NAKED TO MINE ENEMIES (543 pp.)Charles W. FergusonLittle, Brown ($6).
Had I but served my God with half the zeal
I served my King, He would not in mine age
Have left me naked to mine enemies.
This noble exit from history's stage was written by Shakespeare for Thomas Cardinal Wolsey, one of the great Englishmen of his time. This biography, the first appropriate to the scope and splendor of Wolsey's career, makes excellent reading on three counts: it evokes the vast historic tide that submerged the Middle Ages in the frothy waters of the Renaissance; it tells a whodunit about who would...