Sir John Mandeville left his native St Albans in 1322 and died in Liege in 1372.
'Both reader and author have marvellous fun. Some ten or dozen emperors or empresses are stabbed, hacked to pieces, poisoned or otherwise brutally murderred. Few varieties of curious sex are not given a showing. And as for the burning of Rome, throwing Christians to the lions, and the sacking of the temple at Jerusalem - what an opportunity they provide for Burgess's rumbustious style' SUNDAY TELEGRAPH