FREE Delivery in the UK.
Only 1 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
Quantity:1
Before the Normans: South... has been added to your Basket
+ £2.80 UK delivery
Used: Like New | Details
Sold by Wordery
Condition: Used: Like New
Comment: This fine as new copy should be with you within 8-9 working days via Royal Mail. Please note this title is print on demand.
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

Before the Normans: Southern Italy in the Ninth and Tenth Centuries (The Middle Ages Series) Paperback – 19 Mar 1996

3.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
£14.50
£11.33 £12.67
Note: This item is eligible for click and collect. Details
Pick up your parcel at a time and place that suits you.
  • Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
  • Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
How to order to an Amazon Pickup Location?
  1. Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
  2. Dispatch to this address when you check out
Learn more
£14.50 FREE Delivery in the UK. Only 1 left in stock (more on the way). Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Special Offers and Product Promotions

Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.




Product details

  • Paperback: 268 pages
  • Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press; New Ed edition (19 Mar. 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0812215877
  • ISBN-13: 978-0812215878
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 1.5 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,400,634 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

Barbara M. Kreutz was Dean Emeritus of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences of Bryn Mawr College.

Customer Reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars
5 star
0
4 star
0
3 star
1
2 star
0
1 star
0
See the customer review
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

By JPS TOP 500 REVIEWER on 28 Jan. 2013
Format: Paperback
This book was first published in 1991 and I read it ten years ago, at a time when I knew very little about Southern Italy in the ninth and tenth centuries. The author's emphasis, and the book's main value, is to show how the southern part of the peninsula fragmented. The Lombard principality of Benevento, the last independent piece of the Lombard Kingdom now conquered by the Franks, broke up into several components as a result of civil wars during the mid-ninth century which saw the claimants make use of Arab mercenaries. The end of the ninth century saw a first come-back of the Byzantine Empire. A second one would follow during the second and third decades of the 11th century, just as the first Normans started hiring out their swords to Lombard princes.

The main value of this scholarly book is to show the very fragmented and complex political situation of Southern Italy by the time the Norman (and Frankish) horsemen turned up in the South. There were the three Lombard principalities (Benevento and Salerno, and then Capua which also broke away from the first) which, by this time, were not only fighting each other but also fragmenting themselves. Then there were a number of city states which were nominal vassals of the Byzantine Empire (Naples, Amalfi and a couple of others) and had evolved from the former Byzantine Duchy of Naples. To the North of these city-states, was Lazzio, territory under the nominal control of the Pope, and which had evolved from the former Byzantine Duchy of Rome. Then there were the Byzantine territories organized around the Themes of Apulia and Calabria which were placed under the overall military command of a katepan whose headquarters were at Bari.
Read more ›
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x90f53198) out of 5 stars 4 reviews
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x909edd2c) out of 5 stars Are You in the Dark? 11 Mar. 2008
By Gio - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The darkest thing about the so-called Dark Ages is the darkness of our ignorance of them. I'm speaking in general of educated readers, many of whom will be surprised to learn that there was a "Norman Conquest" outside of England, and of the best historians, whose ignorance is directly proportioanl to the scarcity of reliable sources.

Yes, there was a Norman Conquest of Sicily, and then of large chunks of the boot of Italy, and the Norman kingdom which resulted is well worth studying for its importance in the expansion of Europe. But this book plunges even farther back into the darkness, to examine the state of things in southern Italy before the Normans, in the Ninth and Tenth Centuries. The author writes: "In this early medieval period, southern Italy was in effect a giant laboratory, one in which polities were tested and where Byzantium, the Lombards, the Islamic world, and the Latin West constantly intersected." In other words, much of the interfacing of European, Byzantine, and Persian-Arab knowledge and technology that we Western European historians have studied so carefully in Renaissance Spain and northern Italy had already been previewed in southern Italy. Another quote from Dr. Kreutz: "...the lower half of the Italian peninsula...first became a separate and distinct geopolitical region in 774, with the Carolingian conquest of northern Italy. It is true that it was not politically unfified until the late eleventh century, under the Normans. From 774 on, however, southern Italy mostly pursued its own separate destiny, and indeed, as the Kingdom of Naples, it continued to do so until the unification of Italy in the nineteenth century."

This is not a book that makes concessions to a popular readership. It's all solid scholarship and stolid prose. Much of its drama focuses on the reliability of monastic sources. So, unless you're a Calabrian nationalist, why should you give a hoot? Because this fragmented and triangulated region was probably the most important gateway/marketplace through which Greeks, Muslims, and Latin-German Christians exchanged ideas! It was through this region, for instance, that Indian numerals using zero entered Europe. Most of the flow of knowledge was into Europe from Byzantium and North Africa, to the very great long-term detriment of the Islamic world. Frankly (and there's a pun), Europe was receptive while Islam was beginning its long exclusion of infidel science.

