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Main page » Non-Fiction » The Waning of the Middle Ages (Penguin Books)

The Waning of the Middle Ages (Penguin Books)


This magnificent study of life, thought and art in France and the Netherlands in the fourteenth and fifteenth century remains a classic historical work.

In it, Johan Huizinga challenges the prevailing notion that the Middle Ages were just a prelude to the Renaissance. Examining in detail the work of the brothers Van Eyck, he goes on to demonstrate his belief that the actions of princes and statesmen, the chivalry of knights, and the outpourings of theologians, artists, poets and chroniclers were the final and perfect flowering of an older style of life. He ends his splendid and enduring work by concluding that in an age of violent contrasts and impressive forms there was a tone of passion to everyday life that helped produce that 'perpetual oscillation between despair and distracted joy, between cruelty and pious tenderness, which characterize life in the Middle Ages'.

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Tags: Middle, chivalry, knights, outpourings, theologians, Waning, Books, Penguin, Examining