How was magic practised in medieval times? How did it relate to the diverse beliefs and practices that characterised this fascinating period?. How was magic practiced in medieval times? How did it relate to the diverse beliefs and practices that characterized this fascinating period? Richard Kieckhefer. ‘Richard Kieckhefer offers a panoramic view of a very diverse set of problems in his cogently organised and revealing book imaginative and stimulating ‘.

Author: Yozshulkis Faushicage
Country: Latvia
Language: English (Spanish)
Genre: Art
Published (Last): 24 June 2015
Pages: 373
PDF File Size: 15.59 Mb
ePub File Size: 11.12 Mb
ISBN: 262-7-56552-945-9
Downloads: 23041
Price: Free* [*Free Regsitration Required]
Uploader: Taurn

Currently writing books on “the mystical presence of Christ” in the late Middle Ages an exploration of the relationship between ordinary and extraordinary piety, between shared religious culture and exceptional religious experience and late medieval church-building an inquiry into the collaboration and conflict among different interest groups in the creation of monuments meant to serve and symbolize communal interests. The increase in law education meant that kieckuefer opinion was increasingly sought, causing a more nuanced approach to who was prosecuted and for what.

Yet, by the 12th century the definition by Isidore of Seville was a good one; it implied magic as a source of “divination” and enco Christ and Mary blessing the herbs; 14th century the mandrake root had a sort of personality His approach is fairly tightly focused on the sources; he starts by xges at two middl fifteenth century Germany, an estate management handbook in the vernacular that contains scattered magical elements and a Latin handbook for conjuring demons.

The book covers various topics in detail, and it provides a good overview of the perceptions and reactions to magic during the Middle Ages as the title so conveniently states. But one question remains throughout: Kieckhefer gives a nice account of the practice and principles of astrology, and the debates over its claims. And that turned important both for Medicine and Magic; even for Philosophy. Richard Kieckhefer surveys the growth and development of magic in medieval times.

Likewise, the sagas mention sorcery. The rise of the witch trials.

An interesting point of difference between the exempla and practice is the use of the circle; in the former, it is seen as protective, whereas in practice it was actually used to contain inscriptions and other paraphernalia rather than acting as a protective boundary. One significant contribution was the association of magic with women; another was the persistent strand of Christian thought that considered all magic demonic in contrast to widespread classical sentiment that magic was bad only when used to evil ends, or when it posed a threat to the social order.


To sum up, this is a fantastic read. The spark was the Catholic reform within its church, while the conditions were a mixture of the use of torture and inquisitorial investigations, the afes that natural magic might turn out to be demonic, the idea of an anti-Christian sect and the witch im itself. Selected pages Title Page.

The chapter on medieval literature, and how the permagicalsecution of magic and er on necromancy is the most original, based largely on unpublished manuscripts and arguing for a new interpretation of the material. Also how attitudes towards it changed over time – well worth a read!

In this volume Kieckhefer presents a clear and concise description of Medieval magic which, by means of illustrations throughout from exemplars of period texts manages to effect a presentation of magic’s history as it was present in various sectors of Medieval society.

My library Help Advanced Book Search. Middlw were, in fact, responsible for much of the magic that you hear was practiced back then. Mwgic examines its relation to religion, science, philosophy, The physical book is deceptively thin because the font is small, but inside is a wealth of information.

In fact, one of the more interesting things one could take away from this book is how much magic and the mystical arts were largely the preserve of churchmen and elites who wanted to preserve its status as a special thing that only kkieckhefer got to do! Theological and moral condemnations were tied up with attacks on superstition and pagan survivals, and later with attempts to reform the church.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Mediaeval Textbooks S Cambridge medieval textbooks. His publications include European Witch Trials: That being said, the material was well I didn’t quite make it all the way through this one before I had to take it back to the library, and I was not about to expand the energy to renew it.

In addition, he shows how magic served as a point of contact between the popular and elite classes, how the reality of magical beliefs is reflected in the fiction of medieval literature, and how the persecution of magic and witchcraft led to changes in the law. Magic in the Middle Ages. Published May 1st by Cambridge University Press first published Books by Richard Kieckhefer.


Richard Kieckhefer is Professor of Religion and History at Northwestern University and an acknowledged expert on medieval magic and witchcraft. Apr 03, Owlseyes is currently reading it Shelves: First explored is the common tradition of magic, which was a diverse range of magical practices, practiced by a wide range of people.

Magic in the Middle Ages

The author writes in a very dry, scholarly way, and it wasn’t really the material I was hoping for. Kieckhefer approaches also several instances of Middle Age literature ‘romances’ and, still, the question lingers on: Kieckhefer’s prose is clear but struggles to create a sense of mystique that is so intertwined with the subject matter, despite his many colourful examples o For those wondering what flavour of academia they are getting into with this book, it is a dense but very readable undergraduate-level introduction to the topic.

The chapter on necromancy is the most original, based largely on unpublished manuscripts and arguing for a new interpretation of the material. But of course the more “expensive” forms of magic were specific to courts: So too does this chapter chart the journey away from the common tradition into a much more learned type of magic, only available to a section of society who are fully literate.

Magic in the Middle Ages – Richard Kieckhefer – Google Books

Unfortunately, I found the book quite dry and it was not easy finishing the read. Lists with This Book. That being said, the material was well planned out and the book did give me a lot of insight into magic and the middle ages. Turning to Germanic and Celtic influences, Kieckhefer doesn’t downplay the difficulties of using later Christian sources, but he looks at thd range of sources: Magic in the Middle Ages Camb. Trivia About Magic in the Midd Agess University PressNov 6, – History – pages.

Jun 04, Freyja Vanadis rated it liked it. Covering the years c. This textbook deals with magic, both natural and demonic, within the broad context of medieval culture. Oct 05, Errol Orhan rated it it was amazing. Thanks for telling us about the problem.