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William Rufus (1983) by Frank Barlow, is more than a biography of one of England's early Norman kings. The historian who composed this volume has given us a social history as well, of early Norman England. We learn things like that there were no lamps lit at night during William II's reign. The author repeats this and let's the implications sink in, of the resultant "disorder." The facts accumulate, and give a vivid picture of this era, though a typicallly English historian, Barlow is not interested in subtler, questions, such as what the lack of privacy at all levels of society meant for the individual personality. I might wish that he would repeat occasionally himself, as it is difficult for the nonprofessional to always recall the many new terms encountered in the text. And I am still trying to figure out what is meant when "candle-ends" are part of a employee's compensation. I suppose they were literally the last bit of a candle, and one accumulated them to use, in making more candles. But that is a guess on my part.