Stylus Productions

213 DVD

4 lectures on DVD



VIDEO LECTURES by Dr. William J. Neidinger


  1. Christianity vs Islam.  The Islamic tidal wave washed over the southern Mediterranean shores of the old Roman Empire and swept away in its wash the Visigothic kingdom in Spain.  The tide of the army of the Prophet seemed irreversible.
  2. The Discovery.  A brilliant star led to the discovery of the body of James the Apostle (Santiago) in a deserted Galician field.  As the Umayyads of Spain boasted the arm of the Prophet as their holy relic, the Christians now, too, had a talisman in their holy war.
  3. The Journey.  As Christians regained the peninsula, pilgrims from across Europe came to fight and pray traveling to and from Santiago de Compostela.  With pilgrims, priests, warriors, and merchants came new artistic styles and religious ideas that spread across Spain.  We will re-trace the steps of an actual pilgrimage from Paris to Santiago.
  4. The Church.  The Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela is adorned with some of the most sublime examples of Romanesque and Plateresque architecture and sculpture.  We will examine the church and the town in this last lecture.
Santiago de Compostela - Neidinger Lecture

Pilgrims from across Europe would brave bandits and pirates, searing heat and limb-numbing cold, thirst, hunger, and rapacious hoteliers to make it to the end of the Earth (Fisterra) to visit the tomb of Saint James.  As a Christian pilgrimage destination, Santiago de Compostela was rivaled only by Rome and Jerusalem.  Its popularity lasted for centuries and continues to this day.  But more importantly, the surprise discovery of the body of James in remote Galicia on the Iberian peninsula had a profound effect upon the course of European history.  It fueled the Christian holy war, the Reconquista, that would some day drive Islam from the Iberian peninsula.

The lectures are richly illustrated with images, and course materials include detailed lecture notes and an extensive syllabus including maps and ground plans.

Related Programs

History of Spain

The Road to Santiago