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Reviews 213 Whatever her personal charms m a y have been, Lady Wiseman was forced to acknowledge that it was her money that made her a target of attention: 'you are look't upon as one of the good things n o w to be gott', wrote Roger North (p. 80). Her brothers advised her to be careful where she lived, and ensure that she was never alone, 'that is without weomen company' (p. 91), for she was at risk of gossip, which could affect her reputation and future prospects. Her widowed aunt had survived alone in town for twenty years but, as her supportive brothers bluntly told Elizabeth, their aunt 'was no booty to any, as you are' (p. 88). This will be an excellent book for teaching with. The introduction is exemplary, raising interesting issues for discussion, including the links between narratives and early prose fictions and h o w truth in evidence mightbe determined. Some of the historical issues are more complex than Chan acknowledges; historians would disagree with Blackstone's view thattheCourt ofHigh Commission was set up by Elizabeth in 1588, tracing i t s origins earlier in previous reigns. Nevertheless, her general comments give the reader invaluable insight into the historical context from which a story such as that ofClarissa Harlowe could develop. Chan's introduction and technical apparatus provide a scholarly frame of reference so that students can understand some of the nuances of the documents. There is a useful bibliography and index. Patricia Crawford Department of History University of Western Australia The Book of Chivalry of Geoffroi de Charny. Text, Context and Translati (Middle Ages Series), ed. Richard W Kaeuper and Elspeth Kennedy, Philadelphia, University of Pennsylvania Press, 1996; paper; pp. ix, 236; R.R.P. US$17.95. By all accounts Geoffroi de Charny was an exemplary medieval knight. Jean Froissart praised him as 'the most worthy and valiant of them all' while French chronicler Geoffrey le Baker believed he was 'a knight more skilled in military matters than any other Frenchman, so that his fame was widespread'. Inciting enthusiastic praise from chroniclers on both sides of the Channel, Geoffroi de Charny lived and died in 214 Reviews arms. H e experienced nearly two decades ofAnglo-French warfare and was captured and ransomed during the French attempt to reclaim the important port of Calais in the last days of 1349, a subterfuge in which he played a vital role. Charny was the bearer of the sacred banner (Oriflame) of the king of France, owner of the Shroud of Turin, and by his o w n testimony, one of the founding knights of the Company of the Star. A valiant and worthy knight himself, Geoffroi de Charny was also the author of a treatise, which deals with both the practical and theoretical dimensions of the medieval phenomenon of 'chivalry'. The Book of Chivalry is Geoffroi de Charny's longest and most thorough work. A considerable number of treatises on chivalry were written during the medieval period, but it was Charny's astute practicality and realistic understanding of the warrior mentality and duty that set his work apart from other treatises. Described as the most pragmatic of all surviving chivalric manuals Geoffroi de Charny's work is particularly interesting in that it makes an attempt to treat chivalry as a way of life in its o w n right and to offer instruction to that end. Charny gives advice on conduct towards friends and enemies, how to behave in the company of ladies, the worthiest pastimes for a knight to engage in, and the physical and spiritual demands of knighthood. Charny creates a solid impression of knighthood and chivalry as a demanding profession with a detailed and demanding code. His consistent emphasis of the difficulties and dangers, and the frustration and hardships of chivalric life clearly demonstrate his practical and efficient understanding of the realities of warfare and the knight's primary obligations as a warrior. While he pays homage to the romantic notions of chivalry, Charny is first and foremost a warrior, and it is to this end that he writes about chivalry. The span of Charny's public adult life, from his...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1832-8334
Print ISSN
0313-6221
Pages
pp. 213-215
Launched on MUSE
2013-04-03
Open Access
No
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