List books in category History / Medieval

  • Life in the Middle Ages

    Life in the Middle Ages
    Richard Winston

    Here, National Book Award winner Richard Winston explores life in the Middle Ages – from the fifth to the fifteenth centuries, beginning with the fall of the Roman Empire and ending with the dawn of the Renaissance. In both countryside and cities, from the peasants to the bourgeoisie to the nobility, no aspect of life in this era is left unexplored.

  • The Crusades

    The Crusades
    Abigail Archer

    Looking into the past, the Crusades seem incomprehensible. What combination of religious fervor, hatred of people of different faiths, and gall led Europeans of 1100 A.D. to make their way thousands of miles to conquer the Holy Land? Why did they continue for 200 years? How did the Crusades change the world?The intriguing story is peppered with colorful characters. Over the centuries, this well-researched and written book argues, crusaders saw – and participated in – the evolution of warfare and the transformation of society from feudal fiefdoms to nations and empires. The story of the Crusades is a reminder, too, of the horrors wrought in the name of religion. The Crusades are seen by many Christians today as an exercise in fanaticism, an episode in which the teachings of Christ were used to justify the horrors perpetrated on innocents. That judgment is accurate, but not the whole story. The whole story is in these pages.

  • The Story of Angkor

    The Story of Angkor
    Jame DiBiasio

    The lost civilization of Angkor left no written records, and only its ancient stones can tell the tale. The Story of Angkor exposes the history of this oncemighty Southeast Asian empire through the secrets hidden inside the temples and buildings located around the city of Siem Reap. It guides the reader into Angkor’s most spectacular monuments and the kings who commissioned them.The Classical Angkor period, from its founding in 802 AD by Jayavarman II, to its mysterious demise, produced hundreds of temples, reservoirs, and other monuments. But why were they built? What did they represent? The Story of Angkor answers these questions. Through an exploration of ancient culture, religion, trade, warfare, ecology, and politics, it gives meaning to the mysterious faces of the Bayon and decodes the beautiful but violent bas-reliefs of Angkor Wat. It also presents Cambodia’s early history and Angkor Wat’s “discovery” by nineteenth-century explorers.Written in a concise, accessible style, with photos and maps, The Story of Angkor presents an in-depth analysis of the ancient Angkor civilization that will appeal to both readers and travelers.HighlightsUses the temples and monuments themselves to tell the history of Angkor civilizationA concise guide that is ideal to take to the monumentsCovers a great breadth of history in an accessible, readable wayIncludes photos and maps

  • The Vikings: The Story of a People

    The Vikings: The Story of a People
    Njord Kane

    The story of the Norse is a Viking adventure in history. The Norse saga began with the first ancient tribes of Norsemen during the Early Nordic Stone Age. The beginning of the Nordic Ax Culture when primitive Norsemen created their first battle axes from stone. The evolution of an innovative and progressive culture that groomed legendary warriors whose voices still roar out today. Take a journey into the Age of Viking Expansion where Ragnar Lothbrok, Rollo, Erik the Red, and many other famous Vikings take you on a ride into the very Halls of Valhalla. Very interesting and worth the read to anyone interested in the Vikings or Norse history. Explore knowledge and technology specific to a culture that was shaped by a people able to reach great distances beyond their homelands and seas. A battle ferocious people with shields, armor, and weaponry that was unmatched by their opponents.A whole new world of understanding about the ancient vikings has been opened up by new archaeological discoveries and studies. New findings that lead to new questions.Could some of the mythological tales about giants in the Norse Sagas have had some truth behind them? Researchers have found proof of giants and humans interacting together in our own DNA!There are also many shared technologies between the Ancient Norse, Asians, the Inuit and other North American aborigines. Viking explorers have long interacted and traded with many people and cultures afar. Were ancient Norse already in contact with early Native Americans? Were these the people they referred to as "Skraelings?" Were they Proto-Inuits known by the ancients as Thule People? See for yourself with new information about the Norse that was once lost in time.

  • The Low Countries: A History

    The Low Countries: A History
    Anthony Bailey

    Here, from British historian and New Yorker senior writer Anthony Bailey is the dramatic story of the Low Countries – Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg – from the early days of nomads and barbarian invaders to the birth of towns and cities to the rise and decline of world prominence and finally to the dark and tragic days of World War II.

  • The Northern Conquest: Vikings in Britain and Ireland

    The Northern Conquest: Vikings in Britain and Ireland
    Katherine Holman

    Most historical accounts examine the Viking Age in one part rather than the whole region of the British Isles and Ireland. Very few pay attention to the continued contact between England and Scandinavia in the post-Norman Conquest period. This book aims to offer an alternative approach by presenting a history of the Viking Age which considers the whole area up to and beyond the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Vikings have been traditionally portrayed as brutal barbarians who sailed to Britain and Ireland to loot, rape and pillage. The evidence presented here suggests a considerably less dramatic but no less fascinating picture which reveals the Vikings' remarkable achievements and their influence in shaping the political history of these islands. Katherine Holman discusses their skills as farmers, their linguistic and artistic contribution, their rituals and customs and the conflict between paganism and Christianity, showing that the Viking cultural impact was complex and often rich. Based on extensive and original research, The Northern Conquest presents the available evidence and guides the reader through the process of interpreting it. This is not restricted to historical documents alone, but also includes archaeology, runes, inscriptions, artefacts and linguistic evidence to provide different and complementary types of information. In addition, the book considers the contemporary question of the Vikings' genetic legacy. Interest in the Viking Age is thriving and expanding, both in Britain and in North America. Highly readable and casting new light on the period, this book will appeal to a wide audience.

