chapter  VII
vii the intellectual renaissance in the second feudal age
Pages 6

The development of intercommunication, so manifest on the economic map, was no less clearly marked on the map of culture. The abundance of translations of Greek and Arabic works, especially the latter (though these were for the most part mere interpretations of Hellenic thought), and the influence which they exercised upon Western science and philosophy bore witness to a civilization that was coming to be better equipped with antennae. It was no accident that among the translators were several members of the merchant colonies established at Constantinople. In the heart of Europe the old Celtic legends, borne eastwards from their original home, began to imbue with their strange magic the imagination of the French romancers, whilst the poems composed in France-old heroic tales

or stories in a newer mode-were imitated in Germany, Italy, and Spain. The centres of the new learning were the great international schools: Bologna, Chartres, and Paris, ‘Jacob’s ladder raised towards Heaven’.1