1381: The Year of the Peasants' Revolt - download pdf or read online

By Juliet Barker

ISBN-10: 0674735528

ISBN-13: 9780674735521

Written with the fluency readers have come to count on from Juliet Barker, 1381: The 12 months of the Peasants Revolt offers an account of the 1st nice renowned rebellion in England and its historical past, and paints on a large canvas an image of English lifestyles in medieval instances. Skeptical of latest chroniclers bills of occasions, Barker attracts at the judicial assets of the indictments and court docket lawsuits that the uprising.

This emphasis deals a clean standpoint at the so-called Peasants riot and provides intensity and texture to the historic narrative. one of the ebook s arguments are that the rebels believed they have been the unswerving matters of the king appearing in his pursuits, and that the boy-king Richard II sympathized with their grievances.

Barker tells how and why a various and not likely crew of standard women and men from each nook of britain from servants and workers dwelling off wages, throughout the village elite who served as bailiffs, constables, and stewards, to the ranks of the gentry united in armed uprising opposed to church and nation to call for a thorough political time table. Had it been applied, this schedule might have reworked English society and expected the French Revolution through 400 years. 1381: The 12 months of the Peasants Revolt is a vital reassessment of the rebellion and a desirable, unique examine of medieval existence in England s cities and countryside."

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Additional resources for 1381: The Year of the Peasants' Revolt

Sample text

It is no coincidence that Richard’s reign would see an extraordinary flowering of English literature, from Chaucer to Langland, Gower and the anonymous author of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. English was not just the new language of choice among poets. The ability to read and write in the vernacular had percolated down through society. 20 Smith was exceptional but not unique. One of the most striking and unusual features of the great revolt would be its emphasis on the written word. The rebels set out to destroy the records which restricted their freedoms but also to replace them THE STATE OF THE NATION 37 with new documents enshrining in perpetuity their newly won liberties; they communicated by letter and written proclamation; and, perhaps most significant of all, at least six letters, purportedly written by John Balle, were in circulation at the time of the revolt and preserved by contemporary chroniclers as examples of the sort of revolutionary rhetoric which had inflamed the people to rebel.

And there was no one in the entire kingdom more powerful than John of Gaunt. The deaths of his three older brothers had now made him the eldest of Edward 14 1381 III’s legitimate sons but, since the age of twenty-two, he had also been the richest nobleman in the country having inherited, through his wife, the dukedom of Lancaster and earldoms of Derby, Leicester and Lincoln. 16 Gaunt was obviously aware that, once his ailing father died, his young nephew would be all that stood between himself and the throne.

By this means Gaunt had obtained a claim, by right of his wife, to the throne of Castile, which was currently occupied by his father-in-law’s murderer, the pro-French Henry of Trastamara. If Gaunt could gain acceptance of his claim by persuasion or main force he would not only win himself a kingdom but also remove one of France’s most important allies, thereby protecting both England and Gascony from the depredations of the much-feared Castilian navy. In 1372, therefore, with the approval of Edward III and his advisers, Gaunt had formally adopted the title ‘king of Castile and Léon’; a few months later his younger brother Edmund of Langley married Constanza’s sister Isabella to reinforce the link between the two dynasties and prevent anyone else acquiring a claim to Pedro’s former throne.

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1381: The Year of the Peasants' Revolt by Juliet Barker


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