  • Master Builders of the Middle Ages

    Master Builders of the Middle Ages
    David Jacobs

    Today, the great cathedrals of Europe stand as beautiful, imposing monuments – the pride of parishioners and the wonder of tourists. It is difficult for us now, even with all our engineering and architectural skills, to imagine the extraordinary ways these medieval houses of worship were constructed.Midway through the twelfth century, the building of cathedrals became a crusade to erect awe-inspiring churches across Europe. In their zeal, bishops, monks, masons, and workmen created the architectural style known as Gothic, arguably Christianity’s greatest contribution to the world’s art and architecture. The style evolved slowly and almost accidentally as medieval artisans combined ingenuity, inspiration, and brute strength to create a fitting monument to their God.Here are the dramatic stories of the building of Saint-Denis, Notre Dame, Chartres, Reims, and other Gothic cathedrals.

  • The Combined Anglo-Saxon Chronicles

    The Combined Anglo-Saxon Chronicles
    Guy Points

    This book enables rapid access to the events recorded in any one year in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle which was created in the late ninth century. Multiple copies were made and sent to monasteries in England where they were then independently updated, amended and copied, at times resulting in considerable variation in content. Today some nine manuscripts survive in whole or in part to make up what is known as the “Anglo-Saxon Chronicle”. It covers the period BC 60 to AD 1154 recording events, people and places, the governance of England including taxation, foreign affairs, natural events relating to famines, farming, climate, eclipses of the sun and moon, and the arrival of comets. Some entries include commentaries by the scribe. The author provides a narrative in chronological order of the information provided by the extant manuscripts using as his principal source “The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle”, translated by G N Garmonsway. He further develops and abridges the Garmonsway version to produce one continuous text. Unique to Guy Points’ presentation is the device of using different print font types in the text to identify each of the source manuscripts. The font index is supplied at the foot of every single page of the narrative. Thus, the year, content and origin can be instantly correlated by eye. This eliminates time-consuming and potentially confusing cross-referencing by paragraph, page and year. Only new and additional information provided in the different manuscripts is added. Where manuscripts disagree over date attribution this is indicated. Some entries have additional information inserted by the author to help identify more precisely some of the individuals, events and geographical locations named. Overall, the condensed narrative and unique methodology of presentation make the wealth of material in the several manuscripts more easily accessible to everyone.

  • Europe in the Year 1000

    Europe in the Year 1000
    Morris Bishop

    A millennium ago, our forebears lived in a "Dark Age." They themselves did not think it was dark, and they were only half wrong. Here, in this essay from New York Times bestselling historian Morris Bishop is the story of Europe in the year 1000.

  • The Middle Ages

    The Middle Ages
    Morris Bishop

    In this indispensable volume, one of America's ranking scholars combines a life's work of research and teaching with the art of lively narration. Both authoritative and beautifully told, The Middle Ages is the full story of the thousand years between the fall of Rome and the Renaissance – a time that saw the rise of kings and emperors, the flowering of knighthood, the development of Europe, the increasing power of the Catholic Church, and the advent of the middle class. With exceptional grace and wit, Morris Bishop vividly reconstructs this distinctive era of European history in a work that will inform and delight scholars and general readers alike.

  • Fleas, Flies, and Friars: Children’s Poetry from the Middle Ages

    Fleas, Flies, and Friars: Children’s Poetry from the Middle Ages
    Nicholas Orme

    Medieval children lived in a world rich in poetry, from lullabies, nursery rhymes, and songs to riddles, tongue twisters, and nonsensical verses. They read or listened to stories in verse: ballads of Robin Hood, romances, and comic tales. Poems were composed to teach them how to behave, eat at meals, hunt game, and even learn Latin and French. In Fleas, Flies, and Friars, Nicholas Orme, an expert on childhood in the Middle Ages, has gathered a wide variety of children's verse that circulated in England beginning in the 1400s, providing a way for modern readers of all ages to experience the medieval world through the eyes of its children.In his delightful treasury of medieval children's verse, Orme does a masterful job of recovering a lively and largely unknown tradition, preserving the playfulness of the originals while clearly explaining their meaning, significance, or context. Poems written in Latin or French have been translated into English, and Middle English has been modernized. Fleas, Flies, and Friars has five parts. The first two contain short lyrical pieces and fragments, together with excerpts from essays in verse that address childhood or were written for children. The third part presents poems for young people about behavior. The fourth contains three long stories and the fifth brings together verse relating to education and school life.

  • Medieval Europe

    Medieval Europe
    Chris Wickham

    A spirited and thought-provoking history of the vast changes that transformed Europe during the 1,000-year span of the Middle Ages The millennium between the breakup of the western Roman Empire and the Reformation was a long and hugely transformative period—one not easily chronicled within the scope of a few hundred pages. Yet distinguished historian Chris Wickham has taken up the challenge in this landmark book, and he succeeds in producing the most riveting account of medieval Europe in a generation. Tracking the entire sweep of the Middle Ages across Europe, Wickham focuses on important changes century by century, including such pivotal crises and moments as the fall of the western Roman Empire, Charlemagne’s reforms, the feudal revolution, the challenge of heresy, the destruction of the Byzantine Empire, the rebuilding of late medieval states, and the appalling devastation of the Black Death. He provides illuminating vignettes that underscore how shifting social, economic, and political circumstances affected individual lives and international events. Wickham offers both a new conception of Europe’s medieval period and a provocative revision of exactly how and why the Middle Ages matter.

  • Muslim Spain Reconsidered

    Muslim Spain Reconsidered
    Richard Hitchcock

    Covers the period from 711 to1502, giving readers a substantial overview of what it was that made Muslim Spain a unique and successful society, and of its powerful legacy in the formation of modern Spain.

