- Shopping Bag ( 0 items )
The Council of Constance (1414-18) was called chiefly to resolve the so-called papal schism during which three rival popes reigned. Its outcomes, reinforcing papal supremacy and traditional conceptions of the Church, in fact laid the groundwork for the Reformation and subsequent Counter-Reformation. Although the topic is absorbing, this particular treatment is very disappointing. Welsh has written previously on Australian and British history (e.g., The Four Nations: A History of the United Nations); however, his style in this volume is choppy. The book begins with numerous names, dates, and places, with little connecting tissue to hold the reader's interest. Various prurient anecdotes detract from the story, and the volume contains a scant 70 pages concerning the council itself. The remainder of the book surveys the surrounding history in an anecdotal fashion. The strongest section is the description of the Hussite rebellion following the council, but this warrants its own deeper treatment. The notes for each of the chapters are sketchy and simply list books the author utilized in a topical fashion. Not recommended.