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The Victorians gave us many of the Christmas traditions we enjoy today, from putting up Christmas trees to pulling crackers. This handy, pocket-sized colouring book embodies these customs in 45 unique illustrations. Colour in Victorian fireplaces adorned with stockings, St Nicholas with his sack full of presents, and scenes from the nativity. Why not de-stress and take a break over the Christmas period?
London's Strangest Tales takes a walk on London's weirder side with an absorbing collection of curious tales from one of the world's greatest cities. This fascinating book is packed with amazing things you didn't know about Britain's capital, like the fact that it's still forbidden to run, carry an umbrella or whistle in the Burlington Arcade, and the fat lamppost at the corner of Trafalgar Square that is secretly a tiny prison cell. And did you know that the entrance to Buckingham Palace you see from the Mall is actually the back door and not the front? The stories within these pages are bizarre, fascinating, hilarious and, most importantly, true. Revised, redesigned and updated for a new generation of London-lovers, this book is a brilliant alternative guide to the city, whether you're a visitor, a daily commuter or one of its 8 million inhabitants. Word count: 45,000
The perfect introduction to Scottish tartans. Produced in association with the Scottish Tartans Authority, this Little Book focuses on the history of the world famous Scottish tartan. Contents include: * Over 100 clans presented with their tartan, crest, motto and Gaelic clan name. * The history of tartan and how it plays its part in the traditional national dress. * Detailed clans and family names listing. Beautifully produced, Collins Little Book of Clans and Tartans is a treasure in itself and makes a perfect gift for any Scotland enthusiast.
A definitive portrait of one of the most compelling monarchs England has ever had: Elizabeth I. 'We are a prince from a line of princes.' Lisa Hilton's majestic biography of Elizabeth I, 'The Virgin Queen', uses new research to present a fresh interpretation of Elizabeth as a queen who saw herself primarily as a Renaissance prince, delivering a very different perspective on her emotional and sexual life, and upon her attempts to mould England into a European state. Elizabeth was not an exceptional woman but an exceptional ruler, and this book challenges readers to reassess her reign, and the colourful drama, scandal and intrigue to which it is always linked.
How did the most wanted man in the country outwit the greatest manhunt in British history? In January 1649, King Charles I was beheaded in London outside his palace of Whitehall and Britain became a republic. When his eldest son, Charles, returned in 1651 to fight for his throne, he was crushed by the might of Cromwell's armies at the battle of Worcester. With 3,000 of his supporters lying dead and 10,000 taken prisoner, it seemed as if his dreams of power had been dashed. Surely it was a foregone conclusion that he would now be caught and follow his father to the block? At six foot two inches tall, the prince towered over his contemporaries and with dark skin inherited from his French-Italian mother, he stood out in a crowd. How would he fare on the run with Cromwell's soldiers on his tail and a vast price on his head? The next six weeks would form the most memorable and dramatic of Charles' life. Pursued relentlessly, Charles ran using disguise, deception and relying on grit, fortitude and good luck. He suffered grievously through weeks when his cause seemed hopeless. He hid in an oak tree - an event so fabled that over 400 English pubs are named Royal Oak in commemoration. Less well-known events include his witnessing a village in wild celebrations at the erroneous news of his killing; the ordeal of a medical student wrongly imprisoned because of his similarity in looks; he disguised himself as a servant and as one half of an eloping couple. Once restored to the throne as Charles II, he told the tale of his escapades to Samuel Pepys, who transcribed it all. In this gripping, action-packed, true adventure story, based on extensive archive material, Charles Spencer, bestselling author of Killers of the King, uses Pepys's account and many others to retell this epic adventure.
William Marshal, born about 1147, was the son of a minor lord who held the hereditary title of 'Marshal', or head of the king's security. He became a knight loyal to five kings, the most powerful man in the kingdom, the hero of Magna Carta and a saviour of England. At his funeral in the Temple Church, London, on 20 May 1219, he was described by the Archbishop of Canterbury as 'the greatest knight in the world'. William's son commissioned a biography of his father, The History of William Marshal, which brings William vividly to life and is the fullest and most dramatic such biography to reach us from the Middle Ages. The Rotunda of the Temple Church still contains eight 13th-century effigies of knights in armour. Three of the Marshals - William and two of his sons - are known to have been buried in the Church. By the late 16th century, antiquarians were trying to identify William's effigy among them; and since 1843 one effigy in particular has been universally accepted to be William's. This has recently been disputed by a set of drawings, dating to c. 1610, discovered in Washington, DC. These drawings show all the medieval effigies in the Temple Church - and a further, long-lost gravestone which matches the earliest descriptions of William's tomb. This raises a fascinating question: has the real monument to William been lost? This book will uncover the details of this latest discovery and commemorate the greatest knight that ever lived.
