The Welsh Kings by Kari Maund

Anything with a vague historical bent

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Ellen Gethin
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Location: Hay-on-Wye, town of books

The Welsh Kings by Kari Maund

Postby Ellen Gethin » Fri Jul 23, 2010 7:08 pm

with the subtitle Warriors, Warlords and Princes. Published by Tempus in 2000.

I was most impressed with this book. Where I already knew the history the author usually was able to fill in a few more details, or give a slightly different slant on some of the characters in Welsh history, and Kari Maund is cautious about taking the medieval sources at face value, pointing out some of the biases caused by who wrote them and for what political purposes.
There are an awful lot of Welsh princes over about 900 years with very similar names, which can be confusing, but I think this book will help me keep them straight in my mind. Let's face it - I know most of my 13thC Welsh history by reading Edith Pargeter and Sharon Penman, and most of my sub-Roman period from the various Arthurian books around (I was quite heavily influenced by Geoffrey Ashe in my youth). And the bit in the middle is quite hard to get a handle on. This book explained clearly where the 13thC dynasty of Gwynnedd came from, and their power struggles with Powys, and as much as can be ascertained about what was going on in South Wales as well.
Highly recommended.


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