Framing the Early Middle Ages : Europe and the Mediterranean, 400-800, Paperback / softback Book

Framing the Early Middle Ages : Europe and the Mediterranean, 400-800 Paperback / softback


The Roman empire tends to be seen as a whole whereas the early middle ages tends to be seen as a collection of regional histories, roughly corresponding to the land-areas of modern nation states.

As a result, early medieval history is much more fragmented, and there have been few convincing syntheses of socio-economic change in the post-Roman world since the 1930s.

In recent decades, the rise of early medieval archaeology has also transformed our source-base, butthis has not been adequately integrated into analyses of documentary history in almost any country.

In Framing the Early Middle Ages Chris Wickham combines documentary and archaeological evidence to create a comparative history of the period 400-800.

His analysis embraces each of the regions of the late Roman and immediately post-Roman world, from Denmark to Egypt.

The book concentrates on classic socio-economic themes, state finance, the wealth and identity of the aristocracy, estate management, peasant society, rural settlement, cities, and exchange.

These give only a partialpicture of the period, but they frame and explain other developments. Earlier syntheses have taken the development of a single region as 'typical', with divergent developments presented as exceptions.

This book takes all different developments as typical, and aims to construct a synthesis based on a better understanding of difference and the reasons for it.


  • Format: Paperback / softback
  • Pages: 1024 pages, 13 maps
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: General & world history
  • ISBN: 9780199212965

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