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Archaeology and History

Photo of Dr Catherine Hanley

Dr Catherine Hanley

Honorary Senior Research Fellow


I am an independent scholar, researcher and writer who specialises in warfare in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, with particular reference to the military and political relationships between France and England during this period. I gained a PhD at the University of Sheffield (2001) on the subject of ‘The Portrayal of Warfare in Old French Literature, c. 1150–c.1270’ and wrote an academic book on the subject, but later made a sideways move to concentrate on writing works of popular history and historical fiction.

My book-length publications are:

War and Combat 1150–1270: The Evidence from Old French Literature (Boydell and Brewer, 2003)

Louis: The French Prince Who Invaded England (Yale University Press, 2016)

Matilda: Empress, Queen, Warrior (Yale University Press, 2019)

Two Houses, Two Kingdoms: A HIstory of France and England, 1100-1300 (Yale University Press, 2022)

Plus other trade history written under a pseudonym and eight historical novels.

My current projects include 1217: The Battles That Saved England (forthcoming Osprey, 2024), an analysis of the pivotal engagements that took place during the French invasion of England in the early thirteenth century; and Lionessheart: The Life and Times of Joanna Plantagenet (forthcoming The History Press, 2025), the biography of an extraordinary woman who was Eleanor of Aquitaine's daughter and Richard the Lionheart's sister, and who led a life just as exciting as theirs.

My personal website may be found at

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