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600 years after the Battle of Agincourt, Sir Ranulph Fiennes casts new light on this epic event that has resonated throughout British and French history. On 25th October 1415, on a French hillside near the village of Agincourt, four men sheltered from the rain and prepared for battle. All four were English knights, ancestors of Sir Ranulph Fiennes, and part of the army of England's King Henry V. Across the valley, four sons of the French arm of the Fiennes family were confident that the Dauphin's army would win the day... Ranulph Fiennes explains how his own ancestors were key players through the centuries of turbulent Anglo-French history that led up to Agincourt, and he uses his experience as expedition leader and soldier to give us a fresh perspective on one of the bloodiest periods of medieval history. With fascinating detail on the battle plans, weaponry and human drama of Agincourt, this is a gripping evocation of a historical event integral to English identity.gs back to life these stories and more, including those of his own ancestors, in a celebration of a historical event integral to English identity.
Few humans have evolved who can survive and thrive in the bitter cold. Below a certain temperature, death is inevitable. This book is about this aspect of our environment and about Sir Ranulph Fiennes' own life experiencing the extreme cold, from his adventuring apprenticeship 40 years ago on the Greenland Ice Cap to masterminding over the past 5 years the crossing of the Antarctic during winter; the 'coldest journey on Earth', where temperatures will regularly plummet to minus 92ºC. Cold has altered history on many great occasions. Hannibal crossed the high Alps under conditions of extreme cold; soldiers of the mighty armies of Hitler and Napoleon died in their thousands on the frozen Russian steppes from frostbite gangrene. In the past 150 years men and women have also seen the cold as a natural challenge as adventurers and explorers from all over the world have attempted to conquer the coldest regions of the globe. Today, parts of the world subject to extreme cold are the focus of intense geopolitical pressure, as President Putin claims Arctic coastal waters to be Russian, in readiness for the predicted melting of sea-ice, sending submarines to plant Russian flags on the seabed as a warning to would-be non-Russian mineral prospectors, and similar claims are made on the Antarctic. And yet a few degrees of climate change in Antarctica could easily trigger the detachment of huge ice sheets which would slide into the Southern Ocean. As sea levels rise some of the biggest coastal cities in the world would be submerged - a catastrophe that would render insignificant the most devastating of past tsunamis. Sir Ranulph Fiennes has spent a lifetime working in conditions of extreme cold - his frostbitten fingers are a testament to the horrors that man can experience in such temperatures, but he also knows that the life he has led owes a great deal to the cold. Both scientifically rigorous, historically questioning and intensely personal, this book is both a warning of the dangers we face with our relat
The "enthralling page-turner" (Library Journal) now a major motion picture starring Jason Statham, Clive Owen, and Robert De Niro. Here is a gripping novel, inspired by real-life events, about a private team of British vigilantes that sets out to eliminate a gang of cold-blooded contract killers. From 1977 to 1990, four former British soldiers die, one by one, supposedly due to accident or illness. But soon a link is established between the victims: a shared mission in the desert kingdom of Oman, where they fought for a sultan against insurgents and ruined the life of a rival sheikh, who in turn has sent a band of assassins to methodically slay the soldiers and salvage his pride. Now these clever assassins are on the run from an underground group of SAS vets with nothing to lose, no time to waste, and a desire to dispense their own form of justice--no matter the cost. Previously published as The Feather Men.
Discover Sir Ranulph Twistelton-Wykham-Fiennes's personal expedition to trace his extraordinary family through history. From Charlemagne -- himself a direct ancestor of the author -- to the count who very nearly persuaded William the Conqueror to retreat at Hastings, many members of this unique clan have lived close to the nerve centre of the ruler of their day. They number in their ranks a murderer, a wife poisoner, a poacher, England's greatest female traveller of the 17th century, and an extortionist Lord High Treasurer, teen cousins who eloped, a noble lord hanged for manslaughter, another hanged for adultery with the King's wife, and many who, as admirals or major-generals, won famous battles. The Fiennes' behind Cromwell provided the castle in which the Parliamentarians made their first secret moves, the same building in which twenty-one successive generations of the family have lived for 600 unbroken years ...And that is just a taster. Ranulph Fiennes tells the story of his unconventional, exceptional family, and reveals the ingredients for the man described by the Guinness Book of Records as 'the world's greatest living explorer'.
Ranulph Fiennes has entered the public imagination as the intrepid explorer par excellance. Taunted by his wife over the challenge of the never-before attempted circumpolar navigation of the globe, he set off in 1979 on a gruelling 52,000 mile adventure. Together with fellow members of 21 SAS regiment, Fiennes left from Greenwich, travelling over land, passing through both ends of the polar axis. Completed over two years later, it was the first circumpolar navigation of the globe, and justifiably entered Fiennes into the record books.TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH is the record of that journey. It captures the natural beauty of the landscapes they passed through, and the cameraderie that necessarily grows between men who had served in the British forces' elite regiment and were now throwing themselves into danger of a different sort. Time and again, the expedition found themselves in life-threatening situations, weaving through the pack ice of the Arctic Ocean or sharing a single sleeping bag to ward off the -40 degrees celsius Arctic night. The calm and measured approach which made Fiennes such a great expedition leader shines through TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH, deftly recreating the last unexplored regions on earth.It is also a book which lays the foundations for what was to come for Fiennes, confirming a need to exist outside the comfortable norms the rest of us inhabit. As the expedition progresses, there is also a mounting sense of tension as attainment of the final goal also spells the end of the adventure. TO THE ENDS OF THE EARTH is a compelling account of one journey and Fiennes' drive to push himself to ever further extremes.