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Sunday, June 18, 2017

The myth of classical knowledge diffusion

Both atheists and Muslims have been attempting to pass off medieval propaganda about the Islamic world preserving the Graeco-Roman classical canon that subsequently launched the Renaissance as historical fact, but the historical record demonstrates precisely the opposite.
The oft-repeated assertion that Islam “preserved” classical knowledge and then graciously passed it on to Europe is baseless. Ancient Greek texts and Greek culture were never “lost” to be somehow “recovered” and “transmitted” by Islamic scholars, as so many academic historians and journalists continue to write: these texts were always there, preserved and studied by the monks and lay scholars of the Greek Roman Empire and passed on to Europe and to the Islamic empire at various times.

As Michael Harris points out in his History of Libraries in the Western World:

The great writings of the classical era, particularly those of Greece … were always available to the Byzantines and to those Western peoples in cultural and diplomatic contact with the Eastern Empire.… Of the Greek classics known today, at least seventy-five percent are known through Byzantine copies.

The historian John Julius Norwich has also reminded us that “much of what we know about antiquity—especially Hellenic and Roman literature and Roman law—would have been lost forever if it weren’t for the scholars and scribes of Constantinople.”

The Muslim intellectuals who served as propagandists for Caliph Al-Mamun (the same caliph who started the famous Islamic Inquisition to cope with the rationalism that had begun to infiltrate Islam upon its contact with Greek knowledge), such as al-Gahiz (d. 868), repeatedly asserted that Christianity had stopped the Rum (Romans—that is, the inhabitants of the Greek Roman Empire) from taking advantage of classical knowledge.

This propaganda is still repeated today by those Western historians who not only are biased against Christianity but also are often occupationally invested in the field of Islamic studies and Islamic cultural influence. Lamenting the end of the study of ancient philosophy and science upon the presumed closing of the Athenian Neoplatonic Academy by Emperor Justinian I in 529 is part of this narrative. Yet this propaganda does not correspond to the facts, as Speros Vryonis and others have shown, and as evidenced by the preservation and use of ancient Greek knowledge by the Christians of the empire of the Greeks....

Christian Europe, including the Christian kingdoms in Spain, could not benefit more from its commerce with the superior civilization of the Christian Greek Roman Empire because, as Henri Pirenne pointed out long ago, Islamic warriors’ attacks had turned the then-Christian Mediterranean sea into a battlefield, and eventually into an Islamic lake, and had consequently short-circuited the direct cultural exchange between Europe and the empire of the Greeks. Therefore the Islamic empire was arguably the cause of the relative slowing down of European development in the early or “dark” Middle Ages. The scholarly attacks against the Pirenne thesis have failed to invalidate its importance to illuminate what happened: of course cultural and especially commercial exchange between West and East continued to occur, and now largely via the Islamic empire, but this happened not because of the civilizational properties of medieval Islam but because medieval Islam had interrupted the direct communication in the first place.

Therefore the torrent of Islamocentric academic publications; television documentaries from PBS, the History Channel, and the BBC; declarations by UNESCO; and the National Geographic traveling exhibits extolling the “transmission of Greek science and technology” by Islam to the backward West overlooks that, whatever the actual degree of this transmission, the transmission not only of Greek science and technology but also of Greek sculpture, painting, drama, narrative, and lyric, which could not and did not take place via Islam because of religious barriers, would equally have taken place without Islam, if Islam had not interrupted with its military conquests of the seventh and eighth centuries the direct communication between the Christian West and the Christian East.

In fact, when Greek scholars began to arrive in Italy escaping from the final destruction of the Christian Greek Roman Empire by Islam in the fifteenth century (a destruction facilitated by the Christian West’s weakening of the empire during the infamous Fourth Crusade that sacked Constantinople in 1204), they brought Greek drama, narrative, lyric poetry, philosophy (significantly Plato), and art to the West. They decisively contributed to (and perhaps even started, as many scholars have argued) what would be the Italian Renaissance. This massive cultural transmission showed the sort of impact the Christian Greeks could have had on western Europe centuries earlier, perhaps as early as the seventh century, without the Islamic interruption.

Thus the Pirenne thesis continues to be valid to demystify the role of Islam in European history: medieval Islam had interposed itself between Christian Europe and the Christian Greek Roman Empire. Cultural communication continued, of course, but diminished and in a different form. Therefore, precisely because of the problem that the Islamic empire had created, this communication between Christian Europe and the Christian Greeks now had to take place often through the mediation of the Islamic empire itself, which had benefited and continued to benefit from its direct contact with the superior culture of the Greek empire. When this Greek material arrived via Islam, it did so diminished, distorted, and mediated by a faith that was fundamentally inimical to the spirit of Greek civilization.
- The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise: Muslims, Christians, and Jews under Islamic Rule in Medieval Spain, by Darío Fernández-Morera
This shouldn't be hard for inhabitants of the West to understand. Has the Muslim occupation of Dearborn, Malmo, and, the French banlieus led to any sort of intellectual renaissance in those places? If not, then why would one expect the historical occupation of Spain, North Africa, or the Holy Lands to be any different.

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109 Comments:

Blogger Lemur June 18, 2017 5:31 AM  

David Bentley Hart likewise addresses Islamic chauvinism in his book Atheist Delusions. Scholarship grossly exaggerates what amounted to little more than mucking around with the received Greek corpus of understanding, while diminishing the achievements of Christian Europe at the time.

Blogger Shane Sullivan June 18, 2017 5:36 AM  

Wasn't the Italian Renaissance almost over by 1453?

Anonymous Icicle June 18, 2017 5:42 AM  

Christian St. Peter's Basilica vs. Islamic Hagia Sophia.

Any questions?

Blogger Shane Sullivan June 18, 2017 5:48 AM  

@3 Didn't the Turks just construct minarets around the church and place some Arabic symbols inside it?

Blogger Jeff Wood June 18, 2017 6:10 AM  

I have long imagined, without researching the point, that the Muslim conquerors benefitted from the cultures they inherited; but then, being Muslims, wasted their inheritance.

Blogger SteelPalm June 18, 2017 6:17 AM  

This is shameless historical revisionism.

The Musloids were the biggest threat to these classical texts being lost forever, and they destroyed a great many of them.

Thankfully, Christian monks managed to escape from Constantinople and other places with some of these priceless treasures intact, before the Death Cult savages could burn them.

Blogger SteelPalm June 18, 2017 6:19 AM  

@2 Shane Sullivan

Wasn't the Italian Renaissance almost over by 1453?

Hardly. It lasted until 1600, and the first half of the 1500s are considered the "High Renaissance".

Furthermore, the Northern Renaissance lasted until well into the 1600s.

Blogger Phillip George June 18, 2017 6:21 AM  

You shouldn't overlook Islam's ability to intuit things. For example students who failed flying school were still able to commandeer jet planes with box cutters and fly them into the sides of sky scrappers with the precision to collapse them into their footprints within 90 minutes of petrol fuel fire, and still leave photographic passport evidence of their deeds on the footpaths of Manhattan. allah doesn't need libraries to pull off stunts like that. allah has long arms. Plus there's the Russian-Byzantine connection modern historians are trying to cover up. Mr Mueller should drain the the Russian-Byzantine swamp.

