait of an Age

Average Rating 3.5
( 58 )
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(18)

4 Star

(12)

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(12)

2 Star

(7)

1 Star

(9)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

Highly readable!

Manchester's work in this volume is, admittedly, not scholarly in the usual sense of the term. That being said, this book is hard to put down. Manchester's style is engaging and he paints such a picture of medieval times that, upon reading him, one feels as if he has em...
Manchester's work in this volume is, admittedly, not scholarly in the usual sense of the term. That being said, this book is hard to put down. Manchester's style is engaging and he paints such a picture of medieval times that, upon reading him, one feels as if he has emerged from a brief sojourn in the era.

posted by Anonymous on June 29, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

Interesting, but unreliable

It's well-written and interesting enough to read if you're into scandals and Medieval gossip. I read it like a history book at first, so I was shocked by some of the anecdotes Manchester presents as factual history. I'm glad I double-checked and did my research becaus...
It's well-written and interesting enough to read if you're into scandals and Medieval gossip. I read it like a history book at first, so I was shocked by some of the anecdotes Manchester presents as factual history. I'm glad I double-checked and did my research because much of what's here isn't as widely accepted by historians as the author suggests. Personally, I had a lot of trouble with this because I like getting my facts straight, and I didn't enjoy the feeling afterwards that I had believed a lot of scholarly tall tales.

posted by Anonymous on May 27, 2007

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 24, 2006

    BORING!

    i had to read this book for my ap euro class and it was a drag. It is honestly one of the most boring books i have ever read. I suggest people not to read this book..unless you just want to be bored. If your looking for a book to read for pleasure keep on looking...

    1 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 9, 2003

    Another foolish and ignorant assault on the Middle Ages

    The last thing that the ignorant masses need is a book like this one, one which gratifies their belief in their own moral superiority to the people of the Middle Ages. Being a graduate student of medieval history, I know better than to rely on such bigotrous trash as this. If you truly wish to understand the Middle Ages, read: Morris Bishop's 'The Middle Ages', Regine Pernoud's 'Those Terrible Middle Ages: Debunking the Myths', Norman Cantor's 'The Civilization of the Middle Ages', and any PRIMARY source documents you can find on the period. You might also consider the VHS version of David Macaulay's 'Cathedral'. These will give one a far fairer picture of this horribly maligned era.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 20, 2003

    STAY AWAY!!!

    I had to read this book for summer reading for my AP Euro class. This had to be the most boring, dull, and contradictory book I've personally read. It is a fact, however, that Manchester is developing Alzheimer¿s/going senile and is VERY apparant in this book. For example, in the last section, he goes from talking about Magellan, to Christopher Coloumbus, to another explorer, to Magellan, and back and forth! This man is TOTALLY incapable of writing one thoughtful sentence! I'm not even sure what he intended this book to be about, since there's so many different topics. First, I've heard that he tried to write this as a biography about Magellan. I've also heard that this was supposed to be a preface to another book. We may never know. But what I do know is you shouldn't read this book!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2002

    Boring and Perverted

    I was required to read this book for my freshman world history class. It is honestly the most boring book I have ever read. No offense to the people who like this book, but it is far from my level of reading. Half of the book is talking about sex and the other half is very inaccurate.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 23, 2005

    This book will be the death of me!

    I am quite sure that the only reason this book is being read is because you are a) taking an AP Euro Class or something.. b) just does not have a life..But I'm sure this book here will be the death of me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 31, 2005

    Too much information in one book

    I had to read this book as a summer reading assignment for my Ap History class. I was stupid and waited until the weekend before school started to begin reading it. There is a HUGE amount of inforamtion packed into this book. It was difficult to graspt it all. Read it if you have to, or read it if you like medieval history. However, do not wait until the last minute to do it.....if you do it will be very regretful!

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 28, 2003

    Way Too Much Information to Grasp With

    I was assigned this book this summer for my Honors English summer assignment. At first I was kind of excited to read it because it's about the Medieval Times and the Renaissance, and they're both two of my favorite periods in history. But when I started reading it, I was put to sleep. The author includes so many dates and names and information in just one paragraph that you have to go back and try to comprehend what you just read. Also, the book skips from topic to topic, and is written as if an old history teacher who doesn't know the meaning of 'fun' is lecturing you in a droned voice about all these facts with millions of dates and names. It's also written so meticuously down to the very last detail; it's hard to believe that the author got every single fact right. It's definitely not a book I would recommend to anyone, even a history junkie like myself.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 25, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted October 25, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

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