The Early Middle Ages (400-1000) was one of the most dynamic and crucial periods in the formation of Europe. It covers the transition from the relatively diverse world of Roman Empire in late antiquity, to the disparate world of early medieval Europe, where local differences assumed far greater significance, but where, nonetheless, the institution of Latin Christianity lent coherence to the successor states. In this book, McKitterick and five other leading historians have collaborated closely to produce a set of thematic interpretations covering politics, society, economy, culture, religion, and Europe and the wider world. Military matters and warfare are treated within these chapters, reflecting their entrenchment in social, economic, and political stuctures. The definition of 'Europe' is ambiguous in this period, but for the most part, 'Europe' coincides with the ever-expanding horizons of Latin Christendom. However, this book also looks at crucial interactions with other areas, such as Scandinavia, eastern Europe, the Islamic Middle East and North Africa, and Byzantium.
Providing a coherent view of the most important elements within the period, this book gives a sense of the complexities and excitements of six hundred years of transition.