By John Julius Norwich
With the papacy embattled lately, it's necessary to have the point of view of 1 of the world’s such a lot finished historians. In Absolute Monarchs, John Julius Norwich captures approximately thousand years of notion and devotion, intrigue and scandal. the boys (and perhaps one lady) who've held this place of infallible strength over thousands have ranged from heroes to rogues, admirably clever to absolutely decadent. Norwich, who knew popes and had deepest audiences with others, recounts in riveting aspect the histories of the main major popes and what they intended politically, culturally, and socially to Rome and to the world.
Norwich offers such courageous popes as blameless I, who within the 5th century effectively negotiated with Alaric the Goth, an invader civil experts couldn't defeat, and Leo I, who twenty years later tamed (and possibly paid off) Attila the Hun. the following, too, are the scandalous figures: Pope Joan, the mythic lady acknowledged (without any substantiation) to were elected in 855, and the notorious “pornocracy,” the 5 libertines who have been descendants or fans of Marozia, debauched daughter of 1 of Rome’s strongest families.
Absolute Monarchs brilliantly portrays reformers resembling Pope Paul III, “the maximum pontiff of the 16th century,” who reinterpreted the Church’s educating and self-discipline, and John XXIII, who in 5 brief years beginning in 1958 “opened up the church to the 20 th century,” instituting reforms that resulted in Vatican II. Norwich brings the tale to the current day with Benedict XVI, who's dealing with a world priest intercourse scandal.
Epic and compelling, Absolute Monarchs is the amazing tale of a few of history’s so much respected and reviled figures, males who nonetheless forged gentle and shadows at the Vatican and the area this present day.
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Absolute Monarchs: A History of the Papacy by John Julius Norwich