From the Trans-Siberian to the Southwest Chief
Our modern world is built on one indispensable form of transport: the railway. Its gifts are everywhere, in the shape of our cities,coal-fired power, and the food we eat. In this captivating book, the author rides from the birthplace of the locomotive in Britain, crosses Russia on the Trans-Siberian, crests the Andes on a rattling coal train and jams with blues musicians across the USA as he explores the history, geography, cultural resonance and sheer romance of the railroad.
Parish Church Treasures
The Nation's Greatest Art Collection
John Goodall traces a history of the British parish church and its cultural riches through 178 works of art and architecture, from runic inscriptions in the graveyard of St Cuthbert's, Bewcastle, to the war memorial, finished in 1934, in the former priory church in Wymondham. Goodall and Country Life photographer Paul Barker describe and picture an astonishing range of carvings and sculpture, paintings, decorated roofs, stained glass and spires, as well as oddities such as the golden dragon atop St Mary-le-Bow in London.
The Tree Climber's Guide
Adventures in the Urban Canopy
London has more parks and green spaces than any other capital of a comparable size so a climbable tree is never far away. Extolling the virtues of lifting oneself out of the city bustle and finding new perspectives on the urban scene, this book records the exploits of a committed tree climber seeking out interesting specimens and unusual vantage points, from a tall sweetgum alongside the walls of St Paul's Cathedral to a scruffy willow on the Swiss Cottage roundabout.
Hysteria in Nineteenth-Century Paris
During the 1870s the famous Salpêtrière Hospital in Paris had an entire ward dedicated to treating 'hysteria'. This mysterious illness baffled physicians and fascinated the public, who came to witness the spectacle of Dr Jean-Martin Charcot's demonstrations with his hysterical patients. After a profile of Charcot himself, this book tells the stories of Blanche, Augustine and Geneviéve – three of the 'hysterics' under his care and hospitalized during a crucial moment in the history of psychiatry.
The Legend and Tragedy of General Sir Ian Hamilton
The disastrous Gallipoli campaign of the First World War cost Winston Churchill his job as First Lord of the Admiralty and ended the military career of Ian Hamilton, widely blamed for the bungling of the operation on the ground. This study of Hamilton's military career traces his rise to prominence in the British Army of the 19th century and examines his failings, as well as those of his superiors, at Gallipoli, and his prescient military writings after the war.
A Year in the Life of Victorian Britain
Along with evocations of British life from writers such as Dickens, George Eliot and Robert Louis Stevenson, many of the excerpts in this Year illustrate the spread and conflict of empire – Florence Nightingale writing from Scutari, Lady Sarah Wilson reporting the Jameson Raid, and Emily Eden, travelling with the army in India.
Many Lives, One Epic Journey
It's tough being a teenage tiger, a fledgling eagle or a baby meerkat. Every animal must make an extraordinary journey to achieve its life's goal – to continue its bloodline. Packed with dramatic colour photographs and stills from the BBC series Life Story, and covering creatures as diverse as hermit crabs and hyenas, this book charts their journeys from birth, through the learning curves of growing up and the rituals of courtship to parenthood. With a foreword by David Attenborough.
Penelope Fitzgerald (1916–2000) was a great English writer whose career did not begin until she was nearly 60; she would go on to write biographies, short stories and nine novels, including The Blue Flower, a fictionalized life of the German poet Novalis, and Offshore, for which she won the Booker Prize in 1979. Here the much-acclaimed biographer of Edith Wharton and Virginia Woolf presents an intimate portrait of a woman writer 'not quite like anyone else'. American-cut pages.
A Royal Experiment
The Private Life of King George III
Our view of George III is coloured by the madness that afflicted him in later life. Yet as this sympathetic biography makes clear, the prince who acceded to the throne at the age of 22 had eminently sane but novel ambitions. He would be a new kind of king, whose authority rested on consent rather than power; and a new kind of man, with a stable, affectionate marriage rather than a string of royal mistresses. (Also published as The Strangest Family.) Slightly off-mint.
