Long Live the King
The Mysterious Fate of Edward II
The brutal murder of Edward II with a red-hot poker at Berkeley Castle is perhaps the most infamous of all royal deaths – but is it true? A remarkable document discovered in a Montpellier archive more than a century ago claims that he escaped to Ireland before making his way to Italy, where he lived as a hermit. This historical investigation charts his reign and his downfall, before carefully evaluating all the evidence for and against his survival.
Plantagenet Queens and Consorts
Family, Duty and Power
The Plantagenet dynasty ruled medieval England during a period of immense socio-political change when the role of queen consorts was redefined. Indeed, as this book reveals, royal women played a significant role in the maintenance of the Plantagenets’ political power. Corvi focuses on ten influential figures from the period 1236–1485, such as the ‘She-Wolf’ Isabella of France, who deposed her husband Edward II, and Margaret of Anjou, who was often in control of government during Henry VI’s bouts of madness.
The History and Legends of Viking England
After a brief history of the ‘Viking Age’, which saw the movement of peoples from Scandinavia to the British Isles, Eleanor Parker turns to medieval chronicles and legends about the Vikings or ‘Danes’. Although the medieval narratives often portray the Scandinavians as raiders whose purpose was plunder and destruction, Parker’s close study of the stories reveals other motives – including participation in English politics and the need to settle – and she traces the positive Viking contribution to culture and identity in England.
And the Road to Magna Carta
On the death of Richard I in 1199, his brother John took possession of the vast Angevin lands in England and France. By the time of his own death in 1215, King John had lost control of the continental lordships, England was facing invasion, and his English subjects had confronted him with the Magna Carta. Church's study of John approaches the king as a man ill-suited to his position of power, who came to be seen by his contemporaries as a tyrant.
Joanna of Flanders
Heroine and Exile
Joanna of Flanders, Countess de Montfort and Duchess of Brittany, was a formidable figure, leading her troops to rout the French at Hellebont in 1342. The following year however, after accompanying her ally Edward III to England, she vanished from public life. This biography draws on new research to reveal how her subsequent imprisonment in Yorkshire was the result not, as previously claimed, of mental illness, but of Edward’s determination to keep control of Brittany for himself.
Britain's Medieval Episcopal Thrones
History, Archaeology and Conservation
Six episcopal thrones survive from 14th-century cathedral churches. In this scholarly volume, Charles Tracy presents in-depth studies of the timber thrones in Exeter, St David’s and Hereford Cathedrals and the impressive, canopied oak bishop’s chair in Lincoln; Andrew Budge contributes a chapter on the two stone episcopal thrones at Wells and Durham Cathedrals. There is much additional information in appendices, and the studies are lavishly illustrated with photographs, plans and line drawings of the thrones.
Latin Psalter Manuscripts in Trinity College Dublin and the Chester Beatty Library
Because it formed the core of medieval devotional practice, the Book of Psalms was frequently copied as a separate volume for private reading. This study focuses on 13 examples, now in the collections of two Dublin libraries but with origins across Europe, which illustrate the diversity of such psalters’ design. Ranging from the lavishly decorated to the more austerely utilitarian, the manuscripts offer clues to the ways in which medieval readers scrutinized and engaged with the text.
A Brief History Of
A crusade was a military expedition, blessed by the Pope, against the enemies of Christianity; those who set out on these dangerous campaigns had pledged allegiance to the Cross and pinned their hopes on spiritual rewards. From the First Crusade in 1095 to the Spanish Armada against the English in 1588, Hindley tells the story of crusades and crusaders and considers how their ‘just wars’ have shaped relations between Christian and Muslim countries to this day.
Short History of the Anglo-Saxons
A Pocket Essential
Giles Morgan presents a succinct history of the Anglo-Saxons, from the fifth-century Saxon invasion to the Norman Conquest, and ends with chapters on their enduring influence in works such as George RR Martin’s Game of Thrones, and the recent discoveries of Anglo-Saxon hoards.
Life in the Middle Ages
A Brief History of
uses a variety of first-hand accounts and anecdotes to show how England was transformed between the age of the Saxon kings from the 10th century and the 15th century Wars of the Roses. Revealing the diversity of medieval society, he explains the effects of the changing feudal system and the emergence of towns and the urban elite.
The Unconventional King
Edward II, who ruled from 1307 until 1327, when he was forced to abdicate, was undeniably a failure as a king and as a war leader. Kathryn Warner's biography accepts Edward's many failings, but seeks to provide a fuller portrait than the usual portrayal of the wayward and ineffectual ruler. She explores Edward's personality and contemporary perceptions of him, demolishes the myths, and reveals an erratic person, who was born into an hereditary monarchy and had no choice but to be king.
