The Year 1000 is a vivid evocation of how English people lived a thousand years ago - no spinach, sugar or Caesarean operations in which the mother had any chance of survival, but a world that knew brain surgeons, property developers and, yes, even the occasional gossip columnist. In the spirit of modern investigative journalism, Lacey and Danziger interviewed the leading historians and archaeologists in their field.
In the year 1000 the changing seasons shaped a life that was, by our standards, both soothingly quiet and frighteningly hazardous - and if you survived, you could expect to grow to just about the same height and stature as anyone living today. This exuberant and informative book concludes as the shadow of the millennium descends across England and Christendom, with prophets of doom invoking the spectre of the Anti-Christ.
Here comes the abacus - the medieval calculating machine - along with bewildering new concepts like infinity and zero. These are portents of the future, and The Year 1000 finishes by examining the human and social ingredients that were to make for survival and success in the next thousand years.
©2012 Robert Lacey (P)2012 Harper Collins Publishers Limited