Warfare in the Medieval World

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Editorial Reviews

VOYA
The History of Warfare series covers military conflicts from the ancient world to modern times. Each title focuses on a specific historical period and using a similar format. The books are written for upper elementary and junior high school students, and feature numerous blackandwhite photographs, artwork, time lines, maps, informational sidebars, glossaries, bibliographies, and indexes. Warfare in the Medieval World covers the period between the fifth and fifteenth centuries. Beginning with the early Byzantine, Islamic, and Carolinian Empires, the book goes on to describe Viking and Norman conquests. Material on the Crusades, the major religious wars of this era is also included. Siege warfare and new fighting tools such as the crossbow, the catapult, and early gunpowder weapons are examined in light of their effect on military strategy. All of the series entries are short, so detail is minimal. This design may leave students thinking that they have a greater understanding of the events than they actually do. The wealth of illustrative materials makes these books ideal for dipping into, rather than for reading as a whole. These works excel as basic introductions to the fascinating subject of military campaigns through the ages. Students whose interest and curiosity are piqued by the illustrations may go on to read about the subject in greater depth. Other series titles include Warfare in the Ancient World, Warfare in the Renaissance World, Warfare in the 18th Century, Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, The American Civil War, Warfare in the 19th Century, World War I, World War II, and Warfare in the Modern World. Glossary. Index. Illus. Photos. Maps. Biblio. VOYA CODES: 3Q 1P MJ(Readable without serious defects; No YA will read unless forced to for assignments; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 1999, Raintree SteckVaughn, Ages 12 to 15, 80p. PLB $27.12. Reviewer: Cindy Lombardo
School Library Journal
Gr 7-10-Even though these series titles present straightforward descriptions of wars, who fought them, and how, why is a question that might occur to many readers. Nowhere is there any discussion of the social and economic factors that gave rise to fighting. Ancient World covers the rise and fall of empires and dynasties from Egypt through the Roman Empire. Specific battles, from Kadesh to Cannae, are described with accompanying diagrams. This pattern is repeated in Medieval World and Renaissance World, but the authors' dry and academic descriptions fail to capture the drama (and also the chaos, blood, and degradation) of battle. Especially in the latter two books, the texts get bogged down in complicated political background without ever helping readers grasp the significance of the events being described. One comes away from reading about the Hundred Years War or the Thirty Years War without much understanding of how these conflicts influenced the course of history. The emphasis in all three books is on European wars. A token chapter at the end of each one acknowledges that the other parts of the world witnessed major conflicts, but little detail is provided. Discussions of weapons and tactics presume a background in military history. Well-placed, full-color maps and reproductions add some attraction, as do good bibliographies. Peter Connolly's Greece and Rome at War (Stackpole, 1998) is a better choice for understanding ancient warfare, especially in the classical Mediterranean world.-David N. Pauli, Portland Jewish Academy, OR
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780817254438
  • Publisher: Raintree Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/28/1998
  • Series: History of Warfare Series
  • Format: Library Binding
  • Pages: 80
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • Product dimensions: 7.59 (w) x 9.35 (h) x 0.42 (d)

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