The Art and History of Globes
For centuries globes have been the most accurate way of representing the world, avoiding the need for projections that distort the curved surface of the planet to present it on a flat sheet of paper. Many are also artefacts of great beauty. Illustrated with 60 examples from collections around the world, this handsome book charts their art and history, from the earliest surviving Chinese globe to the desktop models of Victorian schoolrooms, explaining how they were made and used.
Photographs from the John Kobal Foundation
During the golden age of Hollywood the style and elegance of the studios' most famous stars were enhanced by the regular appearance of well-groomed dogs in their promotional photographs. The images collected here feature more than 130 actors posing alongside their canine friends, from the greats of the silent era, such as Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton and Mary Pickford, to Joan Collins and Lee Marvin in the 1960s, while Elvis Presley meets a real-life Hound Dog.
Quartz and Feldspar
Dartmoor: A British Landscape in Modern Times
Dartmoor is a place where people go to walk, to climb tors, to experience unspoilt wilderness; but in fact the landscape has been shaped by human activities, from its standing stones and clapper bridges to prison buildings and disused railway lines. In this study of the area, Matthew Kelly considers the many different responses to Dartmoor – archaeological, poetic, folkloric, commercial, environmentalist – and explores how 'this unusually distinct landscape has been encountered, imagined and argued over since the late 18th century'.
Eichmann Before Jerusalem
The Unexamined Life of a Mass Murderer
One of the principal facilitators of the Holocaust, Adolf Eichmann was captured by Mossad in Argentina in 1960 and brought to Jerusalem for trial. This analysis examines his post-war life up to that event, based on newly discovered documentation. The book is in part a response to Hannah Arendt's 1963 volume Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil, which assessed Eichmann's actions in the light of his court testimony and evidence available at the trial.
An Illustrated Literary Companion
While countless writers have relished the streets of London, others have recoiled: ‘I think the full tide of human existence is at Charing Cross’, wrote Dr Johnson; but for DH Lawrence ‘The traffic flows through the rigid grey streets like the rivers of hell through their banks of dry, rocky ash’. This illustrated companion to the capital presents all kinds of literary reaction – in poetry and prose, Dickens’s Sketches and Lear’s limericks – on London and life in London.
The Retronaut Guide to Keeping Pets
The Retronaut website (www.retronaut.com) unearths quirky archive photography and presents unusual and surprising views of the past. This set of images focuses on pets and other animals in the collection, ranging from a horse playing the tuba in the 1920s and elephants playing cricket in the 1930s to a cow travelling on a Paris bus in the 1960s and a goose riding a bicycle in the 1980s.
A Photographic History
South Asians coming to Victorian Britain tended to be soldiers or domestics serving the Empire or the elite seeking education, but later mass migrations from the subcontinent, East Africa and the Caribbean started to forge a uniquely British Asian culture. Mixing images of ordinary people facing the challenges of living and working in their new home with political figures, activists, pioneers and celebrities, this photographic collection charts the experiences of Asians in Britain from the late 19th century to the present day.
Europe Goes to War
A tangled web of international alliances fuelled the politics of 1914 and, when war broke out, confidence in decisive military action soon faded as a stalemate became established on the Western Front. Here bestselling author Max Hastings examines the political and military manoeuvres of 1914, using the accounts of leaders and generals as well as ordinary people, to assess how Europe was drawn into war and review the first few months of action. American-cut pages and felt-tip mark on lower trimmed edge. Slightly off-mint.
BBC Dispatches from the Front Line, 1944–1945
When War Report was first broadcast from the beaches of Normandy in June 1944, it was a landmark for the BBC and combat reporting alike. Chester Wilmot, Frank Gillard and Wynford Vaughan Thomas landed side by side with the troops in gliders, by parachute and in assault craft to report directly from the front line. Their broadcasts, collected here, provide a dramatic, blow-by-blow account of the closing months of the Second World War, from D-Day to the German surrender.
Vintage People on Photo Postcards
Since photography was invented, weddings have been a favourite subject, their black-and-white ceremonial garb especially suited to the medium. The couples in these touching images, as the curator Giles Waterfield (1949–2016) points out in his introduction, are captured in a moment of happy if nervous anticipation.
