Laura Ashe

Richard II (Penguin Monarchs)
  • Richard II (Penguin Monarchs)

  • Laura Ashe

    The acclaimed Penguin Monarchs series: short, fresh, expert accounts of England's rulers - now in paperback

    Richard II (1377-99) came to the throne as a child, following the long, domineering, martial reign of his grandfather Edward III. He suffered from the disastrous combination of a most exalted sense of his own power and an inability to impress that power on those closest to the throne. Neither trusted nor feared, Richard battled with a whole series of failures and emergencies before finally succumbing to a coup, imprisonment and murder.

    Laura Ashe's brilliant account of his reign emphasizes the strange gap between Richard's personal incapacity and the amazing cultural legacy of his reign - from the Wilton Diptych to Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, Piers Plowman and The Canterbury Tales.

Laura Ashe is Associate Professor of English and a Fellow of Worcester College, Oxford. Her books include Fiction and History in England, 1066-1200 and the Oxford English Literary History, vol. 1: 1000-1350. Conquest and Transformation. She has also edited Early Fiction in England: From Geoffrey of Monmouth to Chaucer for Penguin Classics. The extraordinary flowering of English literature in the reign of Richard II features in much of her work.