The Perfect King

The Perfect King

The Life of Edward III, Father of the English Nation

Book - 2008
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He ordered his uncle to be beheaded; he usurped his father's throne; he started a war which lasted for more than a hundred years, and taxed his people more than any other previous king. Yet for centuries Edward III was celebrated as the most brilliant king England had ever had, and three hundred years after his death it was said that his kingship was perhaps the greatest that the world had ever known.

In this first full study of the man's character and life, Ian Mortimer shows how Edward personally provided the impetus for much of the drama of his fifty-year reign. Under him the feudal kingdom of England became a highly organised nation and experienced its longest period of domestic peace in the middle ages.

Nineteenth century historians saw in Edward the opportunity to decry a warmonger, and painted him as a self-seeking, rapacious, tax-gathering conqueror. Yet as this book shows, beneath the strong warrior king was a compassionate, conscientious and often merciful man - resolute yet devoted to his wife, friends and family. He emerges as a strikingly modern figure, to whom many will be able to relate - the father of both the English nation and the English people.

Publisher: London : Vintage, 2008, c2006
ISBN: 9780099527091
Branch Call Number: 942.037092 Edwar -M 3558ad 1
Characteristics: xix, 536 p. :,ill., maps


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Jun 08, 2012

While I wasn't sure the author much like Edward at the beginning of the book, he clearly had a lot of respect for him by the end. An interesting evolution of both the king and the biographer.

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