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What is Medieval History?

Paperback / softback By John H. Arnold
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Product Description

Since its first publication in 2007, John H. Arnold’s What is Medieval History?

 has established itself as the leading introduction to the craft of the medieval historian.

 What is it that medieval historians do? How – and why – do they do it? Arnold discusses the creation of medieval history as a field, the nature of its sources, the intellectual tools used by medievalists, and some key areas of thematic importance from the fall of the Roman Empire to the Reformation. The fascinating case studies include a magical plot against a medieval pope, a fourteenth-century insurrection, and the importance of a kiss exchanged between two tenth-century noblemen. Throughout the book, readers are shown not only what medieval history is, but the cultural and political contexts in which it has been written.

 This anticipated second edition includes further exploration of the interdisciplinary techniques that can aid medieval historians, such as dialogue with scientists and archaeologists, and addresses some of the challenges – both medieval and modern – of the idea of a ‘global middle ages’.

 What is Medieval History?

 continues to demonstrate why the pursuit of medieval history is important not only to the present, but to the future. It is an invaluable guide for students, teachers, researchers and interested general readers.

Product Details

Format: Paperback / softback, 208 pages Language: English
Dimension: 137 x 18 x 213mm ISBN10: 1509532560
Weight: 272g ISBN13: 9781509532568
Publication Date: 06 Nov 2020 Publisher: Polity Press

About Author

John H. Arnold is Professor of Medieval History at the University of Cambridge.

Product Reviews


ÂJohn Arnold explains why medieval history matters urgently in the twenty-first century: historians of all periods and places as well as anyone interested in the Middle Ages should make it essential reading.

ÂJulia Smith, University of OxfordÂA tour-de-force that demonstrates what medieval history is in conception and practice. Arnold evokes the world of the Middle Ages from a vast array of sources – documentary, material, scientific and imaginative – and shows how methodological innovations and political changes in the globalized present offer a renewed call for undertaking the craft of medieval history.

ÂAnne E. Lester, Johns Hopkins University


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