Distant Mirror: The Calamitous 14th Century, A

Barbara W. Tuchman
"Wise, witty, and wonderful . . . A great book, in a great historical tradition." CommentaryThe 14th century gives us back two contradictory images: a glittering time of crusades and castles, cathedrals and chivalry, and a dark time of ferocity and spiritual agony, a world plunged into a chaos of war, fear and the Plague. Barbara Tuchman anatomizes the century, revealing both the great rhythms of history and the grain and texture of domestic life as it was lived.


Reviewed: 2021-01-19
Huge book; short review.

Voluminous, informed ... but kinda boring: how was all that made so ... boring? Good passages, but overall just too much work. Look at how many other reviewers gave up on "A Distant Mirror" (I finished)

Structurally, the problem is that no real superstructure was presented, just a long disconnected series of follies, deaths & betrothments. One hundred years war, the plague shouldn't be boring, but successfully, they were.

5 stars for content
2 stars for interest, reader captivation
3 stars for me.
Reviewed: 2019-05-17
I spent so long taking notes on years ago in the SCA -never thought I'd need those notes for my thesis!
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@aemostrom completed #distantmirrorthe... on 2014-08-20