The traditional 'knight in shining armor' has become a staple figure in popular culture; the images of bloody battlefields, bustling feasting halls and courtly tournaments have been creatively interpreted many times in film and fiction. But what was the knight truly like? The world of the English medieval knight was complex and ever-changing. From the household of King John to the defenders of Elizabeth I, there was a great alteration in the social standing of knights, their equipment and appearance, and their involvement in politics and warfare.
In Knight, author Christopher Gravett, and expert on medieval history, describes how the knights evolved over four centuries of English and European history, the wars they fought, their lives both in peacetime and on campaign, the weapons they fought with, the armor and clothing they wore and their fascinating code and mythology of chivalry. The text is richly illustrated with images ranging from manuscript illustrations to modern artwork reconstructions, and many photographs of historic artifacts and sites.
This book contains material previously published in Warrior 48: English Medieval Knight 1200-1300, Warrior 58: English Medieval Knight 1300-1400, Warrior 35: English Medieval Knight 1400-1500 and Warrior 104: Tudor Knight. It also includes a new introduction and new linking text.
"Knight is a substantial cross between a deep, informational exploration of knighthood in 1200-1600 England and a rich, pictorial coffee table book on the same subject. Although in paperback edition, this is a heavy volume that features mostly black and white photography, along with a few full color photos of knighthood artifacts and paintings. These graphics are paired with detailed excursions into customs, weaponry, social systems, laws, and practices. This information is divided into a few main epochs or eras spanning, in total, four centuries (1200 to 1600 CE).
Knight is simply exhaustive, and the supporting graphics are equally helpful. This is a great read for anyone interested in this specialized subject area of English history and will appeal to all readers, regardless of age or reading ability. It serves as an excellent academic reference for children and adults interested in learning more about this facet of one European country’s culture and history." -Allena Tapia, San Francisco Book Review (March 2010)