The Life of Thomas More

By Peter Ackroyd
Read by Frederick Davidson

18.12 Hours 12/12/1991 unabridged
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This book, as much a work of history as a biography, is a masterful reconstruction of the life and imagination of one of the most remarkable figures in history. Thomas More (1478–1535) was a renowned statesman; the author of a political treatise, Utopia, that gave a political worldview; and, most famously, a Catholic martyr and saint. Born into the professional classes, Thomas More applied his formidable intellect and well-placed connections to become the most powerful man in England, second only to the king. In reconstructing the life of Thomas More, Peter Ackroyd provides an unmatched portrait of the everyday, religious, and intellectual life of the early sixteenth century. More emerges in the fullness of his complex humanity, with unexpected characteristics—such as his preference for bawdy humor—and indisputable moral courage.

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Summary

Summary

Winner of the 1998 James Tait Black Memorial Prize

A 1998 New York Times Notable Book for Nonfiction

This book, as much a work of history as a biography, is a masterful reconstruction of the life and imagination of one of the most remarkable figures in history.

Thomas More (1478–1535) was a renowned statesman; the author of a political treatise, Utopia, that gave a political worldview; and, most famously, a Catholic martyr and saint. Born into the professional classes, Thomas More applied his formidable intellect and well-placed connections to become the most powerful man in England, second only to the king.

In reconstructing the life of Thomas More, Peter Ackroyd provides an unmatched portrait of the everyday, religious, and intellectual life of the early sixteenth century. More emerges in the fullness of his complex humanity, with unexpected characteristics—such as his preference for bawdy humor—and indisputable moral courage.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“Vibrant…inspired…Ackroyd successfully delineates the vast complexity of More’s faith…[He] persuasively argues that [More was] less a man for all seasons, perhaps, than a tonic for ours.” New York Times Book Review
“[A] masterly new biography. It must be a candidate for book of the year.” Observer (London)
“Full of brilliant insight…one stands in awe of Ackroyd’s learning, confident that this is the life of Thomas More for our times.” Independent on Sunday (London)
“Brilliantly conceived…Ackroyd’s vividly human More is...imperfect yet inspiring.” Time
“A sensitive, well-informed work that will be of value to anyone seeking a deeper knowledge of More’s personal history.” Wall Street Journal
“As a biographer of More, Ackroyd is also an effective novelist. He evokes late-medieval London in sight and in smell.” Publishers Weekly
“Davidson’s donnish reading accentuates Ackroyd’s erudition and dry wit, but also serves to convey the underlying tension between intellectual ferment and abiding tradition that is the true drama in this story.” AudioFile
“A limpidly written and superbly wrought portrait of a complex hero who was truly, as his friend Erasmus stated, ‘omnium horarum homo,’ a ‘man for all seasons.’” Kirkus Reviews

Reviews

Reviews

Author

Author Bio: Peter Ackroyd

Peter Ackroyd has written acclaimed biographies of T. S. Eliot, Dickens, Blake, and Sir Thomas More, as well as several successful novels. He has won the Whitbread Book Award for Biography, the Royal Society of Literature’s W. H. Heinemann Award, the James Tait Black Memorial Prize, the Guardian Fiction Prize, the Somerset Maugham Award, and the South Bank Show Award for Literature.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Nonfiction/Religion
Runtime: 18.12
Audience: Adult
Language: English