Time in the Medieval World
The Middle Ages occupy an ambiguous place in history: on the one hand recognizably pre-modern, on the other the birthplace of a modern temporal sensibility. The interest generated by the new millennium has led to a wider appreciation of the medieval origins of many of our temporal ideas, systems and technologies. The contributions to this book suggest current ways of thinking about, and answering, perennial questions about how time was perceived, calculated and spent in the Middle Ages. The emphasis is on the practical utility of temporal schemes, whether in literary narratives, legal definitions, funerary practices or religious beliefs. The book offers a rich diversity of approaches and materials drawn from archaeological, literary, historical and art-historical scholarship and spans the period from the early medieval to the early modern. It presents a multi-faceted view of medieval attitudes to time and suggests that then, as now, time was an altogether malleable and relative medium.
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