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Life in a Medieval Abbey and Life in a Medieval Castle.

Tony McAleavy. New York, NY" Enchanted Lion Books (888-330 8477), 2003. Illus., 64 pp. each, $22.00 each.

It's remarkable how much useful information can be printed on a page and still be made inviting to the casual browser, as well as the more focused student. In traditional two-page sections titled: Religious Orders, Viking Onslaught; World of Politics; Artistic Excellence; etc., the entire fabric of medieval life is displayed. Although the images are often quite small, there are well over 400 of them and all are reproduced with clarity and designed to be closely associated with their descriptive texts. We tend to deal with isolated objects in art classes, with pages from illuminated manuscripts or religious utensils. But here we are shown the life from which these objects originate; we come to understand them as utilitarian artifacts with value considerably beyond the aesthetic. These volumes are for secondary schoolers and should be helpful in any serious study of the period in history and art classes and even in English classes that cover writers such as Chaucer.
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Author:Marantz, Ken
Publication:School Arts
Article Type:Brief Article
Date:Nov 1, 2003
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