A History of the City
The historian and columnist for The National in Scotland, Michael Fry offers a new perspective on the history and culture of Glasgow as ‘a unique species of urban civilization’. His book takes in the whole span of the city’s history, from the sixth century to the present day, but is structured thematically, in chapters exploring Glasgow’s trade and industry, religion, the lives and politics of its ‘patricians’ and ‘plebeians’, and its distinctive styles of language, literature and art.
The King's Bed
Sex, Power and the Court of Charles II
Charles II was obsessed by women, and his conquests ranged across the classes, from the actress Nell Gwyn to the aristocrat Barbara Villiers. For the first time, this revealing book places the king’s compulsive philandering at the centre of an account of his reign. Taking us behind the scenes, it introduces a colourful cast of court favourites, politicians and a parade of mistresses fighting for influence over a king ruled – and ruined – by his passions.
War! Hellish War! Star Shell Reflections 1916–1918
The Illustrated Great War Diaries of Jim Maultsaid
Jim Maultsaid was injured on the Somme in 1916, after which he was commissioned into the Chinese Labour Corps, directing these foreign recruits in non-combatant support work and manual labour. His unusual war diaries include his frank but often upbeat observations about his experiences as well as drawings, satirical cartoons and scrapbook photographs which give a unique insight into his everyday activities and the characters he encountered.
The Real Guy Fawkes
Guy Fawkes is among British history’s most recognizable figures, burned in effigy every November to celebrate the Gunpowder Plot’s failure. His early life is less familiar though, and so this biography focuses on his youth as a Protestant in York and the motivations that led him to fight as a mercenary and to plan mass murder for the Catholic cause, asking whether he was ‘a fanatic, a fool, or a freedom fighter’.
Southwell and Nottinghamshire
Medieval Art, Architecture, and Industry
The special focus of this volume is Southwell Minster, but the 15 essays also include discussions of the Cistercian Abbey at Rufford, Worksop Priory Church, the 12th-century castle at Newark and the development of bell-casting in Nottinghamshire. With a 48-page section of black and white photographs.
The Making of Stonehenge
In this study, the author of The Stonehenge People (1987) argues that it is possible, by exploring a wider frame of reference for the people who built and used the monument, to recapture something of the prehistoric experience and to understand what the makers of Stonehenge were trying to achieve.
To Catch a King
Charles II's Great Escape
In 1651, Charles II returned to England to reclaim the throne of his executed father, only to be crushed by the might of Cromwell’s armies at Worcester. Based on the account he gave of his adventures to Samuel Pepys, and the reports of others who assisted him, this history tells of his six weeks on the run, using deception and disguise, grit and good luck to evade capture.
Mapping the Islands
Demonstrating the ‘lure and “pull” of maps and islands in combination’, this handsome volume illustrates and discusses over 150 maps – historical and contemporary – from the National Library of Scotland’s collection. The authors begin with an introductory chapter on cartography in Scotland since the 16th century; then, in broadly chronological order they use eight themes, including settlement, naming, navigation and natural resources, to describe the geography, history and culture of Scotland’s islands through their representation in maps.
Mapping the River
Once crucial to Glasgow’s industrial strength, the Clyde’s role has changed dramatically over time: for centuries workers on days off went ‘doon the watter’; now, the river is used more for recreation than industry. This volume examines the geography and history of the Clyde through a selection of 108 maps ranging from a 17th-century version of Ptolemy’s Insulae Albion et Hibernia to Russian maps of Glasgow and the lower Clyde dating from the Cold War, and 21st-century tourists’ guides.
Everyday Life in Hadrian's Britain
Lindsay Allason-Jones vividly recreates the lives, habits and thoughts of women who lived in Britain during the four centuries of Roman occupation. Traversing the social strata from high-born ladies to farmers' daughters, she examines the material and textual evidence for their home lives, health, religion, dress and jewellery. This revised edition of the book adds fresh insights provided by the latest archaeological discoveries, including burials, tombstones and curse tablets.