Raising the Dead
The Men Who Created Frankenstein
In 1818 Mary Shelley's Frankenstein horrified readers with the concept of using science to reanimate the dead; yet the idea was almost as old as science itself. This book charts the history of such experiments, from the ancients, through Luigi Galvani's electrification of frogs' legs to the macabre case of the 'Glasgow Frankenstein', in which the brilliant but eccentric scientist Andrew Ure attempted to bring an executed murderer back to life in 1818.
An Intimate History
Surveillance of our habits through CCTV and computer spyware has reached epidemic proportions and social media and TV allow us to fully indulge our passion for eavesdropping on other people, an impulse that John Locke argues is hard-wired into our make-up. This study investigates the deep-seated desire to know what's going on in the private lives of others, uncovering the biological drive behind it and its consequences across history and culture, from 16th-century voyeurism to Facebook and Twitter.
The Mad Sculptor
In 1937 Americans were devouring pulp fiction, while newspapers claimed that a wave of 'sex fiends' was engulfing the nation. So when three women were killed in a swish New York borough the murders became a tabloid sensation. This much-acclaimed title delves into the background of the perpetrator Robert Irwin, a failing sculptor with a history of precarious mental health, and follows his flight, capture and trial as well as the aftermath of the case.
250 Years of British History Painting
With short essays by Greg Sullivan and Mark Salber Phillips, an interview with artist Dexter Dalwood and reproductions of 34 paintings, Fighting History explores the enduring significance and emotional power of British history painting. From vast 18th-century allegorical works to artworks reacting to recent political events, it examines how artists have chosen to capture and interpret the past. Accompanied an exhibition at Tate Britain in 2015.
Normans and Early Plantaganets
An Alternative History of Britain
Covering the period from the death of William I in 1087 to the reign of Edward I (1272–1307), this volume examines alternative outcomes of the civil war of Stephen and Matilda; Richard I and the collapse of the Angevin Empire; the clash between Henry III and Simon de Montfort; and Edward I's involvement with the Crusade of Louis IX in 1270.
The English Civil War
An Alternative History of Britain
With hindsight, the Parliamentarian victory over the Royalists in the English Civil War may seem inevitable, but it was never a foregone conclusion. Venning examines the turning points at which things might have gone differently – the countdown to war between December 1641 and the spring of 1642; Edgehill; the creation of the New Model Army in 1644; and the 1645 campaign.
An Alternative History of Britain
Among the crucial moments in Tudor history that could have had very different outcomes with far-reaching consequences, Venning focuses on Henry VIII's near-fatal tiltyard accident in 1536 and Edward VI's early death in 1553, and he poses the question: if the Spanish Armada had landed successfully – what then?
A Lost Work by Amalarius of Metz
Interpolations in Salisbury, Cathedral Library, MS.154
Amalarius of Metz (c.775–c.850) has borne much of the credit – and the blame – for establishing the ‘allegorical’ interpretation of the liturgy as an exercise unto itself. This volume presents a full study of a long neglected manuscript: Salisbury, Cathedral Library MS.154 contains a version of Amalarius’ Liber officialis that differs significantly from the accepted Hanssens edition. The text of the MS is given in full in Latin and an English translation. No jacket.
A Year in the Life of Stuart Britain
Among the momentous events described in the Stuart year are the Great Plague, the Great Fire of London, the Union of Scotland and England and the publication of Newton’s Principia; and the witnesses to this 17th-century Britain include Pepys, Evelyn, Defoe and John Bunyan.
Power, Politics & County Government in Wales
This study of public administration at the county level in Wales during the ‘long’ 19th century couples a detailed examination of what happened in one county – Anglesey – with overviews of events in other parts of Wales. Griffith explores the social and cultural contexts of county government in Wales, and assesses the shifts in the character and efficacy of local government, initially under a landed magistracy and later under a democratically elected council.