The Triumph of Robert the Bruce
In a fresh account of Bannockburn, Cornell places the battle ‘within its wider context as a phenomenon inextricably linked to the political events within Scotland and England in this period’. He examines the internal conflicts in both countries, the leadership of Robert Bruce and that of England’s Edward II and his generals in a thorough reappraisal of why the battle occurred, how it unfolded and how the Scots achieved their extraordinary against-the-odds victory.
The Black Prince of Florence
The Spectacular Life and Treacherous World of Alessandro de' Medici
The illegitimate son of Lorenzo II and a maidservant, Alessandro de’ Medici ruled Florence for six turbulent years until he was assassinated in 1537. This first complete account of his life charts the rise through the intrigue-ridden courts of Renaissance Italy of the model for Machiavelli’s Prince, assesses the qualities of a ruler branded a tyrant by his enemies after his death, and considers the possible ethnic origins of this ‘first European ruler of colour’.
Although denied the privileged status of men, medieval women had a great variety of roles and vocations, and their lives were shaped by many different geographical, political, legal and religious factors. This volume draws on the riches of the British Library’s manuscript collection to explore, through texts and miniatures, the diversity within medieval women’s experience. Whether aristocrats or servants, it looks at women in their roles as lovers, wives, mothers, intellectuals, women of God and patrons of literature.
Silk and the Sword
The Women of the Norman Conquest
Sharon Bennett Connolly offers a new approach to the male-dominated history of 1066 and its cataclysmic events. She draws on the chronicles of those times to reconstruct the lives of the women who played significant roles in the years that led up to the Conquest and in its aftermath: among them, Emma of Normandy, queen of both Aethelred II and Cnut; Edward the Confessor’s queen, Edith of Wessex; William the Conqueror’s Matilda; and Margaret, the sainted Queen of Scotland.
'On Everyone's Lips':
Humanists, Jews, and the Tale of Simon of Trent
On Easter Sunday in 1475 the corpse of a two-year-old child was found in a ditch in Trent, and the rumour that he had been ritually murdered by Jews quickly gained acceptance; suspects were tried, confessed under torture and executed. Examining how a cult of Simon and the ‘blood libel’ against Jews were widely spread through printed verse and prose accounts, this volume presents a selection of vernacular and Latin texts with facing translations and notes.
The Culture of Food in England
In this study of food and drink, whether in the pauper’s bowl or on the elite table, and what it meant to people in the Middle Ages, Professor Woolgar shows how eating and drinking mattered for a multitude of reasons beyond simple sustenance. Drawing on a wide range of sources, the book looks at how food was acquired, cooked and eaten in the main social groups of late medieval England, and uses the cultures of food to open new perspectives on daily life.
The Winchcombe and Coventry Chronicles
Hitherto Unnoticed Witnesses to the Work of John of Worcester (2 vols)
This two-volume work offers the first critical edition and translation of the Winchcombe and Coventry Chronicles, two breviate world chronicles written during the century after the Norman Conquest. Although less sophisticated than works by the major chroniclers of the period, these texts shed light on the context in which historians were working, in this case illuminating the Chronica chronicarum of John of Worcester. Vol I: Introductions and Commentary. Vol II: Texts and Translations.
Saints' Lives in the Old Icelandic Kings' Sagas
Using Bakhtinian theoretical concepts, this study examines how generic conventions are brought into dialogue in the Old Icelandic sagas’ biographies of royal saints. This approach reveals hagiography’s role in saga’s origins and illuminates the depiction of rulers as conforming only sometimes to saintly ideals.
Conquerors, Brides, and Concubines
Interfaith Relations and Social Power in Medieval Iberia
Simon Barton investigates the political and cultural significance of marriages and other sexual encounters between Christians and Muslims in the Iberian Peninsula, from the Islamic conquest in the early eighth century to the fall of Granada and the end of Muslim rule in 1492.
The Medieval Shepherd
Jean de Brie's Le Bon Berger (1379)
Dedicated to Charles V, Jean de Brie’s treatise on sheep husbandry is a systematic, month-by-month account of raising sheep from the shepherd’s perspective; a subject of great interest given the importance of the wool trade in medieval France. This scholarly edition comprises the original Middle French text, with facing translation, introduction and notes.
Life, Death and Art in the Middle Ages
‘Born, bathed, dressed, loved, cut, bruised, ripped, buried, even resurrected, medieval bodies are a path to understanding the very essence of everyday life in the past.’ Examining how those bodies were perceived and treated, Hartnell’s book is set out like a medieval medical work, a capite ad calcem, ‘from head to heel’, and discusses topics ranging from headless monsters and mental illness to ‘wilfully impractical’ shoes with long, pointed toes and remarkable journeys on foot.
Wind & Water in the Middle Ages
Fluid Technologies from Antiquity to the Renaissance
The unifying themes of this volume of eleven essays are the power of wind and water to turn mills, the services those mills made available to communities, and their social consequences. The essays include studies of mills in medieval Ireland, water technology in Islamic gardens and water management in medieval London.
