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Cosmos and Community in Early Medieval Art
     

Cosmos and Community in Early Medieval Art

by Benjamin Anderson
 

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In the rapidly changing world of the early Middle Ages, depictions of the cosmos represented a consistent point of reference across the three dominant states—the Frankish, Byzantine, and Islamic Empires. As these empires diverged from their Greco-Roman roots between 700 and 1000 A.D. and established distinctive medieval artistic traditions, cosmic imagery

Overview


In the rapidly changing world of the early Middle Ages, depictions of the cosmos represented a consistent point of reference across the three dominant states—the Frankish, Byzantine, and Islamic Empires. As these empires diverged from their Greco-Roman roots between 700 and 1000 A.D. and established distinctive medieval artistic traditions, cosmic imagery created a web of visual continuity, though local meanings of these images varied greatly. Benjamin Anderson uses thrones, tables, mantles, frescoes, and manuscripts to show how cosmological motifs informed relationships between individuals, especially the ruling elite, and communities, demonstrating how domestic and global politics informed the production and reception of these depictions. The first book to consider such imagery across the dramatically diverse cultures of Western Europe, Byzantium, and the Islamic Middle East, Cosmos and Community in Early Medieval Art illuminates the distinctions between the cosmological art of these three cultural spheres, and reasserts the centrality of astronomical imagery to the study of art history.

Editorial Reviews

Glenn Peers

“Anderson has a serious achievement here: tightly focused and deeply learned, Cosmos and Community in Early Medieval Art will set a new course, providing new pivots for our arguments.”—Glenn Peers, The University of Texas at Austin

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300219166
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
02/28/2017
Pages:
216
Sales rank:
1,225,397
Product dimensions:
8.30(w) x 10.20(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author


Benjamin Anderson is assistant professor in the Department of History of Art and Visual Studies at Cornell University.

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