  • Characters of the Inquisition

    Characters of the Inquisition
    William Thomas Walsh

    Refutes the many lies about the Inquisition raised by the enemies of the Church. Shows why it was instituted, the purpose it served, its long-term effects, and why it preserved Catholic countries from the infamous witch-hunts besmirching Protestant history. All this is achieved by narrating the stories of six Grand Inquisitors. Exonerates the Church of all wrong-doing. Really dispels the lies about this institution.

  • Charlemagne

    Charlemagne
    Richard Winston

    From his father, Charlemagne inherited only a part of the Frankish kingdom – little more than half of modern France and the Low Countries. Before his astonishing career had ended, he had conquered half of Europe and his armies had marched through Italy, Germany, and Spain. In a glittering Christmas Day ceremony in Rome, in the year 800, he was crowned the new Holy Roman Emperor.More than the heroic conqueror of Western Europe, Charlemagne was an intense and thoughtful human being. His succession of five wives brought him a palace full of children. So warm was his love for his daughters that he could never bear to see them married away from the court, even though enticing alliances with other rulers were offered them.A deeply religious man, Charlemagne became the protector of orthodox Christianity against medieval heresies. A patron of learning, he established schools and brought artists and scholars to his court to work and study. As a result, most classical literature comes down to us in copies of books made in Charlemagne's time.Here, from National Book Award winner Richard Winston, is his remarkable story.

  • The Northern Conquest: Vikings in Britain and Ireland

    The Northern Conquest: Vikings in Britain and Ireland
    Katherine Holman

    Most historical accounts examine the Viking Age in one part rather than the whole region of the British Isles and Ireland. Very few pay attention to the continued contact between England and Scandinavia in the post-Norman Conquest period. This book aims to offer an alternative approach by presenting a history of the Viking Age which considers the whole area up to and beyond the Norman Conquest of 1066. The Vikings have been traditionally portrayed as brutal barbarians who sailed to Britain and Ireland to loot, rape and pillage. The evidence presented here suggests a considerably less dramatic but no less fascinating picture which reveals the Vikings' remarkable achievements and their influence in shaping the political history of these islands. Katherine Holman discusses their skills as farmers, their linguistic and artistic contribution, their rituals and customs and the conflict between paganism and Christianity, showing that the Viking cultural impact was complex and often rich. Based on extensive and original research, The Northern Conquest presents the available evidence and guides the reader through the process of interpreting it. This is not restricted to historical documents alone, but also includes archaeology, runes, inscriptions, artefacts and linguistic evidence to provide different and complementary types of information. In addition, the book considers the contemporary question of the Vikings' genetic legacy. Interest in the Viking Age is thriving and expanding, both in Britain and in North America. Highly readable and casting new light on the period, this book will appeal to a wide audience.

  • Viking Worlds: Things, Spaces and Movement

    Viking Worlds: Things, Spaces and Movement
    Marianne Hem Eriksen

    Fourteen papers explore a variety of inter-disciplinary approaches to understanding the Viking past, both in Scandinavia and in the Viking diaspora. Contributions employ both traditional inter- or multi-disciplinarian perspectives such as using historical sources, Icelandic sagas and Eddic poetry and also specialised methodologies and/or empirical studies, place-name research, the history of religion and technological advancements, such as isotope analysis. Together these generate new insights into the technology, social organisation and mentality of the worlds of the Vikings. Geographically, contributions range from Iceland through Scandinavia to the Continent. Scandinavian, British and Continental Viking scholars come together to challenge established truths, present new definitions and discuss old themes from new angles. Topics discussed include personal and communal identity; gender relations between people, artefacts, and places/spaces; rules and regulations within different social arenas; processes of production, trade and exchange, and transmission of knowledge within both past Viking-age societies and present-day research. Displaying thematic breadth as well as geographic and academic diversity, the articles may foreshadow up-and-coming themes for Viking Age research. Rooted in different traditions, using diverse methods and exploring eclectic material _ Viking Worlds will provide the reader with a sense of current and forthcoming issues, debates and topics in Viking studies, and give insight into a new generation of ideas and approaches which will mark the years to come.

  • The Black Death

    The Black Death
    Philip Ziegler

    It came out of Central Asia, killing one-third of the European population. And among the survivors, a new skepticism arose about life and God and human authority. Here, in this essay by British historian Philip Ziegler, is the story of the plague that ravaged Europe.

  • The Medieval Soldier

    The Medieval Soldier
    Vesey Norman

    The author outlines the development of the undisciplined barbarian war bands of the Dark Ages into the feudal armies of the early Middle Ages. It deals with the arms and equipments of the soldier, not only from surviving specimens but also from descriptions in contemporary medieval documents. Vesey Norman covers the slow development of tactics and the transition of the warrior from a personal follower of a war leader to the knight who served his feudal overlord as a heavily armored cavalryman in return for land. He details the attitude of the Church to warfare, the rise of chivalry and the development of the knights of the military orders, the Templars, the Hospitallers and the Teutonic Knights. He answers such questions as what classes of men made up the army, who commanded them, and how they were equipped, paid and organized. Since armies frequently has to be transported by water, a brief description of contemporary ships in included.

  • History s Great Showdowns

    History’s Great Showdowns
    Edwin S. Grosvenor

    Some of the world's foremost historians – from Morris Bishop and J. Christopher Herold to H. R. Trevor-Roper and Barbara Tuchman – tell the stories of the greatest showdowns of all time. Here, Richard the Lionheart faces off against the sultan Saladin, Pope Leo I against Attila the Hun, Spanish Explorer Hernán Cortés against Aztec King Moctezuma II, and Emperor Napoleon against Russia's Alexander I. The collection ends with the 1904 standoff between President Teddy Roosevelt and Moroccan desperado Mulay Ahmad al-Raysuni over the kidnapping of an American citizen.

