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Topic: Robin Hood & English History  (Read 3256 times)

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Robin Hood & English History
« on: May 27, 2010, 04:32:28 AM »
Of course, in anticipation of marrying my fiancĂ©e and moving to the UK as the future unfolds, I am utterly fascinated by all things British.  Tonight, I saw the new Robin Hood movie starring Russell Crowe and Cate Blanchett for the second time.  I'd like to find a good book that discusses all aspects of the Robin Hood saga, the variations the story has taken over time, and most especially its relation to historical fact.

Similarly, I would like to find a good but not too detailed book of general English history.  I'd bought The Story of Britain: From the Romans to the Present: A Narrative History by Rebecca Fraser.  I'm ashamed to say that this book seems to assume a familiarity that I lack, mentioning names and places I've never heard of before.  I'd imagine it might be someone like a non-American reading history and wondering who is Patrick Henry, and where is this Battle of Gettysburg???

Recommendations for both gladly accepted!!

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Re: Robin Hood & English History
« Reply #1 on: May 29, 2010, 05:28:35 PM »
Recently the History channel has played a documentary entitled "The Real Robin Hood."  I'm not sure when it will be playing again, but here's their website with a few clips from it: http://www.history.com/topics/robin-hood
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Re: Robin Hood & English History
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2010, 04:22:33 PM »
I'd recommend watch Andrew Marr's History of Britain series. There were 2, and they cover the whole of the 20th century.
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Re: Robin Hood & English History
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2010, 06:38:19 PM »
I read a couple of books by Edward Rutherford, "London" and "Sarum"
Both are fiction, but they start in the stone age and go up to modern day following a family through history. They are loosely tied in to actual history and how it effected then families. 
Both are very good books, but they are quite long. Well over 700 pages each. 
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Re: Robin Hood & English History
« Reply #4 on: June 10, 2010, 08:57:14 PM »
British History for dummies is a good basic book and actually provides a reasonable base understanding of British History.  If you are looking for a tv series, I'm a huge fan of Simon Schama's History of Britain.  It's what pushed me to do my BA in history and now to go for my MA in History.  There's also The Oxford History of Britain which is okay, although dh's copy is several editions old now so I'm not sure on the latest edition.  Those are the kind of general books I can think of at the moment. 

For Robin Hood, my dad really wants Robin Hood: The shaping of a Legend which is expensive, but also has Robin Hood by James Clark Holt, The Robin Hood Handbook: The Outlaw in History, Myth and Legend by Mike Dixon-Kennedy and Robin Hood: A Mythic Biography by Stephen Thomas Knight.  My dad's a huge fan of Robin Hood, so his suggestions are probably good. 

Oh yeah, and a professor at my University wrote The Kings and Queens of England (by Mark Ormrod).  My dh had him as a lecturer and said he's really good so it might be a good look.

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