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Warriors of the Lord: The Military Orders of Christendom

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As an authority on Catholicism, Walsh (librarian, Heythrop College, U. of London) couples historic illustrations—many in color—with commentary on the development, beliefs, battles, barbarism, and contributions of the soldier-monks who defended and spread Christianity. Such Crusaders include the defunct Knights Templar and still extant Cistercians. Annotation ©2003 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
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First Good [ No Hassle 30 Day Returns ] [ Edition: First ] Publisher: John Hunt Publishing Ltd. Pub Date: 1/1/2003 Binding: Hardcover Pages: 208.

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Overview

As an authority on Catholicism, Walsh (librarian, Heythrop College, U. of London) couples historic illustrations—many in color—with commentary on the development, beliefs, battles, barbarism, and contributions of the soldier-monks who defended and spread Christianity. Such Crusaders include the defunct Knights Templar and still extant Cistercians. Annotation ©2003 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Many people know that Franciscans are kind to animals and Benedictines are renowned for their hospitality, receiving every guest as they would receive Christ. But what about Christian orders that are famous not for such dove-like pacifism, but for hawkish determination to defend Christendom by force? In the Middle Ages, writes Walsh, these "military orders" flourished as they fought the Crusades, fueled the "reconquista" and furthered missionary outreach to distant lands. Most of these once-famous orders, such as the Knights Templar, the Teutonic Knights and the Knights of St. John, have not survived to the present day, their influence declining after "the crusading spirit grew colder." But their story is a fascinating glimpse into a distant past in which being a "soldier-monk" was not an oxymoron. Walsh's text is wonderfully accessible and well written, and is complemented by more than 100 illustrations and maps. (Feb.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
VOYA
The storied Knights Templar, Teutonic Knights, and other Catholic military orders exercise a continuing fascination for their combination of monastic vows and soldierly duties. Walsh provides a comprehensive survey of the major orders from their origin in the time of the Crusades. Rich in historical facts, names, and dates, this volume is short on analysis and context. Consequently its greatest appeal will be to students of the Middle Ages who already have some background. The chapters on life within the orders and on their continued vitality in stories and legend (for example, Raiders of the Lost Ark) are of more general interest. Many readers will be surprised to learn of the early interconnections between Islam and Christianity and of the orders' military campaigns in Egypt and later in Europe. The explanations of Jihad and of Augustine's concept of "just war" have relevance to contemporary events. This attractive book, which will appeal to browsers, is rich in illustrations although most of the artwork is unidentified. There are a few obvious editing errors (St. Bernard, for instance, is given a birth date thirty-seven years after he died). A useful appendix gives brief histories of the surprisingly numerous orders. Consider this book if you have patrons with a serious interest in the Middle Ages, the Crusades, or the history of the Catholic Church. VOYA CODES: 3Q 2P J S (Readable without serious defects; For the YA with a special interest in the subject; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2003, Eerdmans, 208p.; Index. Illus. Photos. Maps. Biblio. Appendix., $28. Ages 12 to 18.
—Kathleen Beck
Library Journal
"This is a book about monks who were also soldiers," writes Walsh (librarian, Heythrop Coll., Univ. of London; John Paul II) in this short but wonderfully written and illustrated account of men of religion who were also men of war. Starting with the establishment of knights and knighthood in Europe, Walsh moves on to describe "the adversary," the Arabian infidel, 10,000 strong, who he claims forced the hand of Europe into the Crusades. It is from here that Walsh presents the idea of Christian holy warfare whereby penance could be affected by taking up arms in defense of holy Jerusalem. Walsh is more popularizer than critic, offering great breadth of knowledge in an enormously accessible and straightforward fashion without much analytical or scholarly fanfare. Two short appendixes-on the Templar myth and a list of military orders-as well as a brief bibliography make this an agreeable and satisfying introduction. Highly recommended for history and religion collections.-Sandra Collins, Duquesne Univ. Lib., Pittsburgh Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802821096
  • Publisher: Eerdmans, William B. Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 1/1/2003
  • Edition description: NO AMER
  • Pages: 208
  • Product dimensions: 8.68 (w) x 11.30 (h) x 0.87 (d)

Table of Contents

1 The Church and War 7
2 The Adversary 35
3 Crusades 63
4 Defense of the Kingdom 86
5 Northern Frontier 113
6 Reconquista 132
7 Rule of Life 155
8 Aftermath 169
App. 1 187
App. 2 193
Bibliography 204
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