  • Black Death

    Black Death
    Sean Martin

    The Black Death is the name most commonly given to the pandemic of bubonic plague that ravaged the medieval world in the late 1340s. From Central Asia, the plague swept through Europe, leaving millions of dead in its wake. Between a quarter and a third of Europe's population died, and in England the population fell from nearly six million to just over three million. Sean Martin looks at the origins of the disease and traces its terrible march through Europe from the Italian cities to the far-flung corners of Scandinavia. He describes contemporary responses to the plague and makes clear how helpless the medicine of the day was in the face of it. He examines the renewed persecution of the Jews, blamed by many Christians for the spread of the disease, and highlights the bizarre attempts by such groups as the Flagellants to ward off what they saw as the wrath of God.

  • William Wallace

    William Wallace
    Graeme Morton

    A deconstruction of the national biography and mythology of William Wallace. Freed from the historian's bedrock of empiricism by a lack of corroborative sources, the biography of this short-lived late-medieval patriot has long been incorporated into the i

  • The Middle Ages

    The Middle Ages
    Edwin S. Grosvenor

    Between the Fall of Rome and the Renaissance were the Middle Ages. Once seen as a thousand years of warfare, religious infighting, and cultural stagnation, they are now understood to be the vital connection between the past and the present. Along with the battles that helped shape the modern world are a rich heritage of architecture, arts, and literature, of empire and its dissolution. It was the era of the Crusades and the Norman Conquest, the Black Death and the fall of Constantinople. It is a landscape both familiar and foreign, dark and foreboding at times, but also filled with the promise and potential of the future.

  • A Medieval Woman s Companion: Women s Lives in the European Middle Ages

    A Medieval Woman’s Companion: Women’s Lives in the European Middle Ages
    Susan Signe-Morrison

    What have a deaf nun, the mother of the first baby born to Europeans in North America, and a condemned heretic to do with one another? They are among the virtuous virgins, marvelous maidens, and fierce feminists of the Middle Ages who trail-blazed paths for women today. Without those first courageous souls who worked in fields dominated by men, women might not have the presence they currently do in professions such as education, the law, and literature. Focusing on women from Western Europe between c. 300 and 1500 CE in the medieval period and richly carpeted with detail, A Medieval Woman’s Companion offers a wealth of information about real medieval women who are now considered vital for understanding the Middle Ages in a full and nuanced way. Short biographies of 20 medieval women illustrate how they have anticipated and shaped current concerns, including access to education; creative emotional outlets such as art, theater, romantic fiction, and music; marriage and marital rights; fertility, pregnancy, childbirth, contraception and gynecology; sex trafficking and sexual violence; the balance of work and family; faith; and disability. Their legacy abides until today in attitudes to contemporary women that have their roots in the medieval period. The final chapter suggests how 20th and 21st century feminist and gender theories can be applied to and complicated by medieval women's lives and writings. Doubly marginalized due to gender and the remoteness of the time period, medieval women’s accomplishments are acknowledged and presented in a way that readers can appreciate and find inspiring. Ideal for high school and college classroom use in courses ranging from history and literature to women's and gender studies, an accompanying website with educational links, images, downloadable curriculum guide, and interactive blog will be made available at the time of publication.

  • English Inland Trade

    English Inland Trade
    Michael Hicks

    The Southampton brokage books are the best source for English inland trade before modern times. Internal trade always matched overseas trade. Between 1430 and 1540 the brokage series records all departures through SouthamptonÕs Bargate, the owner, carter, commodity, quantity, destination and date, and many deliveries too. Twelve such years make up the database that illuminates SouthamptonÕs trade with its extensive region at the time when the city was at its most important as the principal point of access to England for the exotic spices and dyestuffs imported by the Genoese. If SouthamptonÕs international traffic was particularly important, the townÕs commerce was representative also of the commonplace trade that occurred throughout England. Seventeen papers investigate SouthamptonÕs interaction with Salisbury, London, Winchester, and many other places, long-term trends and short-term fluctuations. The rise and decline of the Italian trade, the dominance of Salisbury and emergence of Jack of Newbury, the recycling of wealth and metals from the dissolved monasteries all feature here. Underpinning the book are 32 computer-generated maps and numerous tables, charts, and graphs, with guidance provided as to how best to exploit and extend this remarkable resource. An accompanying web-mounted database (http://www.overlandtrade.org) enables the changing commerce to be mapped and visualised through maps and trade to be tracked week by week and over a century. Together the book and database provide a unique resource for Southampton, its trading partners, traders and carters, freight traffic and the genealogies of the middling sort.

  • The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle Illustrated and Annotated

    The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle Illustrated and Annotated
    Bob Carruthers

    The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle is one of the most important sets of historical documents concerning the history of the British Isles. Without these vital accounts we would have virtually no knowledge of some of the key events in the history of these islands during the dark ages and it would be impossible to write the history of the English from the Romans to the Norman Conquest. The history it tells is not only that witnessed by its compilers, but also that recorded by earlier annalists, whose work is in many cases preserved nowhere else. At present there are nine known versions or fragments of the original 'Anglo-Saxon Chronicle' in existence. All of the extant versions vary (sometimes greatly) in content and quality, and crucially all of the surviving manuscripts are copies, so it is not known for certain where or when the first version of the Chronicle was composed. The translation that has been used for this edition is not a translation of any one Chronicle; rather, it is a conflation of readings from many different versions containing primarily the translation of Rev. James Ingram from 1828. The footnotes are all those of Rev. Ingram and are supplied for the sake of completeness. This edition also includes the complete Parker Manuscript. The book is illustrated throughout with paintings and engravings.

