Listen free for 30 days

  • A Brief History of Life in the Middle Ages

  • Brief Histories
  • By: Martyn Whittock
  • Narrated by: John Telfer
  • Length: 10 hrs and 58 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: History, Europe
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (84 ratings)

£7.99/month after 30 days. Cancel anytime

Summary

A fascinating new portrait of Medieval Britain that brings together the everyday and the extraordinary. Using wide-ranging evidence, Martyn Whittock shines a light on Britain in the Middle Ages, bringing it vividly to life. Thus we glimpse 11th century rural society through a conversation between a ploughman and his master. The life of Dick Whittington illuminates the rise of the urban elite. The stories of Roger 'The Raker' who drowned in his own sewage, a 'merman' imprisoned in Orford Castle, and the sufferings of the Jews of Bristol reveal the extraordinary diversity of medieval society.

Through these characters and events - and using the latest discoveries and research - the dynamic and engaging panorama of medieval England is revealed. Martyn Whittock is Head of Humanities and History at Kingdown School, Warminster. He is a lecturer in local history and has written numerous textbooks for the educational market. He has been a consultant for the BBC, English Heritage, and the National Trust and has written for Medieval History magazine and archaeological journals.

©2009 Martyn Whittock (P)2012 Audible Ltd

What listeners say about A Brief History of Life in the Middle Ages

Average customer ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    49
  • 4 Stars
    25
  • 3 Stars
    7
  • 2 Stars
    3
  • 1 Stars
    0
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    49
  • 4 Stars
    19
  • 3 Stars
    4
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    0
Story
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    46
  • 4 Stars
    18
  • 3 Stars
    5
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    3

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Back in the dark ages.

A good history, well written and researched and well read. With each chapter moving smoothly into the next. Well worth the read.

11 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

great book!

loved the gruesome details of life then, thank goodness i live now! chaucer was interesting.

8 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Life in the middle ages.

Thoroughly informative, provided all the information I wanted to know in regard to life in the middle ages. Will need to hear it again to fully absorb so much detail, but that's the beauty of the audio library availability.

5 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

christopher Hibbert...he ain't!!

well, where to start? My big objection to this book is that the author frequently imposes his contemporary views on the past. he appears obsessed with Feminism and is achingly politically correct. He also slips into revisionism. for example, twice he singles out the bad behaviour of English troops during the 100 years war. no mention of the French, Burgundian, Breton and every other soldier fighting during the period nor any acknowledgement that the Bordeaux French preferred angevin/English rule. instead, the war is passed on as some sort of colonial adventure.
Christopher Hibbert wrote '' The English' a social history which has yet to be topped imho.

14 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Word Count

This comes across like the author is a history student and has an assignment due tomorrow with a high word count requirement. Another problem is he seems more concerned with systems of management than painting a picture of the real lives of people in the Middle Ages.

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Thoughtful step by step walk through the influencing factors of the middle ages

Having read much about the late medieval period I wanted to understand more about what had led to the seismic changes of the reformation and the cultural changes seen before this period.
This is such a good account if ever aspect if life , to jump off from and to research further with good references to other experts.
Thank you!!

3 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

very informative

very informative and enjoyable to listen to. Can draw many parallels with our modern world too.

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Kennen had a great career. His diary disappointing

What could Martyn Whittock have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

He made the best of the book

What about John Telfer’s performance did you like?

Ditto

Any additional comments?

Kennen was a very astute man who wrote well
But not here

No comparison to the wonderful Maisky diaries in audible collections

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A little dry but interesting

I enjoyed this, it does repeat itself a bit and I'm sure it would make a better book. but I learnt loads and listened to it in about 3 sittings.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Informative and Interesting.

I enjoyed this Brief history of the middle ages,very much the narrator was also very good.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for kh
  • kh
  • 27-11-16

Loved the Information.

Where does A Brief History of Life in the Middle Ages rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I enjoyed this book. It was just what I was looking for to answer some questions about daily life in the middle ages.

What was one of the most memorable moments of A Brief History of Life in the Middle Ages?

I found the information about the daily life in England before the Norman Conquest really interesting.

What three words best describe John Telfer’s voice?

His voice was fine, but he tended not to pause or break between sections.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

no

Any additional comments?

no

2 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Claire
  • Claire
  • 11-11-18

Really good book

I really enjoyed this book. one if the better history books I've read/listened to. Great reader, content was easy to listen to. Interesting all the way through.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for H Caval
  • H Caval
  • 30-09-20

fantastic

great history, I loved the England piece but mostly about the Catholic Church. I love it.