Chivalry and courtesy


A surprising look at how medieval etiquette can improve our lives today, from the author of the popular How to Live Like a Monk.

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SKU: 9780789214690 Category: Tag:


“Playful, learned, and bursting with golden nuggets of information?a joyful book that shows us how medieval history still matters in surprising ways.” -  Dan Jones, New York Times best-selling author and presenter of Netflix’s Secrets of Great British Castles

“A must read for anyone who wants to brush up on the finer points of etiquette, or who just wants to be a better human being.” – Eleanor Janega, author of The Once and Future Sex: Going Medieval on Women’s Roles in Society and creator of the blog Going Medieval
“Daniele Cybulskie has done it again: no one is better at bringing the medieval world to life? There’s so much to learn from the Middle Ages, and this wonderful book?supremely elegant, witty, expert, and wise?is the ideal guide.” - Helen Castor, medieval historian, broadcaster, and author of She-Wolves and Joan of Arc

A surprising look at how medieval etiquette can improve our lives today, from the author of the popular How to Live Like a Monk.
Medieval people are often portrayed as having poor hygiene and table manners – licking their knives or throwing chicken bones on the floor. In the Middle Ages, however, such behaviour was not tolerated. Medieval society cherished order in nearly every facet of life, from regular handwashing to daily prayer. There were consequences if you didn’t adhere to the rules of good behaviour: you wouldn’t be invited to the lord’s next dinner, you wouldn’t win the battle, and you wouldn’t win the lady. Author Danièle Cybulskie explores the world of etiquette from the time of Chaucer to the court of Elizabeth I, encompassing table manners and interpersonal relationships as well as running a household and ruling a kingdom. With wit and insight, Cybulskie draws on a wide variety of primary sources, from courtiers’ handbooks to romantic poems. Though we may no longer need best practices for things like duelling or ordering about our servants, the principles of generosity, kindness, and respect still apply today. After all, it’s a good reminder to “be companionable no matter who you are with” and to not “chew on bones because that is what dogs do.” Illustrated with original drawings by Anna Lobanova as well as 80 medieval artworks, Chivalry and Courtesy is full of good advice for everyone, whether you are a peasant or a knight, a student or a CEO, a king or a queen.

Additional information

Dimensions 20.3 × 12.7 cm