We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access.
The Abacus and the Cross: The Story of the Pope Who Brought the Light of Science to the Dark Ages | [Nancy Marie Brown]

The Abacus and the Cross: The Story of the Pope Who Brought the Light of Science to the Dark Ages

The medieval Catholic Church, widely considered a source of intolerance and inquisitorial fervor, was not anti-science during the Dark Ages - in fact, the pope in the year 1000 was the leading mathematician and astronomer of his day. Called The Scientist Pope, Gerbert of Aurillac rose from peasant beginnings to lead the church. By turns a teacher, traitor, kingmaker, and visionary, Gerbert is the first Christian known to teach math using the nine Arabic numerals and zero.
Regular Price:$22.95
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Your Likes make Audible better!

'Likes' are shared on Facebook and Audible.com. We use your 'likes' to improve Audible.com for all our listeners.

You can turn off Audible.com sharing from your Account Details page.

OK

Publisher's Summary

The medieval Catholic Church, widely considered a source of intolerance and inquisitorial fervor, was not anti-science during the Dark Ages - in fact, the pope in the year 1000 was the leading mathematician and astronomer of his day. Called The Scientist Pope, Gerbert of Aurillac rose from peasant beginnings to lead the church. By turns a teacher, traitor, kingmaker, and visionary, Gerbert is the first Christian known to teach math using the nine Arabic numerals and zero.

In The Abacus and the Cross, Nancy Marie Brown skillfully explores the new learning Gerbert brought to Europe. A fascinating narrative of one remarkable math teacher, The Abacus and the Cross will captivate readers of history, science, and religion alike.

©2010 Nancy Marie Brown (P)2010 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"A thoroughly engrossing account of the Dark Ages and one of its Popes, both far less dark than popular histories teach.... The years around 1000 CE seem to be every medieval historian’s favorite era, but Brown’s welcome addition to the genre provides a lively, eye-opening portrait of a sophisticated Europe whose intellectual leaders showed genuine interest in learning." (Kirkus Reviews)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.5 (22 )
5 star
 (6)
4 star
 (4)
3 star
 (9)
2 star
 (2)
1 star
 (1)
Overall
3.5 (13 )
5 star
 (4)
4 star
 (2)
3 star
 (5)
2 star
 (1)
1 star
 (1)
Story
3.8 (13 )
5 star
 (4)
4 star
 (4)
3 star
 (4)
2 star
 (0)
1 star
 (1)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Veronica Denville, NJ, United States 03-06-11
    Veronica Denville, NJ, United States 03-06-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "I liked the second half better than the first"

    If you like science and history and religion, then I think you will like this book. But be warned, the first part can be tedious. The author goes into the history of different items, including parchment. I was glad I was listening to the book instead of reading it, so I could "zone out" during parts I wasn't interested in. On the other hand, the narrator (who does a great job, BTW), has to describe details of the numerals that can't be seen. The second part was more about Gerbert's life, and like all good gossip, was fascinating. I've always been interested in the Holy Roman Empire, and what role it played in history. This gives a close-up view of how the Emperor chose popes. And how the pope was viewed by the other bishops. And the conflict between the people of Rome, who had their bishop chosen by an outsider, and all the other conflicts going on at the time. And I was happy to see how the author gave due respect to the women in history, too. So I think that scholars will enjoy the book, but the first part might be bit slow.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Albert Mobile, AL, United States 02-22-12
    Albert Mobile, AL, United States 02-22-12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    11
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Surprising insights into an oft-misunderstood era"
    Would you listen to The Abacus and the Cross again? Why?

    No, I generally listen only once to any audiobook.


    What other book might you compare The Abacus and the Cross to and why?

    For All the Tea in China by Rose -- because it, too, was an interesting story about little-known but significant events in history.


    Have you listened to any of Suzanne Toren’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    No


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Milford, CT, United States 11-18-11
    Susan Milford, CT, United States 11-18-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Don't Waste Your Time or Money"

    The turgid writing is outshone only by the monotonous narration. The summary makes it sound interesting and the subject might be if written and narrated by others.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Showing: 1-3 of 3 results

    There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank You

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.