War and Chivalry: The Conduct and Perception of War in England and Normandy, 1066-1217

Overview

This is the first specific, large-scale study of conduct in warfare and the nature of chivalry in the Anglo-Norman period. The extent to which the knighthood consciously sought to limit the extent of fatalities among its members is explored through a study of notions of a brotherhood in arms, the actualities of combat and the effectiveness of armour, the treatment of prisoners, and the workings of ransom. Were there 'laws of war' in operation in the eleventh and twelfth centuries and, if so, were they binding? ...
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Overview

This is the first specific, large-scale study of conduct in warfare and the nature of chivalry in the Anglo-Norman period. The extent to which the knighthood consciously sought to limit the extent of fatalities among its members is explored through a study of notions of a brotherhood in arms, the actualities of combat and the effectiveness of armour, the treatment of prisoners, and the workings of ransom. Were there 'laws of war' in operation in the eleventh and twelfth centuries and, if so, were they binding? How far did notions of honour affect knights' actions in war itself? Conduct in war against an opposing suzerain such as the Capetian king is contrasted to behaviour in situations of rebellion and of civil war. A study of aristocratic violence towards churches in war, and of the mechanisms of ravaging, examines the behaviour of the knighthood to the other ordines of society, the Church and the peasantry. An overall context is provided by an examination of the behaviour in war of the Scots and the mercenary routiers, both accused of perpetrating 'atrocities'.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"[Strickland] treats all three of the primary elements of medieval warfare...with skill and insight....a book which does more to broaden and reinforce our understanding of the conduct of medieval warfare....The author writes clearly and the book is well organized....I highly recommend it as a purchase for libraries." Clifford J. Rogers, The Journal of Military History

"In this excellent book, Strickland agrees that 2th century chivalric ideal--bravery, skill at arms, honor, largesse--contributed to the bellicose character of Anglo-Norman society." C.L. Hamilton, Choice

"This is a thoroughly engaging and informative work." American Historical Review

"The book's clear prose makes it easy to read.... Strickland's book is thus the definitive statement of ideas that have transformed our knowledge of warfare in what were the chilvalric centuries par excellence . D.A. Carpenter, The International History Review

"Matthew Strickland has written a superb study of the culture of war as it existed in the late eleventh and twelfth centuries in England and Normandy." Stephen Morillo, Albion

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521023467
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/2005
  • Pages: 416
  • Sales rank: 1,202,564
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.94 (d)

Table of Contents

List of illustrations
List of maps
Preface
List of abbreviations
1 Introduction: The Conquest and Chivalry 1
2 A 'Law of Arms'? 31
3 A Christian Chivalry? War, Piety and Sacrilege 55
4 Honour, Shame and Reputation 98
5 Conduct in Battle: A Brotherhood in Arms? 132
6 The Limits of Chivalry and the Realities of Battle 159
7 Ransom and the Treatment of Prisoners 183
8 Respite, Resistance and Honourable Surrender: Conventions of Siege Warfare 204
9 Rebellion, Treason and the Punishment of Revolt 230
10 War Against the Land: Ravaging and Attrition 258
11 Total War? The Scots and the Routiers 291
Conclusion 330
Bibliography 341
Index 366
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