However, harold godwinson, the richest earl in the land and the son of a pirate, when Edward died in January 1066, took the throne. The french-speaking normans were the preeminent warriors of the eleventh century, and based their entire society around conflict. They were led by the formidable and ruthless William ‘the Bastard’—who was convinced that his half-Norman cousin, Edward the Confessor, had promised him the throne of England.
What ensued was one of the bloodiest periods of English history, with a body count that might make even George RR Martin balk. With a lively, this book explains how the disastrous battle changed England—and the English—forever, witty style and a chapter entitled “William’s Children All Kill Each Other”, introducing the medieval world of chivalry, castles and horse-bound knights.
1066 is the most famous date in history, and with good reason, since no battle in medieval history had such a devastating effect on its losers as the Battle of Hastings—which altered the entire course of English history. A riveting account of the most consequential year in English history—with a touch of classic British humor.
1215 and All That: Magna Carta and King John A Very, Very Short History of England
It is the third book in the acclaimed A Very, Very Short History of England series, which captures the major moments of English history with humor and bite. He became king in 1199, though his reign was tumultuous and short. After a brief peace with phillip ii of France, war broke out again in 1202 and King John lost most of his holdings on the continent.
. But both sides failed to uphold the agreements terms and conflict quickly resumed, leading to John’s untimely death a year later to dysentery. Pitched at newcomers to the subject, in particular, his signing of the Magna Carta changed England—and the English—forever, 1215 and All That will explain how King John’s rule and, introducing readers to the early days of medieval England.
Buffeted from all sides, king john was pushed in 1215 to sign along with his barons the Magna Carta, a precursor to constitutional governance. 1215 is one of the most famous dates in english history, and with good reason, since it marks the signing of the Magna Carta by King John and the English barons, which altered the entire course of English and world history.
John lackland was born to king henry ii and Eleanor, Duchess of Aquitane in December, 1166; he was the youngest of five sons. This, coupled with unpopular fiscal policies and treatment of nobles back home, led to conflict upon his return from battle. However, he unexpectedly became the favored heir to his father after a failed rebellion by his older brothers in 1173.
Saxons vs. Vikings: Alfred the Great and England in the Dark Ages A Very, Very Short History of England
A witty and concise look at the beginnings of English history, when the nation consolidated after clashes between the Saxons and invading Vikings. In 871, three of england's four kingdoms were overrun by Vikings, the ruthless, all-conquering Scandinavian raiders who terrorized early medieval Europe. If you’re trying to understand England and its history in the most informative and entertaining way possible, this is the place to start.
Vikings also covers the period before alfred, including ancient Britain, King Arthur, the Roman occupation, explaining important historical episodes such as Boudicca, and the Dark Ages, and Beowulf. Perfect for newcomers to the subject, this is the second title in the new A Very, Very Short History of England series.
Yet within a decade alfred—the only english king known as the Great—had driven the Vikings out of half of England, and his children and grandchildren would unite the country a few years later. With the norsemen murdering one king with arrows and torturing another to death by ripping out his lungs, the prospects that faced the kingdom of Wessex were bleak.
. Worse still, the saxons were now led by a young man barely out of his teens who was more interested in God than fighting. This period, with alfred laying down the first national law code, popular with fans of television shows such as Vikings and The Last Kingdom, saw the creation of England as a nation-state, establishing an education system and building cities.
My Kingdom for a Horse: The War of the Roses Very, Very Short History of England
In 1460-61 alone, twelve noblemen were killed in the field and six were beheaded off it, removing a third of the English peerage. Written in the spirit of a black comedy, My Kingdom for a Horse is an ideal introduction for anyone interested in one of history's most insane wars. Ed west's my kingdom for a horse illuminates the bloody war fought for thirty long years between the descendants of King Edward III in a battle for the throne.
Martin's a song of ice and fire, not to mention the smash-hit TV show Game of Thrones, the British civil war of 1455 to 1485 has inspired writers more than any other. Featuring some of history's most infamous figures, this fifth entry in west's A Very, and the wicked Richard III, who murdered his young nephews to take the throne, including the insane King Henry VI, whose madness triggered the breakdown, Very Short History of England series is a must for fans of British history.