  • Mercenaries and their Masters: Warfare in Renaissance Italy

    Mercenaries and their Masters: Warfare in Renaissance Italy
    Michael Mallett

    Michael MallettÕs classic study of Renaissance warfare in Italy is as relevant today as it was when it was first published a generation ago. His lucid account of the age of the condottieri – the mercenary captains of fortune – and of the soldiers who fought under them is set in the wider context of the Italian society of the time and of the warring city-states who employed them. A fascinating picture emerges of the mercenaries themselves, of their commanders and their campaigns, but also of the way in which war was organized and practiced in the Renaissance world. The book concentrates on the fifteenth century, a confused period of turbulence and transition when standing armies were formed in Italy and more modern types of military organization took hold across Europe. But it also looks back to the middle ages and the fourteenth century, and forward to the Italian wars of the sixteenth century when foreign armies disputed the European balance of power on Italian soil. Michael MallettÕs pioneering study, which embodies much scholarly research into this neglected, often misunderstood subject, is essential reading for any one who is keen to understand the history of warfare in the late medieval period and the Renaissance.

  • The Quest For Arthur s Britain

    The Quest For Arthur’s Britain
    Geoffrey Ashe

    The legend of Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table dominates the mythology of Britain, but could this story prove more fact than fiction? Recent archaeological findings have lead Geoffrey Ashe to believe there is more truth to Arthurian legend than previously accepted. The Quest for Arthur's Britain examines the historical foundation of the Arthurian tradition, and presents the remarkable results of excavations to date at Cadbury (reputed site of Camelot), Tintagel, Glastonbury and many places known almost exclusively to Arthurian scholars.

  • The Vikings

    The Vikings
    Frank R. Donovan

    At the height of their power in the ninth and tenth centuries, the Vikings seemed invincible – conquering, well-armed warriors whose ships were the ultimate in seafaring technology. From island bases near the deltas of major rivers, they used the waterways to scour the countryside, looting and burning towns, plundering merchant shipments, and stripping churches and monasteries of their gold, silver, and jeweled treasures. The Norsemen eventually penetrated all of England and Scotland, founded cities in Ireland, gained a powerful province in France, controlled Frisia and the modern Netherlands, and raided lands around Spain, passing into the Mediterranean to attack Italy and North Africa. They established the first Russian kingdom, challenged Constantinople, and provided a personal guard for the Byzantine emperor. They settled Iceland, where they developed Europe’s first republic, founded two colonies on Greenland, and explored parts of North America five centuries before Christopher Columbus landed in the Americas. Then, like the abrupt end of a summer thunderstorm, their adventures ceased. Here is their dramatic story.

  • Mary Queen of Scots in History

    Mary Queen of Scots in History
    C. A. Campbell

    Dozens, if not hundreds, of scholarly works, biographies, and even fictionalized novels have been based on the dramatic life of Mary Queen of Scots, who ruled over both her native Scotland and France before her execution at age 44. This volume sets itself apart from the pack in two important respects: it presents the by now well-known facts about Mary's life in a compact, capsule format and then focuses on more interesting questions about her impact and influence on other historical events, both during her lifetime and for centuries after her demise.

  • Robert Bruce and the Community of the Realm of Scotland

    Robert Bruce and the Community of the Realm of Scotland
    G W S Barrow

    An Edinburgh Classic edition to commemorate the 700th anniversary of the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314

  • A History of Witchcraft in England: From 1558 to 1718

    A History of Witchcraft in England: From 1558 to 1718
    Wallace Notestein

    Many historical treatments of witchcraft tend to be somewhat sensationalistic and cartoonish. Not so with Wallace Notestein's measured, intellectual take on the subject in A History of Witchcraft in England, which offers not only a thorough historical narrative, but also puts the practice into social and political context.

  • The Normans: From Raiders to Kings

    The Normans: From Raiders to Kings
    Lars Brownworth

    "Lars Brownworth’s The Normans is like a gallop through the Middle Ages on a fast warhorse. It is rare to find an author who takes on a subject so broad and so complex, while delivering a book that is both fast-paced and readable." Bill Yenne, author of Julius Caesar: Lessons in Leadership from the Great Conqueror"An evocative journey through the colourful and dangerous world of early medieval Europe" Jonathan Harris, author of Byzantium and the Crusades There is much more to the Norman story than the Battle of Hastings. These descendants of the Vikings who settled in France, England, and Italy – but were not strictly French, English, or Italian – played a large role in creating the modern world. They were the success story of the Middle Ages; a footloose band of individual adventurers who transformed the face of medieval Europe. During the course of two centuries they launched a series of extraordinary conquests, carving out kingdoms from the North Sea to the North African coast. In The Normans, author Lars Brownworth follows their story, from the first shock of a Viking raid on an Irish monastery to the exile of the last Norman Prince of Antioch. In the process he brings to vivid life the Norman tapestry’s rich cast of characters: figures like Rollo the Walker, William Iron-Arm, Tancred the Monkey King, and Robert Guiscard. It presents a fascinating glimpse of a time when a group of restless adventurers had the world at their fingertips.

  • William the Conqueror

    William the Conqueror
    David Bates

    Fifteen years in the making, a landmark reinterpretation of the life of a pivotal figure in British and European history In this magisterial addition to the Yale English Monarchs series, David Bates combines biography and a multidisciplinary approach to examine the life of a major figure in British and European history. Using a framework derived from studies of early medieval kingship, he assesses each phase of William’s life to establish why so many trusted William to invade England in 1066 and the consequences of this on the history of the so-called Norman Conquest after the Battle of Hastings and for generations to come. A leading historian of the period, Bates is notable for having worked extensively in the archives of northern France and discovered many eleventh- and twelfth-century charters largely unnoticed by English-language scholars. Taking an innovative approach, he argues for a move away from old perceptions and controversies associated with William’s life and the Norman Conquest. This deeply researched volume is the scholarly biography for our generation.

