Skip to comments.Mohammed & Charlemagne Revisited: The Epilogue
Posted on 04/04/2012 7:22:30 AM PDT by marshmallow
We have seen that, irrespective of what happened in Europe, Graeco-Roman civilization was terminated very abruptly in the seventh century in its heartlands, in the Near and Middle East, and in North Africa. In these vast territories a new civilization, quite unlike that which had gone before, appeared with surprising rapidity. This new Islamic culture inherited the resources, wealth, and learning of the old one, and was, from the very beginning, at an enormous advantage over the remnant Roman lands which yet survived in Europe. The latter continent was still largely rural and, for the most part, pagan and tribal.
Nonetheless, as we have demonstrated in great detail in the foregoing pages, it was home to a large and growing population, which, in the territories of the former Roman Empire, in Gaul, central Europe, and Spain, was still heavily under the influence of Rome and, more especially, of Byzantium. The loss of the Middle East and North Africa to Islam did, as Pirenne argued, terminate most of the commercial and cultural contacts which had previously existed between those territories and Europe. But it did not impoverish Europe. The latter continent was, by the late sixth century, largely self-sufficient economically. Trade in luxuries such as wines and spices certainly came to an end, as did the cultural and political influence of Byzantine. The great basilicas of the Visigoths and the Merovingians, with their marble columns and brightly-colored mosaics, were replaced after a somewhat lengthy period of non-construction by the more somber and smaller structures of the tenth-century Romanesque. Yet on the whole the loss of contact with the East had no terrible economic consequences for the majority of Europes peoples.
On the contrary, Europe was thrown back on its own resources, and it may well be that............
(Excerpt) Read more at newenglishreview.org ...
To each his own. A fellow historian and I just read as far as we could endure, and found it disconnected, illogical, unsubstantiated, regurgitated chunks of crap.
As if Christopher Dawson had never written anything. As to the Crusade against the Albi launched by Pope Innocent, he fails to note that the Holy Roman Empire was in fact a German-Roman Empire and a warriors society needing no influence from Islam to react to an internal threat as a warriors society might. Charlemagnes conquest of the Saxons and their annexation to Christendom being a case in point.
Inherited??? Seized by force the resources and wealth of Graeco-Roman civilization, but did not manage to destroy all the learning of Greece, Rome, Persia, Egypt, India...