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A Brief History of Britain 1066-1485 (Brief Histories)
 
 

A Brief History of Britain 1066-1485 (Brief Histories) [Kindle Edition]

Nicholas Vincent
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £8.99
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Product Description

Book Description

From the Norman Conquest to the Battle of Bosworth Field - how Britain was invaded and become a nation. The first volume in the stunning four volume Brief History of Britain series.

Product Description

From the Battle of Hastings to the Battle of Bosworth Field, Nicholas Vincent tells the story of how Britain was born.

When William, Duke of Normandy, killed King Harold and seized the throne of England, England’s language, culture, politics and law were transformed. Over the next four hundred years, under royal dynasties that looked principally to France for inspiration and ideas, an English identity was born, based in part upon struggle for control over the other parts of the British Isles (Scotland, Wales and Ireland), in part upon rivalry with the kings of France. From these struggles emerged English law and an English Parliament, the English language, English humour and England’s first overseas empires.

In this thrilling and accessible account, Nicholas Vincent not only tells the story of the rise and fall of dynasties, but investigates the lives and obsessions of a host of lesser men and women, from archbishops to peasants, and from soldiers to scholars, upon whose enterprise the social and intellectual foundations of Englishness now rest.

This the first book in the four volume Brief History of Britain which brings together some of the leading historians to tell our nation’s story from the Norman Conquest of 1066 to the present-day. Combining the latest research with accessible and entertaining story telling, it is the ideal introduction for students and general readers.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1177 KB
  • Print Length: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Robinson (17 Jun 2011)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0056A8V78
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #121,966 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
29 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rich and varied... 2 Nov 2011
By jaffareadstoo TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
This is the first of four historical volumes covering the years between 1066 and 2010. In this volume the author, Nicholas Vincent has written a concise and extremely well thought out history book which covers the years between the Battle of Hastings in 1066, and the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485.
As the historical content is so rich and varied, it never feels like you are reading a stuffy textbook. Each chapter is meticulously researched, and details the social and economic changes in an easy to read manner. I found that the use of genealogy charts and maps at the beginning of the book helped put royal lineage and country boundaries into context, and a comprehensive further reading guide is easily accessible at the end of the book, and is divided into separate chapters for ease of use.
Overall, I thought this was a really informative book. I discovered things I didn't know about the way in which medieval England developed as a country, and as I am an enthusiastic reader of historical novels, I am sure that this book will be invaluable as an aide memoire.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Is the author on You Tube? 26 May 2013
Format:Paperback
I've started reading this book in Costa Coffee in Waterstones. I immediately liked this book because I felt that in its opening chapters it gave 1066 a fresh modern treatment that helped you see events from a different perspective. It steps back from just telling the story, to being a bit more critical about how much of the story is actually true. In particular it is very critical of the legitimacy of King Harold, the one who got an arrow in his eye at the Battle of Hastings. Without making a big fuss, it starts the story earlier than 1066, despite the title of the book.

However in the next few pages, I felt the book lost its way a little. I know that computer gamers like to play with historical models and 'what if' type scenarios. So the author discussed a few 'what if' scenarios. This makes the book feel very contemporary. It also makes me think that it will date very quickly as todays current references become old hat.

In someways it is good because it is thought provoking. A knight's contribution to the Royal Exchequer can be described as 0.5 man years in taxation terms. In other ways, it seems to start to lose the plot and to forget to tell the central story. I found that I was skipping a few pages at this point.

The reviews are very mixed and the stars are spread quite evenly. My father-in-law (in Scotland) on the basis of his surname told me that he was of French descent and that he was surrounded by Huns. It is interesting to think that 'the myth' is much more important to people than 'the truth'. It is a bit like the newspaper man who says that the truth should not spoil a good story.

So basically you have 'the story' and then you have a discussion about whether 'the story' is true.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars For medieval history buffs 2 May 2012
By Trish
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I love medieval history and this is a great book - really interesting and informative says it as it is - comparing with more recent events. Whilst it took a while to get into it, once I did, I din't want to put it down.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For different views on British history 13 Aug 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Bought this a while ago, still reading it, one of those books I delve into on occasions and find different views on British history.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I chose this book because I LOVE the Brief History series. I find them to be informative without the "waffle".
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and a bit different 27 Feb 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am finding this very interesting and it has a different approach to most history books. It is very largely a social history describing the effects of the headline events rather than simply the events. Covers most social classes and points out the data limitations. As a kindle book I find it limiting as I often wish to turn back a few pages or even a chapter and, if this is possible on Kindle, I have not mastered it.
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