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Prosperity and Plunder

Prosperity and Plunder
European Catholic Monasteries in the Age of Revolution, 1650–1815

$113.00 (C)

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  • Date Published: September 2003
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521590907

$ 113.00 (C)

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About the Authors
  • In the Catholic countries of seventeenth- and early eighteenth-century Europe, communities of monks and nuns were growing in number and wealth. They constructed vast buildings, dominated education, and played a large part in the practice and patronage of learning, music, and the arts. This lavishly-illustrated book offers a unique, comparative description of these communities--their wealth, growth, life, and importance--and then explains their catastrophic decline and fall between 1650 and 1815 by reforming rulers, the 'Enlightenment', and the French Revolution. Derek Beales, Professor Emeritus of Modern History, Cambridge, is a Fellow of both the Royal Historical Society and the British Academy. He has published numerous historical monographs including a book on musical history entitled, Mozart and the Habsburgs (Reeding, 1993) as well as articles in the New York Review of Books and the Times Literary Supplement.

    • This is a pioneering study of a forgotten theme in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century European history
    • Offers comparative discussion of monasteries and religious communities across Europe, from Portugal to Italy and Bohemia
    • Lavish illustration in colour and black-and-white supports a stylish and highly readable text
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    • Winner of the ISI Paolucci/Bagehot Book Award for 2004

    Reviews & endorsements

    "An illuminating study of an understudied topic... Recommended." Choice

    "...Beales' book provides fantastic new insights into the social and economic evolution of Catholic states in Western Europe from a monastic perspective." EH. NET, Lars M. Boerner, Institute of Economic History, School of Economics and Business, Humboldt Universtaet(Berlin)

    "Beales has written a stunning book."
    George Mariz, Western Washington University, Utopian Studies

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2003
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521590907
    • length: 414 pages
    • dimensions: 254 x 198 x 36 mm
    • weight: 1.389kg
    • contains: 41 b/w illus. 10 colour illus. 4 maps
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. At the Brim of Prosperity:
    1. The Counter-Reformation and the monasteries
    2. The German Catholic lands
    3. France
    4. Spain and Portugal
    5. Italy
    Part II. The Time of Reform:
    6. The suppression of the Jesuits
    7. Patterns of reform (i): France: the commission des réguliers
    8. Patterns of reform (ii): the Austrian monarchy: the Joseph(in)ist solution
    Part III. The Time of Revolution:
    9. The revolution in France
    10. The impact of the Revolution outside France
    Bibliographical essay

  • Author

    Derek Beales, University of Cambridge
    Derek Beales is Professor Emeritus of Modern History, University of Cambridge, and a Fellow of Sidney Sussex College.


    • Winner of the ISI Paolucci/Bagehot Book Award for 2004

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