Blogger szopen June 18, 2017 6:30 AM  

You should correct the first sentence to "Both CHRISTIANS and atheists and Muslims have been attempting to pass off ..". The myth was spread also by christian historians too.

Blogger Wanderer June 18, 2017 6:38 AM  

This bogus myth is so pervasive that I've even had alt-retard white nationalists whiteknight for Islam when I argued with them about Christianity. Even neo-nazi whites believe Islam preserved white culture and that Christianity destroyed it. Everyone believes in this shit.

I'm adding Darío Fernández-Morera's book to my reading list.

Blogger Lucas June 18, 2017 6:42 AM  

Never forget that the (((other names))) were involved in the propagation of the El Mito.

Blogger roughcoat June 18, 2017 6:59 AM  

Icicle wrote:Christian St. Peter's Basilica vs. Islamic Hagia Sophia.

Any questions?


Yes, I have a question, which is: what are you trying to say?

The Hagia Sophia was built over 1000 years before St. Peter's Basilica, 70+ years before the birth of Islam. It was built as a Christian cathedral, and converted to a mosque in the 15th century. So what am I suppose to get out of comparing the two?

Anonymous JAG June 18, 2017 7:01 AM  

Muslims destroy the artifacts of the lands they come from. It is the usual lies propagated by the left and Islam.

Muslims did not preserved anything except murder, rape, torture, slavery, and pillage.

Blogger Shane Sullivan June 18, 2017 7:01 AM  

@7 Goodness, that must have added extra confusion to the already conflicted Europe of the Reformation era.

Blogger S. Thermite June 18, 2017 7:03 AM  

C'mon Goys, even the dumbest Leftist knows it's the Christian Church that caused the Dark Ages in Europe. Before the evil, ignorant influence of the Catholic Old-Bearded-Man-in-the-Sky worshipers, the barbarian tribes of Europe wuz all kangz of filosofy. It it wasn't for Islam we wouldn't have the number zero, and would have missed out on all the lovely poetry in One Thousand and One Nights describing how nice the protagonists's sweat smelled.

Blogger Stone June 18, 2017 7:04 AM  

Probably the single greatest refutation of Islam's alleged role in preserving the immense achievements of ancient Greece (in the arts, philosophy, and science) is the book by Sylvain Gouguenheim "Aristote au Mont Saint-Michel".

Blogger Stone June 18, 2017 7:07 AM  

Probably the single greatest refutation of Islam's alleged role in preserving the immense achievements of ancient Greece (in the arts, philosophy, and science) is the book by Sylvain Gouguenheim "Aristote au Mont Saint-Michel".

Blogger CM June 18, 2017 7:17 AM  

S. Thermite wrote:C'mon Goys, even the dumbest Leftist knows it's the Christian Church that caused the Dark Ages in Europe. Before the evil, ignorant influence of the Catholic Old-Bearded-Man-in-the-Sky worshipers, the barbarian tribes of Europe wuz all kangz of filosofy. It it wasn't for Islam we wouldn't have the number zero, and would have missed out on all the lovely poetry in One Thousand and One Nights describing how nice the protagonists's sweat smelled.

Yeah - I can't believe how much of this persisted. I found out last Christmas that zero was in the Indian numeral system and I thought it far more likely it came to Europe through European merchants like the Bonaccis and Polos.

However, Leo Fibonacci had a greek tutor. So it wouldn't shock me if it was Greek Christian Empire that preserved that knowledge of Indian origin.

Blogger jfruser June 18, 2017 7:17 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Anonymous roo_ster June 18, 2017 7:20 AM  

I read henri pirenne in college and he was roundly criticized for getting it right if you know what i mean. Read d f-m last year and his was the first work i have seen since henri that made the case in a cherent and systematic manner. D f-m also illuminates why the spanish and portugese were so keen on stomping out open and crypto jews and muslims in their realms.

The anti christian and anti western propaganda and spin must be countered whenever found.

Blogger seeingsights June 18, 2017 7:27 AM  

There is also the thesis that Islamic Civilization did not first create algebra, but got it from the Hindus. 'Algebra' is a word of Arabic origin, but it was a label placed on something created by non Muslims.
An example of that thesis can be read here:

http://www.hindubooks.org/sudheer_birodkar/india_contribution/maths.html

Anonymous Steve June 18, 2017 7:40 AM  

Has the Muslim occupation of Dearborn, Malmo, and, the French banlieus led to any sort of intellectual renaissance in those places?

Well, to be fair they've innovated a lot of new ways to claim welfare.

Thank you for sharing this, Vox. I always reckoned the stories of Islamic scholarship sounded dodgy and tendentious, barely less absurd than Afrocentric fantasies about pyramid-shaped spaceships manned by basketball-playing psychic Pharaohs.

Even taking it at face value, if Islam's claim to intellectual fame is based on keeping copies of another societies' books, that's almost indescribably pathetic. Like a moron who thinks owning the A-J volumes of the 1911 edition Encyclopedia Britannica somehow mitigates his taste for paint chips.

Islam is, of course, the enemy of all rational thought. When your religion requires you to believe the universe is governed, not by natural laws which can be discovered, but by the inscrutable whims of a smelly kebab deity and various djinn, and that the perfect man was a paedophile bandit who claimed to have flown into space on a magic horse, and when your laughable culture places a premium on marital consanguinity to the point where having a child with the right number of fingers and eyes is a small victory, the end results are never likely to be an Aristotle, an Aquinas or even an Adam Smith.

Islam reduces its victims to an insect-like level of rote swarming behaviours and destroys the capacity for critical thought itself. Like the buzzing of flies, all Moslems have to contribute to human discourse is a collection of empty stock phrases: "Muh Islamophobia!", "Muh Jihad!", "Muh Prophet!"

Islam is the mind-killer.

Anonymous Yann June 18, 2017 7:43 AM  

This is widely known (though not widely accepted).

Muslims become librarians of Roman and Greek knowledge because they invaded the Byzantium. Had they not conquered the Byzantine Empire, the knowledge would have been there anyway.

It's good that they didn't destroy all byzantine libraries, but saying "thank you" is going too far. They could have been much more destructive, but they didn't give any added value. The knowledge was already stored by Byzantium.

Blogger Otto Lamp June 18, 2017 7:50 AM  

The Byzantine Empire was still standing when Christopher Columbus was born--1451.

The reason this canard about Islam being a storehouse of knowledge is we in the West learn little about the Eastern Roman empire--its history or how long it lasted.

Part of that is deliberate, as it undermines the Catholic Church's claim to be the "one true, original church". Even a quick study of Byzantine history reveals that the Roman Catholic church split off from the Orthodox church around the year 1000.

Hence, the study of the history of Byzantines was suppressed in the West. Instead we were taught that the Byzantines were chaotic, backwards peoples.

Blogger Lovekraft June 18, 2017 8:14 AM  

This weeks London fire (jihad by arson) is going to be a common occurence in the west. Similar to the Confederate statue/flag shoad in the southern U.S.

But it can be turned around: since the left has spit upon western achievement, we have every right to mock and deny every achievement they claim. For example, when the Olympics returns and we're subjected to the bile of diversity and globalism, we can treat it with contempt and mock those who tout it.

