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by Guy Halsall
Download Warfare and Society in the Barbarian West 450-900 (Warfare and History) fb2
Humanities
  • Author:
    Guy Halsall
  • ISBN:
    0415239400
  • ISBN13:
    978-0415239400
  • Genre:
  • Publisher:
    Routledge (June 20, 2003)
  • Pages:
    352 pages
  • Subcategory:
    Humanities
  • Language:
  • FB2 format
    1879 kb
  • ePUB format
    1468 kb
  • DJVU format
    1973 kb
  • Rating:
    4.7
  • Votes:
    696
  • Formats:
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Guy Halsall is lecturer in medieval history at the Birbeck College, University of London. In other words, and like some of the other works in the "Warfare and Society" collection, it is also excellent and useful for the so-called "general reader"

Guy Halsall is lecturer in medieval history at the Birbeck College, University of London. He as published widely on the social history and archaeology of Merovingian Gaul and on violence in early medieval society, including Settlement and Social Organization(1995). In other words, and like some of the other works in the "Warfare and Society" collection, it is also excellent and useful for the so-called "general reader". Having mentioned this, it may also be a bit "heavy going" at times, especially since the author clearly tries to be comprehensive and thorough, rather than privileging cheap effects, like some other authors tend to do.

Guy Halsall relates warfare to many aspects of medieval life, economy, society and politics. This book recovers its distinctiveness, looking at warfare in a rounded context in the British Isles and Western Europe between the end of the Roman Empire and the break-up of the Carolingian Empire. Examining the raising and organization of early medieval armies and looks at the conduct of campaigns, the survey also includes a study of the equipment of warriors and the horrific experience of battle as well as an analysis of medieval fortifications and siege warfare.

Warfare was an integral part of early medieval life

Warfare was an integral part of early medieval life. It had a character of its own and was neither a pale shadow of Roman military practice nor an insignificant precursor to the warfare of the central middle ages. In this work, Guy Halsall relates warfare to many aspects of medieval life, economy, society and politics. He examines the raising and organization of early medieval armies.

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Warfare was an integral part of early medieval life. This book looks at warfare in a rounded context in the British Isles and Western Europe between the end of the Roman Empire and the break-up of the Carolingian Empire. Stores ▾. Audible Barnes & Noble Walmart eBooks Apple Books Google Play Abebooks Book Depository Alibris Indigo Better World Books IndieBound. This book recovers its distinctiveness, looking at warfare in a rounded context in the British Isles and Western Europe between the end of the Roman Empire and. Specifications. Taylor & Francis Ltd (Sales), Routledge.

west 450-900 Halsall, Guy Taylor&Francis 9780415239400 : Warfare was an integral part of early medieval life.

Warfare and society in the barbarian west 450-900 Halsall, Guy Taylor&Francis 9780415239400 : Warfare was an integral part of early medieval life. This book looks at warfare in a rounded conte.

WEST, 450–900 Warfare was an integral part of early medieval life. Guy Halsall is lecturer in medieval history at the University of York.

WARFARE AND SOCIETY IN THE BARBARIAN WEST, 450–900 Warfare was an integral part of early medieval life. He has published widely on the social history and archaeology of Merovingian Gaul and on violence in early medieval society, including Settlement and Social Organisation. It is a definitive statement on the subject, which will not quickly be superceded. History - The Journal of the Historical Association. We provide complimentary e-inspection copies of primary textbooks to instructors considering our books for course adoption.

Guy Halsall relates warfare to many aspects of medieval life, economy, society and politics.This book recovers its distinctiveness, looking at warfare in a rounded context in the British Isles and Western Europe between the end of the Roman Empire and the break-up of the Carolingian Empire.

Examining the raising and organization of early medieval armies and looks at the conduct of campaigns, the survey also includes a study of the equipment of warriors and the horrific experience of battle as well as an analysis of medieval fortifications and siege warfare.

Warfare and Society in the Barbarian West uses historical and archaeological evidence in a rigorous and sophisticated fashion. It stresses regional variations but also places Anglo-Saxon England in the mainstream of the military developments in this era, and in the process, provides an outstanding resource for students of all levels.


Gozragore
I have owned and used this book since 2004, and open it again every time I needed to check up something on warfare during the period reviewed by this book (AD 450-900). As reviewers on both the UK site and the US site have mentioned, it is indeed both "essential" and "the best scholarly treatment" on this topic, at least the best that I know of. So, why write another praising review?