  • The Viking Warrior: The Norse Raiders who Terrorized Medieval Europe

    The Viking Warrior: The Norse Raiders who Terrorized Medieval Europe
    Ben Hubbard

    “It is better to stand and fight. If you run, you’ll only die tired.” – Viking saying Beginning in 789 CE, the Vikings raided monasteries, sacked settlements and invaded the Atlantic coast of Europe and the British Isles. They looted and enslaved their enemies, terrorizing all whom they encountered. But that is only part of their story. Sailing their famous longboats, they discovered Iceland and America (both by accident) and also sailed up the Seine to Paris (which they sacked). They settled from Newfoundland to Russia, founded Dublin and fought battles as far afield as the Caspian Sea. A thousand years after their demise, traces of the Vikings can be found as far apart as Canada and Turkey. They traded walruses with Inuits, brought Russian furs to Western Europe and took European slaves to Constantinople. Their graves contain Arab silver, Byzantine silks and Frankish weapons and artifacts. Arranged thematically, The Viking Warrior examines the Norsemen through their origins, society, raiding culture, weapons and war tactics, exploration, trade, settlements and kingdoms. Illustrated with more than 200 colour and black-and-white photographs, maps and artworks, The Viking Warrior is an expertly written account of a people who have long captured the popular imagination.

  • Everyday Life in Viking-Age Towns: Social Approaches to Towns in England and Ireland, c. 800-1100

    Everyday Life in Viking-Age Towns: Social Approaches to Towns in England and Ireland, c. 800-1100
    Letty ten Harkel

    The study of early medieval towns has frequently concentrated on urban beginnings, the search for broadly applicable definitions of urban characteristics and the chronological development of towns. Far less attention has been paid to the experience of living in towns.The thirteen chapters in this book bring together the current state of knowledge about Viking-Age towns (c. 800–1100) from both sides of the Irish Sea, focusing on everyday life in and around these emerging settlements. What was it really like to grow up, live, and die in these towns? What did people eat, what did they wear, and how did they make a living for themselves? Although historical sources are addressed, the emphasis of the volume is overwhelmingly archaeological, paying homage to the wealth of new material that has become available since the advent of urban archaeology in the 1960s.

  • The Mediterranean World: From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of Napoleon

    The Mediterranean World: From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of Napoleon
    Monique O’Connell

    Located at the intersection of Asia, Africa, and Europe, the Mediterranean has connected societies for millennia, creating a shared space of intense economic, cultural, and political interaction. Greek temples in Sicily, Roman ruins in North Africa, and Ottoman fortifications in Greece serve as reminders that the Mediterranean has no fixed national boundaries or stable ethnic and religious identities. In The Mediterranean World, Monique O’Connell and Eric R Dursteler examine the history of this contested region from the medieval to the early modern era, beginning with the fall of Rome around 500 CE and closing with Napoleon’s attempted conquest of Egypt in 1798. Arguing convincingly that the Mediterranean should be studied as a singular unit, the authors explore the centuries when no lone power dominated the Mediterranean Sea and invaders brought their own unique languages and cultures to the region. Structured around four interlocking themes—mobility, state development, commerce, and frontiers—this beautifully illustrated book brings new dimensions to the concepts of Mediterranean nationality and identity.

  • Jewish Life in the Middle Ages

    Jewish Life in the Middle Ages
    Israel Abrahams

    Illustrates the richness, complexity, and fullness of medieval Jewish life. This title helps readers discover how much was hidden from the inquisitive and often hostile gaze of Christian Europe. It also details the customs, manners, and mores, and delves into the social culture of Jewish life at this time.

  • Vikings: A History of the Norse People

    Vikings: A History of the Norse People
    Martin J Dougherty

    “From the fury of the Northmen, good Lord deliver us.” – Anonymous monk,Noirmoutier, France, 9th century ADBeginning in 789AD, the Vikings raided monasteries, sacked cities and invadedwestern Europe. They looted and enslaved their enemies. But that is only partof their story. In long boats they discovered Iceland and America (both byaccident) and also sailed up the Seine to Paris (which they sacked). Theysettled from Newfoundland to Russia, founded Dublin and fought battles as farafield as the Caspian Sea.A thousand years after their demise, traces of the Vikings remain all the wayfrom North America to Istanbul. They traded walruses with Inuits, broughtRussian furs to Western Europe and took European slaves to Constantinople.Their graves contain Arab silver, Byzantine silks and Frankish weapons.In this accessible book, the whole narrative of the Viking story is examinedfrom the eighth to the eleventh centuries. Arranged thematically, Vikings: AHistory of the Norse People examines the Norsemen from exploration to religionto trade to settlement to weaponry to kingdoms to their demise and legacy. Buttoday questions remain: what prompted the first Viking raids? What stoppedtheir expansion? And how much of the tales of murder, rape and pillage is myth?Illustrated with more than 200 photographs, maps and artworks, Vikings: AHistory of the Norse People is an expertly written account of a people who havelong captured the popular imagination.

