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Written following the collapse of Rome's secular control over western Europe, the History of Gregory (c. AD 539-594) is a fascinating exploration of the events that shaped sixth-century France. This volume contains all ten books from the work, the last seven of which provide an in-depth description of Gregory's own era, in which he played an important role as Bishop of Tours. With skill and eloquence, Gregory brings the age vividly to life, as he relates the exploits of missionaries, martyrs, kings and queens - including the quarrelling sons of Lothar I, and the ruthless Queen Fredegund, third wife of Chilperic. Portraying an age of staggering cruelty and rapid change, this is a powerful depiction of the turbulent progression of faith at a time of political and social chaos.
Georgius Florentius Gregorius, better known to posterity as Gregory, Bishop of Tours, was born about 538 to a highly distinguished Gallo-Roman family in Clermont in the region of Auvergne. Best known for his 10-book Histories (often called the History of the Franks), Gregory left us detailed accounts of his own times as well as those of the early Merovingian kings, known as the "long-haired kings," who united the Franks and took control of most of Gaul in the late fifth and early sixth century. Although he is one of the most important historians of pre-modern times, the complex, apparently disconnected, elements of Gregory's work are often difficult for today's readers to understand. This selected, new translation is composed of extensive sections from Books II to X and follows in a connected narrative the political events of the Histories from the appearance of the first Merovingian kings, Merovech, Childeric, and Clovis to the last years of the reigns of Guntram and Childebert II in the late sixth century. This book is designed to introduce new readers, and even experienced ones, to the political world (secular and ecclesiastical) of sixth-century Gaul and to provide an up-to-date guide to reading the bishop of Tours' fascinating account of his times. Included in this volume are twenty-one drawings by Jean-Paul Laurens, a nineteenth-century French historical artist and interpreter of the Merovingians.
The author constructs a novelistic account of the life of Clovis, King of the Franks (ca. 466-511), based on the historical writings of Gregory of Tours, Fredegar, and the anonymous writer of the Liber Historiae Francorum. Annotation copyrighted by Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
This new translation offers a faithful yet accessible English-language rendering of the twelfth-century Gesta Francorum et aliorum Hierosolomitanorum, the earliest known Latin account of the First Crusade. Although an anonymous work, it has become the exemplar for all later histories and retellings of the First Crusade. As such, it is filled with vivid descriptions of the hardships suffered by the crusaders, with deeds of personal heroism, with courtly intrigues, with betrayal and cowardice, and with a relentless faith that would see the attainment of the desired goal: the capture of Jerusalem by the crusaders in 1095. There is a great deal of mystery surrounding this anonymous account, especially in regard to its authorship; place, date, and purpose of composition; narrative methodology; and point of view. It is also a sweeping tale that swiftly moves from the first preaching of the crusade by Pope Urban II, to the ragtag and ultimately doomed effort of the popular People's Crusade, and then the more disciplined and concerted campaign by the French and Norman nobility that led to the conquest of the Holy Land by the crusaders. Based on the latest scholarly research, including a substantive introduction that explores the questions surrounding the Gesta and its historical context, this definitive translation will bring the First Crusade and its era to life for all readers.
Ammianus Marcellinus was the last great Roman historian, and his writings rank alongside those of Livy and Tacitus. The Later Roman Empire chronicles a period of twenty-five years during Marcellinus' own lifetime, covering the reigns of Constantius, Julian, Jovian, Valentinian I, and Valens, and providing eyewitness accounts of significant military events including the Battle of Strasbourg and the Goth's Revolt. Portraying a time of rapid and dramatic change, Marcellinus describes an Empire exhausted by excessive taxation, corruption, the financial ruin of the middle classes and the progressive decline in the morale of the army. In this magisterial depiction of the closing decades of the Roman Empire, we can see the seeds of events that were to lead to the fall of the city, just twenty years after Marcellinus' death.
The Franks first come to light in the third century A.D. as a group of barbarians living in the marshy lowlands of the Rhine frontier of the Roman Empire. By 800 they had become the political heirs of the Romans in the West.

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