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Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your Bookshelf

Here is a list of the best Medieval History books, some I have read myself, some that I did research on, and all have great reviews!

1. The Oxford History of Medieval Europe (2002)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfThis is the most authoritative account of life in Medieval Europe between the fall of the Roman Empire and the coming of the Renaissance.Full coverage is given to all aspects of life in a thousand-year period which saw the creation of western civilization: from the empires and kingdoms of Charlemagne, the Byzantines, and the Hundred Years War, to the ideals of the crusades, the building of great cathedrals and the social catastrophe of the Black Death; the cultural worlds of chivalric knights, popular festivals, and new art forms. The chapters show the movement of the centre of gravity in European life…
Author(s): George Holmes

2. Medieval Christianity: A New History (2015)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfFor many, the medieval world seems dark and foreign—an often brutal and seemingly irrational time of superstition, miracles, and strange relics. The aggressive pursuit of heretics and attempts to control the “Holy Land” might come to mind. Yet the medieval world produced much that is part of our world today, including universities, the passion for Roman architecture and the development of the gothic style, pilgrimage, the emergence of capitalism, and female saints.   This new narrative history of medieval Christianity, spanning the period 500 to 1500 CE, attempts to integrate what…
Author(s): Kevin Madigan

3. The History of Medieval Europe (2019)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfIn 410 Alaric, King of the Visigoths, sacked the city of Rome.Never again would the Roman Empire regain complete control over the western half of Europe.Yet, this would not be the civilization in Europe.After a brief period of anarchy and turmoil various nations across the continent rose up and forged new ideas and identities that not only drew upon the classical past but upon them and developed them far more than their Roman and Greek forebears could envisage.Lynn Thorndike’s remarkable book The History of Medieval Europe explores the development of Europe and its civilization, from the decline of…
Author(s): Lynn Thorndike

4. The New Penguin Atlas of Medieval History: Revised Edition (Hist Atlas) (1992)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfThis is a revised edition of “The Penguin Atlas of Medieval History”….
Author(s): Colin McEvedy, David Woodroffe

5. The Plantagenets: The Warrior Kings and Queens Who Made England (2014)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfThe first Plantagenet kings inherited a blood-soaked realm from the Normans and transformed it into an empire that stretched at its peak from Scotland to Jerusalem. In this epic narrative history of courage, treachery, ambition, and deception, Dan Jones resurrects the unruly royal dynasty that preceded the Tudors. They produced England’s best and worst kings: Henry II and his wife Eleanor of Aquitaine, twice a queen and the most famous woman in Christendom; their son Richard the Lionheart, who fought Saladin in the Third Crusade; and his conniving brother King…
Author(s): Dan Jones

6. The Time Traveler’s Guide to Medieval England: A Handbook for Visitors to the Fourteenth Century (2011)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfNow in paperback, a literary time machine that takes readers into the sights, smells, and tastes of the fourteenth century—a book that is revolutionary in its concept and startling in its portrayal of humanity.The past is a foreign country. This is your guidebook. A time machine has just transported you back into the fourteenth century. What do you see? How do you dress? How do you earn a living and how much are you paid? What sort of food will you be offered by a peasant or a monk or a lord? And more important, where will you stay? The Time Traveler’s Guide to Medieval England is not your typical…
Author(s): Ian Mortimer

7. A Short History of the Middle Ages, Fifth Edition (2018)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfIn this newest edition of her bestselling book, Barbara H. Rosenwein integrates the history of European, Byzantine, and Islamic medieval cultures—as well as their Eurasian connections—in a dynamic narrative. The text has been significantly updated to reflect growing interest in the Islamic world and Mediterranean region. Stunning plates featuring art and architecture weave together events, mentalities, and aesthetics. Medievalist Riccardo Cristiani authors a new feature on material culture that examines the intricacies of manuscript…
Author(s): Barbara H. Rosenwein

8. A History of the Middle Ages, 300–1500 (2016)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfThis clear and comprehensive text covers the Middle Ages from the classical era to the late medieval period. Distinguished historian John Riddle provides a cogent analysis of the rulers, wars, and events—both natural and human—that defined the medieval era. Taking a broad geographical perspective, Riddle includes northern and eastern Europe, Byzantine civilization, and the Islamic states. Each, he convincingly shows, offered values and institutions—religious devotion, toleration and intolerance, laws, ways of thinking, and changing roles of women—that presaged modernity. In addition to traditional topics…
Author(s): John M. Riddle, Winston Black

9. The Dark Ages 476-918 A.D. (2017)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfYet Charles Oman shines light upon this frequently forgotten period and explores how even though Rome had fallen and many changes had occurred there were also great continuities. Although Rome may have fallen the Eastern Empire, centered at Constantinople, continued to thrive, in many ways continuing what the Roman Empire had always done since the days of Augustus, but also developing new judicial systems to govern its vast lands as well as encouraging new forms of art and architecture. Even in the power vacuum that was left after 476 A.D. Western Europe…
Author(s): Charles Oman