Illustrations of the Stage and Acting in England to 1580
Beginning with the Romano-British theatre, represented by masks and other archaeological finds, Davidson presents a collection of 166 illustrations and commentary that illuminate the many aspects of early drama and entertainments, among them ceremonies and liturgical plays, pageants, venues for plays, playbooks, fools and minstrels. The study ends with the remains of the early Elizabethan Rose Theatre, excavated in 1988. No jacket.
The Greatest Knight
The Remarkable Life of William Marshal, the Power behind Five English Thrones
William Marshal (1147–1219) was a landless younger son who rose through the ranks to serve as chief advisor to five English monarchs, including Richard the Lionheart and his brother John. Using contemporary evidence, including the sole surviving copy of a 13th-century biography, this study explores the life of a courageous warrior, tournament champion, wily politician and, ultimately, regent of the realm, against a rich tapestry of chivalry, grandeur and barbarity.
Treachery, Tyranny and the Road to Magna Carta
The youngest son of Henry II, John (1166–1216) became king on the death of his brother, Richard I, in 1199. He inherited a vast and possibly ungovernable dominion, extending across the Angevin empire in France as well as England, Ireland and Wales. In this biography, Morris draws on contemporary sources to describe a tyrannical and murderous reign that saw the loss of the French lands, the rebellion of the English barons and, despite the signing of Magna Carta, civil war.
Lovell our Dogge
The Life of Viscount Lovell, Closest Friend to Richard III and Failed Regicide
Boyhood friend of Richard III and one of the wealthiest barons in England, Francis Lovell remained loyal to the Yorkist cause even after his king’s death at Bosworth. Drawing on primary sources, this history offers a portrait of the man his enemies called Richard’s ‘dogge’, uncovers his role in the attempted assassination of Henry VII and Lambert Simnel’s rebellion, and unravels the mystery of his disappearance after the Battle of Stoke Field in 1487.
The Women Behind the Wars of the Roses
The Wars of the Roses that convulsed 15th-century England sprang from a family quarrel as fraught and intimate as any before or since. It is often viewed in terms of its male protagonists but, as this history makes clear, women played a key role, among them the Yorkist matriarch Cecily Neville; Margaret of Anjou, formidable wife of the mad King Henry VI; and Margaret Beaufort, whose ambition for her son ushered in the Tudor dynasty.
The Arts of Intimacy
Christians, Jews, and Muslims in the Making of Castilian Culture
In a well-illustrated study of ‘the lost memory of Castile’, the authors explore the dynamic intermingling of Arabic, Hebrew and Latin elements in medieval Castilian visual and literary culture. The book includes a chronology, genealogies and an extensive bibliographic essay on sources and readings.
The Medieval Marriage Scene
Prudence, Passion, Policy
With topics including medieval Jewish models of marriage, the many loves of Philip Augustus of France, women talking about marriage in the poetry of William Dunbar and Hans Sachs, and the dilemma of widows with inherited property in medieval London, this collection of twelve essays approaches the subject of medieval marriage from the perspectives of literature, history, art history, law, religion and economics, and ranges geographically from Iceland to the Levant.
St. Oswald of Northumbria
The medieval German legend of St Oswald differs significantly from Bede’s version, with the introduction of ahistorical elements and a bridal-quest narrative. This study traces the continental story’s development, revealing the significance of the Icelandic Oswald’s Saga, the full text of which is included.
Preaching, Building, and Burying
Friars in the Medieval City
By preaching in the open and visiting lay people at home, mendicant friars took religion outside church buildings. Yet, despite their dedication to apostolic poverty, the friars were criticized for their churches’ considerable size. In her study of the ‘social lives of buildings’, Bruzelius describes how friars’ activities shaped the interior and exterior spaces of medieval cities; in particular explaining how individual donors’ requests for intercessory prayers and burial rights led to the episodic expansion and decoration of the friars’ convents.
A Brief History of the Knights Templar
A Brief History of the Warrior Order
The Knights of the Order of the Temple of Solomon are found in fictional literature from the Middle Ages to Sir Walter Scott and beyond, even appearing in computer games. Nicholson separates the surviving historical evidence from speculative associations with Freemasonry, the Holy Grail and space travel: beginning with the Templars' origins during the Crusades she considers their religious life, their service to Europe's kings and their commercial and economic activities, up to the order's dissolution in 1312.
Heroines of the Medieval World
‘Although there were many women in the medieval era who did the extraordinary, who stood out in a world dominated by men, they are not easy to find.’ This study scours the sources to uncover the achievements of famous women such as Eleanor of Aquitaine and Margaret of Scotland, and the less-familiar stories of women in convents, pawns in political marriages, mistresses, warriors and captive women like Ingeborg of Denmark, crowned queen of France yet imprisoned by her husband for 20 years.
