In From the Holy Mountain an award-winning travel writer sets off on an extraordinary adventure retracing the journey of the 6th century monk John Moschos and his student Sophronius the Sophist. Using Moschos' writings as a guide for his travels, William Dalrymple recounts with elegance the peoples of Eastern Christianity who have kept Orthodoxy's flame alive. A rich and gripping account of eastern history, the rise of Islam and Orthodox spirituality.
In 587 a.d., two monks set off on an extraordinary journey that would take them in an arc across the entire Byzantine world, from the shores of the Bosphorus to the sand dunes of Egypt. On the way John Moschos and his pupil Sophronius the Sophist stayed in caves, monasteries, and remote hermitages, collecting the wisdom of the stylites and the desert fathers before their fragile world finally shattered under the great eruption of Islam. More than a thousand years later, using Moschos's writings as his guide, William Dalrymple sets off to retrace their footsteps and composes "an evensong for a dying civilization" --Kirkus Reviews, starred review
William Dalrymple is the award-winning author of the British bestsellers In Xanadu and The City of Djinns. He divides his time between London, Edinburgh, and Delhi.
"Elegant, poignant . . . courageous . . . pitting the idealism of the past against the hatred, dispossession, and denial of the present." --Karen Armstrong, author of History of God
"This splid book should take its rightful place on the same shelf as Chatwin's In Patagonia. [It is] rich with the poetry of antique places and transports the fascinated reader smoothly into a vanishing world . . . There are, finally, innumerable wonderful stories in From the Holy Mountain." --Michael Dirda, The Washington Post Book World
"Dalrymple is a born travel writer, with a nose for adventure and a reporter's healthy skepticism. His quirky, exhilarating mosaic will appeal to readers of all faiths." --Publishers Weekly (starred review)
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