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A boisterous man, William had many friends and none of the cold cruelty of most medieval monarchs. He was famous for his generosity and courage and generally known to be homosexual. Licentious, eccentric, and outrageous, his court was attacked at the time by Anselm, archbishop of Canterbury, and later by censorious historians. This highly readable account of William Rufus and his brief but important reign is an essential volume for readers with an interest in Anglo-Saxon and medieval history or in the lives of extraordinary monarchs.
Frank Barlow is emeritus professor of history at the University of Exeter, and author of many major books on medieval history, including the Yale English Monarch volume on Edward the Confessor (ISBN 0 300 07156 6, #13.95*).