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King and Emperor: A New Life of Charlemagne Hardcover – 6 August 2019

4.5 out of 5 stars 40 ratings

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Review

Nelson assembles an astonishingly rich picture from the most unrewarding of texts. The way she puzzles out probable facts and motivations, based on a complete reading of the existing texts, is a joy to witness ... The narrative voice emerges as that of a patient, inquisitive, incisive and helpful master detective, with funny asides, a beautiful style and sensible politics. -- Bettina Bildhauer, Times Literary Supplement

This is a terrific book ... It is lovely to read, in part because it is so lightly written ... One leaves Jinty Nelson's book with the sense that one does, yes, get from it a sense of what Charlemagne was actually like. Which is what biographies are for, and why this is one to read. -- Chris Wickham, History Today

An immense achievement - brilliantly learned and profoundly wise, it is as revelatory about the practise of history as it is about the great man himself. -- Helen Castor, BBC History Magazine

Christianity entered a new era in 800 when Charles, King of the Franks, became the first Holy Roman Emperor, and entrenched the faith in European civilisation. His story is told in Janet L Nelson's outstanding King and Emperor., The Telegraph

There have been countless studies of Charlemagne in many languages, but few have been as ambitiously biographical as Nelson's. Historians of early medieval Europe are trained to interpret scattered clues and fragments, however, and Nelson is one of the very best. -- Charles West, London Review of Books

An imaginative, deeply thoughtful, often provocative, always important book. -- Geoffrey Koziol, Professor of History at UC Berkeley

[The author is] a giant in the field, who knows that myths concerning Charlemagne, which began before his corpse grew cold, are difficult to lay to rest, H-France Review

This is a remarkable book: at once the dramatic story of a truly extraordinary man, and a masterclass in the practice of history from a superlative historian. Janet Nelson's brilliant insight illuminates a world that is both familiar and strange, and full of resonances between past and present. Here - seen through challenging sources, sifted and weighed with wisdom and wit - is everything we can know, twelve centuries on, about the king and emperor called Charlemagne. -- Helen Castor, author of SHE-WOLVES and JOAN OF ARC

Praise for COURTS, ELITES, AND GENDERED POWER IN THE EARLY MIDDLE AGES: Reconfirms Janet Nelson's role as one of the most important of contemporary voices in both medieval studies and gender history, Early Medieval Europe

Professor Dame Janet Nelson has been rather more than just a participant in the recent work on courts, elites and gendered power ... she has been its instigator, or its inspiration., English Historical Review

Book Description

A major new biography of one of the most extraordinary of all European rulers.

Customer reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Reviewed in Australia on 7 April 2020
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Top international reviews

Bill Greenhalf
3.0 out of 5 stars A worthy history of a great man, but not a great read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 28 December 2019
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F. Barrett
3.0 out of 5 stars Style
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 September 2019
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Nell
5.0 out of 5 stars not bought for me
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 5 September 2019
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R
4.0 out of 5 stars Over academic
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 12 April 2020
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Elle
4.0 out of 5 stars enjoyable
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 6 May 2020
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Roger Girard
4.0 out of 5 stars The life of Charlemagne
Reviewed in Canada on 15 December 2019
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dryfly
4.0 out of 5 stars Impressive work
Reviewed in the United States on 9 November 2019
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6 people found this helpful
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Nathan May
5.0 out of 5 stars Arguably an authority of the life Charlemagne
Reviewed in the United States on 4 December 2019
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3 people found this helpful
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Ted Frederick
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent biography of Charlemagne.
Reviewed in the United States on 12 January 2020
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Sanders
5.0 out of 5 stars The times he lived in
Reviewed in the United States on 7 November 2019
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Jerry Gordon
3.0 out of 5 stars Well researched discusdion of King of the Franks and later Roman Emperor Charlemagne
Reviewed in the United States on 30 December 2019
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MP Reader
5.0 out of 5 stars Thorough
Reviewed in the United States on 5 December 2019
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Elizabeth AR Brown
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent book
Reviewed in the United States on 22 November 2019
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