A full and definitive account of the war waged between Irish Republicans and England over three centuries by the bestselling author of `Who Dares Wins', with emphasis on the latterday role of the special forces. From the Battle of the Boyne in 1690 to the Downing Street Declaration of 1993, Britain and Ireland have been in mortal conflict over the sovereignty of the Emerald Isle. In `The Irish War', bestselling author Tony Geraghty writes a full and compelling account of the tragic three-hundred-year war, tracing the path to today's weary peace. From his years of reporting the outbreak of the troubles in 1969 for the Sunday Times to the present, Tony Geraghty has covered every bloody twist and turn of the IRA and the Loyalist campaigns, but his unerring eye for detail took him back through the centuries to uncover the roots and causes of the grievances and feuds that have been so ruthlessly fought over in the past twenty-five years. The result is a powerful history of England's ruthless aggression against her small Catholic neighbour and that tiny island's utter determination to oust the bullying intruder. After the battles of the Boyne and Aughrim, deserted by the last of their officers and with inferior resources, the Irish reinvented the rules of warfare to their advantage. The battle cry of Sinn Fein - `Ourselves Alone' - went up and a code of fighting that ignored the rules of war was let loose. Tracing the roots and meaning of the terrible war that has been fought overtly and covertly for three hundred years, `The Irish War' is essential reading for all those seeking to understand the relations between these two nations.
By 1300, a Marcher region had been created between England and Wales, consisting of about forty castle-centered lordships that extended along the Anglo-Welsh border and much of southern Wales. Expressions like "the Welsh marches" are still part of today's vernacular, though they refer only vaguely to Anglo-Welsh borders--but the question remains: what was this medieval March of Wales, and how and why was it created? This book provides a readerly, scholarly, yet concise answer, aided by maps, illustrations, a list of key dates, and primary source material--placing the March in the context of current debates on frontiers and the medieval British Isles.
`It is unlikely that a clearer, more stimulating account of the Russians' extraordinary period of imperial history will be written.' Philip Marsden, Spectator Geoffrey Hosking's landmark book provides us with a new prism through which to view Russian history by posing the apparently simple question: what is Russia's national identity? Hosking answers this with brilliant originality: his thesis is that the needs of Russia's empire prevented the creation of a Russian nation. The Tsars, and before them the Grand Dukes of Moscow, were empire builders rather than nation builders and, as consequence, profoundly alienated ordinary Russians.
FROM A MULTI-AWARD-WINNING HISTORIAN, THIS IS AN ARRESTING NEW HISTORY OF THE BATTLE FOR THE FENS.
Between the English Civil Wars and the mid-Victorian period, the proud indigenous population of the Fens of eastern England fought to preserve their homeland against an expanding empire. After centuries of resistance, their culture and community were destroyed, along with their wetland home – England’s last lowland wilderness. But this was no simple triumph of technology over nature – it was the consequence of a newly centralised and militarised state, which enriched the few while impoverishing the many.
In this colourful and evocative history, James Boyce brings to life not only colonial masters such as Oliver Cromwell and the Dukes of Bedford but also the defiant ‘Fennish’ them- selves and their dangerous and often bloody resistance to the enclosing landowners. We learn of the eels so plentiful they became a kind of medieval currency; the games of ‘Fen football’ that were often a cover for sabotage of the drainage works; and the destruction of a bountiful ecosystem that had sustained the Fennish for thousands of years and which meant that they did not have to submit in order to survive.
Masterfully argued and imbued with a keen sense of place, Imperial Mud reimagines not just the history of the Fens, but the history and identity of the English people.
Post-war British culture was initially dominated by religious-led sexual austerity and, from the sixties, by secular liberalism. Using five case studies of local licensing and a sixth on the BBC, conservative Christians are exposed here as the nation's censors, fighting effectively for purity on stage, screen and in public places. The Anglican-led Public Morality Council was astonishingly successful in restraining sex in London's media in the fifties, but a brazen sexualised culture thrived amongst the millions of tourists to Blackpool, whilst Glasgow and the Isle of Lewis were gripped by conservatism. But come the late 1960s, tourists took Blackpool's sexual liberalism home, whilst progressive Humanism burrowed into Parliament and the BBC to secularise moral reform and the national narrative. Using extensive archival research, Callum G. Brown adopts a secular gaze to show how conservative Christians lost the battle for the nation's moral culture.
Almost three-quarters of a million British soldiers lost their
lives during the First World War, and many more were incapacitated
by their wounds, leaving behind a generation of women who, raised
to see marriage as "the crown and joy of woman's life," suddenly
discovered that they were left without an escort to life's great
Fighting the People's War is an unprecedented, panoramic history of the 'citizen armies' of the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand and South Africa, the core of the British and Commonwealth armies in the Second World War. Drawing on new sources to reveal the true wartime experience of the ordinary rank and file, Jonathan Fennell fundamentally challenges our understanding of the War and of the relationship between conflict and socio-political change. He uncovers how fractures on the home front had profound implications for the performance of the British and Commonwealth armies and he traces how soldiers' political beliefs, many of which emerged as a consequence of their combat experience, proved instrumental to the socio-political changes of the postwar era. Fighting the People's War transforms our understanding of how the great battles were won and lost as well as how the postwar societies were forged.
