The Time-traveller's Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth Century

The Time-traveller's Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth Century

Hardback

By (author) Ian Mortimer

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  • Publisher: The Bodley Head Ltd
  • Format: Hardback | 352 pages
  • Dimensions: 154mm x 236mm x 38mm | 739g
  • Publication date: 2 October 2008
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0224079948
  • ISBN 13: 9780224079945
  • Sales rank: 139,140

Product description

The past is a foreign country. This is your guidebook. Imagine you could get into a time machine and travel back to the fourteenth century. What would you see? What would you smell? More to the point, where are you going to stay? Should you go to a castle or a monastic guest house? And what are you going to eat? What sort of food are you going to be offered by a peasant or a monk or a lord? This radical new approach turns our entire understanding of history upside down. It shows us that the past is not just something to be studied; it is also something to be lived. It sets out to explain what life was like in the most immediate way, through taking you, the reader, to the middle ages, and showing you everything from the horrors of leprosy and war to the ridiculous excesses of roasted larks and haute couture.Being a guidebook, many questions are answered which do not normally occur in traditional history books. How do you greet people in the street? What should you use for toilet paper? How fast - and how safely - can you travel? Why might a physician want to taste your blood? And how do you test to see if you are going down with the plague? The result is the most astonishing social history book you are ever likely to read: revolutionary in its concept, informative and entertaining in its detail, and startling for its portrayal of humanity in an age of violence, exuberance and fear.

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Author information

Ian Mortimer has BA and PhD degrees in history from Exeter University and an MA in archive studies from University College London. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society in 1998, and was awarded the Alexander Prize (2004) by the Royal Historical Society for his work on the social history of medicine. He is the author of three medieval biographies, The Greatest Traitor: The Life of Sir Roger Mortimer, The Perfect King: The Life of Edward III, and The Fears of Henry IV: The Life of England's Self-Made King, published in 2003, 2006 and 2007 respectively by Jonathan Cape. He lives with his wife and three children on the edge of Dartmoor.