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From the Publisher
Barbara W. Tuchman-the acclaimed author of the Pulitzer
Prize-winning classic The Guns of August-once again
marshals her gift for character, history, and sparkling prose to
compose an astonishing portrait of medieval Europe.
The fourteenth century reflects two contradictory images: on the
one hand, a glittering age of crusades, cathedrals, and chivalry;
on the other, a world plunged into chaos and spiritual agony. In
this revelatory work, Barbara W. Tuchman examines not only the
great rhythms of history but the grain and texture of domestic
life: what childhood was like; what marriage meant; how money,
taxes, and war dominated the lives of serf, noble, and clergy
alike. Granting her subjects their loyalties, treacheries, and
guilty passions, Tuchman re-creates the lives of proud cardinals,
university scholars, grocers and clerks, saints and mystics,
lawyers and mercenaries, and, dominating all, the knight-in all his
valor and "furious follies," a "terrible worm in an iron
Praise for A Distant Mirror
"Beautifully written, careful and thorough in its scholarship . .
. What Ms. Tuchman does superbly is to tell how it was. .
. . No one has ever done this better."-The New York
Review of Books
"A beautiful, extraordinary book . . . Tuchman at the top of her
powers . . . She has done nothing finer."-The Wall
"Wise, witty, and wonderful . . . a great book, in a great