10. A Short History of the Middle Ages, Fourth Edition (2014)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfBarbara H. Rosenwein’s bestselling survey text continues to stand out by integrating the history of three medieval civilizations (European, Byzantine, and Islamic) in a lively narrative that is complemented beautifully by 70 full-color plates, 46 maps, and 13 genealogies, many of them new to this edition. The fourth edition begins with an essay entitled “Why the Middle Ages Matter Today,” and the book now covers East Central Europe in some depth. This edition includes three “Seeing the Middle Ages” features, each discussing a work of art in depth: An Ivory Diptych of Christ and the Virgin, Saint Luke, Gospel Book of Otto…
Author(s): Barbara H. Rosenwein

11. A History of Medieval Heresy and Inquisition (Critical Issues in World and International History) (2011)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfIn this concise and balanced survey of heresy and inquisition in the Middle Ages, Jennifer Kolpacoff Deane explores the increasingly bitter encounters between piety, reform, dissent, and the institutional Church between 1100 and 1500. Although the loaded terms of ‘heresy’ and ‘orthodoxy’ employed by ecclesiastical officials suggest a clear division between right and wrong, that division was in fact vigorously contested by medieval people at all levels of society. Deane investigates key issues that sparked confrontations between Christians, including access to scripture, apostolic models of…
Author(s): Jennifer Kolpacoff Deane

12. A History of Medieval Spain (Cornell Paperbacks) (1983)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfMedieval Spain is brilliantly recreated, in all its variety and richness, in this comprehensive survey. Likely to become the standard work in English, the book treats the entire Iberian Peninsula and all the people who inhabited it, from the coming of the Visigoths in the fifth century to the reign of Ferdinand and Isabella. Integrating a wealth of information about the diverse peoples, institutions, religions, and customs that flourished in the states that are now Spain and Portugal, Joseph F. O’Callaghan focuses on the continuing attempts to…
Author(s): Joseph F. O’Callaghan

13. An Environmental History of Medieval Europe (Cambridge Medieval Textbooks) (2014)

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your BookshelfAs the very first book of its kind, An Environmental History of Medieval Europe provides a highly original survey of medieval relations with the natural world. Engaging with the interdisciplinary enterprise of environmental history, it examines the way in which natural forces affected people, how people changed their surroundings, and how they thought about the world around them. Exploring key themes in medieval history – including the decline of Rome, religious doctrine, and the long fourteenth century – Hoffmann draws fresh conclusions about…
Author(s): Richard Hoffmann

Best Medieval History Books that Should be on Your Bookshelf

We highly recommend you to buy all paper or e-books in a legal way, for example, on Amazon. But sometimes it might be a need to dig deeper beyond the shiny book cover. Before making a purchase, you can visit resources like Genesis and download some medieval history books mentioned below at your own risk. Once again, we do not host any illegal or copyrighted files, but simply give our visitors a choice and hope they will make a wise decision.

Childhood, Orphans and Underage Heirs in Medieval Rural England: Growing up in the Village

Author(s): Miriam Müller
Publisher: Springer International Publishing,Palgrave Macmillan, Year: 2019, Size: 2 Mb, Download: pdf
ID: 2310158

A New History of Medieval Japanese Theatre: Noh and Kyōgen from 1300 to 1600

Author(s): Noel John Pinnington
Publisher: Springer International Publishing;Palgrave Macmillan, Year: 2019, Size: 2 Mb, Download: pdf
ID: 2354704

The Routledge History of Medieval Magic

Author(s): Sophie Page (Editor), Catherine Rider (Editor)
Publisher: Routledge, Year: 2019, Size: 15 Mb, Download: pdf
ID: 2366021

A History of Early Medieval Europe: From 476–911

Author(s): Margaret Deanesly
Publisher: Routledge, Year: 2019, Size: 5 Mb, Download: epub
ID: 2400253

Medieval Philosophy

Author(s): Peter Adamson
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA, Year: 2019, Size: 3 Mb, Download: epub
ID: 2419199

The Myth of the Medieval Jewish Moneylender: Volume II

Author(s): Julie L. Mell
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan, Year: 2018, Size: 2 Mb, Download: pdf
ID: 2152562

Affective and Emotional Economies in Medieval and Early Modern Europe

Author(s): Andreea Marculescu, Charles-Louis Morand Métivier (eds.)
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan, Year: 2018, Size: 3 Mb, Download: pdf
ID: 2152977

John Adams and the Constitutional History of the Medieval British Empire

Author(s): James Muldoon
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan, Year: 2018, Size: 2 Mb, Download: pdf
ID: 2153632

Land and Credit: Mortgages in the Medieval and Early Modern European Countryside

Author(s): Chris Briggs,Jaco Zuijderduijn (eds.)
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan, Year: 2018, Size: 4 Mb, Download: pdf
ID: 2203766

Arab Christians and the Quran from the Origins of Islam to the Medieval Period

Author(s): Beaumont Mark
Publisher: Brill, Year: 2018, Size: 1 Mb, Download: pdf
ID: 2213380

Please note that this booklist is not absolute. Some books are truly hot items according to The New York Times, others are composed by unknown authors. On top of that, you can always find additional tutorials and courses on Coursera, Udemy or edX, for example. Are there any other relevant links you could recommend? Leave a comment if you have any feedback on the list.

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