The Kings that made Britain
At the accession of Henry II in 1154 the Plantagenets ruled over a realm that stretched from the Scottish borders to the Pyrenees. When Richard III died in 1485 only Calais was left on the European mainland, but the Plantagenets had consolidated and secured royal control within Britain. In this lucid account of their 300-year reign Wilson chronicles the turbulent and often blood-soaked world of kings such as Richard the Lionheart, King John and Henry V, the hero of Agincourt.
A Ruler and His Reputation
More than five centuries after his death Richard III remains a compelling but divisive figure, the subject of myth and counter-myth. In this biography Horspool ‘aims at neutrality’, focusing on contemporary accounts while also examining how competing narratives have created the ‘composite figure who is at once so familiar and so alien’. He ends with reflections on the enduring fascination with Richard and describes events surrounding the recent rediscovery and reburial of his body.
Authorship and Publicity Before Print
Jean Gerson and the Transformation of Late Medieval Learning
Daniel Hobbins looks beyond the ecclesiastical career of Jean Gerson (1363–1429) to present the French theologian as representative of his wider cultural era and an author active at a time when written culture was rapidly expanding.
Texts in Translation
The central and later Middle Ages were a critical formative period for the Italian peninsula, which lay at the centre of trading networks stretching from Britain to Byzantium. This volume’s 120 newly translated sources range in date from c.1000 to the early 15th century. They illustrate the cultural, ethnic and religious diversity of medieval Italy, highlighting both its continuities with the Latin West and the ways in which it was exceptional, such as its new communal forms of government.
The Medieval Origins of Anti-Jewish Iconography
Hebrew prophets and Israelites appeared in early Christian art, but only after 1000 CE did the Jew emerge as a recognizable figure, soon to become a poisonous symbol. Sara Lipton argues that the visual stereotypes were neither an inevitable result of Christian theology nor simple reflections of prejudice. She traces complex relationships between medieval Christians’ religious ideas, social experience and changing artistic practices, and shows how representations of Jews transformed over time from benign figures of ancient wisdom to vicious caricatures.
The Mythical Battle
Re-examining one of the key events in English history, this analysis of what happened, where and why ranges from details such as how King Harold died to a wider view of the battle’s impact. Comparing the various written accounts of the battle, it challenges our notions of historical fact, and shows how the understanding of events is altered by subsequent generations to suit their own ends.
The Castle at War in Medieval England and Wales
After examining the origins of castle building in northern France, Dan Spencer’s military history focuses on the role of castles in warfare in England and Wales, from their introduction by the Normans in the 11th century to the death of Henry VIII in 1547. The book covers all the major conflicts, including the conquest of Wales, war with Scotland, 1295–1337, the Hundred Years War and the Wars of the Roses, ending with the early Tudors’ fortifications against invasion.
The First Crowned Queen of England
The kings of Anglo-Saxon England were reluctant to allow a woman to sit beside them on the throne; when Elfrida shared her husband Edgar's coronation at Bath in 973, she broke the mould. A powerful queen, she ruthlessly disposed of rivals in pursuit of the crown for her son, Ethelred the Unready. In this first biography of Elfrida, Norton asks whether she really was the black-hearted woman who murdered King Edward the Martyr, her stepson, to make way for Ethelred.
The Siege of Jerusalem
Crusade and Conquest in 1099
In this vivid narrative history Kostick retells the events that unfolded following the arrival of a Christian army at Jerusalem in June 1099. He also sets this siege and the brutal sack of the city against the wider background of the First Crusade, following the crusaders on their march towards Jerusalem, highlighting tensions and factions among their ranks and assessing both the immediate aftermath and the longer-term legacy for the Crusade's leaders.
A Brief History of Medieval Warfare
The Rise and Fall of English Supremacy at Arms: 1344–1485
For much of the 14th and 15th centuries, England was almost continuously at war with its neighbours, and enjoyed an unprecedented degree of military supremacy. Peter Reid's extensive account is not simply a catalogue of battles, but combines analysis of strategy and weaponry with a dramatic telling of how and why the wars, from Bannockburn to the Wars of the Roses, came about, and how they were fought.
The Foundation of Freedom 1215–2015
Described by Lord Denning as ‘the greatest constitutional document of all times’, Magna Carta is widely seen as a guarantor of individual rights and freedom from tyranny. But how is a charter forced on a medieval king by his barons relevant today? This comprehensive, accessible and richly illustrated volume explains its origins, how it has been interpreted through the centuries, and the inspiration it provides to those wishing to build democratic societies across the world.
Women in Medieval England
Arguing that the Normans’ imposition of a feudal system significantly reduced women’s rights and status, Telford uses a range of evidence from legal records to chart the struggles of ordinary women against the hypocritical sexual politics of medieval England. She considers such subjects as the pressure on young women to marry and bear children, the difficulty of legally ending an unhappy marriage, the special challenges faced by widows and the law’s attitudes to prostitution. Foreword by John Ashdown-Hill.
