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Edward the Confessor (Penguin Monarchs)

The Sainted King

David Woodman



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Allen Lane
05 November 2020
A revealing portrait of this royal saint, one of the last kings of Anglo-Saxon England Edward the Confessor, one of the last kings of Anglo-Saxon England, is in part a figure of myths created in the later medieval period. David Woodman traces the course of his 24-year-long reign through the lens of contemporary sources, from the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle and the Vita dwardi Regis to the Bayeux Tapestry, to uncover the fraught and complex politics of his life. Edward was a shrewd politician who, having endured a long period of exile from England in his youth, ascended the throne in 1042 and came to control a highly sophisticated administration. Such was his power in the mid-eleventh century that the late Anglo-Saxon coinage from his reign is the only example in western Europe of a royal monopoly across such a large area.

What we know as 'England' had only relatively recently come into being and Woodman constructs a portrait of an age by untangling the truth from the saintly legend and shows how the events of Edward's reign led, through many twists and turns, to the Norman Conquest.
Imprint:   Allen Lane
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 186mm,  Width: 129mm,  Spine: 20mm
Weight:   224g
ISBN:   9780241383001
ISBN 10:   0241383005
Series:   Penguin Monarchs
Pages:   128
Publication Date:  
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Hardback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Dr David Woodman is Fellow and Senior Tutor of Robinson College, University of Cambridge. His previous publications include Charters of Northern Houses, The Long Twelfth-Century View of the Anglo-Saxon Past and Writing, Kingship and Power in Anglo-Saxon England.C

Reviews for Edward the Confessor (Penguin Monarchs): The Sainted King

David Woodman charts a shrewd course through the plentiful and often contradictory narrative sources for Edward the Confessor's reign. His book is particularly admirable for its recognition that, unusually for an English monarch, Edward proved still more influential dead than alive. -- Professor George Garnett

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