The Last Duel: A True Story of Trial by Combat in Medieval France

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9780099457237: The Last Duel: A True Story of Trial by Combat in Medieval France
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The gripping, atmospheric true story of the "duel to end all duels" in medieval France: a trial by combat pitting a knight against a squire accused of violating the knight's beautiful young wife.

In 1386, a few days after Christmas, a massive crowd gathered at a Paris monastery to watch the two men fight a duel to the death - a trial by combat meant to 'prove' which man's cause was right in God's sight. The dramatic true story of the knight, the squire, and the lady unfolds during the tumultuous fourteenth century, a time of war, plague, and anarchy, as well as of honour, chivalry, and courtly love. The notorious quarrel appears in many histories of France, but no writer has recounted it in full, until now.

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Review:

"'a genuinely suspenseful and well written piece of narrative'. - The Spectator"

"'succeeds brilliantly in combining page-turning intensity with eye-opening insights' Sunday Times"

"'Jager knows his territory well; we learn a good deal about medieval armor and weaponry, fashion and custom, the legal system and sexual ideas, court politics and religion. His skilful prose quickly ensnares readers in the web of the characters' invention, allowing no escape until very near the end- Sex, savagery, and high-level political maneuvers energize a splendid piece of popular history.' Kirkus Reviews"

"'A riveting account that will satisfy general readers and historians alike.' Publishers Weekly'As enthralling and engrossing as any [story] about a high-profile celebrity scandal today.' Booklist (starred)"

From the Publisher:

An engrossing work of historical intrigue in the tradition of Barbara Tuchmann's A Distant Mirror and Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose

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