Benevento, the inland southern capital of Lombard Italy, is not much of a tourist destination these days, but it was a city of greater sophistication in the 9th C than anywhere north of Rome. Its liturgical music has been imaginatively reconstructed by Marcel Peres on his CD of Beneventan chant. Amalfi, the Lombard/Greek city state on the seacoast, is indeed a spectacular place to visit today, though most of its architecture dates from well after the Lomabards. There are good reasons to suppose that Amalfi was a hub of exchange of musical and poetic styles, north and south, long before the Spanish court of Alfonso el Sabio. Somehow, in southern Italy, the characteristic instruments of both Islamic and European music encountered each other and re-absorbed the dominant Hellenic instruments. The basic double reed of ancient Greece, for example, became the shenai of Arab/Persian music and the shawm>oboe of European. Translations of ancient Greek texts also flowed through pre-Norman and Norman Italy - translations from Greek to Arabic to Latin and also some from Latin to Arabic, though Arabs were almost never the translators.

Only readers with a general knowledge of Mediterranean history over the millennia will find this book intelligible. Still, if you are a person who reads history regularly for pleasure, you won't find many books with more new knowledge to impart.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x90b60894) out of 5 stars Still has some value 28 Jan. 2013
By JPS - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This book was first published in 1991 and I read it ten years ago, at a time when I knew very little about Southern Italy in the ninth and tenth centuries. The author's emphasis, and the book's main value, is to show how the southern part of the peninsula fragmented. The Lombard principality of Benevento, the last independent piece of the Lombard Kingdom now conquered by the Franks, broke up into several components as a result of civil wars during the mid-ninth century which saw the claimants make use of Arab mercenaries. The end of the ninth century saw a first come-back of the Byzantine Empire. A second one would follow during the second and third decades of the 11th century, just as the first Normans started hiring out their swords to Lombard princes.

The main value of this scholarly book is to show the very fragmented and complex political situation of Southern Italy by the time the Norman (and Frankish) horsemen turned up in the South. There were the three Lombard principalities (Benevento and Salerno, and then Capua which also broke away from the first) which, by this time, were not only fighting each other but also fragmenting themselves. Then there were a number of city states which were nominal vassals of the Byzantine Empire (Naples, Amalfi and a couple of others) and had evolved from the former Byzantine Duchy of Naples. To the North of these city-states, was Lazzio, territory under the nominal control of the Pope, and which had evolved from the former Byzantine Duchy of Rome. Then there were the Byzantine territories organized around the Themes of Apulia and Calabria which were placed under the overall military command of a katepan whose headquarters were at Bari.

Finally, there was also Muslim Sicily from where the Muslims were regularly raiding and pillaging the coasts of the peninsula for over two centuries. However, these are not covered in the book whose scope is limited to the mainland. To some extent, this book has now become a bit dated. This is because a large number of new charters from South Italian monasteries have been published over the last 20 years or so. However, even before, it had it limitations, particularly when dealing with the Byzantine provinces, and seems to be largely focused on Amalfi and Salerno. It also covers better the ninth century than the tenth.

As an introduction to the Norman Conquest of Southern Italy, it is largely superseded by the first chapter of Graham Loud's "The Age of Robert Guiscard". The number of monographs on the various regions (in English, French, German or Italian) has also significantly increased since this book was first published. Despite all this, this book retains value but it is no longer worth more than three stars in my view.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x90b698dc) out of 5 stars Scholarly and well versed in Southern Italian History 27 Feb. 2012
By Bruno of Calabira - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Barbara M. Freutz did a fine job in researching the book. She makes fine use of the Monte Cassino and Salerno Archives. She would find greater treasures in the Monastery Libraries of Southern Italy, especially the Carthusian Monastery of Santa Stefano in Serra San Bruno. The Orthodox Greeks have or had many monasteries in Magna Grccia where other valuable historical information can be found.
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x90b634e0) out of 5 stars Some great tales of Lombardy 21 Sept. 2013
By Gary M, Crethers - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book is a good introduction to the period. I was hoping for info about the Byzantine region as well as the Lombard region of Southern Italy, Its very readable and an approachable intro to the subject. The only problem I had was with some quotes not translated from the original languages. But Ms. Kreutz is an entertaining and informative writer. The social aspects of every day life could have done with some more development but she claims that the information available is meager. This is mostly written from textual sources not archeological ones.
Were these reviews helpful? Let us know


Feedback