From william shakespeare's series of history dramas to Sir Walter Scott and George R. R. Named after the emblems used by the two leading families, the Houses of York and Lancaster, the title of the conflict gives it a romantic feel that probably wasn't as apparent to those on the battlefield having swords shoved into their eyes.
. And, for all the lovely heraldry and glamorous costumes of the era, the war saw the complete breakdown of the medieval code of chivalry in which prisoners were spared, which makes it even better drama.
England in the Age of Chivalry . . . And Awful Diseases: The Hundred Years' War and Black Death A Very, Very Short History of England
And awful diseases covers the events, personages and ideas most commonly known as "medieval". This includes geoffrey chaucer, the great famine of 1315, the Peasants revolt, the Scottish wars of independence, the Black Death and the 100 Years War. A revealing glimpse into the tumultuous history of England’s medieval period, full of knights in shining armor and terrible peasant suffering.
Covering the violent and disease-ridden period between 1272 to 1399, England in the Age of Chivalry. His legacy continues to shape our view of England’s history and is crucial in understanding the development of Europe. Central to this time is king edward iii, who started the 100 Years War and defined the concept of chivalry, including England's order of the garter.
King Arthur's Wars: The Anglo-Saxon Conquest of England
The story of an era shrouded in mystery, and the gradual changing of a nation’s cultural identity. There is, however, a huge amount of speculation. As a result, we can now know far more about this “Dark Age. What is so special about essex? why is buckinghamshire an odd shape? why is the legend of king Arthur so special to us? Why don’t Cumbrian farmers use English numbers when they count sheep? Why don’t we know where Camelot was? Why did the Romano-British stop eating oysters? This book provides a new level of understanding of the centuries preceding the Norman Conquest.
King arthur’s wars brings an entirely new approach to the subject—the answers are out there, in the British countryside, waiting to be found. King arthur’s wars exposes what the landscape and the place names tell us. How did that happen? There is little evidence: not much archaeology, and even less written history.
. Months of field work and map study allow us to understand, for the first time, how the Anglo-Saxons conquered England, county by county and decade by decade. We speak english today, because the Anglo-Saxons took over most of post-Roman Britain.
The Path of the Martyrs: Charles Martel, The Battle of Tours and the Birth of Europe
Buy it. If there are cathedrals rather than mosques in the great cities of western Europe, it is thanks to the defeat of a Muslim army by Charles Martel in 732. He wrote a regular blog first for the daily Telegraph and later for the Spectator, described by Peter Oborne as 'one of the most interesting of the rising generation of political writers'.
He is also the author of a number of history books, the latest of which, Fire and Ice, Iron, looks at the historical inspiration for Game of Thrones. Praise for the path of the martyrs:'Exciting' Al Murray 'Ed West makes the past come alive. After reading west, you'll never get your Ostrogoths mixed up with your Visigoths again.
Henry jeffreys, author of Empire of Booze'Ace. With considerable scholarship spiced with wit, Ed. If you haven't bought & read it yet, what are you waiting for? Do it. Buy it now. Andrew Lilico. He writes clearly, authoritatively and amusingly about the kind of history you feel you should know about but have always found a bit complicated.
West puts the battle in its historical context, and shows how it set the course of history for more than a thousand years.
The Great Betrayal: The Great Siege of Constantinople
An engrossing chronicle of the Fourth Crusade and the fall of the Holy Roman Empire, from the bestselling author of Thermopylae. The army of the fourth crusade had set out to reclaim Jerusalem, but under the sway of their Venetian patrons, the crusaders diverted from their path in order to lay siege to Constantinople.
. In the great betrayal, historian ernle bradford brings to life this powerful tale of envy and greed, demonstrating the far-reaching consequences this siege would have across Europe for centuries to come. The capital city of the byzantine empire, it was a center of art, Russia, and commerce that had commanded trading routes between Asia, culture, and Europe for hundreds of years.