The relationship of England and Scotland became defined by events on 9 September 1513 in a battle of great size, bloodshed and finality - the Battle of Flodden. On the back of historian George Goodwin's critically acclaimed debut, FATAL COLOURS, comes FATAL RIVALRY, providing the first in-depth examination of the Battle of Flodden, the biggest and bloodiest in British history. This book captures the importance of the key players in the story - the kings and their respective queens, their nobles, diplomats and generals - as the rivalry brought the two countries inexorably to war. Fatefully, it would be an error by James, that most charismatic of commanders, and in the thick of engagement, that would make him the last British king to fall in battle, would condemn the bulk of his nobility to a similarly violent death and settle his country's fate.
Now with a new chapter. The official inside story of the life, death and remarkable discovery of history's most controversial monarch. On 22 August 1485 Richard III was killed at Bosworth Field, the last king of England to die in battle. His victorious opponent, Henry Tudor (the future Henry VII), went on to found one of our most famous ruling dynasties. Richard's body was displayed in undignified fashion for two days in nearby Leicester and then hurriedly buried in the church of the Greyfriars. Fifty years later, at the time of the dissolution of the monasteries, the king's grave was lost - its contents believed to be emptied into the river Soar and Richard III's reputation buried under a mound of Tudor propaganda. Its culmination was Shakespeare's compelling portrayal of a deformed and murderous villain, written over a hundred years after Richard's death. Now - in an incredible find - Richard III's remains have been uncovered beneath a car park in Leicester. The King's Grave traces this remarkable journey. In alternate chapters, Philippa Langley, whose years of research and belief that she would find Richard in this exact spot inspired the project, reveals the inside story of the search for the king's grave, and historian Michael Jones tells of Richard's fifteenth-century life and death. The result is a compelling portrayal of one of our greatest archaeological discoveries, allowing a complete re-evaluation of our most controversial monarch - one that discards the distortions of later Tudor histories and puts the man firmly back into the context of his times.
For nearly three hundred years, from the end of the eighth century AD until approximately 1100, the Vikings set out from Scandinavia across the northern world a dramatic time that would change Europe forever. This book explores the Viking conquest and settlement across Britain and Ireland, covering the core period of Viking activity from the first Viking raids to the raids of Magnus Barelegs, king of Norway. This lively history looks at the impact of the Viking forces, the development of societies within their settlements, their trades and beliefs, language and their interactions with native peoples. Drawing on the superb collection of the British Museum, together with other finds, sites and monuments, The Vikings in Britain and Ireland is a richly-illustrated introduction to the culture, daily life and times of the Vikings and their legacy which is still visible today.
'I am standing in the dining room of my father's house in Ireland, gazing up at ten Pakenham family portraits. What thoughts went on behind those passive, chalky faces? How can I bring them out of the shadows?' Eliza Pakenham, granddaughter of the seventh Earl of Longford, chronicles the fortunes of her colourful ancestors against the backdrop of Napoleonic wars and Irish revolutions. Through her painstaking research and discovery of hidden records, she unearthed the story of an extraordinary dynasty peppered with intriguing characters: Kitty, Duchess of Wellington, kept apart from her love for over a decade; Tom, second Earl of Longford, who fathered three illegitimate children; and Ned, the darling of the family, a war hero. Through them we learn of life in times of peace and war, of the pain of bereavement, and rapid changes in politics and society. A vivid and absorbing account of a fascinating generation, brought truthfully to life.
In 1485 the Battle of Bosworth marked an epoch in the lives of two great houses: the house of York fell to the ground when Richard III died on the field of battle; and the house of Tudor rose from the massacre to reign for the next hundred years. Michael Jones, co-author of The King's Grave: The Search for Richard III, rewrites this landmark event in English history. He shifts our perspective of its heroes and villains and puts Richard firmly back into the context of his family and his times.
From the summer of 1938, British women from all walks of life joined the Women's Voluntary Services (WVS). This disparate band of women came together for the common good - to help serve and protect their communities. By 1941 a million women had enrolled. These brave and dutiful women played a vital role in Britain's victory. The positive impact of the WVS on wartime society was universally acknowledged. They were instrumental in implementing the large-scale evacuation of children from bomb-targeted cities, in the care of the wounded, and in keeping those in war service fed. Lady Reading, founder and fearless leader, was one of the most influential women in twentieth-century Britain. The story of the WVS has never been fully told before. Social historians Patricia and Robert Malcolmson bring this vital part of the Second World War to life in a vivid and engaging way through the diaries and records of the women serving their country on the Home Front. Women at the Ready promises to be a magnificent saga of sacrifice and determination.
