From the Brink of the Apocalypse: Confronting Famine, War, Plague, and Death in the Later Middle Ages
By John Aberth
January 1, 2001
Relying on rich literary and historical sources, John Aberth brings this period vividly to life. Taking his themes from the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, he describes how the Great Famine and Black Death swept away nearly half of Europe's population, while the royal houses of England and France were engaged in a Hundred Years War that meant perpetual political strife. Above all loomed the specter of Death, ever present and constantly feared. Throughout the later Middle Ages, ordinary people were transformed by this daunting and fearful series of crises, yet in their prayers, chronicles, poetry, and especially their commemorative art are foreshadowing of the age to come. As John Aberth reveals in this informative and sympathetic work, in their struggles we glimpse the birth of the modern.