Thursday, July 28, 2016

The Queue

Each chapter of Vanished Kingdoms relates the history of a single vanished kingdom, proceeding in roughly chronological order from the polity's founding (rather than from it's fall). An oddity is chapter six, "Byzantion: The Star-lit Golden Bough (330-1453);" according to the logic of the book's structure, this should be chapter one (which is, instead, "Tolosa: Soujourn of the Visigoths (A.D. 418-507)"), as 330 is the earliest date for any of the erstwhile states. Chapter six is also odd in that it is by far the shortest chapter & yet about about the second-longest-lived kingdom, second only to chapter three, "Burgundia: Five, Six, or Seven Kingdoms (c. 411-1795)." Instead of being about the Byzantine Empire (which referred to itself as the never-fallen Roman Empire), the chapter is about the latter-day academic reputation of the empire ruled from Constantinople, the greatest city in Christendom, re-founded by the emperor Constantine on the site of Byzantium (the Latinization of the original Greek name, Byzantion) to serve as the eastern capital of Rome's far-flung empire. As a final oddity, I skipped over the lengthy chapter five ("Litva: A Grand Duchy with Kings (1253-1795)," about the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth) to read Byzantium's brief chapter six. I will resume Vanished Kingdoms once I finish the Apostolic Exhortation Amoris Lætitia, received, as expected, for my birthday.

Father Michael White & Tom Corcoran, Rebuilt: The Story of a Catholic Parish
Edward P. Hahnenberg, A Concise Guide to the Documents of Vatican II
Jon Baird, with Kevin Costner & Stephen Meyer, illustrated by Rick Ross, The Explorers Guild, Volume One: A Passage to Shambhala

Pope Francis, Amoris Lætitia (The Joy of Love)
Norman Davies, Vanished Kingdoms: The Rise and Fall of States and Nations ***paused***
Madeline Pecora Nugent, The Divine Office for Dodos: A Step-by-Step Guide to Praying the Liturgy of the Hours

Richard Price, Clockers
Sir Richard Francis Burton, translator, "Sinbad the Sailor" from The Arabian Nights
Sir Ernest Shackleton, South: A Memoir of the Endurance Voyage
Hilaire Belloc, How the Reformation Happened
William F. Buckley Jr., The Unmaking of a Mayor
Scott & Kimberly Hahn, Rome Sweet Home: Our Journey to Catholicism
Margaret MacMillan, Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World
(A.K.A. Peacemakers: The Paris Peace Conference of 1919 and Its Attempt to End War)

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