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Henri Pirenne (1862-1935) Source: Wikipedia <br/> Commons Wikipedia Commons
Henri Pirenne (1862-1935), was professor of his­tory in the University of Ghent, Belgium, in 1896-1930. He is best known for the Pirenne Thesis which argued that the Roman Empire's collapse occurred in the 7th century due to Arab expansion and not in the 5th century.  This theory is developed in his 1937 book entitled Mohammed and Charlemagne. Pirenne was also prominent in the non-violent resistance to the German occupation of Belgium during World War I, and was interned from 1916 until the end of the war.  During this time he wrote much of the two volume A History of Europe: From the end of the Roman World in the West to the beginnings of the Western States, published after his death.

Among his numerous books and papers on the history of Belgium is the outstanding Histoire de Belgique (7 vols., 1899-1932, also translated into German and Dutch). The third volume deals with the rise of Anabaptism in Belgium. He describes Anabaptism largely as a socio-economic movement, the Anabaptists in his view having been the poor, the proletariat.   Pirenne's views deeply influenced the Dutch Mennonite historian Karel Vos.


Author(s) Nanne van der Zijpp
Richard D. Thiessen
Date Published February 2008


Cite This Article

MLA style

van der Zijpp, Nanne and Richard D. Thiessen. "Pirenne, Henri (1862-1935)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. February 2008. Web. 15 Sep 2014. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Pirenne,_Henri_(1862-1935)&oldid=83988.

APA style

van der Zijpp, Nanne and Richard D. Thiessen. (February 2008). Pirenne, Henri (1862-1935). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 15 September 2014, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Pirenne,_Henri_(1862-1935)&oldid=83988.




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Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, and Waterloo, Ontario, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 4, p. 182. All rights reserved. For information on ordering the encyclopedia visit the Herald Press website.


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