Britain and Europe 1500-1780
This volume is part of a series that examines the 'shifting boundaries' between Britain and Europe over time. For the period 1500 to 1780, Houlbrooke focuses on their complex and variegated diplomatic and commercial links, while keeping in mind political, religious, economic and cultural forces which shaped developments on both sides of the Channel. The study also covers relations between England, Wales and Scotland, the creation of the United Kingdom and the early challenges it faced.
The Captain's Concubine
Love, Honor, and Violence in Renaissance Tuscany
In March 1578 cavalier Fabrizio Bracciolini alleged that he had been beaten up in a street in Pistoia by Mariotto Cellesi and four accomplices. At the trial that followed it emerged that Fabrizio was the lover of Mariotto's father's concubine. This dramatic history brings this long-forgotten incident to life, probing contemporary notions of honour, family and religion. Peopled by a rich cast of patricians, merchants, shopkeepers, weavers, priests and prostitutes, it presents a cross-section of society in Renaissance Italy.
China and the World since 1750
Within two decades China is likely to have become the world's largest economy and its technological powerhouse. But how will this affect its foreign relations? Will the country strengthen its military might or pursue more diplomatic engagement with the rest of the world? To answer these questions the author considers the new form of Chinese nationalism and asks what we can learn about Chinese attitudes by looking back over the past 250 years of receptiveness and resistance to outside influence.
The Rise of Western Military Power
From the earliest accounts of human civilization and modern studies of the behaviour of surviving traditional societies, it is clear that warfare has always been an important facet of our existence. This broad survey examines the military development of the powers and nations within the great world cultures (China, India, the Asian Steppe, the Mediterranean lands and Europe) from the earliest times to the present, with a focus on how the West emerged as the dominant power in modern times.
'This is War!'
The Diaries and Journalism of Anthony Cotterell 1940–1944
An official British Army journalist during the Second World War, Anthony Cotterell flew on bombing raids, sailed with merchant shipping convoys, and took part in the D-Day landings before he disappeared without trace in the aftermath of the Battle of Arnhem. This remarkable book includes many of his best reports – including his unforgettable account of the Normandy campaign – along with extracts from his caustically humorous diary, and many previously unpublished photographs.
A War of Choice
The British in Iraq 2003–9
Plans to establish an effective government in Iraq in place of Saddam Hussein's dictatorship quickly proved ill-judged as the country descended into factional violence and the British were forced into an ignominious withdrawal. In this analysis of the complex events Jack Fairweather, former Baghdad bureau chief for the Daily Telegraph and an embedded journalist during the invasion, gives a comprehensive account of the political and military manoeuvres of the disastrous British interventions in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Revealing CIA Secrets
Christopher Moran, a British scholar of American national security, examines how the CIA balances the need to maintain its own secrecy with the public's right to know, and how the Agency has attempted to control the 'storytellers', usually ex-CIA officers writing their memoirs. Central to that effort are the vetting activities of the Publications Review Board (PRB), and Moran provides an engrossing account of the veterans' stories as they encounter the PRB 'roadblock'.
The Tumultuous Life of General Frank Crozier 1879–1937
Frank Crozier (1879–1937) achieved rank and success in the First World War as Brigadier General of the 119th Brigade, but his career was otherwise unconventional and dogged by controversy and financial insolvency. This biography traces his life from the Boer War and the Irish Troubles to appointments in the Lithuanian Army and Royal Irish Constabulary after the First World War, and his later career as a pacifist and outspoken antagonist of the British establishment.
War in Ancient Greece
Although the Athenian Thucydides was unsuccessful as a military commander, his monumental history of the Peloponnesian War, written as 'a possession for all time', is a remarkable record of the lengthy conflict between Athens and Sparta during the final decades of the fifth century BCE. This volume comprises the complete text of the work in English translation, with a brief editorial introduction and a selection of maps. The original eight-book structure is replaced by a division into 26 shorter chapters.
Waltzing into War
How Britain Almost Lost the Battle of Waterloo
As surprising as Wellington and other officers attending a lavish ball in Brussels on the eve of Waterloo was the presence there of a French spy, who was intent on undermining British chances in the battle. Mixing social history with politics and espionage, this book tells the story of how the scandalous craze for the waltz enthralled Europe and how the hostesses of high society interacted with European politics and affected the course of empires.
