The medieval period is one of the most fascinating and influential periods in human history. From the rise of powerful empires to the spread of new ideas and technologies, the medieval era was a time of great change and transformation.
For those looking to dive into this rich and complex period of history, there are countless books to choose from. In this article, we have compiled a list of the top 10 books about the medieval period, each offering a unique perspective on this captivating era.
Whether you are a scholar, a student, or simply a history buff, these books are sure to deepen your understanding and appreciation of the medieval world.
A Distant Mirror
The Calamitous 14th Century” by Barbara Tuchman – This book provides a sweeping and engaging portrait of the 14th century, a time of great upheaval and change in Europe. Tuchman was a Pulitzer Prize-winning historian and author known for her accessible and engaging writing style.
“The Crusades Through Arab Eyes” by Amin Maalouf
This book offers a perspective on the Crusades that is often overlooked in Western accounts: that of the Arabs who experienced the Crusades firsthand. Maalouf is a Lebanese author and journalist who has written extensively on the history and culture of the Middle East.
“The Time Traveler’s Guide to Medieval England” by Ian Mortimer
This book is a lively and immersive guide to daily life in medieval England, covering everything from food and drink to fashion and hygiene. Mortimer is a historian and novelist who specializes in the medieval period.
“The Norman Conquest: Battle of Hastings and the Fall of Anglo-Saxon England” by Marc Morris This book provides a comprehensive account of the Norman Conquest of England, including the events leading up to the Battle of Hastings in 1066. Morris is a historian and broadcaster who has written several books on medieval English history.
“The Middle Ages: A Very Short Introduction” by Miri Rubin
This book provides a concise and accessible overview of the medieval period, including its major historical events, cultural developments, and social structures. Rubin is a historian and professor of medieval and early modern history at Queen Mary University of London.
“The Black Death: A Personal History” by John Hatcher
This book provides a gripping and immersive account of the Black Death, one of the deadliest pandemics in human history. Hatcher is a historian and professor of economic and social history at the University of Cambridge.
“The Life and Times of Chaucer” by John Gardner
This book is a biographical account of the life of Geoffrey Chaucer, one of the most important writers of the medieval period. Gardner was a novelist, essayist, and literary critic known for his works of historical fiction.
“The Civilization of the Middle Ages” by Norman F. Cantor
This book is a comprehensive survey of the medieval period, covering its cultural, intellectual, and religious developments as well as its political and social structures. Cantor was a historian and professor of history, sociology, and comparative literature at New York University.
“The Oxford Illustrated History of Medieval Europe” edited by George Holmes
This book is a lavishly illustrated and expertly curated survey of medieval Europe, covering everything from its major historical events to its art and architecture. Holmes was a historian and professor of history at the University of Oxford.
“The Song of Roland” translated by Dorothy L. Sayers
This book is a translation of one of the most famous epic poems of the medieval period, the “Chanson de Roland.” Sayers was a renowned author, playwright, and translator, best known for her mystery novels featuring detective Lord Peter Wimsey.