There are several possible answers. One is that, somewhat to my surprise, there is currently only ONE review of this book on each site. A related point is that this rather excellent book may therefore not have attracted all the attentions that it really deserves, and this is irrespective of whether the reader shares the author's point of view, opinions, and thesis, or not. A third point is that I see the need to list and emphasize the many qualities of this book and author, most of which are also on display in his most recent book on "The Worlds of Arthur". The last point is that, on some elements, I may not entirely agree with the two other reviewers and have a slightly different perspective.

The first, and most obvious, quality of this book is that the author "knows his stuff" and takes a lot of trouble to argue and explain his points in-depth. This is what might lead me to slightly rephrasing the point of view expressed by another reviewer. This book is certainly written by a scholar, and an excellent one, but it is not quite (or not only?) a "scholarly treatment". In other words, and like some of the other works in the "Warfare and Society" collection, it is also excellent and useful for the so-called "general reader". Having mentioned this, it may also be a bit "heavy going" at times, especially since the author clearly tries to be comprehensive and thorough, rather than privileging cheap effects, like some other authors tend to do. So, substance over form, certainly, but I would somewhat qualify the "scholarly treatment" expression.

A second point to highlight and emphasize is the author's intellectual honesty and methods. One is that he does not pretend to know, as other authors sometimes do when writing about the Dark Ages and even tend to present their own thesis as based on "facts", rather than the speculative interpretations which they happen to be (at best). In fact, and as another reviewer mentioned, the book is littered with cases where the author mentions that we essentially do not know and that, given the current state of our sources (both written and archaeological), in many cases we can't know for sure. This may be true of any period in Ancient or Medieval History, of course, although it seems to be particularly the case for the so-called "Dark Ages", and for the period between AD 450 and AD 700 or so in particular. Again, this statement is more or less true depending upon which sub-period and which region of Western Europe you may be considering, and it is also probably less true than it was fifty or sixty years ago.

Then you have the book's structure and contents. There are some 10 chapters and over 230 pages (counting the appendix but not the notes or the bibliography) dealing with the various aspects of warfare and its links with society. There is, however, not very much on naval warfare and this is probably the only significant limitation of the book. One example of the qualities and methods displayed in this book is Chapter 6 on the size of armies during the period. Halsall clearly belongs to the "minimalist" school and tends (like many others, such as Haldon for the Byzantine world) to follow Delbrück's much older assertions about the small sizes of armies, especially during the Late Roman Empire and the Middle Ages. Halsall, using both the written sources and what is known of the logistics, the social and the economic "infrastructures" of the time, demonstrates (rather convincingly in my view) that armies of a few thousand (and up to 10000) were the norm, if there was one, and that armies of tens of thousands were exceptional, largely impractical and created huge logistical problems to move and to feed. He does however admit that this view is disputed (see Bernard Bachrach, in particular) and that larger kingdoms or Empires (the Merovingians and Carolingians, in particular) could (and did on occasion) raise significantly larger armies, but with difficulty and at huge costs.

Finally, some of the excellent points discussed and emphasized by the author also need to be mentioned as illustrations (although there are also other very good ones which I have not mentioned). One is the emphasis on ravaging enemy territory, but to draw out the enemy and fight him in the field (according to the author), rather than to destroy his resources and would be increasingly the case from the 10th century onwards. The author also shows the similarities (but also some differences) of warfare across western period and how practices, tactics and equipment evolved. Finally, he shows how changes occurred, insisting in particular on the role of Viking warfare which, in itself, could have been the subject of the whole book.
Andriodtargeted
Detailed scholarly study of western society at the start of the "dark ages".
Hystana
As a professional historian who has done a lot of work on the 5th and 6th centuries in western Europe, let me say that I am extremely impressed with this work.
This book is the best and most careful survey of the evidence that has ever been written. Because it is about the early Middle Ages, it spends a fair amount of time telling the reader what we don't know and can't know. If that will drive you crazy, save your money. However, it is the only honest approach, and as a result the positive statements and the interpretations offered are worth all that much more.
Small gripe: One paragraph on Offa's dike and other large earthworks of the period?
Small warning: No maritime history.
Those interested in the way the Vikings transformed early medieval warfare will be particularly interested.
A vast and up-to-date bibliography which for a few readers will be worth the price of the book.