The Portable Medieval Reader edited by James Bruce Ross and Mary Martin McLaughlin

Think about the types of people who lived and chronicled throughout the whole of the Middle Ages.  Royalty, knights, clergy, artisans, merchants, scholars of all stripes.  Consider some of the names of the era: Peter Abelard, St. Thomas Aquinas, Dante Alighieri, Geoffrey Chaucer, William of Tyre, Roger Bacon, Anna Comnena, Pope Pius II, Thomas Becket, … Continue reading The Portable Medieval Reader edited by James Bruce Ross and Mary Martin McLaughlin

Henry V

Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more, Or close the wall up with our English dead! In peace there’s nothing so becomes a man As modest stillness and humility; But when the blast of war blows in our ears, Then imitate the action of the tiger: Stiffen the sinews, summon up the blood. … Continue reading Henry V

The Maid of Orleans: The Life & Mysticism of Joan of Arc by Sven Stolpe

This book is a reprint from 1956 that, among those with an interest in Joan, has attained an almost legendary status.  We live in an age where people are eager to dismiss the presumably supernatural out of hand and tear down heroes, giving zero credence to the idea of the "great person theory."  The idea … Continue reading The Maid of Orleans: The Life & Mysticism of Joan of Arc by Sven Stolpe

The Hundred Years War, Volume 1: Trial by Battle by Jonathan Sumption

This is a complex read.  This is quite possibly the most complex read I've ever undertaken. My progress on this volume began life as a buddy read, the ripcord pulled on the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Agincourt.  Due to logistics, the buddy read fell apart.  Simply put, this book just doesn't work as a buddy … Continue reading The Hundred Years War, Volume 1: Trial by Battle by Jonathan Sumption

The Book of Chivalry of Geoffroi de Charny: Text, Context, and Translation by Richard W. Kaeuper and Elspeth Kennedy

This is one I revisit from time to time because it sets a standard for me. The Company of the Star was a short-lived order of knights created in 1352 by Jean (or John) II of France, meant to rival the English Order of the Garter.  Geoffroi de Charney was one of the top knights … Continue reading The Book of Chivalry of Geoffroi de Charny: Text, Context, and Translation by Richard W. Kaeuper and Elspeth Kennedy