Lithuania Ascending

By S. C. Rowell,

Book cover of Lithuania Ascending: A Pagan Empire Within East-Central Europe, 1295-1345

Book description

From 1250 to 1795 Lithuania covered a vast area of eastern and central Europe. Until 1387 the country was pagan. How this huge state came to expand, defend itself against western European crusaders and play a conspicuous part in European life are the main subjects of this book. Chapters are…

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Why read it?

1 author picked Lithuania Ascending as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

This is a look at the evolving Lithuanian state at a key moment in its efforts to fight off western crusaders, expand to the east against Russians and south against Mongols, and accommodate its society and religious practices to its allies and subject peoples.

This was the era when the modern states of Belarus and Ukraine were forming under Lithuanian rule or protection. The cities of those regions, as well as the princes, were all Orthodox Christians, but they preferred being governed by tolerant pagans who lived among them than being heavily taxed by Muslim nomads who despised them.


From William's list on medieval Baltic history.

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