The Medieval World
The Illustrated History of the Middle Ages
Arranged thematically, this historical survey begins by tracing the growth of dynasties and empires, from the Carolingians to the Ottomans. Further sections cover warfare and conquest (in particular the Crusades and the Hundred Years’ War), as well as daily life under the feudal system and developments in religion and culture. Also featured are photographs of medieval maps, artworks and significant documents such as Magna Carta and Joan of Arc’s final letter. Includes material previously published in The Middle Ages.
The Prelate in England and Europe
In the period between the early 14th and mid 16th century, prelates – cardinals, bishops and monastic superiors – had considerable power, wealth and cultural influence. This study, comprising twelve essays, examines their exercise of power, their patronage of books and libraries, and their material wealth.
Capital and Corporal Punishment in Anglo-Saxon England
Investigating how capital and corporal punishments developed and operated in English society between c.600 and 1150, the ten essays in this volume draw on legal, literary, historiographical, philological and archaeological evidence to explore topics including amputations, mutilation and spectacle, and incarceration.
Clerks, Wives and Historians
Essays on Medieval English Language and Literature
This collection of ten Studientage Englisches Mittelalter (SEM) essays in medieval English literature includes studies of monsters in Spenser’s Faerie Queene; treachery in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle; Piers Plowman; and tensions between Chaucer’s Wife of Bath and the Clerk. English text.
The English Isles
Cultural Transmission and Political Conflict in Britain and Ireland, 1100–1500
This collection of nine papers originated in a conference that offered new perspectives on the origins of England’s empire, the impact of English medieval imperialism, and the ways in which English cultural norms were transmitted to Ireland, Scotland and Wales after the Norman Conquest. Among the essay topics are 12th- and early 13th-century English views on kingship; Anglicization in medieval Ireland; and post-medieval accounts of the Lordship of the Isles.
England and the Continent in the Eighth Century:
The Ford Lectures, Oxford 1943
Wilhelm Levison presents a meticulously detailed survey of English influence upon continental ways of thought and life during the 8th century, placing particular emphasis on the exchange of learning and scholarship and the work of, among others, Willibrord, Boniface and Alcuin. Slightly off-mint.
Medieval Dress and Textiles in Britain
A Multilingual Sourcebook
Dress in the Middle Ages was an identifier of status, wealth, occupation, gender and ethnicity, and fashions in dress caused controversy and complaint: ‘Do not fashion your clothing in a new-fangled way’, wrote Robert Brunne in Handlyng Synne (1303). This volume of manuscript sources, transcribed and translated from Old and Middle English, Latin and Anglo-Norman French, illuminates these subjects through readings from wills, accounts, inventories, moral and satirical works, sumptuary regulations and epics and romances.
Vivid Lives in a Distant Landscape from Charlemagne to Piero della Francesca
Ranging from the 9th century to the 15th, this collection of short biographies introduces 70 notable men and women from Europe and the Middle East. Dispelling popular myths about the medieval world’s ‘backwardness’, the book highlights the achievements of familiar figures such as Joan of Arc, the Venetian traveller Marco Polo and Persian polymath Avicenna, as well as lesser-known individuals such as the clockmaker and leper Richard of Wallingford. More than 170 colour illustrations complement the text.
The Crusade of Richard I
The Third Crusade united European leaders in an expedition to reclaim the Holy Land from Saladin. It is particularly well-documented, with contemporary chronicles surviving from both sides of the conflict, some of which were written by men present in the region. First published in 1889, this compilation of translated sources juxtaposes accounts by different authors and illustrates how events such as the siege of Acre were viewed at the time.
A Year in the Life of Plantagenet England
The year 1215 is remembered for King John’s reluctant granting of Magna Carta, but the famous meeting at Runnymede is just one episode in the year’s story of political, constitutional and religious upheaval. The author of The Hollow Crown here combines a narrative of high politics and civil war with the evidence for everyday life to show how these transformative months were experienced by people at different levels of English society.
A Brief History of
Between the Romans’ departure from Britain and the Norman Conquest, a distinct English identity developed, the legacy of which is still felt today. As Hindley tells the story of Anglo-Saxon England he highlights its cultural glories, such as Beowulf and the Lindisfarne Gospels, and its powerful women, from the war leader Æthelflæd to the abbess Hilda. He also shows how the centralized English bureaucracy helped create Europe’s first true ‘nation’.
The Conquests that Changed the Face of Europe
The history of the Normans began a long time before William the Conqueror arrived in England in 1066. In this absorbing and accessible introduction, Professor Neveux describes the 'extraordinary Norman adventure' that changed the landscape and culture of Europe, from the first Viking raids of the 8th century to the defeat of the Normans in Sicily in the mid 13th century. Translated by Howard Curtis.
