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Great Invasion

Norman Conquest of 1066

Format: Hardback
Publisher: Bailey Bros.& Swinfen Ltd, Kent, United Kingdom
Published: 12th Nov 1973
Dimensions: w 140mm h 220mm
ISBN-10: 0561001480
ISBN-13: 9780561001487
Barcode No: 9780561001487

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Kirkus US
1066 and so what? This is another of Mr. Alderman's shallow speculative reconstructions (hedged, it's true, with a plethora of probablys and perhapses) that fails to convey the import of the event. Very little is spelled out except conversations and lines of descent (typically Harold is told regarding his brother Tostig's misrule that "the people have many" unidentified "grievances" and William promises his adherents "good government"); there are frequent "long and arduous" journeys that take up (the reader's) time, and whereas "Tostig did not come to Norway to enjoy the scenery," the reader is asked to. The critical difference between the social order in England and Normandy is never precisely established (more or less harsh feudalism won't do) and the conduct of the battle at Hastings (i.e. which forces were deployed when) does not accord with standard histories. Also erroneous is crediting William with establishing the long-standing system of national taxation. Franklin Hamilton's 1066 is a far superior chronicle of the pivotal year, while Ellacott's Norman Invasion is an excellent examination of causes, circumstances and consequences. Fortunately no one needs this limp look-see. (Kirkus Reviews)