An Alternative History of Britain: The War of the Roses by Timothy Venning

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By Timothy Venning

Timothy Venning's exploration of the choice paths that British background may simply have taken strikes directly to the Wars of the Roses. What if Richard of York had now not given conflict in useless? How could a victory for Warwick the Kingmaker on the conflict of Barnet replaced the process the fight for strength? What if the Princes had escaped from the tower or the Stanleys had no longer betrayed their king at Bosworth? those are only many of the attention-grabbing questions posed via this publication.

As continually, whereas inevitably speculative, Dr. Venning discusses all of the eventualities in the advantage of a deep figuring out of the main riding forces, tensions and traits that formed British heritage. In so doing, he is helping the reader to appreciate why issues panned out as they did, in addition to what could have been during this tumultuous interval.

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In 1215 the medieval papacy had reached its culmination at the Fourth Lateran Council, held in a Roman palace which, before Nero confiscated it, had been the home of the ancient Laterani family. The council, representing the entire Church, was brilliantly attended. Its decrees were of supreme importance, covering confession, Easter rites, clerical and lay reform, and the doctrine of transubstantiation, an affirmation that at holy communion bread and wine are transformed into the body and blood of Christ.

This lockstep continued for a period of time roughly corresponding in length to the time between the Norman conquest of England, in 1066, and the end of the twentieth century. Inertia reinforced the immobility. Any innovation was inconceivable; to suggest the possibility of one would have invited suspicion, and because the accused were guilty until they had proved themselves innocent by surviving impossible ordeals—by fire, water, or combat—to be suspect was to be doomed. EVEN DURING the Great Schism, as the interstice of the rival popes came to be known, the Holy See remained formidable.

1000—are still widely known as the Dark Ages. ” Yet there are no survivors to be offended. Nor is the term necessarily pejorative. Very little is clear about that dim era. Intellectual life had vanished from Europe. Even Charlemagne, the first Holy Roman emperor and the greatest of all medieval rulers, was illiterate. ” Nevertheless, if value judgments are made, it is undeniable that most of what is known about the period is unlovely. After the extant fragments have been fitted together, the portrait which emerges is a mélange of incessant warfare, corruption, lawlessness, obsession with strange myths, and an almost impenetrable mindlessness.

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