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  • Published: 29 March 2012
  • ISBN: 9781448136025
  • Imprint: Cornerstone Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 464
Categories:

The Norman Conquest




The definitive account for our times of a pivotal moment in English history

An upstart French duke who sets out to conquer the most powerful and unified kingdom in Christendom. An invasion force on a scale not seen since the days of the Romans. One of the bloodiest and most decisive battles ever fought. This riveting book explains why the Norman Conquest was the single most important event in English history.

Assessing the original evidence at every turn, Marc Morris goes beyond the familiar outline to explain why England was at once so powerful and yet so vulnerable to William the Conqueror's attack. Why the Normans, in some respects less sophisticated, possessed the military cutting edge. How William's hopes of a united Anglo-Norman realm unravelled, dashed by English rebellions, Viking invasions and the insatiable demands of his fellow conquerors. This is a tale of powerful drama, repression and seismic social change: the Battle of Hastings itself and the violent 'Harrying of the North'; the sudden introduction of castles and the wholesale rebuilding of every major church; the total destruction of an ancient ruling class. Language, law, architecture, even attitudes towards life itself were altered forever by the coming of the Normans.

Marc Morris, author of the bestselling biography of Edward I, A Great and Terrible King, approaches the Conquest with the same passion, verve and scrupulous concern for historical accuracy. This is the definitive account for our times of an extraordinary story, a pivotal moment in the shaping of the English nation.

  • Published: 29 March 2012
  • ISBN: 9781448136025
  • Imprint: Cornerstone Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 464
Categories:

About the author

Marc Morris

Dr Marc Morris is a historian and broadcaster, specialising in the Middle Ages. He is the author of King John: Treachery, Tyranny and the Road to Magna Carta, The Norman Conquest and A Great and Terrible King.

In 2003 Marc presented the highly acclaimed TV series Castle for Channel 4 and wrote its accompanying book. He has also contributed to other history programmes on radio and television.

An expert on medieval monarchy and aristocracy, and a fellow of the Royal Historical Society, Marc has written numerous articles for History Today, BBC History Magazine and Heritage Today (now published together as an e-book, Kings and Castles).

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Praise for The Norman Conquest

Almost everything you know about 1066 is wrong. And there’s no better historian to put you right than the wonderful Marc Morris. His new book grips not only as a work of narrative history but also as a sleuthing exercise . . . Morris has captured the triumph and the tragedy of this tumultuous era with verve, insight and a rollicking narrative.

Mail on Sunday

Morris gives a compelling account of the invasion by William the Conqueror in 1066 ... Confidently, he opens with the Bayeux Tapestry as a powerful contemporary depiction of a famous battle ... Morris sorts embroidery from evidence and provides a much-needed, modern account of the Normans in England that respects past events more than present ideologies.

Iain Finlayson, The Times

Marc Morris’s lively new book retells the story of the Norman invasion with vim, vigour and narrative urgency

Evening Standard

As every schoolboy knows, or used to, 1066 is the most important date in English history. But as Marc Morris points out in this enormously enjoyable book, the Norman conquest was much more violent, complicated and ambiguous then we usually think. Carefully steering the reader through the partisan and often contradictory sources, he paints a vivid picture of the collapse of the sophisticated Anglo-Saxon realm, and shows how William the Conqueror relied on sheer terror to establish his reign. Even a Norman chronicler admitted that William had “mercilessly slaughtered” the English, “like the scourge of God smiting them for their sins.

Dominic Sandbrook, The Sunday Times, Books of the Year

I loved it – a suitably epic account of one of the most seismic and far-reaching events in British history.

Dan Snow

Stimulating popular history of the 1066 Norman invasion . . . Marc Morris’s new book is an exciting arrival ... a strong and often gripping story, developed with enormous verve, a clear sense of direction and considerable confidence

BBC History Magazine

This is a wonderfully shrewd, engaging and readable account of the most pivotal event in English history.

Tom Holland

The Norman Conquest is a scrupulously researched and well-written book. But it is also that rare thing: a work undertaken with enormous integrity. Dr Morris questions the received wisdom from past scholars, considers the Conquest and its aftermath anew, and expresses his findings with great conscientiousness.

Ian Mortimer

A muscular, vivid narrative full of compelling historical insight – not just a brilliantly told story, but required reading for anyone interested in the real 1066 and all that.

Helen Castor

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