This book is in very good condition. The dust jacket has a little edge wear and is price-clipped, but is otherwise in very good condition. Internally the book is in excellent condition - clean, tight and unmarked with little sign of use.
In "The Church in Early Irish Society", Dr. Hughes gives an account of the problems which arose when the organization of the Christian church, imported from the urban bureaucracy of the Roman Empire, had to be adapted to the heroic society of early Ireland. How was the church government in Ireland brought into line with the secular law, and were the changes made without protest? Dr. Hughes finds the key to these questions in legal texts of the sixth, seventh and eighth centuries, and attempts, through them, to trace the gradual process of modification which culminated in the eighth century, when the church, now fully adjusted to Irish society, reached a so-far unprecedented height of power and influence. In the ninth century the Viking raids and settlements provided new problems : did they really bring about a decline in the spiritual vitality of the church and degeneracy in her institutions, as is often supposed? It is for answers to questions like these that Dr. Hughes searches the contemporary sources for each period that she examines, tracing the history of the church up to the twelfth century. The main emphasis of the book is on the church as an institution, but it also asks what Christianity meant to different people at different times, and illustrates some of Ireland's contacts with England and the continent.