The History of England, Volume IV
The fourth volume of Peter Ackroyd’s epic History of England begins in 1688 with a revolution and ends in 1815 with a victory. Against a vivid backdrop of coffee houses and playhouses, it charts the creation of those pillars of modern Britain, the Bank of England and the Stock Exchange, the rise of newspapers, the birth of the novel, and the technological developments that transformed England from a land of green fields to one of iron and coal.
The Americas in the Age of Revolution
Lester D Langley presents a comparative history of three revolutions – the American Revolution in 1776, the slave revolt in the French colony of Saint Dominique (that became Haiti) and the long Spanish-American struggle for independence – and offers ‘a portrait of hemispherical political culture in an epoch spanning three wars in the Americas, each of which left a powerful legacy for the new states that took form in their aftermath’.
The King and the Catholics
The Fight for Rights: 1829
In 1780, the anti-Papist Gordon riots left 1,000 dead and London in flames; half a century later, Parliament passed the Catholic Emancipation Act. This narrative history charts the struggles that brought about that conclusion. It profiles the key players, including George III, a staunch opponent of emancipation; the political rivals Wellington and Peel; and the Irish campaigner Daniel O’Connell; and examines the conflict between the right to practise one’s religion and allegiance to the state.