The First Kingdom

Author(s): Max Adams


The bestselling author of The King in the Northturns his attention to the obscure era of British history known as 'the age of Arthur'.

Somewhere in the shadow time between the departure of the Roman legions in the early fifth century and the arrival in Kent of Augustine's Christian mission at the end of the sixth, the kingdoms of Early Medieval Britain were formed. But by whom? And out of what?

In The First Kingdom, Max Adams scrutinizes the narrative of this period handed down to us by later historians and chroniclers. Stripping away the more lurid claims made for a warrior-hero named Arthur, he synthesises the research carried out over the last forty years to tease out the strands of reality from the myth. He reveals how archaeology has delivered evidence of a diverse and dynamic response to Britain's new-found independence, of material and intellectual trade between the Atlantic islands and the rest of Europe, and of the environmental context of those centuries.

A skilfully wrought and intellectually probing investigation of the most mysterious epoch in our history, The First Kingdompresents an image of post-Roman Britain whose resolution is high enough to show the emergence of distinct political structures in the sixth century - polities that survive long enough to be embedded in the medieval landscape, recorded in the lines of river, road and watershed, and memorialised in place names.


'A triumph. The most gripping portrait of seventh-century Britain that I have read ... A Game of Thronesin the Dark Ages' Tom Holland in The Timeson The King in the North

'Gripping, hugely enjoyable and deeply scholarly' History Today, Books of the Year, on The King in the North

'Brilliantly combines history and archaeological research ... A compelling read' The Ladyon Ælfred's Britain


Available Stock:

Add to Cart

Click & Collect

Add to Wishlist

Product Information

General Fields

  • : 9781788543477
  • : Head of Zeus
  • : Head of Zeus
  • : March 2021
  • : ---length:- '23.4'width:- '15.3'units:- Centimeters
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Max Adams
  • : Hardback
  • : English
  • : 941.014
  • : 480