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In medieval and Renaissance Europe, mercenaries--professional soldiers who fought for money or other rewards--played violent, colorful, international roles in warfare, but they have received relatively little scholarly attention. In this book a large number of vignettes portray their activities in Western Europe over a period of nearly 900 years, from the Merovingian mercenaries of 752 through the Thirty Years' War, which ended in 1648. Intended as an introduction to the subject and drawing heavily on contemporary first-person accounts, the book creates a vivid but balanced mosaic of the many thousands of mercenaries who were hired to fight for various employers.
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Hunt Janin is an American writer living in southwestern France. He has written numerous nonfiction and scholarly books on a range of subjects, including medieval history and cross-cultural studies.
Ursula Carlson is a professor emerita at Western Nevada College, Carson City, Nevada.
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