  • Relations between East and West in the Middle ages: papers

    Relations between East and West in the Middle ages: papers
    Derek Baker

    In the Roman Empire, relations between East and West meant connections between the eastern and western parts of a unified structure of empire. Romans sometimes complained about the corrupting influence on their city of Greeks and Orientals, but they employed Greek tutors to educate their sons. People did not think of the eastern and western parts of the empire as being separate entities whose relations with each other must be the object of careful study. Even at the moment of the empire's birth, there was a clear idea of where the Latin West ended and the Greek East began. This began to change with Constantine, when the Roman Empire was split in two, with Rome itself in decay. This volume, first published in 1973, derives from a colloquium on medieval history held at Edinburgh University. Its theme was the fl uctuating balance-of-power of Latin West and Greek East, Rome and Constantinople. The book starts with Justinian's attempt to reunite the two halves of the old Roman Empire and then goes on to consider the polarization of Christianity into its Catholic and Orthodox sectors, and the misunderstandings fostered by the Crusades; and ends with the growing power and conquests of Islam in the fourteenth century. The contributions included in Relations between East and West in the Middle Ages are: Old and New Rome in the Age of Justinian, by W. H. C. Frend; The Tenth Century in Byzantine-Western Relationships, by Karl Leyser; William of Tyre, by R. H. C. Davis; Cultural Relations between East and West in the Twelfth Century, by Anthony Bryer; Innocent III and the Greeks, Aggressor or Apostle? by Joseph Gill; Government in Latin Syria and the Commercial Privileges of Foreign Merchants, by Jonathan Riley-Smith; and Dante and Islam, by R. W. Southern.

  • The Sea Wolves: A History of the Vikings

    The Sea Wolves: A History of the Vikings
    Lars Brownworth

    In AD 793 Norse warriors struck the English isle of Lindisfarne and laid waste to it. Wave after wave of Norse ‘sea-wolves’ followed in search of plunder, land, or a glorious death in battle. Much of the British Isles fell before their swords, and the continental capitals of Paris and Aachen were sacked in turn. Turning east, they swept down the uncharted rivers of central Europe, captured Kiev and clashed with mighty Constantinople, the capital of the Byzantine Empire. But there is more to the Viking story than brute force. They were makers of law – the term itself comes from an Old Norse word – and they introduced a novel form of trial by jury to England. They were also sophisticated merchants and explorers who settled Iceland, founded Dublin, and established a trading network that stretched from Baghdad to the coast of North America. In The Sea Wolves, Lars Brownworth brings to life this extraordinary Norse world of epic poets, heroes, and travellers through the stories of the great Viking figures. Among others, Leif the Lucky who discovered a new world, Ragnar Lodbrok the scourge of France, Eric Bloodaxe who ruled in York, and the crafty Harald Hardrada illuminate the saga of the Viking age – a time which “has passed away, and grown dark under the cover of night”.

  • Constantius II: Usurpers, Eunuchs and the Antichrist

    Constantius II: Usurpers, Eunuchs and the Antichrist
    Peter Crawford

    The reign of Constantius II has been overshadowed by that of his titanic father, Constantine the Great, and his cousin and successor, the pagan Julian. However, as Peter Crawford shows, Constantius deserves to be remembered as a very capable ruler in dangerous, tumultuous times. When Constantine I died in in 337, the twenty-year-old Constantius and his two brothers, Constans and Constantine II, all recieved the title of Augustus to reign as equal co-emperors. In 340, however, Constantine II was killed in a fraternal civil war with Constans. The two remaining brothers shared the Empire for the next ten years, with Constantius ruling Egypt and the Asian provinces, constantly threatened by the Sassanid Persian Empire. However, Constans in turn was killed by the usurper Magentius in 350. Constantius refused to accept this fait accompli, made war on Magentius and defeated him at the battles of Mursa Major and Mons Seleucus, leading him to commit suicide. Constantius, was now sole ruler of the Empire but it was an empire beset by external enemies. Constantius campaigned successfully against the Germanic Alamanni along the Rhine and the Quadi and Sarmatians across the Danube, as well as against the Persians in the East, though with more mixed results. In 360 he elevated his cousin Julian to the rank of Caesar (effectively deputy emperor) and left him to govern the West, while he concentrated on the Persian threat. Julian defeated the Alamanni in battle but was then proclaimed Augustus by his troops. Constantius was marching back to meet this threat to his rear when he fell ill and died. Having done so much to defend and preserve the empire, his dying act was to attempt to avert further civil war by declaring Julian his rightful heir.

  • The Crusades

    The Crusades
    Hilaire Belloc

    Belloc shows that the Crusades were a titanic struggle between Christian civilization and "the Turk," savage Mongols who had embraced Islam. He explains the practical reasons why the Crusaders initially succeeded and why they ultimately failed then he predicts the re-emergence of Islam, since Christendom failed to destroy it in the 12th century. Makes history come alive and gives a rare, true appreciation of Christendom and of our Catholic forefathers!

  • The Crecy War: A Military History of the Hundred Years War from 1337 to the Peace of Bretigny in 1360

    The Crecy War: A Military History of the Hundred Years War from 1337 to the Peace of Bretigny in 1360
    Alfred H Burne

    Crecy, the Black Prince’s most famous victory, was the first of two major victories during the first part of the Hundred Years War. This was followed ten years later by his second great success at the Battle of Poitiers. The subsequent Treaty of Bretigny established the rights of the King of England to hold his domains in France without paying homage to the King of France.In this hugely-acclaimed military history Colonel Burne re-establishes the reputation of Edward III as a grand master of strategy, whose personal hand lay behind the success of Crecy. He convincingly demonstrates that much of the credit for Crecy and Poitiers should be given to Edward and less to his son, the Black Prince, than is traditionally the case.With his vigorous and exciting style, Colonel Burne has chronicled for the general reader as well as for the military enthusiast, one of the most exceptional wars in which England has ever been engaged. This book firmly restores the Crecy campaign to its rightful place near the pinnacle of British military history.‘A most important book – a work of original research, written by a master of his subject … A model of how history should be written, packed with accurate information and common sense.’Sir Arthur Bryant in The Sunday Times

  • Germany: A History

    Germany: A History
    Francis Russell

    Here, from New York Times bestselling historian Richard Russell, is the dramatic story of Germany – from the rise of Charlemagne to the age of Martin Luther, from the Thirty Years' War to the iron rule of Otto von Bismarck, and from the formation of the Weimar Republic to the fighting of two world wars.

