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Publisher's Summary

With this exciting and historically rich six-lecture course, experience for yourself the drama of this dynamic year in medieval history, centered on the landmark Norman Conquest. Taking you from the shores of Scandinavia and France to the battlefields of the English countryside, these lectures will plunge you into a world of fierce Viking warriors, powerful noble families, politically charged marriages, tense succession crises, epic military invasions, and much more.
Your journey starts in the 10th and early 11th centuries, when power in England and Normandy was very much up for grabs - and when the small island nation was under continuous assault from Viking forces. Professor Paxton helps you gain a solid grasp of the complex political alliances and shifting relationships between figures such as Emma of Normandy, Cnut, and Edward the Confessor. She also recounts for you the two seminal battles that pitted England against the Scandinavians and the Normans: the Battle of Stamford Bridge and the Battle of Hastings. Throughout the lectures, Dr. Paxton opens your eyes to continued debates and controversies over this year and offers her own take on the Norman Conquest's enduring legacy and the fascinating results of this epic clash. By exploring the year 1066 – what led up to it, what happened during that fateful year, and what changed as a result - you'll gain a sharper perspective and a greater understanding of everything that would come afterward.
©2012 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2012 The Great Courses
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Joshua on 07-10-13

History brought to life

Where does 1066: The Year That Changed Everything rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

It's definitely one of the better books I've listened to. For certain it ranks among the best non-fiction titles in my library.

Who was your favorite character and why?

William the Conqueror — because that's who the story is mostly about. I was also very intrigued by Emma of Normandy. She's a historical figure I knew little about before listening to this, and I was surprised by just how large her role was in the political side of the events leading up to the Norman invasion of England.

What about Professor Jennifer Paxton’s performance did you like?

She really brings the history to life with a very vivid and entertaining performance. It's easy to see that she enjoys her work. ... If only all my high school and college history instructors had lectured so well!

Any additional comments?

I choose this lecture as the first one I listened to in the Great Courses series to see how I like the series simply because it was short and cheap. It has definitely persuaded me to listen to more of the series.

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17 of 17 people found this review helpful

By Ms Winston on 08-13-14

Breaks down a complex subject to small bites

Would you listen to 1066: The Year That Changed Everything again? Why?

Yes, I intend to listen to it again in a few months -- the information is very complex and I want to reinforce my understanding.

What other book might you compare 1066: The Year That Changed Everything to and why?

I think that "Team of Rivals" also breaks complicated issues into segments that make them easier to understand.

What about Professor Jennifer Paxton’s performance did you like?

An excellent instructor! She knows her subject thoroughly -- for example, many of the characters we meet have the same or similiar names and she distinguishes among them for the listener. She understands the complex political and social aspects of the time period and makes it more understandable. Jennifer Paxton also has great expression in her lectures -- no danger of falling asleep due to a monotone with her.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

The beginning of modern England.

Any additional comments?

I have purchased classes from The Teaching Company for years in the DVD format. The classes are much more reasonable in price purchasing them from I did not miss the visual aspects.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Ama on 05-02-14

An excellent lecture on a momentous year

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Well, if you want to have a deeper understanding on the conquest and the situation that led up to it, this is vital. This contains the nuance often missing from the open/closed dichotomy taught in schools

What was the most interesting aspect of this story? The least interesting?

Emma Of Normandy Queen of England is so Pivotal, but I had never heard of her before. She fled to Normandy with her sons, She was the mother to the last Anglo-Saxon King Edward the confessor, who spent his formative years in Normandy.

Did Professor Jennifer Paxton do a good job differentiating each of the characters? How?

Professor Paxton, is a really lively and expressive teacher. She was exhaustive in her explanations. Can't speak highly enough of her.

Did 1066: The Year That Changed Everything inspire you to do anything?

Do my own research

Any additional comments?

After doing my own research I found out that William the conqueror's wife Matilda Duchess of Normandy herself was descended from Alfred the great.

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2 of 2 people found this review helpful

By Amazon Customer on 07-15-17


very short, maybe the Norman conquest including Ireland would give more substance. Great execution none the less

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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