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The Wars of the Roses: Peace and Conflict In Fifteenth-Century England
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The Wars of the Roses: Peace and Conflict In Fifteenth-Century England

3.62 of 5 stars 3.62  ·  rating details  ·  58 ratings  ·  7 reviews
It was the period when the French beat the English and the English fought among themselves. Traditional historians have glossed over it, considering it the time that wrecked Britain's military greatness. But Gillingham elegantly separates myth from reality, arguing that, paradoxically, the wars actually proved how peaceful the country was. His gifted graphic description ma
Hardcover, 274 pages
Published 1981 by Louisiana State University Press
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Kristopher Swinson
2.8. Practically only the 15th century Englishman could be more relieved than I was when the Wars of the Roses finally ended. The initial charm of this work—which fell short of the back cover’s promised “dazzling account”—dissipated into protracted, seldom interesting the battlefield.

Gillingham employs skillful application of historical method, critical enough of traditional or variant interpretations (103, 106, 120, 132, 154, 200, 222). He’s unafraid to weigh the relative value o
Kenneth Sherman
Gillingham gives a very readible account of the War of the Roses. For much of the 15th century the succession to the throne was disputed and king (two if you count Richard II) was executed and one was killed in battle and another disappeared and possibly buried in the Tower of London. Despite that, Gillingham pointed out that England was actually a more peaceful place than continental Europe during the 15th century. The English seemed to fight differently in England than in France, where they an ...more
This is a telling of the Wars of the Roses mostly through the battles that were fought. While it was very interesting it was also a bit dry at times. The author does a good job of using different sources and makes sure to state when he is using only one to tell of events in case of any bias in the information. I also think that having a prior working knowledge of the events really helped in the reading and if I hadn't known what was going on I might have become lost in all the names, dates, and ...more
My usual go to for history is much more biliographical or society analysis based. This focused more on the war tactics and the factions of the Wars of the Roses.

However, despite it not being my normal, I really, really enjoyed this book. I was able to get an understanding of this dynastic feud from an angle I haven't previously delved in to.

I will certainly be reading more of Gillingham's books.
Gerry Germond
A good account which helped me sort out this event. I especially appreciated the first three chapters which set the stage for the Wars of the Roses and laid to rest many popular misconceptions of them. There isn't much original source material and the author takes some pains to evaluate them for trustworthiness, weeding out Tudor propaganda. At only 257 pages, a good account.
An excellent modern analysis of the war and politics of later 15th century England. Overturns many myths about the "Wars of the Roses" and sets the record straight about what really happened. Not for those who aren't into Medieval English History.
Endeavour Press
This book is published by Endeavour Press.
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John Gillingham is emeritus professor of medieval history at the London School of Economics and Political Science. On the 19th July 2007 he was elected into the Fellowship of the British Academy

He is renowned as an expert on the Angevin empire.
More about John Gillingham...
The Middle Ages Medieval Britain: A Very Short Introduction Richard I (English Monarchs) The Angevin Empire Richard the Lionheart

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