Ludwig Pastor's The History of the Popes from the Close of the Middle Ages (40 vols.) spans the pontificates of fifty-six Popes, from Clement V (1305–1314) to Pius VI (1755–1799). Before Pastor's work on the history of the Popes, the Vatican Archives had been closed to scholars and historians. Pastor's close relationship with Pope Leo XIII allowed him unprecedented access to research original documents and papers throughout Europe. For over forty years, through the pontificates of Leo XIII, Pius X, Benedict XV, and Pius XI, Pastor labored over The History of the Popes from the Close of the Middle Ages until his death in 1928. Translated from German into English, this forty volume-collection spans five centuries of important Catholic Church history.
Beyond his research in the Vatican Library and Vatican Archives, Pastor also garnered numerous other sources from never before accessed institutions, such as the Archives of the Lateran Palace, Archives of the Inquisition, Archives of the Propaganda Fide, Archives from the Secretariate of Briefs, the Library and private Archives of Rome, the private Archives of the Angelica Library, and more.
Each volume contains a detailed table of contents and timeline, a valuable list of sources, as well as introductions to the main political and historical context for each Pope. Pastor delves deep into the character and history for each Pontiff, tracking their contributions to the Church and the world. Major historical events and transformations are covered in detail, including the Council of Trent, the influence of Martin Luther, the Reformation and the Counter-Reformation, the Thirty Years' War, the rise of secular states, and more, making The History of the Popes from the Close of the Middle Ages (40 vols.) important for both Protestants and Catholics alike.
With over 20,000 pages, The History of the Popes from the Close of the Middle Ages (40 vols.) is the standard reference work on papal history during the Renaissance and Early Modern periods of the Catholic Church, and still widely cited by modern historians. With the Logos edition, all Scripture passages in The History of the Popes from the Close of the Middle Ages (40 vols.) are tagged and appear on mouse-over. What’s more, Scripture references are linked to the wealth of language resources in your Logos library. This makes these texts more powerful and easier to access than ever before for scholarly work or personal Bible study. With the advanced search features of Logos Bible Software, you can perform powerful searches by topic or Scripture reference—finding, for example, every mention of “Pius,” or “Council.”
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What strikes one is the amount of labor spent by Professor Pastor in ransacking the Roman and other Italian archives, as, for instance, those of Bologna, Siena, Florence, Venice, Milan, and still more particularly those of Mantua. To praise further so learned and able a work would be superfluous.
—The Dublin Review
Critics of many countries and of many creeds have been unreserved in their praise of the German historian's thoroughness, in their praise of the science of his method, and of the frank simplicity of his presentation. Nor have they been ungenerous in their acknowledgement of the benefit he has conferred, on all students and writers of modern history, by the new material that he has gathered, wisely and freely, from the rich mines hitherto unworked.
—The American Catholic Quarterly Review
It would take the book critic too far to illustrate all the wealth of information here brought together. Like a living panorama, the days and scenes of the earlier centuries repeat themselves before us, men speaking and acting as they then did, without varnish or adaptation.
—The American Ecclesiastical Review
Ludwig Pastor was born in Aachen in 1854 and educated in Leuven, Bonn, and Vienna. Pastor taught at the University of Innsbruck from 1881–1900, and was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Leuven. In 1901, Pastor was appointed director of the Austrian Historical Institute in Rome. Emperor Francis Joseph I elevated him to the nobility, creating him Freiherr von Campersfelden in 1908. In 1921 he was appointed the Republic of Austria's ambassador to the Holy See. Ludwig Pastor started his magnum opus The History of the Popes from the Close of the Middle Ages in 1886 and continuously labored on it until his death in 1928.