This class is a continuation of Honors 2111, which examined the poetry and philosophy of the ancient world. Honors 2112 covers the period from the beginnings of the Common Era to roughly the seventeenth century and start of the modern era. Once termed “the Dark Ages,” the Middle Ages from the perspective of Europe and the Middle East is now seen as a crucial time of development of two major religions—Christianity and Islam; the creation of nation states; and the advancement of knowledge about the human body, mathematics, chemistry, and astronomy. Important topics to be discussed include ethical behavior, the nature of God and divine justice, epistemology, organization of the state, the philosophy and practices of art, the physical workings of the universe and the human body; humanism; and secularism. This course emphasizes careful reading, critical thinking, and good writing.