Blogger Johnny June 18, 2017 8:16 AM  

Islam basically is a warrior cult that functions best when the converts are the warrior class presiding over a domestic population that supports it with taxation, or a slave population that supports it with its labors. On that level it functions well enough but does not allow for any evolution, any progress, because progress in any other area is a threat to the status of the warrior elite. Thus it neglects everything else.

By the nature of its sex rules it encourages extended family tribalism, and when it runs out of non Islamics to oppress it turns on itself in the form of feuding clans. Thus the easy return to tribalism when order breaks down. The only other choice is a dictator who can only retain power by using the inherently sanctioned violent methods to oppress the tribal tendency. Thus we have Islam currently. Either oppressive leaders or feuding tribal enclaves

Blogger Mr.MantraMan June 18, 2017 8:17 AM  

I know it's TV but the shows Vikings and Last Kingdom have the monks and the literate going over Roman literature, little to no mention of the musslemen.

Anonymous badhairday June 18, 2017 8:18 AM  

This might be a good time to remind you all that the last known copy of The Method by Archimedes was scratched out and over written with a prayer book.

Blogger Matthew June 18, 2017 8:23 AM  

Shut up, Obvious.

Blogger Cataline Sergius June 18, 2017 8:32 AM  

I was always a little curious as to how the Muslims were meant to have passed on these great stores of knowledge to the Latins.

The Crusades weren't by any stretch, a colonization effort. We aren't talking about the Britts in India, here.

Science and philosophy were inextricably tied together in those days.

Christian pilgrims weren't that interested in learning secret Musselmen knowledge. On the off chance you were literate, that was a good way imperil your immortal soul.

Tangential contact wouldn't be enough to effect that kind of transfer of knowledge.

The only organizations that had the resources to undertake that were the Templars and the Hospitallers. I know of no effort on their part to undertake such a project.

Anonymous krymneth June 18, 2017 8:39 AM  

The funny thing is that even if you take this story as given, it still leaves them in the position of the servant given one talent in Jesus' parable, who was cast into the outer darkness.

All the powers of propaganda can still only get them that far. No one can take seriously the idea that they advanced the knowledge, even with the fog of centuries covering them.

Blogger Johnny June 18, 2017 8:48 AM  

The culture we are talking about was imbedded in the Greek city states. That would be philosophy (deduction by logic), mathematics, and phonic script.

The impression I get from the arguments presented here is that we really don't know how all that collective information got passed on. The theory that the Arabs did it is based on noting that they preserved it for a time. As, by the way, did the Romans more vigorously. They actually adapted a good deal of Greek culture openly and preserved the Greek universities for hundreds of years. And now somehow we are to believe it came to us from the Arabs only because they did not immediately kill it off in their conquests.

Blogger Otto Lamp June 18, 2017 8:49 AM  

@Cataline Sergius,

The Crusaders spend as much (if not more) time attacking the Byzantines as they did the Muslims, because many of the minor royalty that went on the crusades thought to establish their own kingdoms in the East, which as a practical matter meant taking land from the Byzantines.

Had the Byzantines not had to fight what was essentially a two front war (the Crusaders on one side and the Muslims on the other) it's likely they would have defeated Islam (or at least contained it to a small area). Heck, even fighting on two sides, they held out for almost 1000 years against Islam.

This is why I find it ironic that the Muslims rail against the crusades. In the end, the crusades helped Islam by weakening the Byzantines.

Blogger FrankNorman June 18, 2017 8:50 AM  

I blame Roman Catholicism for this - sort of. With the Papacy wanting to pretend that every Christian community ever had accepted it's claims until Martin Luther showed up, the entire Byzantine civilization, which was based on Orthodox Christianity, therefore had to be memory-holed. Ignored.
So the conception of European history became an entirely Western-centered one.
Not that they did this to help the Muslims, of course. Not at all.
I also wonder if this isn't still one of the unspoken reasons why Russia is seen as the bad guy, the great eastern boogeyman. We all know that's because Russia is one of the few lands that can tell the one-world globalist types to go take a hike and make it stick, but beneath that, is the ancient religious divide between East and West.

Blogger VD June 18, 2017 9:00 AM  

The Crusaders spend as much (if not more) time attacking the Byzantines as they did the Muslims, because many of the minor royalty that went on the crusades thought to establish their own kingdoms in the East, which as a practical matter meant taking land from the Byzantines.

Completely false. 4th Crusade was atypical.

Blogger Otto Lamp June 18, 2017 9:01 AM  

@Johnny,

When the western Crusaders conquered Constantinople in 1204, they remarked that it was richer and more sophisticated than any European city they had ever seen.

Constantinople was a CHRISTIAN city at that time, and had ALWAYS been a Christian city. It had been governed by a unbroken line of emperors going all the way back to...Constantine in 330 AD.

Muslims had never conquered Constantinople, and wouldn't for another 250 years (1453).

Constantinople was the center of culture and knowledge in the East. And, until 1453, it had a Christian population and was run by a Christian government.

The Christians in the Eastern-Roman/Byzantine empire preserved the knowledge until 1453, not Islam.

Blogger Jew613 June 18, 2017 9:08 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Zaklog the Great June 18, 2017 9:10 AM  

If not, then why would one expect the historical occupation of Spain, North Africa, or the Holy Lands to be any different.

I know the train is fine, but I thought I'd point this out anyway. It probably wasn't quite as bad then because Muslims hadn't been literally retarded by a millennia of Islam-encouraged first-cousin marriage. Which is not to say that it was especially helpful.

Blogger Otto Lamp June 18, 2017 9:11 AM  

@VD,

Here we'll have to disagree.

Even on the first crusade, the Byzantine emperor was careful to shepard the crusaders through his lands for fear the crusaders had eyes on more than just fighting Islam. And, he did have to eventually force them out of numerous sites where they had set up permanent residence. This was true for all the crusades.

Blogger Adm Trell June 18, 2017 9:11 AM  

Can anyone recommend some unbiased scholarly works on the Byzantine Empire and the Middle Ages?

Blogger Jew613 June 18, 2017 9:12 AM  

The idea of Muslims preserving Greek learning has always been ridiculous and obviously so. The burning of the library of Alexandria wasn't a unique event. If a book agreed with the koran it was superfluous if it disagreed it was heresy.

Blogger dc.sunsets June 18, 2017 9:21 AM  

So is today's Left, waging its Crusade of Idiocy, in some way parallel to that "infamous Fourth Crusade?"

The Left weakens & attacks what is right (and Right) and good.

Blogger Matamoros June 18, 2017 9:23 AM  

24 Otto Lamp Part of that is deliberate, as it undermines the Catholic Church's claim to be the "one true, original church". Even a quick study of Byzantine history reveals that the Roman Catholic church split off from the Orthodox church around the year 1000.

You should get a history book and study it some time instead of this idiotic propaganda from a failed church stuck in 1453.

There are two unassailable points that the Orthodox cannot get around.

1. Matt. 16:18, where Christ clearly founds the Church upon Peter. Matthew was written in Aramaic and reads "You are Kepha (Cephas in Greek) and upon this kepha I will build my Church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it."

2. Our Lady of Fatima in her visitations and miracle of the Sun clearly states that Russia must be consecrated by the Pope to her Immaculate Heart, and then Russia will be converted to the Catholic Church and the world will be at peace - not to Orthodoxy but to the Catholic Church.

