The eight lectures which are here published were delivered before the Lowell Institute in February, 1915, and at the University of California the following July, and it has seemed best to print them in the form in which they were prepared for a general audience. Their purpose is not so much to furnish an outline of the annals of Norman history as ( to place the Normans in relation to their time and to indicate the larger features of their work as founders) and organizers of states and contributors to European culture. Biographical and narrative detail has accordingly been subordinated in the effort to give a general view of Norman achievement in France, in England, and in Italy. Various aspects of Norman history have been treated with considerable fullness by historians, but, so far as I am aware, no connected account of the whole subject has yet been attempted from this point of view. This fact, it is hoped, may justify the publication of these lectures, as well as explain the omission of many topics which would naturally be treated in an extended narrative.
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