The Art, Literature and Material Culture of the Medieval World
Transition, Transformation and Taxonomy
Reflecting contemporary approaches to the Middle Ages as a dynamic era of social, technological and political change, this volume of 18 essays explores the ideas of transition, transformation and taxonomy in subjects as varied as ethnic identity in medieval Córdoba, Old English poetry, the sculpture series of Salisbury Cathedral Chapter House, and Simon Semeonis’ 14th-century account of his pilgrimage from Ireland to Jerusalem.
The Man Who Conquered Europe
The identity of the fabled King Arthur has puzzled historians for centuries, but has never been established beyond the supposition that he was a British warrior who held the Saxons at bay in the 6th century. This study considers the available sources to identify who he may have been, and explains one aspect of the legend that has eluded previous historians – the story of Arthur’s successful campaign against the Roman Empire in mainland Europe.
After the Conquest
The Divided Realm 1066–1135
As he lay dying in Rouen in 1087, William the Conqueror bequeathed to his sons Robert, William and Henry the dukedom of Normandy, the throne of England and £5,000 respectively. Twenty years of violence and treachery were to follow William’s death until the youngest son, ‘the lion of justice’ according to medieval chroniclers, succeeded his brother William Rufus as Henry I. Teresa Cole traces the turbulent history of the three brothers, from their births to the death of Henry in 1135.
Henry V, the Man-at-Arms and the Archer
Agincourt is one of the most celebrated battles in English history, a victory that made Henry V a national hero and still resonates six centuries later. This title peels away the layers of myth to tell the human story through the eyes of key participants, from the king himself to a Somerset squire and an archer from Dorset. Drawing on historic accounts, it assesses the casualties and discusses the massacre of French prisoners that shocked contemporaries.
Medieval & Renaissance Interiors
In Illuminated Manuscripts
Illuminated manuscripts are an invaluable resource for understanding medieval and early modern life in castles, palaces and ordinary households, both urban and rural. Reproducing 140 little-known illuminations, mostly from the British Library’s collections, this book shows how these miniatures reflect medieval domestic interiors and how they provide information on topics ranging from the security of dwelling places to creature comforts such as heating and lighting, hygiene, beds and bedrooms, and the display of wealth and treasured possessions.
The Medieval World Complete
This survey of one of the great ages of European civilization is illustrated with photographs of paintings, sculpture, buildings and objets d’art. Chapters covering the beginning and the end of the Middle Ages frame six sections on religion and the Church, nations and laws, daily life, art and architecture, scholarship and philosophy, and the world beyond Christendom. The book includes biographies of key personalities from Charlemagne to William Wallace, timelines, maps and a gazetteer.
King Cnut and the Viking Conquest of England 1016
While referred to as 'the Great' in Denmark, Cnut (?995–1035) is mostly remembered in Britain for his legendary attempt to turn back the sea. Bartlett sets out to give this much-neglected king of England and his forgotten conquest their proper place in history. Beginning with the earlier Viking incursions, Bartlett tells the story of the protracted 'time of terror' and the epic conflict between Cnut and Edmund Ironside that culminated in the Danish warrior's victory at Assandun in 1016.
The Hundred Years War
Volume Three: Divided Houses
By the end of his reign, England's warrior king Edward III was a senile shadow of his former self, his conquests overrun by his enemies, his heir a neurotic child who would divide the nation. In this third volume of his magisterial narrative history, Jonathan Sumption sifts through contemporary sources to create a compelling account of the 30 years from 1369 to 1399, when the French attained the peak of their military, political and artistic confidence.
Edward the Elder
King of the Anglo-Saxons Forgotten Son of Alfred
‘A remarkable and successful king of the Anglo-Saxons’, but overshadowed by the illustrious reputation of his father, Alfred the Great, Edward the Elder reigned between 899 and 924 and was pivotal in the transformation of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms into a recognizable, unified English nation state which his son Æthelstan developed further. Drawing on tenth-century sources, Michael John Key gives an assessment of the reign and, as far as possible, an account of Edward’s early life and kingship in Anglo-Saxon Wessex.
The Norman Conquest
William the Conqueror's Subjugation of England
Did the Normans bring civilization to England and enable stronger links with continental Europe? Was William’s victory the result of supreme strategy – or just luck? As new discoveries have cast doubt on the traditional picture of 1066, Cole reassesses the evidence for the Conquest and its effects. Explaining the background to the invasion, she highlights the long development of English relations with Normans and Scandinavians; describing the aftermath, she considers how the conquerors crushed resistance and exploited the kingdom’s riches.