What are the Errors of Russia? See: http://www.onepeterfive.com/errors-russia-now-infected-rome/

Part of this is also that the Orthodox churches (There is no Orthodox Church) will return to the Catholic Faith from which they went into schism.

Read Vladimir Soloviev's "Russia and the Universal Church" for historical information.

Blogger FrankNorman June 18, 2017 9:35 AM  

43. Matamoros June 18, 2017 9:23 AM

There are two unassailable points that the Orthodox cannot get around.


Have you ever tried asking any of them what they have to say about it?


1. Matt. 16:18, where Christ clearly founds the Church upon Peter. Matthew was written in Aramaic and reads "You are Kepha (Cephas in Greek) and upon this kepha I will build my Church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it."


Nothing in that passage supports the huge pile of claims that the Roman Catholic system has put on top of it. Simon Peter played an important role in the early church. But he's gone to Heaven now. And there's nothing in there about some permanent "office" on earth that would be filled by others after his death.

Jorge Borgoglio is not the Apostle Peter.

I suggest you also check the rest of the New Testament - Peter was the apostle to the Jews, Paul to the Gentiles.



2. Our Lady of Fatima in her visitations and miracle of the Sun clearly states that Russia must be consecrated by the Pope to her Immaculate Heart, and then Russia will be converted to the Catholic Church and the world will be at peace - not to Orthodoxy but to the Catholic Church.


Sorry, can't hear you over the sound of my woo detector redlining.
Of course a Roman Catholic having a "vision" would say it was the Orthodox who were in error.

Blogger FrankNorman June 18, 2017 9:38 AM  

Another point - Roman Catholics think the world will be at peace if all professing Christians submit to the Pope?
Really?
So the Muslims don't exist in this worldview, or something?

Blogger Josh (the gayest thing here) June 18, 2017 9:39 AM  

Can anyone recommend some unbiased scholarly works on the Byzantine Empire and the Middle Ages?

John Julius Norwich

Blogger Matamoros June 18, 2017 9:39 AM  

St. John Bosco on Islam - 'A monstrous hodgepodge of Judaism, paganism and Christianity'

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&js=y&prev=_t&hl=en&ie=UTF-8&u=https://infovaticana.com/2017/06/18/san-juan-bosco-islam-una-monstruosa-mezcolanza-judaismo-paganismo-cristianismo/

Blogger Matamoros June 18, 2017 9:42 AM  

@45. FrankNorman Roman Catholics think the world will be at peace if all professing Christians submit to the Pope?Really?

Frank, at least read the article, it isn't long.

And Catholics don't say this, Our Lady makes this promise.

And the article takes the Vatican to task for its failures.

Blogger Francis Parker Yockey June 18, 2017 9:45 AM  

"Christian Greek Roman Empire." Not bad. A little unwieldy, but it conveys more direct meaning than "Eastern Roman Empire," and skips over the established connotations of "Byzantine." Those who don't understand it will be forced to think it through. And in the context of arguing against the "Islamic world preserved the Graeco-Roman classical canon" canard, it's particularly effective.

Blogger Matamoros June 18, 2017 9:47 AM  

Btw, Happy Father's Day to all who cared enough to show up for the battle for Western Civilization (Christendom) so that Christians and European peoples do not perish!

Read Sirach 3 on fathers as you have time.

Anonymous David-093 June 18, 2017 9:59 AM  

It's fascinating how Byzantine historians routinely gloss over the Massacre of the Latins 20 years before the Sack of Constantinople.

Blogger Phillip George June 18, 2017 10:00 AM  

Isn't the destruction of libraries right now an untold scandal.

Project Gutenberg etc. may not preserve 1% of it.

What has happened in our generation is worse than the fire of Alexandria...
or the loss of that previously Christian City.
Hard copies reference libraries a disappearing. The dumbification is relentless right now.

Blogger Yarnwinder June 18, 2017 10:01 AM  

It does seem odd to think that Islam encouraged the spread of classical knowledge from Byzantium to the West without using and benefiting from that knowledge themselves. It is my opinion that Mohammed destroyed the civilization of the Middle East by introducing Islam. He certainly didn't want to help out Christians.

Anonymous Causal Lurker June 18, 2017 10:01 AM  

A lot of books and information (Greek, Roman, sometimes Hebrew or Aramaic, anything) were preserved in the West by monastic libraries. The scriptora borrowed, copied, and sometimes restored damaged texts. A lot of works re-diffused east and south as new chapter houses got established, and started or built their own collections. The knowledge embedded in those texts took longer to emerge, because of the limited number of learned or literate people. There was less time for literature and pholosphy becasue of the labor to stay fed (or not starving).

Look at the Gospel books of Kells and Lindisfarne as examples of the high end for copied texts, where illumination went to 11. BTW, those were home-grown and the techniques exported with the Irish monks.

Byzantium (later Constantinople) had a spurious claim to being one of the great patriarchies of the early Church. Jerusalem, Antioch, Alexandria, Rome, all had better historic claims. The reason for schism and strife is the secular "second Rome" for Constantinople; Charlemagne was granted the honor of rex, not basileus, by the Eastern Emperor after 800 AD. Unnecessary friction, at a time when western Europe was beginning to get back on its feet again. The river routes up the Danube and Rhine would have been excellent interior lines (again).

Blogger RC June 18, 2017 10:02 AM  

I found Emmet Scott's theory of the source and effects of reliable European access to papyrus an interesting piece of the puzzle. He defends Pirenne capably.

Blogger Dexter June 18, 2017 10:02 AM  

Desert raiders aren't just in it for the rape and pillage, you know. They have a keen interest in preserving classical civilization and culture!

Anonymous Evstratios June 18, 2017 10:58 AM  

Pathetic historical revision primarily instigated through what is currently identified as stockholm syndrome. You guys are the greatest, please don't kill me. There is a reason the spartans left their weakest to die in the shadow of my ancestral village and rejected the effeminate mewlings of the regressive athenians at every turn. Would that the sociological wisdom of the ancients be heeded.

I hail from Kalyvia Sochas, Bryseiae, eternal soldiers under Menelaus, Therae, site of the Eleusinium. We had the baddest bitches since 800bc. Helen was probably the first recorded night rider, running away with the first sjw mulatto paris, causing the sack of troy because she was unhaaappy. My region has fought succesive waves of barbarism for 3000 years. Whats old is new again. Modern day pausanias conspiring with the enemy must choose exile, prison, or death.

Damn these faggots to hell, Mystras (stone throw from Kalyvia) was a Christian stronghold and seat of ottoman rebellion for 300 years. The protection of which was directly responsible for emergent aspects of the renaissance. They fought for that right, the only help that came from the moslem dogs was falling on the swords of their superiors.

Rewriting succesive caliphates as the saviour of western thought and development is a new one for me, though not surprising, and brings a yearning for battle from the marrow of my bones.

If the Medes darken the sun, we shall have our fight in the shade

Molon Labe

Blogger Duke Norfolk June 18, 2017 11:17 AM  

If you step back and look at it in the larger picture, in order for the trope that Islam saved the knowledge of Western Civ to be true it (Islam) would have to have a wholly different manifestation than has been seen in any time we know.

