By Sword and Fire: Cruelty and Atrocity in Medieval Warfare

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For all the talk of chivalry, medieval warfare routinely involved acts which we would consider war crimes. Lands laid waste, civilians slaughtered, prisoners massacred: this was standard fare justified by tradition and practical military necessity. Sean McGlynn's compelling portrait of war in the Middle Ages reveals the true face of medieval conflict through its battles, seiges and campaigns.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780304366958
  • Publisher: Phoenix
  • Publication date: 3/2/2010
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 991,034
  • Product dimensions: 5.30 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

List of illustrations     ix
Preface     xi
Acknowledgements     xvi
A note on sources     xvii
Maps     xviii
Violence     1
Introduction     1
Crime and Punishment     5
War     36
The King as Judge and Executioner     36
The King as Warrior     52
The Church and Just War     61
Chivalry and the Laws of War     71
Battles     81
Battles in Medieval Warfare     85
Massacres of Prisoners     91
Verden, 782     92
Waterford, 1170     95
Hattin, 1187 and Acre, 1191     100
Agincourt, 1415     113
Towton, 1461 and Tewkesbury, 1471     129
Conclusions     133
Sieges     141
Sieges in Medieval Warfare     143
Storm, Sack and Non-Combatants     151
Jerusalem, 1099     152
Chateau Gaillard, 1203-4     161
Beziers, 1209     170
Limoges, 1370     179
Conclusions     185
Campaigns     195
Campaigns in Medieval Warfare     195
Ravaging     197
William the Conqueror's Harrying of the North, 1069-70     200
King David's Scottish Invasions, 1138     208
King John's Winter Campaign, 1215-16     222
The Black Prince's Grand Chevauchee, 1355     233
Conclusions     239
Medieval Savagery?     245
Notes     254
Select Bibliography     266
Index     275
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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 16, 2013

    This is a very interesting read for those interested in medieval

    This is a very interesting read for those interested in medieval warfare, with case-studies of several engagements (sieges, battles and campaigns).
    However, the author claims at the start that his aim was to write a history text that was accessible to non-academics, and I'm sad to say he didn't quite achieve this. Keep your dictionary handy, you'll need it.

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