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Tucked away within the romantic landscapes of Europe, a remarkable range of beautifully preserved medieval cities and towns invites discovery - time capsules of history where you can stroll the cobbled streets of another time; savor the treasures of palaces, stately mansions, soaring cathedrals, and grand civic centers; and walk the mighty bastions and ramparts that once defended them.
Now, in The Great Tours: Experiencing Medieval Europe, award-winning Professor Kenneth R. Bartlett of the University of Toronto invites you to travel through time to the golden ages of 12 of Europe’s most beautiful medieval cities. In 24 lectures, you’ll discover the sights, sounds, and smells of teeming markets and mercantile centers, royal feasts and ritual, dramatic military engagements, magnificent religious pageantry, and the many colorful layers of daily medieval life.
PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.
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- Voracious reader
Bartlett is brilliant
Love the lecturer! A passionate, informed and fascinating lecture series. Makes medieval Europe come alive. About to visit France and Germany and this series of lectures has added huge value for me in understanding the places we are visiting. (Tbh it’s even set the agenda for where we are visiting) My wife and I listened to Professor Bartletts lecture series on the Renaissance before we went to Italy and it added so much to our trip. If you’re travelling in Europe or interested in what it was like to be alive in the medieval period get this series.
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Not what I expected but still good overall
I am going to review this based on what it is, not what I hoped it to be but I want to comment on the latter. I try to read the book descriptions and a review or two before I make a Purchase, but I guess the title of this so interested me I did neither. The title made me think it would be a tour of the Middle Ages as if you were a traveler in the era. That is not what it is at all. It is actually a modern tour of selected cities in Europe that still have a strong medieval feel to them. If I planned a trip to Europe I can see using this as a guide to setting my itinerary to include several places as stops on the tour. It would also be useful once in one of these locations as it is narrated as if you are there. In that sense it creates one of my few criticisms of the listening experience as it is much more geared towards a visual experience and not an audio. Prof. Bartlett will say at times things like. Look left and take in the....Move through the entry and then turn left to see....It does come with a PDF but there are only a few black and white pictures in it so you are left with your imagination or waiting until you are on location to get the most out of the listen.
I like his mix of choices, from the expected...Prague, Dubrovnik, and Bruges, to less visited locations like York, Avignon, and Krakow. to those that were unknown to me like Mdina on Malta and Rothenburg in Germany. The last is the most interesting to me. It is the first place covered and is one I definitely would like to visit.
The overall presentation is a mix of travel log and some history of each location He also goes into a lot of architecture which made me wish he had an introductory chapter on the basics of architectural terms. he also gives recommendations on sites to see and places to get a reasonably priced good meal. I wish I had been to one of the places he covered to get a real feel for its value.
Two minor quibbles. The chapters on the audible app do not list the lecture title as they do for other great courses. They are found in the PDF, but as someone with a visual impairment, looking at the PDF on my phone was a challenge. and if I went to one of the locations, I would want to quickly get to the right chapter. The other is the professors odd pronunciation of Peninsula and other words like Schism. This was a bigger problem in another course by him when he used the words more frequently. It takes you out of the narrative every time you hear him say Penin-Chula or Shh-ism.
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