A magisterial history of the origins, reality, and legend of the knight
“A carefully researched, concise, readable, and entertaining account of an institution that remains a part of the Western imagination.” —Los Angeles Times
Born out of the chaos of the early Middle Ages, the armored and highly mobile knight revolutionized warfare and quickly became a mythic figure in history. From the Knights Templars and English knighthood to the crusades and chivalry, The Knight in History, by acclaimed medievalist Frances Gies, bestselling coauthor of Life in a Medieval Castle, paints a remarkable true picture of knighthood—exploring the knight’s earliest appearance as an agent of lawless violence, his reemergence as a dynamic social entity, his eventual disappearance from the European stage, and his transformation into Western culture’s most iconic hero.
Frances (1915–2013) and Joseph (1916–2006) Gies were the world’s bestselling historians of medieval Europe. Together and separately, they wrote more than twenty books, which col-lectively have sold more than a million copies. They lived in Michigan.
“Illuminates the evolution of knighthood” — New York Times Book Review
“A carefully researched, concise, readable, and entertaining account of an institution that remains a part of the Western imagination.” — Los Angeles Times
“Splendid … This detailed look, focusing as it often does on individual men, shows the knight in a new and more interesting light, whether Roland or Galahad.” — Washington Post
“Gies’s writing is fresh and direct, her scholarship is exact, and she approaches her subject with excitement.” — The New Yorker