Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1986. 1st Edition. Hardcover. Blue cloth. Three volume, oversized reference set. A white stain on the spine of volume I. Slight soiling on front cover of volume III. Otherwise, these are gorgeous, tight, and clean books in fine condition. Item #122885
Monte Cassino (sometimes written Montecassino) is a rocky hill about 130 kilometres (81 mi) southeast of Rome, Italy, 2 kilometres (1.2 mi) to the west of the town of Cassino and 520 m (1,706.04 ft) altitude. Site of the Roman town of Casinum, it is best known for its historic abbey. St. Benedict of Nursia established his first monastery, the source of the Benedictine Order, here around 529. The hilltop sanctuary was the site of the Battle of Monte Cassino in 1944, where the building was destroyed by Allied bombing and rebuilt after the war. The site has been visited many times by Popes and other senior clergy, including Pope Benedict XVI in May 2009. Since the reforms of the Second Vatican Council the monastery is one of the few remaining territorial abbeys within the Catholic Church. On 23 October 2014, Pope Francis applied the norms of the motu proprio Ecclesia Catholica (Paul VI, 1976) to the Abbey. This act removed from its jurisdiction all 53 parishes and reduced its territory to the Abbey itself - while retaining its status as a Territorial Abbey. The former territory of the Abbey, except the land on which the Abbey Church and monastery sit, was transferred to the local diocese of Sora-Cassino-Aquino-Pontecorvo. This 3-volume reference work begins with Monte Cassino's relationship to Byzantium in the 9th century and extends through the Renaissance period of the 15th century. Speciall attention given to the Bronze Doors of the abbey, which provide invaluable insight to the history of the monastery. The author also consulted archives not destroyed by the fighting in WWII.