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The Bayeux Tapestry: The Life Story of a Masterpiece
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The Bayeux Tapestry: The Life Story of a Masterpiece

3.79 of 5 stars 3.79  ·  rating details  ·  39 ratings  ·  10 reviews
The vivid scenes on the Bayeux Tapestry depict the events leading up to the Battle of Hastings in 1066. It is one of Europe's greatest treasures and its own story is full of drama and surprise.

Who commissioned the tapestry? Was it Bishop Odo, William's ruthless half-brother? Or Harold's dynamic sister Edith, juggling for a place in the new court? Hicks shows us this world
ebook, 368 pages
Published July 31st 2011 by Vintage Digital (first published March 2nd 2006)
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Those of you who read my comments on the first few chapters of Carola Hicks's awkwardly-titled The Bayeux Tapestry: The Life Story of a Masterpiece, are probably wondering whether I was ever able to get over my yearning for a close reading of the Tapestry, and enjoy this book for what it is: a "biographical" account following the artifact through the thousand years since its composition, and all of the social and ideological battles that have been fought over and around it during that time. And ...more
The Bayeux Tapestry is rapidly becoming one of my favorite works of art, even moreso after visiting it this past summer. Hicks' study deviates from traditional scholarship on this work, focusing on the biography of the work rather than questions of patronage and the circumstances of its creation. These are dealt with briefly, but the bulk of her book discusses its later preservation under what were very often tumultuous circumstances. The only thing that would make the read more enjoyable would ...more
This is as the title says. I knew little about the Bayeaux Tapestry before reading the book, other than thinking it was an amazing piece of work. I still think that. What this book highlights is that there are times when much is known about the Bayeaux Tapestry, for example it was tracked in detail during World War II, but there is much which is not known about its actual origins. There are theories but none are certain. It went through stages of appalling storage so it is remarkable that is has ...more
This is another background book on the Bayeux Tapestry and the Battle of Hastings - a follow-up to the Bloch book I just finished. It is well written and informative. The books spends relatively less time on the actual making of the embroidery/tapestry and more time on the history of the tapestry as an important artifact -- this is especially the case following the intervention of Napoleon in trying to use the tapestry for propaganda value in the battle against England. This book goes over this ...more
What an amazing book! Whatever I have read about the Norman Invasion, there was always a reference to the Bayeux Tapestry. I finally decided to pay some attention to this masterpiece and I am so glad I did. A truly interesting and exciting read (better than some fictional thrillers). This book is a must-read for all Medieval enthusiasts. I can't recommend it highly enough.
An very enjoyable read. I was lucky enough to visit the tapestry this summer, and I picked up the book in the gift shop.

Some chapters were more interesting than others. I found I skimmed through some of the very detailed chapters, although I'm sure a more scholarly reader would appreciate the amount of information included.

A biography of an embroidery! Could this be interesting? Yes. I could not put this detective story down and though there are a few suppositions this did not detract from the story. From the beginning to the times of Napoleon and the Nazis Carola Hicks has told a good tale of this wonderful piece of embroidered propaganda.
Patricia Gulley
A fabulous read, the history and the controversies. I enjoyed this book very much and read it slowly over a long period of time. I liked the explanation of it display, cleaning and moving to a new home in the end. Now to get myself over there to see it.
Dr. Sharada
As an academic book, it is excellent--well-documented and totally engaging. If, however, you're not accustomed to academic reading, this book may not prove as entertaining as the cover claims.
DNF: Only read the first section as a requirement for literature course
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