The Great Courses: Medieval History

11 books in series
4.5 out of 5 stars 12,972 ratings

1066: The Year That Changed Everything Publisher's Summary

With this exciting and historically rich six-lecture course, experience for yourself the drama of this dynamic year in medieval history, centered on the landmark Norman Conquest. Taking you from the shores of Scandinavia and France to the battlefields of the English countryside, these lectures will plunge you into a world of fierce Viking warriors, powerful noble families, politically charged marriages, tense succession crises, epic military invasions, and much more.

Your journey starts in the 10th and early 11th centuries, when power in England and Normandy was very much up for grabs - and when the small island nation was under continuous assault from Viking forces. Professor Paxton helps you gain a solid grasp of the complex political alliances and shifting relationships between figures such as Emma of Normandy, Cnut, and Edward the Confessor. She also recounts for you the two seminal battles that pitted England against the Scandinavians and the Normans: the Battle of Stamford Bridge and the Battle of Hastings. Throughout the lectures, Dr. Paxton opens your eyes to continued debates and controversies over this year and offers her own take on the Norman Conquest's enduring legacy and the fascinating results of this epic clash. By exploring the year 1066 – what led up to it, what happened during that fateful year, and what changed as a result - you'll gain a sharper perspective and a greater understanding of everything that would come afterward.

©2012 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2012 The Great Courses
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    • 1066: The Year That Changed Everything

    • By: Jennifer Paxton, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Jennifer Paxton
    • Length: 3 hrs
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,409
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,260
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,258

    With this exciting and historically rich six-lecture course, experience for yourself the drama of this dynamic year in medieval history, centered on the landmark Norman Conquest. Taking you from the shores of Scandinavia and France to the battlefields of the English countryside, these lectures will plunge you into a world of fierce Viking warriors, powerful noble families, politically charged marriages, tense succession crises, epic military invasions, and much more.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • History brought to life

    • By Joshua on 07-10-13

    Regular price: $9.95

    • The Medieval World

    • By: Dorsey Armstrong, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Dorsey Armstrong
    • Length: 18 hrs and 16 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 2,202
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 2,007
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,995

    Far from being a time of darkness, the Middle Ages was an essential period in the grand narrative of Western history. But what was it like to actually live in those extraordinary times? Now you can find out.These 36 lectures provide a different perspective on the society and culture of the Middle Ages: one that entrenches you in the daily human experience of living during this underappreciated era.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Prof. Armstrong is an rockstar. Loved her class.

    • By Rocco on 10-04-13

    Regular price: $41.95

    • The Early Middle Ages

    • By: Philip Daileader, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Philip Daileader
    • Length: 12 hrs and 32 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,347
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,209
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,202

    The Early Middle Ages-the years from A.D. 650 to 1000-were crucial to Europe's future social and political development. These 24 lectures trace a journey from Scandinavia across northern and central Europe to the farthest reaches of the Byzantine and Islamic empires, providing an exciting new look an era often simply called the "Dark Ages."

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Great professor!

    • By Nicolas Cobelo on 11-16-17

    Regular price: $34.95

    • The Vikings

    • By: Kenneth W. Harl, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Kenneth W. Harl
    • Length: 17 hrs and 59 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 2,925
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 2,656
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 2,639

    As raiders and explorers, the Vikings played a decisive role in the formation of Latin Christendom, and particularly of western Europe. Now, in a series of 36 vivid lectures by an honored teacher and classical scholar, you have the opportunity to understand this remarkable race as never before, studying the Vikings not only as warriors, but in all of the other roles in which they were equally extraordinary - merchants, artists, kings, raiders, seafarers, shipbuilders, and creators of a remarkable literature of myths and sagas.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Enthralling Presentation of a Fascinating Subject

    • By AppleCedAR on 09-14-13

    Regular price: $41.95

    • The Story of Medieval England: From King Arthur to the Tudor Conquest

    • By: Jennifer Paxton, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Jennifer Paxton
    • Length: 19 hrs and 7 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      5 out of 5 stars 1,623
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,477
    • Story
      5 out of 5 stars 1,455

    These 36 lectures tell the remarkable story of a tumultuous thousand-year period in the history of England. Dominated by war, conquest, and the struggle to balance the stability brought by royal power with the rights of the governed, it was a period that put into place the foundation of much of the world we know today. As you journey through this largely chronological narrative you'll see key themes emerge, including the assimilation of successive waves of invaders, the tense relationship between kings and the nobility, and the constant battles over money and taxation.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • I'm sad it's over!

