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The Black Prince
 
 

The Black Prince [Kindle Edition]

David Green
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: £2.56 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
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Review

''An excellent, impressively sourced work of history which cleanly dissects the big issues of fourteenth-century politics, society and historiography.''

Alex Burghart, Medieval Studies

‘This is much more than a fine biography. It is a wide-ranging and deeply imaginative portrait of fourteenth-century aristocratic society, based on intimate knowledge of both the primary and secondary sources: a fitting culmination to years of research into one of the most controversial and flamboyant characters in English history.’

Chris Given-Wilson, Professor of Late Medieval History, University of St Andrews

‘David Green’s fascinating new study of how this most iconic but enigmatic figure exercised his power acutely analyses the cultural and social as well as political factors that shaped his turbulent century.’

Michael Jones, Emeritus Professor of Medieval French History, University of Nottingham

‘In this thoroughly readable book, David Green provides a vivid picture of England in the late fourteenth century, centred on the career of the Black Prince. The nature of aristocratic power provides a central theme, while war, plague and religion receive full attention. The book also throws many fascinating sidelights on the period, from the scandalously low-cut dresses of the Princess of Wales and the military finery of the Black Prince, to the increasingly macabre tombs of the period, with their images of decaying skeletons contrasting with worldly splendour.’

Michael Prestwich, Professor of History, University of Durham

"Green's book is well-researched and lucidly written. It provides a welcome addition for anyone who needs to learn more about the life and career of the Black Prince. It also offers a valuable and accessible survey for readers seeking information on a wide range of fourteenth-century themes, from politics to chivalry."
Barbara Gribling, University of York

Review

"An excellent, impressively sourced work of history which cleanly dissects the big issues of fourteenth-century politics, society and historiography." Alex Burghart, Medieval Studies This is much more than a fine biography. It is a wide-ranging and deeply imaginative portrait of fourteenth-century aristocratic society, based on intimate knowledge of both the primary and secondary sources: a fitting culmination to years of research into one of the most controversial and flamboyant characters in English history.' Chris Given-Wilson, Professor of Late Medieval History, University of St Andrews David Green's fascinating new study of how this most iconic but enigmatic figure exercised his power acutely analyses the cultural and social as well as political factors that shaped his turbulent century.' Michael Jones, Emeritus Professor of Medieval French History, University of Nottingham In this thoroughly readable book, David Green provides a vivid picture of England in the late fourteenth century, centred on the career of the Black Prince. The nature of aristocratic power provides a central theme, while war, plague and religion receive full attention. The book also throws many fascinating sidelights on the period, from the scandalously low-cut dresses of the Princess of Wales and the military finery of the Black Prince, to the increasingly macabre tombs of the period, with their images of decaying skeletons contrasting with worldly splendour.' Michael Prestwich, Professor of History, University of Durham "Green's book is well-researched and lucidly written. It provides a welcome addition for anyone who needs to learn more about the life and career of the Black Prince. It also offers a valuable and accessible survey for readers seeking information on a wide range of fourteenth-century themes, from politics to chivalry." Barbara Gribling, University of York

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
47 of 50 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, flawless 2 Nov 2003
By Rodian
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
There isn't exactly a shortage of material on this guy, but I still found this book extremely valuable in gaining a detailed knowledge and insight into the life of one of the most prominent chivalric figures in British history. I don't think I would recommend it as THE book to start with if you know nothing of Edward or his period, since it is quite in-depth. However, it is certainly not a book just for those who have already read everything else. I picked this up after studying this period for a while, and having read several works on the Black Prince, notably Barber's 'Edward, Prince of Wales and Aquitane'. This book is by far the best in my opinion. All the details are there, from military to sentimental, the book is very carefully written and surprisingly easy to read. Green hardly ever loses his grip on the reader, and although it is not as 'narrative' (so to speak) as Richard Barber's work, the interest factor is just as high.
What can I say? It's only a book - but it's a book that will probably tell you everything you wanted to know. Even if you HAVE read everything else on this subject, 'The Black Prince' is certainly worth a look if not a buy!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not a biography, but full of good things 28 Aug 2010
By bookelephant TOP 1000 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
First point: unlike the other reviews, this is not a review of Green's 2001(reissued 2008) "The Black Prince"; it is a review of the different 2007 book "Edward The Black Prince: Power in Medieval Europe" (Amazon have wrongly attached the same reviews to both books). So if you want to know about the 2001/2008 book read the other reviews, but if you want to know about the 2007 book, read this!
So what about the book? Well, I bought it thinking it would be a biography of the Black Prince, and was initally disappointed to find that it absolutely is not that. It is probably best described as a collection of essays on subjects which are of relevance to the Black Prince, but would fit uneasily in any conventional biogrpahy. Thus Green deals with issues such as the effects of the Black Death, religious changes, the concepts of nobility, aristocracy and chivalry and developments in warfare. Having said that, he has a lot of good stuff in these essays, and if you concentrate hard you will not only learn a lot about those particular subjects, but get a pretty good biography of the Black Prince too - just not in chronological order. So it is quite hard work, but worth it.
However I do slightly wonder what audience it is aimed at. I don't think, despite the essay style of it, that it is aimed at an academic audience; and this is borne out by Prestwich's slightly "damning with faint praise" review which describes it as "thoroughly readable" (and even to me some of the points made seemed overbroad for the academic context).
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Very poor 28 Jan 2010
Format:Paperback
It is rare to find a book that has been badly written, badly edited (if at all) and badly published, but this is it. It is difficult to see how sentences such as the following can pass muster:

'William Neville served in the Richard's household of as prince of Wales and was associated with the family prior to that.'

Several times I was left struggling to understand the author's meaning, and this made the book tiring and unpleasant to read. The many illustrations are also uniformly poor with most of the detail lost in a sludge of grey. They are scattered amongst the text in an often random fashion which reduces their impact even further. A map of the Black Prince's military campaigns covers the whole of France, southern England as far north as London, and northern Spain in a box 8.5 x 6cm. The details of the Prince's progress cannot be deciphered even with the aid of a magnifying glass because the printing quality is just not good enough at this scale.

Some of this might be excused if the book brought the Black Prince to life at any stage , but as the previous reviewer said, it is not a rounded attempt to explain the man.
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