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Download The Civilization of the Middle Ages: A Completely Revised and Expanded Edition of Medieval History, the Life and Death of a Civilization Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Civilization of the Middle Ages: A Completely Revised and Expanded Edition of Medieval History, the Life and Death of a Civilization Audiobook, by Norman F. Cantor Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (793 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Norman F. Cantor Narrator: Frederick Davidson Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2010 ISBN: 9781455171262
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In 1963 Norman F. Cantor published his breakthrough narrative history of the Middle Ages. Here is a significant revision, update, and expansion of that work.

The Civilization of the Middle Ages incorporates newer research and novel perspectives, especially on the foundations of the Middle Ages and the late Middle Ages of the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. A sharper focus on social history, Jewish history, women’s roles in society, and popular religion and heresy distinguish the book. While the first and last sections of the book are almost entirely new and many additions have been incorporated in the intervening sections, Cantor has retained the powerful narrative flow that made earlier editions so accessible. 

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Quotes & Awards

  • “No better explanation of medievalism is available to the general reader.”

    Booklist

  • “Cantor…writes with wonderful fluidity; his lucid prose moves from topic to topic with effortless grace.”

    AudioFile

  • “A good book for general readers on this fascinating period of history.”

    Washington Post Book World

  • “Cantor’s fine prose is ably read by Frederick Davidson.” 

    Library Journal

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Mike Anderson | 1/29/2014

    " Detailed and thorough exposition of the Middle Ages from the fall of Rome to the renaissance. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Barbara | 1/13/2014

    " Interesting and informative history of Europe in the middle ages. It could have used better editing. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lynn Weber | 12/19/2013

    " Every page is interesting (if you're interested in this kind of thing). "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bonnie | 12/16/2013

    " This was the first, and still the best, book on the Medieval era that I have read. History, generally, is one of my favorite topics, but this period was so formative to what followed - whether for good or ill. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kevin J. Rogers | 12/16/2013

    " This in an outstanding, concise history of the Middle Ages, written for the lay reader, yet packed with erudite observations on the mores, morals, politics, and passions of that most transitional of periods in human history. Entertaining, informative, and highly recommended. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jessica Trapp | 12/13/2013

    " Interesting book on the religious and political history of medieval life. Sometimes I think that the more things change, the more they stay the same. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Brianne | 12/11/2013

    " Very thorough history book. A bit tedious at times but a good description and well-written easy to understand book. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Walt | 11/24/2013

    " Good, clear writing for the masses. The text is not overly academic; but written for casual reading by lay persons. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kimberly | 1/4/2013

    " Norman Cantor is probably my favorite historian on the European medieval period. Very readable. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Allison Archer | 10/14/2012

    " Read this as assigned in a Middle Ages history class. Cantor was personable but, in my opinion, not as readable as Cahill. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Aubrey Louw | 5/17/2012

    " Excellent survey of the period. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Henriette | 3/12/2012

    " Eurocentric, opinionated and everything but neutral in passing value oriented judgements. But the prose is GOOD - it took several weeks to finish the book but long stretches were entertaining and provided room for reflection. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Taylor | 1/28/2012

    " Probably one of the best "survey" books on the Middle Ages. Just outstanding. The author really concentrates on the socio-political evolution of Europe throughout the time period and does a fantastic job explaining the "whys" as well as the "whats". Anyone interested in the period should read this. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Taylor Kniphfer | 12/4/2011

    " I'm actually cheating. I didn't read the whole book. I simply got half way through it and stopped. It wasn't that it wasn't good-in fact, it was very good reference book the Middle Ages-but that you just can't read through it like a novel. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Meriel | 6/3/2011

    " I have read several of Cantor's books and I am always happy that I did. His writing about a period or event always provides the historical background and the theology, economics, and sociology to make you understand on more than a surface level. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Sandy | 6/3/2011

    " If I could give it negative stars I would. I'm forced to read this book for class. It's awful!!! I haven't learned a thing about the middle ages. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joey | 4/15/2011

    " This was an interesting book, but a little dry. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Henriette | 4/5/2011

    " Eurocentric, opinionated and everything but neutral in passing value oriented judgements. But the prose is GOOD - it took several weeks to finish the book but long stretches were entertaining and provided room for reflection. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lynn | 3/18/2011

    " Every page is interesting (if you're interested in this kind of thing). "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Sandy | 5/23/2010

    " If I could give it negative stars I would. I'm forced to read this book for class. It's awful!!! I haven't learned a thing about the middle ages. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bonnie | 2/22/2010

    " This was the first, and still the best, book on the Medieval era that I have read. History, generally, is one of my favorite topics, but this period was so formative to what followed - whether for good or ill. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Joey | 1/11/2010

    " This was an interesting book, but a little dry. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Walt | 2/26/2009

    " Good, clear writing for the masses. The text is not overly academic; but written for casual reading by lay persons. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Scott | 8/28/2008

    " This is a great book, really interesting with lots of stories and conveys the general history very well in a good narrative style. Definitely recommended for anyone who's interested in this topic. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kevin J. | 5/11/2008

    " This in an outstanding, concise history of the Middle Ages, written for the lay reader, yet packed with erudite observations on the mores, morals, politics, and passions of that most transitional of periods in human history. Entertaining, informative, and highly recommended. "

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About the Author
Author Norman F. Cantor

Norman F. Cantor (1929–2004) was emeritus professor of history, sociology, and comparative literature at New York University. His academic honors included appointments as a Rhodes Scholar, Porter Ogden Jacobus Fellow at Princeton University, and Fulbright professor at Tel Aviv University. His earlier books include Inventing the Middle Ages, nominated for a National Book Critics Circle Award, and The Civilization of the Middle Ages, one of the most widely read narratives of the Middle Ages in the English language.

About the Narrator

Frederick Davidson (1932–2005), also known as David Case, was one of the most prolific readers in the audiobook industry, recording more than eight hundred audiobooks in his lifetime, including over two hundred for Blackstone Audio. Born in London, he trained at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art and performed for many years in radio plays for the British Broadcasting Company before coming to America in 1976. He received AudioFile’s Golden Voice Award and numerous Earphones Awards and was nominated for a Grammy for his readings.