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Richard I : The Crusader King

Richard I : The Crusader King
Book Details
Name of the Book:Richard I : The Crusader King
ISBN-10 / ISBN-13 9780141976860 0141976853 978-0141976853 0141976861, 9780141976860
Authors / Editors: Thomas Asbridge
Page Count:187
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This latest Allen lane penguin Monarchs Title Focuses upon the dramatic life of Richard the Lionheart one of the most famous Kings in our history and a legendary warrior of the crusades. Richard only spent six months of his entire ten year reign actually in England! Richard’s’ focus on life was essentially European in fact he was born in Aquitaine, France in 1157 then part of his Father’s’ vast Angevian Empire! Richard’s’ family was notoriously unstable and Richard and his two eldest brothers all rebelled against their Father King Henry II without any huge success. Furthermore, their parents marriage collapsed and Eleanor of Aquitaine sided with her sons and was imprisoned by her husband for the last sixteen years of his reign.This dramatic upbringing steeled Richard into a supremely able soldier and he became renowned for his chivalry and honour throughout Europe! Richard’s’ guiding ambition was to take the holy land of Jerusalem back from its Arab forces led by his great adversary the mighty Saladin. It was his lifetimes work and yet he ultimately failed to win back his ultimate ambition! Richard married in 1191 to Berengaria of Navarre but the union proved loveless and barren.Richards reign was dramatic and he had to contend constantly with his younger brother John’s’ repeated attempts to seize his throne! also in 1192, Richard was kidnapped by Leopold of Austria on his way home from the Crusades, he spent over a year in prison and the huge ransom paid by his mother for his release almost bankrupted the kingdom of England! Richard’s’ rule was not a success and the kingdom was blighted with instability and baronial discord! Richard lived as he had died fatally wounded at Chalus in France which turned Septic and from which he died a few days later at the age of 42 to be succeeded by his treacherous brother John. Renowned medieval historian,Thomas Asbridge’s’paints a vivid, engrossing portrait of the real Richard, less glamorous then history would have you believe but nonetheless engrossing and completely absorbing of the great legend that is Richard ‘The Lionheart’. I would urge you to order your copy from Amazon now you will not be disappointed by this little gem of a book!Richard I’s reign is both controversial and seemingly contradictory. One of England’s most famous medieval monarchs and a potent symbol of national identity, he barely spent six months on English soil during a ten-year reign and spoke French as his first language. Contemporaries dubbed him the ‘Lionheart’, reflecting a carefully cultivated reputation for bravery, prowess and knightly virtue, but this supposed paragon of chivalry butchered close to 3,000 prisoners in cold blood on a single day. And, though revered as Christian Europe’s greatest crusader, his grand campaign to the Holy Land failed to recover the city of Jerusalem from Islam.

Seeking to reconcile this conflicting evidence, Thomas Asbridge’s incisive reappraisal of Richard I’s career questions whether the Lionheart really did neglect his kingdom, considers why he devoted himself to the cause of holy war and asks how the memory of his life came to be interwoven with myth. Richard emerges as a formidable warrior-king, possessed of martial genius and a cultured intellect, yet burdened by the legacy of his dysfunctional dynasty and obsessed with the pursuit of honour and renown.


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