Glorious Son of York
A charismatic Plantagenet ruler, described by a contemporary as ‘the handsomest prince my eyes ever beheld’, Edward IV (1442–1483) fought hard for his crown, contesting some of the most important battles of the medieval period, including Mortimer’s Cross, Towton, Barnet and Tewkesbury. Covering Edward’s background, the Yorkist takeover and the tensions created by the king’s controversial Woodville marriage, this history follows his struggle to gain and regain the kingship of England during a period of great dynastic turmoil.
The Mythology of the 'Princes in the Tower'
Were the sons of Edward IV – the boy king Edward V and his younger brother, Richard, Duke of York – genuinely held against their will in the Tower of London; and were they murdered there? Bones found in the Tower were interred in Westminster Abbey in 1674, and their burial urn was opened in 1933. Now, drawing on genetic science, John Ashdown-Hill re-examines the case of the two princes, questioning the orthodox view and stripping away the myths that surround their fate.
Richard, Duke of York
King by Right
Inheriting his dukedom at the age of four, Richard, 3rd Duke of York, became the wealthiest man in England at 13 and later rebelled against his king. Although remembered as the man who ignited the Wars of the Roses, the Duke has been largely eclipsed by his sons, Edward IV and Richard III. Lewis's biography challenges the myth of the Duke as a man of insatiable ambition who dragged a nation into civil war, and reveals a family man, yet one with unparalleled power and responsibilities.
Archbishops Ralph d'Escures, William of Corbeil and Theobald of Bec
Heirs of Anselm and Ancestors of Becket
Between the ‘English Church as Anselm left it’ and the ‘world as Becket found it’, Truax examines the lives and work of three lesser archbishops, and highlights crucial developments in the English church during their pontificates.
Religious Men and Masculine Identity in the Middle Ages
The focus of these eleven essays is the complex relationship between masculinity and religion, with topics ranging widely to include studies of the rabbis of Babylonian Talmud; narratives of the First Crusade; and why men became monks in late medieval England.
The Cave Church of Paul the Hermit
at the Monastery of St Paul, Egypt
The Coptic Monastery of St Paul grew up around the cave near the Red Sea where Paul, the first Christian hermit, lived in solitude. A shrine in late antiquity, the cave became a church in medieval times and was decorated with wall paintings in the 13th century. This richly illustrated volume records the work of the American Research Center in Egypt in conserving the paintings, and sets the Coptic art and architecture of the church in historical and spiritual context.
The Last Crusade in the West
Castile and the Conquest of Granada
This third book in O'Callaghan's trilogy about the struggle between Christianity and Islam on the Iberian Peninsula describes the reconquest of Spain by the Christian monarchs, from the middle of the 14th century to the final efforts of Fernando and Isabel – a military offensive, accorded the status of a crusade by the Papacy, that forced the capitulation of Granada in 1492.
In Search of England's Lost King
Francis Young, himself at the forefront of the search to locate the lost coffin of King Edmund, tells the story of the historical search for the real man behind the legendary East Anglian king killed by the Vikings in 869. The book traces Edmund’s progress from martyred king to England’s national saint in medieval times; and describes current research into Edmund’s burial in the abbey at Bury St Edmunds and the present whereabouts of his mortal remains.
Eleanor of Aquitaine
Queen of the Troubadours
The wife of Louis VII of France, then of Henry II of England, and mother of Richard I and King John, Eleanor of Aquitaine (1122–1204) was a dominant figure in the twelfth century. For the French poet, philosopher and historian Jean Markale, she was pivotal: a paragon of beauty and virtue, the embodiment of sovereignty and 'heroine of a revolution that awakened the Middle Ages from its torpor'. First published in France in 1979; translated by Jon E Graham.
Magna Carta and All That
A Guide to the Magna Carta and Life in England in 1215
With its limits on royal authority, the ‘Great Charter’ granted by King John at Runnymede is considered one of the most important documents in English constitutional history. Green explains the political power struggles behind Magna Carta, introduces the people and places most associated with it and describes the organization of English society, from peasants to barons, in the 13th century. He also provides a full translation of the charter’s 63 clauses.
Edward the Confessor
King of England
Peter Rex presents ‘an alternative view’ of Edward the Confessor’s life, character and achievements, drawing on the wealth of research into his reign since Frank Barlow’s major biography of the king appeared in 1979. Discounting the traditional emphasis on the influence of Earl Godwine, Rex examines Edward’s achievements in foreign policy and statecraft, looking in particular at his contribution to advancing the administration of the Old English state; and in a final chapter, he discusses the cult of the Confessor’s sanctity.
John Capgrave's Fifteenth Century
East Anglia in the 15th century was a centre of English culture, and its ferment of political, religious and cultural debate is reflected in the works, written in Middle English for lay audiences, of the Augustinian friar and scholar John Capgrave. Exploring the innovation and themes of his writings – piety, the intellectual, the spiritual integrity of the English Church, holy women, sainthood and governance – Karen Winstead argues against the prevalent view of Capgrave as a religious and political reactionary.
