Catherine Nixey’s book “The Darkening Age: The Christian Destruction of the Classical World” is very good.

First, it shows that the Roman persecution of Christians, although real, has been significantly exaggerated by Christian writers.

Second and more important, it shows that the worst persecutions, by far, were the reverse: the terrible destruction of Classical achievements by Christian fanatics. Her book is similar to Charles Freeman’s 2005 book “The Closing of the Western Mind: The Rise of Faith and the Fall of Reason.” Nixey is a fluid writer with a vivid sense of humor. Reading her is like reading Will Durant—and I know of no higher compliment to pay a writer of history. Although I hold that the effects of modern German philosophy—Kant, Hegel, Marx, and their contemporary heirs—are even more suppressive of intellectual freedom than religion, it is good to be reminded that religion, including Christianity, is a force for evil. Catherine Nixey’s book is a vivid reminder of that frightening truth.

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