- Paperback: 246 pages
- Publisher: Routledge; illustrated edition edition (28 May 2008)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0754652742
- ISBN-13: 978-0754652748
- Product Dimensions: 17.4 x 1.4 x 24.6 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 894,811 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- See Complete Table of Contents
Liturgy and Architecture: From Early Church to the Middle Ages (Liturgy, Worship & Society Series) Paperback – Illustrated, 28 May 2008
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'This work is a successful and much-needed source on the subject... this volume fills an important void in the literature and will be the critical source on the subject for some time. ... Essential.' ----- Choice
'This is an impressive, insightful, informative study, keenly aware of the relevant archaeological data, sensitive both to liturgical and to architectural theory and development and versed in the source documents.' ----- Theological Book Review
About the Author
The Revd Dr Allan Doig is Fellow, Chaplain and Tutor for Graduates at Lady Margaret Hall, and a member of the Faculty of Theology in the University of Oxford.
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Top Customer Reviews
Doig provides an exemplary account of the architectural form of the settings for Christian worship, and in particular effectively demolishes many myths about how worship was conducted and how we should in consequence order worship today.
For anyone interested in the history of liturgy or of church architecture this book is, quite simply, required reading.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Two other flaws condemn this book to relative mediocrity. First, Doig's title claims to synthesize liturgy and architecture, but these topics are not at all independent of theology and politics. Of course, Doig does take account of the theological and political developments, but not always very deeply. Arianism, for example, is decreed (with little explanation) to have barely affected architectural development. Likewise, little time is spent explaining the proposed influence of the Syriac church Qal'at Si'man on architecture in Gaul and the political and theological implications of such a connection. In contrast to these examples, some effort is spent explicating the development of the theology underpinning of the feast of Corpus Christi. Likewise, the personages of Constantine and Charlemagne receive extensive treatment. All in all, Doig seems only comfortable discussing most direct links of theology and politics with liturgy and architecture--and this gives a sense of liturgy and architecture as rather more disconnected than they really are.
Lastly, this book is maddeningly under illustrated, and those illustrations that are included are often of marginal quality. This might be a production issue; the book itself is printed on nice enough paper but little effort seems to have been spent on layout or design. Indeed, it seems that the page proofs were spit right out of Microsoft Word.
I have perhaps fallen into the trap of being too critical. The book is not bad; it is a highly readable, often quite compelling, analysis of the connection between liturgy and architecture for the first fourteen centuries or so of Christendom. Moreover, Doig synthesizes a great deal of more focused scholarly inquiry on the subject, which is certainly to be appreciated by the non-specialist. This is an informative book; its topography is just too uneven. Reading it is like hiking a mountain trail, always hoping for a sweeping vista around the next bend, but never seeing more than the trees and rocks close at hand.