This The Making of Modern Britain 1951-2007 Revision Guide is part of the bestselling Oxford AQA History for A Level series. Written to match the new AQA specification, this series helps you deepen your historical knowledge and develop vital analytical and evaluation skills. This revision guide offers the clearly structured revision approach of Recap, Apply, and Review to prepare you for exam success. Step-by-step exam practice strategies for all AQA question types are provided (including Source Analysis and essays linked to Key Concepts), as well as well-researched, targeted guidance based on what we now know from the new AQA examiner's reports on Modern Britain. Our original author team is back, offering expert advice, AS and A Level exam-style questions and Examiner Tips. Contents checklists help monitor revision progress; example student answers and suggested activity answers help you review your own work. This guide is perfect for use alongside the Student Books or as a stand-alone resource for independent revision.
'Nicola Tallis, one of our great popular historians.' Alison Weir
The first biography of Lettice Knollys, one of the most prominent women of the Elizabethan era.
Cousin to Elizabeth I - and very likely also Henry VIII's illegitimate granddaughter - Lettice Knollys had a life of dizzying highs and pitiful lows. Darling of the court, entangled in a love triangle with Robert Dudley and Elizabeth I, banished from court, plagued by scandals of affairs and murder, embroiled in treason, Lettice would go on to lose a husband and beloved son to the executioner's axe. Living to the astonishing age of ninety-one, Lettice's tale gives us a remarkable, personal lens on to the grand sweep of the Tudor Age, with those closest to her often at the heart of the events that defined it.
In the first ever biography of this extraordinary woman, Nicola Tallis's dramatic narrative takes us through those events, including the religious turmoil, plots and intrigues of Mary, Queen of Scots, attempted coups, and bloody Irish conflicts, among others. Surviving well into the reign of Charles I, Lettice truly was the last of the great Elizabethans.
This book argues that the legacies of nineteenth-century public health in England and Wales were not just better health and cleaner cities but also new ideas of property and people. Between 1815 and 1872, the work of public health activists led to multiple redefinitions of both, shifting the boundaries between public and private nuisances, public and private services, taxable and nontaxable property, cities and suburbs, the state and the individual, and, finally, between different kinds of individuals. These boundary-making processes were themselves inflected by different material, political, and ideological developments in the areas of disease, demography, democracy, and domesticity. The changes in boundaries manifested themselves in the creation of new nuisance laws and in the minute control by the state of private domestic arrangements. Most important, these changes also promoted a radical shift in ideas on who should bear financial responsibility for the health of others, stimulating in the process a controversy on the nature of community. Public health thus served as an important, if contradictory, site in the creation of communities, enhancing the right to health for some while simultaneously restricting in the name of health the privacy rights of others. Relying on underused legal sources, this book presents a fresh view of the local origins and legal and political significance of the public health movement of the nineteenth century. James G. Hanley is associate professor of history at the University of Winnipeg.
The Top Ten Sunday Times Bestseller 'Richly entertaining... impressively well-researched' Daily Mail, Biography of the Year 'Incisive... strongly recommend' The Times 'A study in aggressive social climbing [with] quick-moving fluency' Sunday Times 'Painstakingly researched... genuinely enthralling' Observer 'A page-turner which is also a carefully researched work of history' Spectator 'A compelling new biography...superbly researched' Daily Express 'Everything a top-notch biography should be' Budapest Times 'Well-researched, enjoyable, revealing' The Oldie ************************ The intimate story of a unique marriage that spans the heights of glamour and power to infidelity, manipulation and disaster through the heart of the 20th century. DICKIE MOUNTBATTEN: A major figure behind his nephew Philip's marriage to Queen Elizabeth II and instrumental in the Royal Family taking the Mountbatten name, he was Supreme Allied Commander of South East Asia during World War II and the last Viceroy of India. EDWINA MOUNTBATTEN: Once the richest woman in Britain and a playgirl who enjoyed numerous affairs, she emerged from World War II as a magnetic and talented humanitarian worker loved around the world. From British high society to the South of France, from the battlefields of Burma to the Viceroy's House, The Mountbattens is a rich and filmic story of a powerful partnership, revealing the truth behind a carefully curated legend. Was Mountbatten one of the outstanding leaders of his generation, or a man over-promoted because of his royal birth, high-level connections, film-star looks and ruthless self-promotion? What is the true story behind controversies such as the Dieppe Raid and Indian Partition, the love affair between Edwina and Nehru, and Mountbatten's assassination in 1979? Based on over 100 interviews, research from dozens of archives and new information released under Freedom of Information requests, prize-winning historian Andrew Lownie sheds new light on this remarkable couple.
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