A Brief History of Henry VIII
Reformer and Tyrant
Described by Derek Wilson as 'a magnificent piece of propaganda', Holbein's portrait of Henry VIII depicts a proud, belligerent and powerful monarch. Wilson argues that a realistic understanding of Henry requires 'the rejection of this forceful icon' and, drawing on a lifetime's work on this period, his study provides a fresh assessment of the king's character and his response to the bewildering changes of the Renaissance and Reformation era.
A Brief History of the Great Moghuls
India's Most Flamboyant Rulers
Bamber Gascoigne's classic book tells of the most fascinating period of Indian history, the 16th and 17th centuries, when the country was ruled by an extraordinarily talented dynasty of emperors. Masters of almost limitless power and incomparable wealth, the 'Great Moghuls', as they were known to European travellers, were passionate about art, science and religion, but also sophisticated administrators who stabilized much of India. First published as The Great Moghuls in 1971.
Superstition and Science
Mystics, Sceptics, Truth-Seekers and Charlatans
The period between the European Renaissance and Enlightenment brought monumental scientific discoveries about gravity, the structure of the solar system and the circulation of the blood, but these coexisted with an almost universal belief in horoscopes and magic. In this book a Tudor historian explores how the great thinkers of the age responded to the entanglement of superstition and science, and shows how their work contributed to debate about the relationship between belief and knowledge.
A Brief History of the Tudor Age
Beginning with the victory of Henry Tudor in 1485 and ending with the death of Queen Elizabeth I in 1603, this is a vivid account of a contradictory age of great cultural achievement and terrible violence. Opulent life at court, voyages of discovery, scholarship and the flowering of English drama are juxtaposed with poverty, the narrow lives of peasants, harsh justice and war. First published as The Tudor Age.
The End of Glory
Illuminating the question of why Napoleon chose to gamble on total victory at the risk of utter defeat, this study focuses on the dramatic two years between the retreat from Moscow in 1812 and the Emperor's abdication in 1814. Price shifts away from the usual emphasis on Waterloo, to the conflicts of 1813; he examines the battle of Leipzig in particular; and explores the reasons why Napoleon rejected the offers of a compromise peace extended to him during that year.
The Empire of Necessity
Slavery, Freedom, and Deception in the New World
Greg Grandin's study of slavery begins not on the west coast of Africa but in the South Pacific, off the coast of Chile, where in 1805 Captain Amasa Delano, an anti-slavery American, happened upon a slave rebellion on board the Tryal. The incident, recorded in Delano's memoirs, has inspired many literary works, notably Herman Melville's Benito Cereno; here, it leads to a new account of slavery across continents, and the deceptions inherent in the New World's 'Age of Freedom'.
A Brief History of Life in Victorian Britain
A Social History of Queen Victoria's Reign
Michael Paterson makes the point that the Victorians were not so different from us: 'they had a fixation with new technology, were guilty of gross materialism, yet this was balanced... by a willingness to give charitable aid'. This readable history looks at everyday life – the food, fashion, transport, religion, work and leisure of ordinary Britons – from the 1830s to the end of the century.
The Children of Henry VIII
Henry VIII fathered four living children, each by a different mother. The relationships between his daughter Mary, the illegitimate son Henry Fitzroy, Duke of Richmond, Edward, who died at the age of 15, and Anne Boleyn's daughter Elizabeth were often scarred by jealously, mutual distrust and even hatred. In this study, John Guy draws on a wide range of sources to tell the stories of these four key figures in the dynastic history of England.
Volume 14. First published in 1936.
Covering the forty-four years from the outbreak of the Franco- Prussian war to the eve of the First World War, Ensor surveys a period which saw the 'conversion of English government into a democracy', great advances in education and literacy, the slump in agriculture, the first threat to manufacturing industry from foreign competition, and world-wide imperial expansion. First published in 1936. Book club reprint.
A Brief Guide to Native American Myths and Legends
The world of Native American mythology is inhabited by such fantastical and capricious characters as the shape-shifting trickster Coyote and the mischievous Blue Jay. The seminal study of these sacred tales was written by the Scottish folklorist Lewis Spence in 1914; this updated edition has a new introductory essay, commentary on Native American culture and stories from tribes not covered by Spence, such as the Inuit.