The Medieval Mediterranean City

Urban Life and Design Before European Hegemony, 1250–1380


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About the Book

This book is a study of architecture and urban design across the Mediterranean Sea from the 12th to the 14th Century, a time when there was no single, hegemonic power dominating the area. The focus of the study—four cities on the Italian peninsula, and four in Syria and Egypt—is the interconnectedness of the design and use of urban structures, streets and open space. Each chapter offers an historical analysis of the buildings and spaces used for trade, education, political display and public action. The work includes historical and social analyses of the mercantile, social, political and educational cultures of the eight cities, highlighting similarities and differences between Christian and Islamic practices. Sixteen new maps drawn specifically for this book are based on the writings of medieval travelers.

About the Author(s)

Felicity Ratté is a professor of art and architectural history at Emerson College in Boston. She teaches from the ancient to the renaissance periods, mostly focusing on the cultures of Europe and the Middle East. Her work currently focuses on the medieval and early modern built environment and its representation.

Bibliographic Details

Felicity Ratté

Format: softcover (7 x 10)
Pages: 222
Bibliographic Info: 92 photos, maps, glossary, appendix, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2021
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7811-5
eISBN: 978-1-4766-3909-3
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments viii
A Note Regarding the Maps x
List of Maps xi
List of Illustrations xii
Preface 1
Introduction 3
1. The Merchant’s City 19
2. The Scholar’s City 58
3. The Diplomat’s City 91
4. The People’s City 123
Conclusion 146
Appendix: Timeline 151
Glossary 154
Chapter Notes 157
Bibliography 189
Index 203

Book Reviews & Awards

“Valuable”—German Historical Institute of Rome