Is history absolute? Is writing about the past an exact science, or is it more of a nebulous discipline open to different interpretations and points of view? These are important questions that noted historian Ian Mortimer says all serious writers of history must reflect on.
This new collection explores those ideas, providing an analysis on how the immensity of chronicling the past lends itself to a wide variety of audiences and contexts. Mortimer teaches that the purpose of history goes beyond simply relaying events of yesterday—it is about finding the meaning and conveying it to living and future generations. It is up to the audience to determine what history means to them, and it is up to the historian—or historical fiction writer—to determine what is and what isn’t history.What Isn’t History? collects together for the first time the selected articles and speeches on writing history and historical fiction from Ian Mortimer, the bestselling author of The Time Travelers Guide to Medieval England and the Time Traveller’s Guide to Elizabethan England.
This insightful look at the life of Henry V and the Battle of Agincourt casts new light on a period in history often held up as legend. A great English hero, Henry V was lionized by Shakespeare and revered by his countrymen for his religious commitment, his sense of justice, and his military victories. Here, noted historian and biographer Ian Mortimer takes a look at the man behind the legend and offers a clear, historically accurate, and realistic representation of a ruler who was all too human.
Mortimer digs up fascinating details about Henry V’s reign that have been lost to history, including the brutal strategies he adopted at the Battle of Agincourt. A fascinating look at the life of an iconic English king—ideal for students of medieval history.
Holding power for over fifty years starting in 1327, Edward III was one of England’s most influential kings—and one who shaped the course of English history. Revered as one of the country’s most illustrious leaders for centuries, he was also a usurper and a warmonger who ordered his uncle beheaded. A brutal man, to be sure, but also a brilliant one.
Noted historian Ian Mortimer offers us the first comprehensive look at the life of Edward III. The Perfect King was often the instigator of his own drama, but also overthrew tyrannous guardians as a teenager and ushered in a period of chivalric ideals. Mortimer traces how Edward’s reforms made feudal England a thriving, sophisticated country and one of Europe’s major military powers. Ideal for anyone fascinated by medieval history, this book provides new insight into Edward III’s lasting influence on the justice system, artistic traditions, language, and architecture of the country.
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