Crown of Blood
The Deadly Inheritance of Lady Jane Grey
In 1553, 17-year-old Lady Jane Grey was proclaimed Queen of England to prevent the accession of Henry VIII’s Catholic daughter Mary. Thirteen days later she was imprisoned in the Tower, and in February 1554 she was beheaded. This narrative history draws on previously overlooked sources to create a vivid and engaging portrait of an intelligent, charismatic and deeply religious girl caught up in the power politics of her age, whose courage shone through her final, harrowing ordeal.
The A to Z History of London
Since the early 1930s, when Phyllis Pearsall walked the streets of London preparing the first Geographers’ A–Z Street Atlas, the capital has undergone tremendous expansions and transformations. Using the graphic mapping of A–Zs since 1936, Philip Parker first outlines the city’s history, then examines themes that have preoccupied Londoners since the 1930s, including public housing, transport and cultural diversity; and looks at eleven locations, among them Canary Wharf and Nine Elms, that have changed dramatically.
And the Men Who made Him
While much has been written about Henry VIII’s women, this biography turns to the men who surrounded the king and, through his relationships with male family, servants, ministers, friends and rivals, gives a fresh account of Henry’s multi-faceted personality. From his childhood with his father, through the ‘lusty bachelors’ of his youth, to the intellectuals and political advisers of his reign, and Holbein, the king’s image-maker for posterity, Tracy Borman presents a rich and often surprising narrative of Henry’s life.
Badon and the Early Wars for Wessex
Circa 500 to 710
This reappraisal of the early battles of the Britons and Saxons casts doubt on the reliability of the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, while proposing explanations, tactical overviews and locations for the battles that established the kingdom of Wessex. It starts with an account of the historical situation after the Roman occupation, before focusing on the crucial Battle of Badon Hill, and using detailed maps, military theory and battle plans to analyse subsequent campaigns.
The True Story of England's Crusader King
The enduring legend of King Richard I, as a noble warrior who selflessly left his kingdom and fought bravely to win back the Holy Land, has its origins in the public image promulgated by his formidable mother, Eleanor of Aquitaine. As this biography reveals, the scandalous reality is very different: Richard ‘the Lionheart’ detested England (which he twice bankrupted), slaughtered defenceless peasants and repeatedly abandoned his supporters to save himself.
The Gunpowder Plot
The 1605 Gunpowder Plot is one of the best-known events in British history, commemorated on 5 November each year. This book re-evaluates the evidence about the origins, depth and extent of the plot. It profiles the conspirators, including Robert Catesby and Guy Fawkes, and examines their backgrounds, aims and objectives. It follows their trial and execution, and reveals for the first time how close they came to overthrowing the government.
Remembering 1914–18, Great War Britain
The King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment was the destination for many of Lancaster’s young men in 1914. This study of the city’s experience of the war draws on regimental records as well as first-hand accounts and contemporary documents and photographs.
The Baby Boomer Generation
A Lifetime of Memories
This blend of memoir and social history explores the experiences of the generation born in the aftermath of the Second World War. Decade by decade, from rationing to the internet, it notes not only events of national and international importance, such as the Cuban missile crisis, but changes to the fabric of everyday life: pop music, ready meals, shell suits and reality TV.
The Corner Shop
Shopkeepers, the Sharmas and the Making of Modern Britain
Growing up in a Reading corner shop, the BBC television newsreader Babita Sharma was witness to a changing world and its impact on customers’ lives and opinions as well as the products they bought. In this volume, she links her recollections of shop life with the last fifty years of British history, reflecting on an institution that, despite the creep of supermarkets, online shopping and home delivery, has found a way to evolve and survive.
The Life and Choices of Lady Anne Barnard
Lady Anne Barnard lived at the heart of Georgian society – the Prince of Wales was a friend, and Walter Scott admired her verses – but her defiance of convention made her an outsider. Drawing on her unpublished papers, including six volumes of memoirs, this biography brings the poet, musician, artist and hostess vividly to life, and tells how she travelled to France to observe the Revolution, married an army officer twelve years her junior, and raised an illegitimate child.