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The Cambridge History of Christianity 4

The Cambridge History of Christianity 4.pdf

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Christianity in Western Europe c. 1100–c. 1500
During the early middle ages, Europe developed complex and
varied Christian cultures, and from about 1100 secular rulers, competing factions and inspired individuals continued to engender a
diverse and ever-changing mix within Christian society. This volume explores the wide range of institutions, practices and experiences associated with the life of European Christians in the later
middle ages. The clergy of this period initiated new approaches to
the role of priests, bishops and popes, and developed an ambitious
project to instruct the laity. For lay people, the practices of parish
religion were central, but many sought additional ways to enrich
their lives as Christians. Impulses towards reform and renewal
periodically swept across Europe, led by charismatic preachers
and supported by secular rulers. At the same time, Christians
were often preoccupied and troubled by non-Christians within
their own communities and on their borders. This
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