On 29 December 1170, Thomas Archbishop of Canterbury was brutally murdered in his cathedral by four knights from the household of his former friend and patron, King Henry II. The horror that the killing inspired and the miraculous cures performed at Thomas's tomb transfigured him into one of the most popular saints in Western Christendom, and Canterbury became one of the greatest pilgrim shrines in the West.
Yet these were unexpected results. Thomas's extraordinary career had been, and remains, controversial. The transformation of a handsome, attractive, and worldly courtier into a zealous prelate, a bitter exile and finally a martyr was for many hard to understand. In this brilliant new biography, based on the original sources and informed by the most recent scholarship, Frank Barlow reconstructs Thomas's physical environment and entourage at various stages of his career, exploring the nuances and irregularities in the story that have been ignored in other studies.
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Review: Thomas BecketUser Review - Jodi - Goodreads
Although Barlow's biography of Thomas Becket is considered by most historians as "the" authoritative biography, as a book, it is dense and difficult. Great reference; not something to curl up with on a rainy day. Read full review
Review: Thomas BecketUser Review - Andrew Allen - Goodreads
Very dense and scholarly. Entertainment was secondary to academic merit in this book's creation. Read full review
background and youth 11201143
Thelower rungs of the ladders 11431154
Royal chancellor 11551162
Archbishop of Canterbury 1162
the first year 11621163
The quarrel with the king 11631164
Thomas on the defensive November i 164April 1166