Cover Image

Larger ImageView Larger

Henry II

W. L. Warren (Author)

Not available in British Common; Available in Canada

Paperback, 350 pages
ISBN: 9780520034945
November 1977
Henry II was an enigma to contemporaries, and has excited widely divergent judgments ever since. Dramatic incidents of his reign, such as his quarrel with Archbishop Becket and his troubled relations with his wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine, and his sons, have attracted the attention of historical novelists, playwrights, and filmmakers, but with no unanimity of interpretation. That he was a great king there can be no doubt. Yet his motives and intentions are not easy to divine, and it is Professor Warren's contention that concentration on the great crises of the reign can lead to distortion. This book is therefore a comprehensive reappraisal of the reign based, with rare understanding, on contemporary sources; it provides a coherent and persuasive revaluation of the man and the king, and is, in itself an eloquent and impressive achievement.
Note on References
Note on Translations

Part I: Politics
1. Prologue
2. The Pursuit of Inheritance
3. King, Duke, and Count: a Chronological Survey, 1154- c. 1182
4. The Lordship of the British Isles
5. Henry II and his Empire

Part II: The Government of England
6. The Pattern of English Government
7. Recovery and Reconstruction
8. The King's Government
9. Royal Justice
10. King and Subjects

Part III: Henry II and the Church
11. Church and State in Norman England
12. Archbishop Theobald
13. Archbishop Thomas Becket
14. The Restoration of Harmony

Part IV: The Angevin Commonwealth
15. Federal Government (c. 1178-1183)
16. The End of the Reign (c. 1183-1189)

"This must surely rank as one of the classic historical will hold its place not only as a work of reference but as a piece of historical literature."—Observer

"W. L. Warren has written a life of the great Angevin whose scholarship and fair-mindedness should make it the classic account for the next fifty years. . . . Dr. Warren's monumental celebration is made to last."—The Times

"The result is masterly. . . . it is alive all through, a fine work by a professional historian who can write and has an eye for significant detail, without burying us under it."—Sunday Telegraph

Join UC Press

Members receive 20-40% discounts on book purchases. Find out more