It's truly absurd. It's more believable that some native tribe in Africa would have done so.

Anonymous Gart Williams June 18, 2017 11:22 AM  

It's weird how the Byzantines and their thousand year empire have been written out of history by modern day "historians".

Anonymous Cred In Unum Deum June 18, 2017 11:24 AM  

Even a quick study of Byzantine history reveals that the Roman Catholic church split off from the Orthodox church around the year 1000.

Nice of you think that, but it is 100% wrong.

The Chair of St. Peter is in Rome, not Constantinople. A quick overview of of Christian history shows that it was, time and time again, was the Successor of St. Peter who had to make determinations on heresies, most of those Heresies came from the East.

Nothing in that passage supports the huge pile of claims that the Roman Catholic system has put on top of it.

Despite the fact that God Himself in the Flesh basically gives St. Peter authority in that passage.

Peter was the apostle to the Jews, Paul to the Gentiles.

Point being what?

It is very simple. Show me a direct line from whoever is in charge of your Church, all the way back to St. Peter. I want specific names, and dates.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_popes

I have serious issues of Pope Francis, but he is the Pope, and there is a clear line starting from him going all the way back to St. Peter himself. That is pretty damn impressive to me, and was just one of the reasons I converted to the Catholic Church.

Anonymous Anonymous June 18, 2017 11:26 AM  

When I was in Catholic seminary a few years back, I was taught that much of our Greek philosophy texts came to us as Arabic translations that were then supposedly translated back into Greek (that doesn't make sense) and other European languages through Islamic Spain. I thought it was bs then, and I'm glad to see that it actually is bs propaganda.

Sad that I was taught such in a Catholic seminary, but hey, lots of errors are taught there nowadays and this was the smallest of them.

~DLSG

Anonymous Ominous Cowherd June 18, 2017 11:42 AM  

Matamoros wrote:2. Our Lady of Fatima ...

If you want to convince us that you are Christian, quoting a goddess cult is not the right starting point.

Cred In Unum Deum wrote:The Chair of St. Peter is in Rome ...

That chair is a human institution based on a Roman bishop's desire that other bishops kiss his ass. The mis-used verse in Matthew is Christ telling Peter that Peter will stand firm for Him in the future, unlike the night before His crucifixion. It foreshadows Peter's vision that nothing is unclean, not a power-grab by the bishop of Rome.

Peter was in Rome? Interesting that we know that through self-serving Roman tradition, rather than from scripture.

Blogger Francis Parker Yockey June 18, 2017 11:54 AM  

Related: Greek Communists meet with Bibi, promise new museum commemorating Jewish casualties in WW2-- in Thessaloniki, a city where Jews murdered and enslaved Greeks in the Ottoman era.

Jews ran a slave trade monopoly in Thessaloníki, where they sold Europeans to the Turks to become concubines or be worked to death.

For some reason, the Tribe has never felt the need to apologize, or to pay reparations for, this practice. Funny how that works.

http://www.timesofisrael.com/netanyahu-honors-greek-jews-at-thessaloniki-dedication-of-holocaust-museum-site/

Blogger The Chortling June 18, 2017 11:56 AM  

More important than arguing here is to pick up the book by Fernandez-Morera. I noticed that even our converged local library has an ebook copy via their Overdrive service.

I bought it almost 2 weeks ago (on Amazon) and added the audio. Wish Castalia could pick up this author.

Of courese, it got immediately cucked back in 2016: https://www.newcriterion.com/issues/2016/9/acts-of-faith

Blogger TM Lutas June 18, 2017 11:57 AM  

A persistent and widespread lie is best defeated by an attractive, easily accessible rendition of the truth.

Tell the truth, make it pretty so people will feel good passing it on, and ake it easy to refer to via URI both as a whole and any particular smaller subsection.

What is good about any political movement always involves honest truths that it communicates.

Anonymous GK Chesterton June 18, 2017 12:10 PM  

You need to read E. Michael Jones if you want the Truth... in short, ALL of the problems of the West stem from Luther and the Protestant heresy. Yes, it is a fact that Protestants are basically Jews. (Luther was basically a Jew.) pBut it is too easy to fall in the folly of anti-semetism. It isn't the Jews fault that some "Christians" decided to worship Luther and the Jewish scriptures. The Jews are a threat but only a minor threat compared to Protestant idol worshipers. In fact, right now many Jews are in alliance with the Throne of St. Peter. Which is why these disgusting "nativist" white nationalists in the USA are often both anti-Semite and anti-Catholic and have been since the Know-Nothings. Only a revival of the True Catholic Church in Rome will save the West...

Blogger ((( bob kek mando ))) - ( Give us this day our daily bait, that we may crush our enemies, see their weaksauce driven before us and hear the lamentations of their women, thank you Baby Jesus, Amen ) June 18, 2017 12:12 PM  

59. Cred In Unum Deum June 18, 2017 11:24 AM
I have serious issues of Pope Francis, but he is the Pope



even Crazy Eyes, her ownself, has admitted both that Francis is an Antipope, and that Benedict is a crap Pope for attempting that fake recusal of the popeship.

given John Paul's accolades to Marciel Maciel, the best that can be said of him is that he may have been too old and senile to understand what was actually happening at the end of his popeship.

this is, however, very unlikely. Maciel created the 'Legion of Christ' in 1941 and John Paul was less than 60 when he attained the papacy in 1978.

https://infogalactic.com/info/Antipope#List_of_historical_antipopes

Blogger ((( bob kek mando ))) - ( Give us this day our daily bait, that we may crush our enemies, see their weaksauce driven before us and hear the lamentations of their women, thank you Baby Jesus, Amen ) June 18, 2017 12:18 PM  

65. GK Chesterton June 18, 2017 12:10 PM
It isn't the Jews fault that some "Christians" decided to worship Luther and the Jewish scriptures.



wut?

baw-hahahahahahahahahaha.

"Jewish scriptures" would be the Old Testament and / Talmud, neither of which the Protestants have ever elevated above the NT. heck, most don't have any idea what's in the Talmud.

i've seen Catholics lie about Protestant theology before, but that one is a knee slapper.


59. Cred In Unum Deum June 18, 2017 11:24 AM
Point being what?



that Paul visited Rome *before* Peter ever left Israel AND that Paul founded the Roman church.

your own translations of the Bible inform you of this.

you just don't want to consider the implications.

Anonymous 5343 Kinds of Deplorable June 18, 2017 12:21 PM  

you just don't want to consider the implications.

We Protestants are peachy with that.

Blogger Ransom Smith June 18, 2017 12:24 PM  

ALL of the problems of the West stem from Luther and the Protestant heresy.

Oh Catholics. Never the least bit introspective.
Denying that Protestantism formed as a legitimate response to Catholicism's growing issues.

Luther for his many, many issues, had a reason for this "heresy".

Blogger Lovekraft June 18, 2017 12:32 PM  

The question I see it is:

if the globalists/jihad eliminate the 'soft Christianity', would the hard Church branches be among the next to go (thus eliminating Christianity entirely), or would the hC rise as part of the cycle?

I think that what VD is trying to tell us is, "We can't afford to take that chance, for the Savior's sake." Now it's a matter of fleshing out this argument.

