Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part IV: Men of Rohan

This is the fourth part of a series taking a historian's look at the Battle of Helm's Deep (I, II, III) from both J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Two Towers (1954) and Peter Jackson’s 2002 film of the same name. In the last part, we looked in some depth at the organization of the host of Saruman … Continue reading Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part IV: Men of Rohan

Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part III: The Host of Saruman

This is the third part of a series taking a historian's look at the Battle of Helm's Deep (I, II), from both J.R.R. Tolkien's The Two Towers (1954) and peter Jackson's 2002 film of the same name. In our last part, we looked at the film-only cavalry engagement that proceeds the main action of the … Continue reading Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part III: The Host of Saruman

Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part II: Total Warg

This is the second part of a series taking a historian's look at the Battle of Helm's Deep (Part I here), from both J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Two Towers (1954) and Peter Jackson’s 2002 film of the same name. Last time, we looked at the operations which led up to the fortress assault. This time, I … Continue reading Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part II: Total Warg

Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part I: Bargaining for Goods at Helm’s Gate

This is the long-awaited first part of a series taking a historian's look at the Battle of Helm's Deep from both J.R.R. Tolkien's The Two Towers (1954) and Peter Jackson's 2002 film of the same name. We're going to discuss how historically plausible each sequence of events is and, in the process, talk a fair … Continue reading Collections: The Battle of Helm’s Deep, Part I: Bargaining for Goods at Helm’s Gate

Collections: A Trip Through Bertran de Born (Martial Values in the 12th Century Occitan Nobility)

This week we are taking another trip through a medieval author, this time the Occitan noble and troubadour Bertran de Born. This trip ought to be read closely with our trip through, Dhuoda of Uzès, as both exemplify the values and thinking of the medieval European aristocracy (though note that Dhuoda writes some 350 years … Continue reading Collections: A Trip Through Bertran de Born (Martial Values in the 12th Century Occitan Nobility)

Collections: A Trip Through ‘Antarah Ibn Shaddad (Victory Songs)

This week we are taking another trip through a medieval author, but quite a bit earlier - the end of the sixth century - and quite a bit further east: the Ethiopian-Arab warrior-poet 'Antarah ibn Shaddad. This trip ought to be ready closely with the one that is going to follow it (Bertran de Born, … Continue reading Collections: A Trip Through ‘Antarah Ibn Shaddad (Victory Songs)

Collections: A Trip Through Dhuoda of Uzès (Carolingian Values)

This week, we're taking another trip, this time through a medieval author, in this case looking at a selection of passages from Dhuoda of Uzès, Duchess of Septimania's Liber Manualis ("Handbook") for her son William and discussing the model of noble relationships it presents. Dhuoda is a fascinating figure both for the ways she is … Continue reading Collections: A Trip Through Dhuoda of Uzès (Carolingian Values)