The New York Times bestseller and definitive history of Christianity for our time—from the award-winning author of The Reformation and Silence
A product of electrifying scholarship conveyed with commanding skill, Diarmaid MacCulloch's Christianity goes back to the origins of the Hebrew Bible and encompasses the globe. It captures the major turning points in Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox history and fills in often neglected accounts of conversion and confrontation in Africa, Latin America, and Asia. MacCulloch introduces us to monks and crusaders, heretics and reformers, popes and abolitionists, and discover Christianity's essential role in shaping human history and the intimate lives of men and women. And he uncovers the roots of the faith that galvanized America, charting the surprising beliefs of the founding fathers, the rise of the Evangelical movement and of Pentecostalism, and the recent crises within the Catholic Church. Bursting with original insights and a great pleasure to read, this monumental religious history will not soon be surpassed.
Where does Christianity begin? In Athens, Jerusalem, or Rome? How did the early creeds of the church develop and differentiate? What was the impact of the Reformation and the Catholic Counterreformation? How have vital Christian communities emerged in Asia, Africa, and India since the 18th century? Award-winning historian MacCulloch (The Reformation) attempts to answer these questions and many more in this elegantly written, magisterial history of Christianity. MacCulloch diligently traces the origins and development of Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant Christianities, and he provides a more in-depth look at the development of Christianity in Asia and Africa than standard histories of Christianity. He offers sketches of Christian thinkers from Augustine and Luther to Desmond Tutu and Patriarch Bartholomew I. Three appendixes contain a list of popes, Orthodox patriarchs, and a collection of Christian texts. Assuming no previous knowledge on the part of readers about Christian traditions, MacCulloch traces in breathtaking detail the often contentious arguments within Christianity for the past 3,000 years. His monumental achievement will not soon be surpassed.
It is a huge let down that this iBook version doesn't seem to have figures except the maps. Once in a while the author refers to Plate XX for the photo of a church etc, but I can't find it in the ebook. Am I missing something?
Missing illustrations mar otherwise excellent book
Sadly this edition is missing all of the color plates that are present in the paper versions, and salt is rubbed in the wound with each of the many references to a specific plate. Hypertext links on the footnotes and within the text are scant compensation. Excellent text, but only two stars for this edition because of the missing plates.
It is an excellent summary of the history of Christianity, providing me with a lot of facts I was not aware of before. The author links the past with the present, developments two thousands years which still resonate today. Thanks to the information provided I understand now where the differences between the Catholic Church and the Protestant denominations/churches on one side and in particular the Catholic Church and mainstream society are coming from. It may be a book which challenges somebodies belief system but after all that is what books are made for.