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|Format: DRM Protected ePub|
Vendor: HarperCollins e-books
Publication Date: 2009
Chartres Cathedral, south of Paris, is revered as one of the most beautiful and profound works of art in the Western canon. But what did it mean to those who constructed it in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries—and why was it built at such immense height and with such glorious play of light, in the soaring manner we now call Gothic?
In this eminently fascinating work, author Philip Ball makes sense of the visual and emotional power of Chartres and brilliantly explores how its construction—and the creation of other Gothic cathedrals—represented a profound and dramatic shift in the way medieval thinkers perceived their relationship with their world. Beautifully illustrated and written, filled with astonishing insight, Universe of Stone embeds the magnificent cathedral in the culture of the twelfth century—its schools of philosophy and science, its trades and technologies, its politics and religious debates—enabling us to view this ancient architectural marvel with fresh eyes.
Philip Ball's book Bright Earth: Art and the Invention of Color was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award; his Critical Mass: How One Thing Leads to Another won the UK's Aventis Prize. He is a consulting editor for Nature magazine, and he lives in London.
“There is no better general introduction to the subject... [Ball’s] account is bold and plausible.”
“Lively...Ball puts the fun back in medieval scholasticism...seems as much at ease on the medieval building site as in an abbey library.”
“A terrific book…A lucid, thoughtful tour de force…A fascinating book with important insights and observations on every page.”
“Anyone who has been thrilled by the great Gothic cathedrals will revel in this study of both the spiritual and architectural qualities of those medieval wonders.”
“Ball leaves no stone unturned . . . A revelatory look at a seminal period in art history.”