At the dawn of the thirteenth century, Constantinople stood as the bastion of Christianity in Eastern Europe. But in 1204, the city suffered a devastating attack that would spell the end of the Holy Roman Empire. With longstanding tensions between the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches, the crusaders set arms against their Christian neighbors, destroying a vital alliance between Eastern and Western Rome.
The Norman Conquest: The Battle of Hastings and the Fall of Anglo-Saxon England
The norman conquest was the most significant military—and cultural—episode in English history. Morris explains why england was so vulnerable to attack; why the normans possessed the military cutting edge though they were perceived as less sophisticated in some respects; and why William’s hopes of a united Anglo-Norman realm unraveled, dashed by English rebellions, Viking invasions, and the insatiable demands of his fellow conquerors.
. Named one of the best books of the year by the kansas city star, who hailed it “meticulous and absorbing, epic clashes, ” and the Providence Journal, ” this USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestseller is a tale of gripping drama, who called the work “stunning in its action and drama, and seismic social change.
But why was this revolution so total? reassessing original evidence, acclaimed historian and broadcaster Marc Morris goes beyond the familiar story of William the Conqueror, an upstart French duke who defeated the most powerful kingdom in Christendom. This riveting and authoritative usa today and Wall Street Journal bestseller is “a much-needed, modern account of the Normans in England” The Times, London.
An invasion on a scale not seen since the days of the Romans, it was capped by one of the bloodiest and most decisive battles ever fought. Language, law, architecture, and even attitudes toward life itself —from the destruction of the ancient ruling class to the sudden introduction of castles and the massive rebuilding of every major church—were altered forever by the coming of the Normans.
The Tudor Tutor: Your Cheeky Guide to the Dynasty
From the bloody wars of the roses to queen elizabeth i’s iconic rule, and movies, appearing in endless TV shows, the Tudor Dynasty was a fascinating period of English history—and monarchs such as Henry VIII have become a part of modern pop culture, novels, as well as parodies and satires. After all these centuries, how do you separate the truth from the legends? This guide—with beautiful color illustrations—debunks the myths, and offers a journey through the Tudor era that’s not only informative, provides lots of fun facts, but humorous and entertaining.
A wonderfully irreverent and engaging introduction to the Tudors. Suzannah lipscomb, author of 1536: the year that changed henry viii “Putting the events and people of 500 years ago into a clear, modern context, this is as witty and punchy an introduction to the period as you could hope for. Justin pollard, historical consultant for Showtime’s The Tudors.
An entertaining yet highly accurate guide to this larger-than-life royal dynasty” Claire Ridgway, author of The Fall of Anne Boleyn.
Four Princes: Henry VIII, Francis I, Charles V, Suleiman the Magnificent and the Obsessions that Forged Modern Europe
And suleiman the magnificent—who stood apart as a Muslim—brought the Ottoman Empire to its apogee of political, military, and economic power. These men collectively shaped the culture, religion, and politics of their respective domains. Charles v was the most powerful man of the time, and unanimously elected Holy Roman Emperor.
Francis i of france was the personification of the Renaissance, and a highly influential patron of the arts and education. John julius norwich—“the very model of a popular historian”—is acclaimed for his distinctive ability to weave together a fascinating narrative through vivid detail, colorful anecdotes, and captivating characters.
Here, charles v, francis i, he explores four leaders—Henry VIII, and Suleiman—who led their countries during the Renaissance The Wall Street Journal. With remarkable erudition, john julius norwich offers “an important history, masterfully written, ” indelibly depicting four dynamic characters and how their incredible achievements—and obsessions with one another—changed Europe forever The Washington Times.
Bad behavior makes for entertaining history” in this bold history of Europe, the Middle East, and the men who ruled them in the early sixteenth century Kirkus Reviews. Henry viii, who was not expected to inherit the throne but embraced the role with gusto, broke with the Roman Catholic Church and appointed himself head of the Church of England.