Book Series Medieval and Early Modern Political Theology, vol. 1

Political Theology in Medieval and Early Modern Europe

Discourses, Rites, and Representations

Monserrat Herrero, Jaume Aurell, Angela Concetta Miceli Stout (eds)

  • Pages: 397 p.
  • Size:156 x 234 mm
  • Illustrations:29 b/w
  • Language(s):English
  • Publication Year:2017

  • ISBN: 978-2-503-56834-8
  • Paperback
  • Available
  • ISBN: 978-2-503-56857-7
  • E-book
  • Available


“This collection thus affords a fertile seedbed for future work.” (Jason A. Kerr, in Renaissance Quarterly, LXXII/1, 2018, p. 344)


Montserrat Herrero is Associate Professor of Political Philosophy at the University of Navarra (Spain). She is the Principal Investigator of the Religion and Civil Society Project at the Institute for Culture and Society.

Jaume Aurell is Professor of Medieval History and Theory of History at the University of Navarra (Spain).

Angela C. Miceli Stout is a Visiting Researcher at the University of Navarra (Spain) in the Religion and Civil Society Project at the Institute for Culture and Society (2013-2016).


This book aims to provide new historical and theoretical perspectives on political theology with an interdisciplinary approach, from political philosophy and theology to art and history. After a comprehensive introduction and three introductory chapters on both the theory and the concept of  "political theology" (based on the works of Schmitt, de Lubac, and Kantorowicz), this volume explores the transferences between the temporal and the spiritual experimented on the past. It interprets some historical events (medieval crusades, royal wisdom, and early modern idea of tolerance), examines some philosophical and theological narratives (John of Paris, Spinoza, Locke, Bayle, Leibniz, Montesquieu, Toqueville), and deciphers some rites (royal coronations) and representations (the Holy Crown, royal banquets, royal coats of arms).


Introduction, Martin Aurell and Jaume Aurell

PART ONE. The Theory: The Shaping of a Scholarship Concept

1. Carl Schmitt’s Political Theology: The Magic of a Phrase, Montserrat Herrero
2. The Mystical and the Real: Putting Theology Back into Political Theology, William T. Cavanaugh
3. From the Medieval Church as a Mystical Body to the Modern State as a Mystical Person: Ernst Kantorowicz and Carl Schmitt, Antonio Bento

PART TWO. The Practice: Modes of Transferences and Interferences

I. Discourses

5. Sapiential Rulership in the Eleventh Century: the Political Theology of Royal Wisdom, Manuel Alejandro Rodríguez de la Peña
6. Is Political Theology an Oxymoron? Radical Criticism of the Crusades in the Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries, Martin Aurell
7. Regnum and Sacerdotium in John of Paris’ De Regia Potestati et Papali, José Maria Silva Rosa
8. Interpretation of Scriptures as Theological-Political Act in Baruch Spinoza and John Locke, Montserrat Herrero
9. Early Modern Political Theology and the Question of China: Bayle, Leibniz and Montesquieu, Simon Kow
10. Religious Rupture and Administrative Continuity in Tocqueville's The Old Regime and the Revolution, Rafael García Pérez
11. The Rise of Toleration or the Rise of the State? Critics, Reforms and Abolitions of the Inquisition in the Enlightenment Europe, Juan Pablo Dominguez

II. Rites

12. Invoking the Name of the King: Context and Meaning in Late Medieval Portugal, Rita Costa Gomes
13. The Self-Coronation of Frederick II: a Non-Sacred Consecration, Jaume Aurell
14. The Hungarian Constitutiones Synodales of 1309 and the “Holy Crown”: The Theological Use of an Art Object as a Political Symbol, Vinni Lucherini

III. Representations

15. Romanesque Royal Banquets at Bayeux: An Original System of Theological-Political Representations between Self-Celebration and Propaganda, Xavier Barral i Altet
16. The Sacralisation of the Royal Coats of Arms in Medieval Europe, Laurent Hablot
17. Rex et Sacerdos: A Veiled Ideal of Kingship? Representing Priestly Kings in Medieval Iberia, Marta Serrano-Coll
18. Transference of Authority: Spiritual Tradition as Foundation for State Construction and Preservation in Medieval and Early Modern Russia, Elena Kashina

General Index