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Re: [Authentic_SCA] Good books about the middle ages

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  • Natasha Laity Snyder
    Hi, thanks for the information, I guess I should have been more clear - I have quite a few specialty books - on the history of art, painting, the Crusades,
    Message 1 of 6 , May 9, 2007
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      Hi, thanks for the information,

      I guess I should have been more clear - I have quite a few specialty
      books - on the history of art, painting, the Crusades, Cornwall, etc,
      but I was really just looking for a general overview - much, like
      perhaps, a college textbook on European history. Obviously, it is a
      huge topic, but i have been feeling that while my knowledge of a few
      select subjects is good, I don't have the best understanding of how
      it fits into the historical context. So, I guess, some sort of
      social/political history of the middle ages and renaissance would be
      what I'm looking for.

      I'll definitely check out the Duke's website!


      Tangwystel
    • Rosie
      ... guess ... Hiya, As a history student (or I was before baby) I find this a tricky question to answer. Unless you are looking for a Medieval Europe for
      Message 2 of 6 , May 10, 2007
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        > I'm looking for a good overview of middle ages/renaissance history.
        > I have some books, but I don't know if they are reliable...so I
        guess
        > what I'm asking is what are people's favorite history books?
        >
        > Tangwystel
        >
        > Natasha Laity Snyder

        Hiya,
        As a history student (or I was before baby) I find this a tricky
        question to answer. Unless you are looking for a "Medieval Europe for
        Dummies" type book, (Not to say you are a dummy! Just that they are
        good beginner/ overview books) you are embarking on a huge course of
        study. I prefer books like "Polish way : a thousand-year history of the
        Poles and their culture / Adam Zamoyski" which are social histories
        rather than "this army won this war and this king got toppled by this
        one." Of course to cover the whole of Europe, you'd be reading these
        types of book for the rest of your life, so you are doomed to a sketchy
        overview. If you were to read the "dummies" type books, you're still
        getting a sketchy overview so I guess it depends which kind of sketchy
        overview you want.
        Anyway, most of my medieval reading (since I didn't study it at uni)
        has been about England and Poland. The above mentioned was my favourite
        Polish history book, though I'd recommend "Poland" by James Mitchener.
        It is fiction, but very well researched. If you want to get a good feel
        for their history rather than collect facts, it's a goodie. For my
        England reading, I've mostly indulged in biographies. Antonia Fraser is
        usually very good. I could also suggest you read histories of major
        cities. It was a new idea to me at uni that you could study a city not
        as a place, but as an entity. Then there are diseases. A nice leisurely
        read through the bubonic plague is just what you need, I'm sure!

        Rosie- who loves her baby, but misses her student days when she had a
        brain and actually could read more than 3 pages of a book in a row!
      • Natasha Laity Snyder
        Hi, Thanks for the good info - I ve never read any Michener but my mom LOVES him - just never got around to it I guess. How about Edward Rutherford - of
        Message 3 of 6 , May 10, 2007
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          Hi,

          Thanks for the good info - I've never read any Michener but my mom
          LOVES him - just never got around to it I guess. How about Edward
          Rutherford - of "London" and "Sarum" fame - I enjoyed those books -
          are they reasonably historically accurate for fiction? Did he do his
          homework?

          Hmm, Medieval Europe for Dummies - sounds right up my alley!

          1/4 of my family tree is from Poland, so that book sounds good to me!!

          Tangwystel
        • Brian
          Best book I ve read for what you are looking for is Daily Life in Medieval Times http://www.amazon.com/Daily-Life-Medieval-Times-
          Message 4 of 6 , May 23, 2007
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            Best book I've read for what you are looking for is Daily Life in
            Medieval Times http://www.amazon.com/Daily-Life-Medieval-Times-
            Frances/dp/1840138114/ref=sr_1_10/103-9592774-4558232?
            ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1179969730&sr=1-10

            Its easy to read and quite informative. It doesn't get into the
            renaissance period but is an excelent overview of what life was like in
            medieval times. Its not so much about particular events and people in
            history but about how the normal life for people was.

            Brian
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