England Arise. The People, The King & The Great Revolt of 1381. Juliet Barker. Little, Brown, 2014. ISBN 978-1-4087-0335-9. 506 pages, illustrated with references and index. £25 (hardback)
This is the first definitive history by a British writer of the Peasants’ Revolt of 1381. But Juliet Barker does not refer to the events as being the Peasants’ Revolt, but more properly a Great Revolt or Rebellion which followed the imposition of an ever increasing Poll Tax which funded unsuccessful wars. Folklore figures which loom large such as Wat Tyler and John Balle are only part of the story. This, of course, is a very Essex related book, being the county where the revolt perhaps originated. The author widens the story to give the full picture.