The second in the series, this is a more mature and confidently written book. It very concisely covers 500-1400AD, ranging over the development of the church within the old Roman Empire. The humour is still there, the rudest and most controversial tutorial group ever slug it out - the facts and the interpretations of Europe's turbulent years leading up to the Reformation. The funniest chapter deals with heresies and, if I am not much mistaken, owes a lot to Monty Python - 'No-one expects the Spanish Inquisition!'. The tutorial topics are the: Franks, Anglo-Saxons, Carolingians, Monasticism, papacy, crusades, 12th century Renaissance, new religous orders (Benedictines, Carthusians, Augustinians, etc), heresy (great fun), St. Francis of Assisi, medieval women (made of stern stuff), late medieval papacy, and John Wycliffe (hurrah!). On the downside, there is no index and I would have added a couple of texts to the otherwise excellent bibliography, (particularly C. S. Lewis's collection on Medieval and Renaissance Literature), but overall a great read.
This report prepared by Michael JR Jose