Blogger peppermint88 June 18, 2017 12:33 PM  

All the planets have Roman names, but many of the stars, such as Altair and Aldebaran, Deneb and Denebola, have these durka durka names. Rigel, for example, is dune coon for left shoe of the suicide bomber. Betelgeuse is towelhead for bloody hand of the beheader. The ancient Greeks, of course, not only knew about all the stars of magnitude class 5 and above, they charted the movements of the planets, using this technique called epicycles that’s less insane than the Father being consubstantial and begetting but not making the Son, in as described in Ptolemy’s Almagest. The reason Syntaxis Mathematica is read as Almagestis that this magesterial tome was read through translation from sandniggerese by the Renaissance.

Some day we'll restore use of the pre-Christian Greek names for the stars.

Blogger Duke Norfolk June 18, 2017 12:40 PM  

As an agnostic I can tell you that much of what turns many people off is the internecine spats that are interminable. Which goes hand in hand with the translation/interpretation fights. I realize that it's just human nature and all, but it's exhausting.

Of course most people, I'm sure, don't pay much attention to the infighting. But for some it can lead to rejection of the whole thing as they feel as if to know the truth they have to devote their whole life to studying it, and even then who knows. (And let's face it, the percentage of people who are intellectually capable of doing so is quite small.) It's endlessly complicated. This isn't the basis for my agnosticism, but I sure do sympathize.

I realize that there's probably no answer to this, as it's just the nature of anything so important. Carry on.

Blogger VD June 18, 2017 1:10 PM  

As an agnostic I can tell you that much of what turns many people off is the internecine spats that are interminable. Which goes hand in hand with the translation/interpretation fights. I realize that it's just human nature and all, but it's exhausting.

I concur. I am seriously considering banning and spamming Protestants who attack Catholicism and Catholics who attack Protestantism. They are divisive, and we know how divisive individuals are supposed to be handled.

Blogger marco moltisanti June 18, 2017 1:16 PM  

It just occurred to me while reading this that the theory that the adoption of Christianity contributed to the fall of the "Roman Empire" is also bunk. If that were true, why did the intensely Christian eastern empire survive another thousand years?

Anonymous God Hates Cucks June 18, 2017 1:48 PM  

Matamoros wrote:Our Lady of Fatima in her visitations and miracle of the Sun clearly states that Russia must be consecrated by the Pope to her Immaculate Heart, and then Russia will be converted to the Catholic Church and the world will be at peace - not to Orthodoxy but to the Catholic Church.



"Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God...Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders..." - 2 Thessalonians 2

Blogger dienw June 18, 2017 2:08 PM  

Yes, it is a fact that Protestants are basically Jews. (Luther was basically a Jew.)

Horseshit. You damned fool; you lying Babylonian - that is descriptive, not rhetorical - do you even know who the Jews were and are? Sola Scritura,Sola Fide, Sola Gratia, Solo Christo, and Soli Deo gloria does not make you a Jew. Do you not understand the difference between the "tradition of the elders" and the bible? Judaism is Pharisism is against Chirst is anti-Cristian.

What you have stated is blasphemy.


Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 18, 2017 2:10 PM  

dienw wrote:What you have stated is blasphemy.
No, it's not blasphemy, unless you worship Luther or Protestantism.

It's idiocy, yes, but not blasphemy.

Blogger pyrrhus June 18, 2017 2:10 PM  

As someone said, "history is a set of lies agreed upon." But has anyone checked out Russian mathematician Fomenko's New Chronology, in which he contends that the historical timeline is drastically wrong, for reasons that are mathematical, and quite interesting?

Blogger ((( bob kek mando ))) - ( Give us this day our daily bait, that we may crush our enemies, see their weaksauce driven before us and hear the lamentations of their women, thank you Baby Jesus, Amen ) June 18, 2017 2:11 PM  

72. Duke Norfolk June 18, 2017 12:40 PM
As an agnostic I can tell you that much of what turns many people off is the internecine spats that are interminable.



frankly, i don't much care for it myself.

but when people sit there telling blatant lies about you, that does tend to get your dander up.

to Chesterton's assertion, he's going to have to provide extensive documentation that Prots have elevated OT / Talmud sources above NT text or used those to void NT text.

as someone raised in Baptist / Evangelical / Methodist churches my whole life, i can tell you conclusively, THAT'S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. we use the OT merely to see what the Law was before the New Covenant. we don't use the Talmud at all.

you can criticize them for being churchian or lukewarm or whatever, but most Prot denominations spend +70% ( all of Sunday School, all of Sunday eve service and most Wed services, it's only the Sunday morning main service in which the pastor may digress a bit, and even then, the congregation is not going to be very approving if he doesn't cite at least a couple of verses ) of their time reading directly from the Biblical texts. way, WAY more than the Catholics do.

and, having spent 7th and 8th grade in a Catholic school, i also know this from personal experience. when one of my 8th grade teachers asked for any students whose families read the Bible regularly, only two raised their hands. me and a Catholic girl. the teacher was a bit surprised that there were *any* Catholics who spent any time in the Scripture at all. most of the time when he asked that question ( because he did it every year ), the only ones who would raise their hands would be the non-Catholics.

more on the Roman church origin:

in point of fact, the church in Rome likely predated the visitation of ANY of the Apostles. Paul wrote Romans and addressed some ~50 believers by name ( Peter being conspicuous by his absence ) before he ever visited the place.

however, most of the ancient Church didn't consider a church to have been 'planted' until one of the 12 Apostles or 72 Disciples had officially made a visit.

and by that criteria, the Church in Rome was certainly founded by Paul.

they aren't even certain Peter died in Rome, much less that he ever visited before his crucifixion. Peter's church was in Israel.


however, none of this has anything to do with Islam being completely irrelevant to the transmission of the Greco-Roman classics to the Renaissance.

the Byzantine ( that is to say, Orthodox ) and Roman churches did do an excellent job of preserving that knowledge all on their own and the best that can be said of the Muslims is that the knowledge they preserved may be a net wash with the knowledge they destroyed.

Anonymous 5343 Kinds of Deplorable June 18, 2017 2:17 PM  

It's idiocy, yes, but not blasphemy.

Wait, what? Snidely as the voice of moderation? Moar popcorn!

Blogger Otto Lamp June 18, 2017 2:28 PM  

"Jews ran a slave trade monopoly in Thessaloníki, where they sold Europeans to the Turks to become concubines or be worked to death."

One of the reasons European Christians were kicked out of Japan (and Japan closed itself off) is Portuguese traders (the same traders who brought Catholic priests to Japan) were abducting Japanese citizens and selling them as slaves in other lands. This is the reason the Japanese were some of the first Asians to reach Europe--they did so as slaves.

Slavery is an almost universal sin among human cultures.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 18, 2017 2:29 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger szopen June 18, 2017 2:48 PM  

I waited for quite long time until there would be an appriopriate entry to put this comment it, but what the heck.. I always thought VD is on some level similar to Janusz Korwin-Mikke. And seems JKM was discovered by Sargon of Akkad. If you would read JKM for as long as I was (he is the guy who literally converted me from socialist young idiot to a being a young free market zealot, there was a moment in my life when I simply adored this guy :D ) I bet you would find the same similarities.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2BcMI2MGb_g

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 18, 2017 2:49 PM  

5343 Kinds of Deplorable wrote:Wait, what? Snidely as the voice of moderation? Moar popcorn!

If you think I'm going to defend someone claiming such utter retardation as "Protestantism is basically Jewish" and "Luther was basically a Jew", then you've not been paying attention.
I'm no Protestant, but I'll have no truck with lies.

