In the year 1495, Charles VIII was the youthful King of France, the most powerful state in medieval Europe. A dreamer who saw himself as the saviour of Christian Europe, he believed he could roll back the ever-spreading tide of Ottoman Turkish conquest. As a base for his crusade he was determined to seize southern Italy. In a lightning campaign he used France's modern army to sweep through Italy, his mobile field artillery train smashing into dust the tall towers of Italy's medieval castles. The Italian states rallied and at Fornovo their alliance, the League of Venice, fought Charles' army to a standstill.
David Nicolle was born in 1944, the son of the illustrator Pat Nicolle. He worked in the BBC Arabic service for a number of years, before going 'back to school', gaining an MA from the School of Oriental and African Studies, London, and a doctorate from Edinburgh University. He later taught world and Islamic art and architectural history at Yarmuk University, Jordan. He has written many books and articles on medieval and Islamic warfare, and has been a prolific author of Osprey titles for many years. David lives and works in Leicestershire, UK.