    • By Claudia Murray on 04-24-14

    Regular price: $41.95

    • The Era of the Crusades

    • By: Kenneth W. Harl, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Kenneth W. Harl
    • Length: 18 hrs and 17 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 454
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 405
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 404

    What were the forces that led to one of history's most protracted and legendary periods of conflict? How did they affect the three great civilizations that participated in them? And, ultimately, why did they end and what did they accomplish? In these 36 lectures, you'll look at the "big picture" of the Crusades as an ongoing period of conflict involving Western Christendom (we would now call it Western Europe), the Byzantine Empire, and the Muslim world.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Fascinating background

    • By Tad Davis on 08-31-13

    Regular price: $41.95

    • Medieval Europe: Crisis and Renewal

    • By: Teofilo F. Ruiz, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Teofilo F. Ruiz
    • Length: 11 hrs and 56 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 70
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 63
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 61

    The Middle Ages harshly tested every aspect of human perseverance, imagination, and survival. Living conditions were squalid for almost everyone except the ruling elite, and most of the riches of Western culture were preserved in monasteries and on other continents. And into this setting came widespread famines, prolonged wars, and plagues that marked Europe's late medieval period as one of the most harrowing in recorded history.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Excellent Course & Presentation

    • By Shawn on 12-30-13

    Regular price: $34.95

    • The High Middle Ages

    • By: Philip Daileader, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Philip Daileader
    • Length: 12 hrs and 25 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 819
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 736
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 729

    At the dawn of the last millennium in the year 1000, Europe was one of the world's more stagnant regions-an economically undeveloped, intellectually derivative, and geopolitically passive backwater, with illiteracy, starvation, and disease the norm for almost everyone. Yet only three centuries later, all of this had changed.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Wonderful teacher

    • By Mary Elizabeth Reynolds on 03-02-14

    Regular price: $34.95

    • The Late Middle Ages

    • By: Philip Daileader, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Philip Daileader
    • Length: 12 hrs and 22 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      5 out of 5 stars 587
    • Performance
      5 out of 5 stars 522
    • Story
      5 out of 5 stars 518

    The Late Middle Ages-the two centuries from c. 1300 to c. 1500 - might seem like a distant era, but students of history are still trying to reach a consensus about how it should be interpreted. Was it an era of calamity or rebirth? Was it still clearly medieval or the period in which humanity took its first decisive steps into modernity? These 24 provocative lectures introduce you to the age's major events, personalities, and developments, and arms you with the essentials you need to form your own ideas about this age of extremes.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • An Excellent Overview of the Late Middle Ages

    • By Mike on 07-04-14

    Regular price: $34.95

    • How the Crusades Changed History

    • By: Philip Daileader, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Philip Daileader
    • Length: 11 hrs and 52 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 203
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 187
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 187

    Centuries have passed since the last crusader knight laid down his sword, but the Crusades continue to hold sway over our world. Because the Crusades have been so consequential to history, it's essential to understand the context, motivations, and preconditions of these dramatic military campaigns. In doing so, you'll not only get a fresher understanding of the Crusades, you'll discover surprising truths about why (and how) they were fought.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • I am so pleased that Teaching Co is now on Audible

    • By D. Littman on 08-24-13

    Regular price: $34.95

    • The Black Death: The World's Most Devastating Plague

    • By: Dorsey Armstrong, The Great Courses
    • Narrated by: Dorsey Armstrong
    • Length: 12 hrs and 10 mins
    • Original Recording
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,333
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,236
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 1,239

    Many of us know the Black Death as a catastrophic event of the medieval world. But the Black Death was arguably the most significant event in Western history, profoundly affecting every aspect of human life, from the economic and social to the political, religious, and cultural. In its wake the plague left a world that was utterly changed, forever altering the traditional structure of European societies and forcing a rethinking of every single system of Western civilization: food production and trade, the church, political institutions, law, art, and more.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • informative, interesting, well organized

    • By Tricia Munter on 06-12-16

    Regular price: $34.95