The Romance of the Middle Ages
With tales ranging from King Arthur’s Round Table to Alexander the Great’s journeys in the Far East, romance was the most fertile narrative form of the Middle Ages. This book presents treasures from the Bodleian Library to introduce the literary genre of romance and the manuscripts that preserve its texts. The authors also discuss later responses to the tradition: Pre-Raphaelites’ aesthetic appreciation, the enthusiasm of Sir Walter Scott and CS Lewis and the affectionate mockery found in Cervantes and Monty Python.
The Consolation of Queen Elizabeth I
The Queen's Translation of Boethius's De Consolatione Philosophiae
In 1593, Elizabeth I became one of several leading figures who translated Boethius’ Consolation. Its themes, particularly predestination and free will, made it one of the most important and most popular philosophical works in the medieval and early modern periods. This diplomatic edition of the text is accompanied by Quan Manh Ha’s introduction discussing Elizabeth’s reading and translation of the Consolation, parallels between her life and that of the imprisoned Boethius, and the manuscript itself. No jacket.
The King's Grave
The Discovery of Richard III's Lost Burial Place and the Clues It Holds
In one of the most significant archaeological discoveries of recent times, the grave of King Richard III was located in a Leicester car park in 2012. This book contains a diary of the dig and its aftermath by the screenwriter Philippa Langley, whose intuition and perseverance brought the project to fruition despite numerous setbacks. Her account of that remarkable quest is interspersed with historical chapters on the life, reign, death and posthumous reputation of the last Plantagenet monarch.
A Lost Work by Amalarius of Metz
Interpolations in Salisbury, Cathedral Library, MS.154
Amalarius of Metz (c.775–c.850) has borne much of the credit – and the blame – for establishing the ‘allegorical’ interpretation of the liturgy as an exercise unto itself. This volume presents a full study of a long neglected manuscript: Salisbury, Cathedral Library MS.154 contains a version of Amalarius’ Liber officialis that differs significantly from the accepted Hanssens edition. The text of the MS is given in full in Latin and an English translation. No jacket.
Defending the City of God
A Medieval Queen, the First Crusades, and the Quest for Peace in Jerusalem
After the First Crusade, the conquering knights established states on the lands they had wrested from Islam, and the largest and most powerful was the Kingdom of Jerusalem. This book charts the life and times of Queen Melisende, who ruled it from 1131 until her death in 1161. Using every scrap of evidence, it portrays a strong-willed woman who brought peace to a volatile population of warring knights, Muslim peasants and Jewish traders.
The Battle for a Nation
The year of Scotland's referendum, 2014 was also the 700th anniversary of the battle of Bannockburn, when 'a very different sort of campaign on the issue of Scotland's independence came to its climax'. Alistair Moffat follows in detail the events of those two days in June 1314, and captures all the fear, heroism, confusion and desperation of medieval warfare as he describes the tactics and manoeuvres that led to a stunning victory for the heavily outnumbered Scots.
North-East England in the Later Middle Ages
Originating in a conference organized under the auspices of the AHRB Research Centre for North-East England History, these 14 essays all deal in some way with issues surrounding the quest for regional identity. The emphasis of the volume is on the county palatine of Durham in the later medieval period, and specific essay topics include St Cuthbert in the border region, local law courts in Durham, and the city's monastic community. No jacket.
Against All England
Regional Identity and Cheshire Writing, 1195-1656
Examining late medieval and early modern English identity from the vantage point of an explicitly regional literature, this study of pageants, poems and prose works created in Cheshire between 1195 and 1656 challenges the dominant view of the Renaissance as a break with England's medieval past. In discussing texts such as Lucian's De laude Cestrie, the Chester Whitsun plays and the Stanley family romances, Barrett demonstrates both regional continuity and the 'complex intertwining of regional and national identities'.
Medieval and Renaissance Stained Glass
in the Victoria and Albert Museum
The V&A's collection of medieval and Renaissance stained and painted glass is the largest and most comprehensive in the world. This selection of the Museum's panels spans the period 1140 to 1540 and shows the technical and artistic advances between the Romanesque and Renaissance eras, while also illuminating the beliefs and images, sacred and secular, of the medieval world. The collection is represented here by 110 plates, including full page details of important pieces, with following commentaries.
Magna Carta and the England of King John
What was the social, economic, legal and religious background to Magna Carta? How was King John perceived by those who knew him, and what was England like during his reign? The studies in this collection analyse such issues as the legacy of earlier Angevin rulers, the burgeoning economy of the early 13th century and Magna Carta's effects on widows and property. The volume ends with the first critical edition of an open letter of 1210 from the king himself.
A Sacred City
Consecrating Churches and Reforming Society in Eleventh-Century Italy
By analysing the ritual consecrations of churches and attempts to direct the large crowds that they attracted, Hamilton examines the conflict between secular and religious powers over the control of sacred space in Italian cities.