Anonymous Hezekiah Garrett June 18, 2017 2:58 PM  

Yeah, one. Did the Muslims actually build the Hagia Sophia?

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 18, 2017 3:10 PM  

szopen wrote:I always thought VD is on some level similar to Janusz Korwin-Mikke. And seems JKM was discovered by Sargon of Akkad.

Oh Lord, that guy is great. Thanks for pointing him out, I'd never heard of him before.

Janusz is a prety cool guy. He doesn't afraid of Commies or cucks or feminists.

Blogger szopen June 18, 2017 3:22 PM  

Snidely Whiplash wrote:szopen wrote:
Janusz is a prety cool guy. He doesn't afraid of Commies or cucks or feminists.

Yeah. However, he is nowadays just a pale shadow of himself from the older time. I saw him in early 1990s discussing against the whole crowd in my home city; crowd full of people raised in communism. Holy shit, just seeing him effortlessly inventing new arguments, destroying all the opponents and coming to just the best answers in matter of blink of eye was amazing. He raised a whole generation or right-wingers. He was demonized by the left. Unfortunately, his support is miniscule, about 3-4%, mostly young, intelligent males (the average intelligence of his voters was few times tested to be the highest for all parties).

Right now... few years ago I saw him attacked (verbally) in some youtube movie. He again came with perfect retort, but this time it took him whole five seconds or so. He's old.

Blogger FrankNorman June 18, 2017 3:41 PM  

65. GK Chesterton June 18, 2017 12:10 PM

You need to read E. Michael Jones if you want the Truth... in short, ALL of the problems of the West stem from Luther and the Protestant heresy. Yes, it is a fact that Protestants are basically Jews. (Luther was basically a Jew.) pBut it is too easy to fall in the folly of anti-semetism. It isn't the Jews fault that some "Christians" decided to worship Luther and the Jewish scriptures. The Jews are a threat but only a minor threat compared to Protestant idol worshipers. In fact, right now many Jews are in alliance with the Throne of St. Peter. Which is why these disgusting "nativist" white nationalists in the USA are often both anti-Semite and anti-Catholic and have been since the Know-Nothings. Only a revival of the True Catholic Church in Rome will save the West...


Meanwhile, in the real universe, Protestants are people who believe in Justification by Faith - faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus.

Claiming that Luther was "basically a Jew" - I wonder who your nonsense insults more, Lutherans or Jews?

But then, you are almost certainly a troll. I find that an order of magnitude more likely, than that there are Roman Catholics in the English-speaking world who are so mindbogglingly misinformed as to seriously believe what you posted.

Anonymous SciVo de Plorable June 18, 2017 3:58 PM  

Thanks to the Dar al Islam's celebration of Clock Boy's transparent lie, I have a hypothesis that all or nearly all "Islamic" achievements in math, science, and technology were plagiarisms from trade partners and conquered peoples. The way that it could be falsified would be if there were a flowering of discovery that lasted longer than three generations from a new contact or conquest.

Blogger Tatooine Sharpshooters' Club June 18, 2017 4:12 PM  

Fomenko's New Chronology

Is that the "scientific" chronology that has "composite" Jesus being crucified in 1185 AD on the Asian shore of the Boporus? And that the Rome in Italy (he posits several different Romes) was founded by Aeneas in 1380 AD? I think his math is a little off.

Has the Muslim occupation of Dearborn, Malmo, and, the French banlieus led to any sort of intellectual renaissance in those places?

Has the Arabian core of Islam ever produced anything other than murderous orthodoxy? Even the Turkic steppe nomads who mostly replaced them in the Islamic world replaced them were more culturally amenable and inquisitive.

Blogger Kyle Searle June 18, 2017 4:59 PM  

A lot of the Arabic translations were distorted by the need for their translators to express Islamic purity to avoid being flogged. I think quite a lot of Greek work did survive in the West, particularly places like Italy/Silicy, but the Greek philosophers were simply not 'in-vogue' in Latin Rome and this delayed the propagation of Greek ideas for about 400 years in Europe. Eventually the Pope lost some of his power, the berbers were pushed back, and with increased secular power nobles had more books produced.

Historically there were some Islamic cultures that did ok, namely the Persians and the Mughals / Bukhara. The big difference between them and the Osman Turkey and Mameluk Egypt is that they weren't run by white slaves. The Mameluks were mostly Coptic and Circassian slaves, and both the Osman army and administration were composed of Greek, Balkan, and Circassian boys raised from young to be elite slaves. The pecking order was roughly like this:

Ruling clan -> Elite white slaves -> Free Muslims -> Dhimmi (tax-paying non-Muslims) -> Black domestic slaves

Needless to say, even though those elite slaves were raised to be Muslim they didn't feel a lot of loyalty to their nations so corruption was rampant. They didn't really have lower nobility the way we would understand it. Most science in the West was done by the younger sons of nobility, or monks, as they had the disposable income and time to do it.

Anonymous Icicle June 18, 2017 5:10 PM  

Didn't the Turks just construct minarets around the church and place some Arabic symbols inside it?

Pretty much. They also managed to scrape off some of the Christian art and put in their sad geometric patterns. So I'll say "pretty much."

"woahhhhh...this sh*t is lame"

Yes, I have a question, which is: what are you trying to say?

The Hagia Sophia was built over 1000 years before St. Peter's Basilica, 70+ years before the birth of Islam. It was built as a Christian cathedral, and converted to a mosque in the 15th century. So what am I suppose to get out of comparing the two?


Exactly. One of their "Islamic Crown Jewels" and they did not even manage to build it themselves. Note also it is Turks not Arabs that did this.

Yeah, one. Did the Muslims actually build the Hagia Sophia?

No.

Anonymous MendoScot June 18, 2017 5:13 PM  

Just a reminder that moslem "preservation of antiquity" is why we know so little about one of the greatest empires of antiquity - the Persians. After the moslem conquest of their lands, the contents of their libraries, reputed to be much greater than the library of Alexandria, were burned.

I don't remember the names of the protagonists, but the essence of the decision was "either they agree with the koran, in which case they are unnecessary, or they disagree with the koran, in which case they are blasphemy. Burn them."

Blogger tublecane June 18, 2017 5:43 PM  

@78-Fomenko is indeed "interesting." Fiction can be devilishly interesting.

Anonymous Full-Fledged Fiasco June 18, 2017 6:10 PM  

"Probably the single greatest refutation of Islam's alleged role in preserving the immense achievements of ancient Greece (in the arts, philosophy, and science) is the book by Sylvain Gouguenheim "Aristote au Mont Saint-Michel"."

+1

Blogger Tuatha June 18, 2017 6:20 PM  

I am glad someone else is telling the truth about the lack of ANY contribution to science from mohammedanism. And I was beginning to think that I was just one of very few who knew the truth.

Anonymous DonReynolds June 18, 2017 6:38 PM  

Henri Pirenne
Now there is a scholar I have not seen mentioned (by anyone) in decades. Yes, he wrote some perfectly delightful books and they are very good reading material.