  • A History of Islamic Spain

    A History of Islamic Spain
    Professor W Montgomery Watt

    The period of Muslim occupation in Spain represents the only significant contact Islam and Europe was ever to have on European soil. In this important as well as fascinating study, Watt traces Islam's influence upon Spain and European civilization–from the collapse of the Visigoths in the eighth century to the fall of Granada in the fifteenth, and considers Spain's importance as a part of the Islamic empire. Particular attention is given to the golden period of economic and political stability achieved under the Umayyads. Without losing themselves in detail and without sacrificing complexity, the authors discuss the political, social, and economic continuity in Islamic Spain, or al-Andalus, in light of its cultural and intellectual effects upon the rest of Europe. Medieval Christianity, Watt points out, found models of scholarship in the Islamic philosophers and adapted the idea of holy war to its own purposes while the final reunification of Spain under the aegis of the Reconquista played a significant role in bringing Europe out of the Middle Ages. A survey essential to anyone seeking a more complete knowledge of European or Islamic history, the volume also includes sections on literature and philology by Pierre Cachia. This series of "Islamic surveys" is designed to give the educated reader something more than can be found in the usual popular books. Each work undertakes to survey a special part of the field, and to show the present stage of scholarship here. Where there is a clear picture this will be given; but where there are gaps, obscurities and differences of opinion, these will also be indicated. Full and annotated bibliographies will afford guidance to those who want to pursue their studies further. There will also be some account of the nature and extent of the source material. The series is addressed in the first place to the educated reader, with little or no previous knowledge of the subject; its character is such that it should be of value also to university students and others whose interest is of a more professional kind.

  • Cathars: The Most Successful Heresy of the Middle Ages

    Cathars: The Most Successful Heresy of the Middle Ages
    Sean Martin

    Catharism was the most successful heresy of the Middle Ages. Flourishing principally in the Languedoc and Italy, the Cathars taught that the world is evil and must be transcended through a simple life of prayer, work, fasting, and non-violence. They believed themselves to be the heirs of the true heritage of Christianity going back to apostolic times, and completely rejected the Catholic Church and all its trappings, regarding it as the Church of Satan. Cathar services and ceremonies, by contrast, were held in fields, barns, and in people's homes. Finding support from the nobility in the fractious political situation in southern France, the Cathars also found widespread popularity among peasants and artisans. And, unlike the Church, the Cathars respected women; they played a major role in the movement. Alarmed at the success of Catharism, the Church founded the Inquisition and launched the Albigensian Crusade to exterminate the heresy. While previous Crusades had been directed against Muslims in the Middle East, the Albigensian Crusade was the first Crusade to be directed against fellow Christians, and was also the first European genocide. With the fall of the Cathar fortress of Montségur in 1244, Catharism was largely obliterated, although the faith survived into the early fourteenth century. Today, the mystique surrounding the Cathars is as strong as ever, and Sean Martin recounts their story and the myths associated with them in this lively and gripping book.

  • The Secret History

    The Secret History
    Procopius

  • Alcuin: Theology and Thought

    Alcuin: Theology and Thought
    Douglas Dales

    Scholar, ecclesiastic, teacher and poet of the eighth century, Alcuin can be seen as a true hidden saint of the Church, of the same stature and significance as his predecessor Bede. His love of God and his grasp of Christian theology were rendered original in their creative impact by his gifts as a teacher and poet. In his hands, the very traditional theology that he inherited, and to which he felt bound, took new wings. In that respect, he must rank as one of the most notable and influential of Anglo-Saxon Christians, uniting English and continental Christianity in a unique manner, which left a lasting legacy within the Catholic Church of Western Europe. This book is intended for the general reader as well as for those studying, teaching or researching this period of early medieval history and theology in schools and universities.

  • France: A History

    France: A History
    Marshall B. Davidson

    "Every man has two countries," Henri de Bornier once said, "his own and France." Indeed, France has captivated us for centuries. Here, in this compelling history from acclaimed historian Marshall B. Davison, is its story: from prehistory to its conquest by Julius Caesar; from its invasion by the Franks, who gave us the name we use today, to the reign of Charlemagne; from the rule of the Bourbon monarchs, who reached their apex under the Sun King, Louis XIV, to the bloody days of the French Revolution; from the ruthless rise and reign of Napoleon Bonaparte to the brutal Nazi occupation during World War II.

  • The Wars of the Roses: The conflict that inspired Game of Thrones

    The Wars of the Roses: The conflict that inspired Game of Thrones
    Martin J. Dougherty

    “Westeros is probably closer to medieval Britain than anything else.” George R.R. Martin, creator of Game of Thrones Kings who were insane, infant or imprisoned; feuding families, disputed successions and monarchs executing their brothers; exiled nobles, war with France and enemies forced to unite against a common foe – the history of the Wars of the Roses is so filled with drama that it feels like fiction. In fact, it has inspired fiction. As Game of Thrones author George R.R. Martin said: “I’ve drawn on many parts of history, but the Wars of the Roses is probably the one A Song Of Ice and Fire is closest to.” Telling the story of the fifteenth century wars between Lancastrians and Yorkists, The Wars of the Roses follows the course of the conflict from the succession of infant King Henry VI right through to the defeat of rebellions under Henry VII. Its protagonists were twisted by their conflicting loyalties of blood, marriage and, above all, ambition. From mad Henry VI captured in battle to the mystery of the ‘Princes in the Tower’ and the truth behind Richard III’s deformity, the book is a lively account of more than 30 tumultuous years. Illustrated with more than 200 colour and black-and-white photographs, artworks and maps, The Wars of the Roses reveals the scheming and betrayal, the skullduggery and murder behind the struggle to gain power – and then hold on to it.