The Last Knight: The Twilight of the Middle Ages and the Birth of t

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Simon and Schuster, May 11, 2010 - History - 272 pages
3 Reviews
There may not be a more fascinating a historical period than the late fourteenth century in Europe. The Hundred Years' War ravaged the continent, yet gallantry, chivalry, and literary brilliance flourished in the courts of England and elsewhere. It was a world in transition, soon to be replaced by the Renaissance and the Age of Exploration -- and John of Gaunt was its central figure.

In today's terms, John of Gaunt was a multibillionaire with a brand name equal to Rockefeller. He fought in the Hundred Years' War, sponsored Chaucer and proto-Protestant religious thinkers, and survived the dramatic Peasants' Revolt, during which his sumptuous London residence was burned to the ground. As head of the Lancastrian branch of the Plantagenet family, Gaunt was the unknowing father of the War of the Roses; after his death, his son usurped the crown from his nephew, Richard II. Gaunt's adventures represent the culture and mores of the Middle Ages as those of few others do, and his death is portrayed in The Last Knight as the end of that enthralling period.
 

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User Review  - woakden - LibraryThing

It seemed like the editor of this book didn't do a very good job. I did really like the style of writing, it was very accessible and read more like a story than a history book. Read full review

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User Review  - Meggo - LibraryThing

This book was one of the few that was so painful to read that I had to put it down. The writing style was irritating in a way that I cannot describe, however I can confirm that I simply hated this book. Read full review

Contents

Introduction i
12
The Great Families
33
Plantagenet England
49
Women
87
Spain
123
Peasants
161
Politics
181
Chaucer
203
Sources
243
Index
251
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About the author (2010)

Norman F. Cantor (1929–2004) was a professor of history, sociology, and comparative literature at New York University. Among his many academic honors are appointments as a Rhodes Scholar, Porter Ogden Jacobus Fellow at Princeton University, and Fulbright Professor at Tel Aviv University. He was nominated for the NBCC Award for Inventing the Middle Ages.

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