The March on Paris
The Memoirs of Alexander von Kluck, 1914
Alexander von Kluck, commander of the First German Army, was blamed for the crucial failure of the German offensive in the West in August and September 1914, which led to years of trench warfare. Based on official records and his own Army Orders, Kluck's account of that momentous campaign presents events as seen from First Army headquarters and gives the General's explanations for his actions. First published in 1923; reissued with a new introduction by Mark Pottle.
Archduke Franz Ferdinand Lives!
A World Without World War I
If the Archduke had never been assassinated, would the First World War have been avoided? Here a political theorist considers this possibility and postulates a number of alternative histories, including one with no Second World War or nuclear weapons but with science, medicine and social and racial tolerance developing at a much slower pace. The analyses of such fictional outcomes offer interesting perspectives on the 20th century and the factors that have made the modern world. Slightly off-mint.
The Stockbrokers' Battalion in the Great War
A History of the 10th (Service) Battalion Royal Fusiliers
Members of the London Stock Exchange from well-known families such as the Rothschilds served alongside clerks from City insurance, shipping and banking firms in the 10th Battalion, Royal Fusiliers during the First World War. This book uses personal diaries and letters as well as accounts written after the war to tell the story of this 'pals battalion', which was in action on the Somme, at Ypres and during the advance through France in the last months of the war.
The World's War
In a sweeping narrative of the First World War, Olusoga portrays not only the variety of peoples fighting on the Western Front, but also outlines the wider geography of the war – the African and Asian colonies, from Morocco to Bangkok, where the European empires recruited their non-European soldiers. He explores the experience and the sacrifices of those forgotten armies – some four million men – and exposes the shocking paraphernalia of the era's racial obsessions. Accompanied the BBC TV documentary. Off-mint.
Hidden Stories of the First World War
The Europeana 1914–18 project (www.europeana1914-1918.eu/en) encourages people across Europe to share family histories, documents and artefacts relating to the First World War, and has produced a host of valuable material revealing forgotten adventures, hardships, tragedies and romances. The 32 stories collected in this volume, drawn from Europeana and other sources, tell the tales of ordinary people caught up in great events, from a conscripted French pacifist to a Welsh soldier injured in the last days of the war.
Brothers In Arms
Canadian Firefighters in England in the Second World War
In response to an appeal by the government for volunteer firefighters from Commonwealth countries, a contingent of Canadian firemen arrived in Liverpool in 1942. Bolstering the hard-pressed British fire services, they were assigned to various blitz-torn cities including London, Plymouth and Bristol. This book tell the story of their invaluable contribution through a collection of photographs of their life and training in Britain, as well as the scenes of bomb devastation that they were called to deal with.
Secrets of a German PoW
The Revelations of Hauptmann Herbert Cleff
Captured in North Africa in 1942, Herbert Cleff was interrogated by the British and began to reveal interesting information about German developments in aeronautics, missiles and fuel technology. Transferred to London he was taken sufficiently seriously to be living a civilian life by 1943 and working in Whitehall. This book investigates Cleff's life, his likely knowledge and his wartime claims in an attempt to ascertain whether he was genuinely passing on secrets, deliberately planting misinformation or was merely a fantasist.
From Peat Bog to Conifer Forest
An Oral History of Whitelee, its Community and Landscape
In the mid 20th century the wet and windy Whitelee Plateau south of Glasgow was a peat bog. Today it is a vast conifer forest. This absorbing study charts one of the most dramatic transformations of the British landscape in recent history. Extensively illustrated with colour photographs and maps, it records how local farmers were persuaded to sell their unproductive land for urgently needed forestry. It assesses the environmental impact of the plantation and, through oral histories, its effect on local communities.
The North Wessex Downs
The underlying chalk geology is responsible for many of the special characteristics of the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Rich in prehistoric monuments, including the Uffington White Horse and the stone circle at Avebury, the area is also blessed with majestic landscapes and monuments of a more recent vintage such as Highclere Castle. This book explores the geography, history and wildlife of the area, and includes visitor information and photographs of many of the most important sites.