Medieval Warfare: A History

ISBN 13: 9780192801272

Medieval Warfare: A History

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9780192801272: Medieval Warfare: A History

This finely illustrated book explores over seven hundred years of European warfare, from the time of Charlemagne through to the end of the Crusades. The period covered has a distinctive character in military history, being an age when organization for war was integral to social structure, when the secular aristocrat was by necessity also a warrior, and whose culture was profoundly influenced by martial ideas. Twelve scholars, each expert in his own field, have contributed to this survey, which is is divided into two parts. Part I seeks to explore the experience of war viewed chronologically with separate chapters on, for instance, the Viking age, the wars and expansion of the eleventh and twelfth centuries, the Crusades, and the great Hundred Years War between England and France. The chapters in Part II trace thematically the principal developments in the art of warfare. In both parts of the book, the overall aim has been to offer the reader an impression, not just of the where and the when of great confrontations, but above all of the social experience of warfare in the middle ages, and of the impact of its demands on human resources.

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About the Author:


Maurice Keen is Tutorial Fellow in Medieval History at Balliol College, University of Oxford

From Kirkus Reviews:

A comprehensive anthology of essays by highly placed British academics (joined by one from West Point) that survey military development in the Middle Ages. Arguing in his introduction that war is central to the narrative political story of the middle ages, Keen (History/Oxford; Chivalry, 1984) has assembled a series of 12 crisply topical essays that consider how warfare became increasingly organized, mechanized, and militarized between 900 and 1500. Keen and his fellow authors make clear that this acceleration of war-making was primarily defensive, as the fledgling European societies were regularly besieged by invaders like the Magyars and Vikings. In an attention-getting early chapter, H.B. Clark observes that the Vikings derived much of their power from their simultaneously elusive and brutal nature (they combined sophisticated tactics of organized raiding with a knack of attracting poetic tributes to their violence). John Gillinghams An Age of Expansion shows how this defensive pattern underlies the warfare over Saxony and the later colonial wars in Spain, Scotland, and Ireland. And Peter Edburys Warfare in the Latin East examines the defensive motivations of the European campaigns against Muslims ranging from Eastern Europe to Jerusalem, campaigns we remember as the Crusades. Later chapters deal with more tactical matters, exploring how proprietary medieval notions, particularly chivalry, fared in the context of warfares increasing standardization, and covering the developing range of fortifications, siege tactics, and arms and armor. Following Christopher Allmands unusual survey of War and the Non-Combatant, Keen closes with his own review of the emergence of cannon, gunpowder, and permanent armies as the ultimate developments of medieval militarism. A scrupulously prepared survey that will be invaluable to students and accessible to committed lay readers. (100 b&w illus.) (History Book Club Split Main selection) -- Copyright ©2000, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Editore: Oxford University Press (2002)
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ISBN 10: 0192801279 ISBN 13: 9780192801272
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Descrizione libro Oxford University Press, USA, 2002. Paperback. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria DADAX0192801279

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