Course Code
HIST 0870
Course Type
Subject Credit
Course Availability

Each seminar runs only if there is sufficient student demand. This seminar tells the story of two rival dynasties, and their struggle for dominance in north-western Europe over the course of the central Middle Ages. In England’s case, moreover, this conflict was instrumental in creating one of the most celebrated documents in history: the Magna Carta. All in all, it is an exhilarating tale of politics, sex and violence in a world of knights and castles, peopled by some of the most interesting personalities of the time: figures like Eleanor of Aquitaine, Thomas Becket, Richard the Lionheart, St Louis, and so on and so forth. However, there is much more to it than the mechanics of state-building in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. In this module, we will also look very closely at related themes, such as ‘Church and State’ in the Middle Ages; gender and the nature of queenly power; community, society and culture; and chivalry, crusading and holy war.