Much of the Christian world expected the second coming to occur in the year 1000 AD. Up to that time, nobody saw any reason to build anything except magnificent cathedrals, while they lived in shacks and huts. When the second coming did not occur, everyone wanted to know WHY....and so they went back to the old texts to figure out where they missed it and when would it actually occur. That was the point in European history when learning and libraries and knowledge moved from the monastic to the university. Cambridge and Oxford were the first two universities in England and they started about this time. The more common view was that England was (again) at war with France and the English scholars could not attend the University of Paris. But a more accurate view would be that Cambridge and Oxford were started because of a new interest in learning, prompted in large part because the second coming did not occur in the year 1000 AD.

So where did they dig up these old manuscripts, texts, and books from the Roman Empire and the Greek scholars? They were in the monasteries....where they had been studied, copied, and cataloged for centuries. The Catholic Church did not have them locked away, they had preserved them as best they could until learning and knowledge moved from the monastic setting to the university setting. Recall the fact that the early professors (regardless of the subject they taught) were Churchmen, and that was how we knew Scholars and Schoolmen.

Blogger Critical G June 18, 2017 6:40 PM  

It boggles my mind that anyone with a passing familiarity of Islam can believe that it transmitted otherwise irrevocable knowledge to anyone.
Seeing as Dar al-Islam was such an advanced civilisation, why, after a brief period of liberalisation, did it revert to precisely the way of life prescribed by Muhammad?

Anonymous a deplorable rubberducky June 18, 2017 6:46 PM  

You may want to check out Robert Reilly's book The Closing of the Muslim Mind if you haven't. There was indeed a time when Islam was poised -- meaning a in position with some potential -- to take up where the ancients left off and really do something. But it didn't happen. Reilly traces the whys and wherefores of what went down.

In a nutshell, Islamic theology precluded advancement. Allah is omnipotent and capricious, rendering reason and inquiry impotent and futile. Strictly, there is no point in doing anything not Islamic, even worse, there's danger in doing anything not Islamic.

Blogger Snidely Whiplash June 18, 2017 6:50 PM  

DonReynolds wrote:When the second coming did not occur, everyone wanted to know WHY....and so they went back to the old texts to figure out where they missed it and when would it actually occur. That was the point in European history when learning and libraries and knowledge moved from the monastic to the university. Cambridge and Oxford were the first two universities in England and they started about this time. The more common view was that England was (again) at war with France and the English scholars could not attend the University of Paris. But a more accurate view would be that Cambridge and Oxford were started because of a new interest in learning, prompted in large part because the second coming did not occur in the year 1000 AD.
That's a very nice just so story, but it's false.
The Universities were founded by the monasteries, and there was originally no particular distinction between them. The purpose of the Universities was to train theologians and priests, not to analyze why the 2nd coming didn't happen, as that was not a major thing among monastics. They knew as well as any Protestant "No man knoweth the hour". While there were some lay preachers and secular priests who thought the 2nd coming was timed to the millennium, the idea was generally treated the way you treated the 2012 hysterics a few years ago.
And no, there was no "new interest in learning" that caused the universities to be founded, but rather the increased social stability and improved economy occasioned by the crowning of Charlemagne and the founding of the Holy Roman Empire generated enough surplus wealth that the particularly talented could be exempted from the drudgery of producing food and become scholars and professors.


Anonymous Icicle June 18, 2017 7:52 PM  

Shades of "you didn't build that!" everywhere in the comments.

Obama is also suspected of being a Muslim. So much projection.

The irony is rich.

Anonymous JB June 18, 2017 9:32 PM  

The French historian, Jacques Heers, a specialist of the European Middle Ages, and of historiography in general, thoroughly debunked this Arab contribution to European culture in his revisionist work, L'histoire assassinée.

Blogger flyingtiger June 19, 2017 1:17 AM  

Does anyone know how this myth started? Which historian first said this. I am too tired to check my Decline and fall of Rome.Monks in Western Europe and Ireland were preserving Latin texts. The Catholic church does not want to admit that the Orthodox did anything good, While Protestants do not want to give Catholics or the Orthodox credit.

Blogger DemonicProfessorEl June 19, 2017 1:41 AM  

@103

From what I remember doing historiography, this myth of the "Muslim preservation" started around the late 1970s/early 1980s with the rise of PC, "Orientalism," and the consolidation of Marxism in the universities - and the rise of the "Studies" departments.

On that note, the number of classical European text translations is about 95-97% from Greek and Latin.

Only a few bizarre lost texts (largely lost by Islamic plundering) were translated from Arabic or Farsi into European languages.

The whole "Islamic Origins" of European stuff is a myth - from Arabic numerals (coming from India) to noodles to coffee. Arab-Islamic culture really invented nor really advanced anything. Often, they threw scientific and economic development back centuries.

Blogger DemonicProfessorEl June 19, 2017 1:42 AM  

@104 Correction: Arab-Islamic culture *never invented nor really advanced anything."

OpenID peppermintfrosted June 19, 2017 2:53 PM  

Catholics and Protestants need to understand that all the churches in the West have been vertically captured by the University men, whether you call them puritans, agnostics, atheists, satanists, or jews, during the 20th century. There's no point in calling other denominations heretics for letting it happen at this point.

It is unlikely that the same institutional structure could be vertically recaptured by whatever your favorite word for the good guys is faster than horizontally replaced.

Anonymous MattnOKC June 19, 2017 10:30 PM  

You should read Mohammed and Charlemagne Revisited: The History of a Controversy next. A great book on this subject.
http://amzn.to/2skFAat

Anonymous DonReynolds June 20, 2017 10:21 PM  

flyingtiger wrote:Does anyone know how this myth started? Which historian first said this. I am too tired to check my Decline and fall of Rome.Monks in Western Europe and Ireland were preserving Latin texts. The Catholic church does not want to admit that the Orthodox did anything good, While Protestants do not want to give Catholics or the Orthodox credit.

There is a certain amount of "friction" between Protestant and Catholic and Orthodox, which you will see here, but that does not mean that serious people are like that. I freely admit and give credit to the achievements of the Roman Catholic church and the Orthodox churches, but the backlash when I do that is difficult to manage.

I taught economics from 1978-98 and the last time I tried to include anything remotely Roman Catholic in my classes was when I scheduled a discussion of the Bishops Letter back in 1985 regarding poverty in America. The blowback was intense and I was obliged to cancel the discussion altogether. It simply was not possible at Cumberland University to have any such discussion in a civil manner. The "friction" was simply too intense....on both sides, but particularly from my fellow Protestants. I had not experienced anything like that before, and these were students that I thought had the maturity and civil disposition (otherwise) to enjoy and appreciate the discussion.

My Scot-Irish tribe had their own oral history of "friction", which they apparently brought with them when they came to this country. But I have always tried to respect Catholics as fellow Christians, freely admitted to their virtues, and made a number of good friends in the process. But in a teaching situation, it was really unmanageable to have a public discussion of something as mild as the Bishops Letter. I wish it was not like that and maybe it will be better in the future, but in the meantime I just stay out of the scuffles over doctrine and history and religious differences. It just is not worth it and only creates unnecessary hard feelings.

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