ABBEY'S CHOICE APRIL 2014 ----- Award-winning and critically acclaimed historian Helen Rappaport turns to the tragic story of the daughters of the last Tsar of all the Russias, slaughtered with their parents at Ekaterinburg.
On 17 July 1918, four young women walked down twenty-three steps into the cellar of a house in Ekaterinburg. The eldest was twenty-two, the youngest only seventeen. Together with their parents and their thirteen-year-old brother, they were all brutally murdered. Their crime: to be the daughters of the last Tsar and Tsaritsa of All the Russias.
Much has been written about Nicholas II, his wife Alexandra and their tragic fate, as it has about the Russian Revolutions of 1917, but little attention has been paid to the Romanov princesses, who - perhaps inevitably - have been seen as minor players in the drama.
In Four Sisters, however, acclaimed biographer Helen Rappaport, puts them centre stage and offers readers the most authoritative account yet of the Grand Duchesses Olga, Tatiana, Maria and Anastasia.
Drawing on their own letters and diaries and other hitherto unexamined primary sources, she paints a vivid picture of their lives in the dying days of the Romanov dynasty.
We see, almost for the first time, their journey from a childhood of enormous privilege, throughout which they led a very sheltered and largely simple life, to young womanhood - their first romantic crushes, their hopes and dreams, the difficulty of coping with a mother who was a chronic invalid and a haeomophiliac brother, and, latterly, the trauma of the revolution and its terrible consequences.
Compellingly readable, meticulously researched and deeply moving, Four Sisters gives these young women a voice, and allows their story to resonate for readers almost a century after their death.
The Romans first set military foot on Greek soil in 229 BCE; only sixty or so years later it was all over, and shortly thereafter Greece became one of the first provinces of the emerging Roman Empire. It was an incredible journey - a swift, brutal, and determined conquest of the land to whose art, philosophy, and culture the Romans owed so much. Rome found the eastern Mediterranean divided, in an unstable balance of power, between three great kingdoms - the three Hellenistic kingdoms that had survived and flourished after the wars of Alexander the Great's Successors: Macedon, Egypt, and Syria. Internal troubles took Egypt more or less out of the picture, but the other two were reduced by Rome. Having established itself, by its defeat of Carthage, as the sole superpower in the western Mediterranean, Rome then systematically went about doing the same in the east, until the entire Mediterranean was under her control. Apart from the thrilling military action, the story of the Roman conquest of Greece is central to the story of Rome itself and the empire it created. As Robin Waterfield shows, the Romans developed a highly sophisticated method of dominance by remote control over the Greeks of the eastern Mediterranean - the cheap option of using authority and diplomacy to keep order rather than standing armies. And it is a story that raises a number of fascinating questions about Rome, her empire, and her civilization. For instance, to what extent was the Roman conquest a planned and deliberate policy? What was it about Roman culture that gave it such a will for conquest? And what was the effect on Roman intellectual and artistic culture, on their very identity, of their entanglement with an older Greek civilization, which the Romans themselves recognized as supreme?
Australians remember the dead of 25 April 1915 on Anzac Day every year. But do we know the name of a single soldier who died that day? What do we really know about the men supposedly most cherished in the national memory of war? Peter Stanley goes looking for the Lost Boys of Anzac: the men of the very first wave to land at dawn on 25 April 1915 and who died on that day. There were exactly 101 of them. They were the first to volunteer, the first to go into action, and the first of the 60,000 Australians killed in that conflict. Lost Boys of Anzac traces who these men were, where they came from and why they came to volunteer for the AIF in 1914. It follows what happened to them in uniform and, using sources overlooked for nearly a century, uncovers where and how they died, on the ridges and gullies of Gallipoli - where most of them remain to this day. And we see how the Lost Boys were remembered by those who knew and loved them, and how they have since faded from memory.
What is trachyte and how did it come to be the unsung hero of Sydney's building stones? The answer is found in this fascinating story of how a hard stone quarried in the New South Wales Southern Highlands became the city's most important stone after sandstone. The title provides an apt description: trachyte was Sydney's hard rock. Sandstone with all its virtues was the premier building stone of Sydney's early and middle years but trachyte had qualities sandstone lacked and so it perfectly complemented the 'yellowblock' of our heritage buildings. Sydney's hard rock provided what sandstone, with all its beauty, could not provide. This tough, distinctively coloured igneous stone was first quarried at Mount Gibraltar near Bowral in the 1880s and soon began appearing in the kerbs and gutters along the growing city's streets. Soon it was adopted by builders and architects and it can still be seen overhead in the keystones of great buildings as well as underfoot, in myriad small and large scale projects throughout New South Wales and beyond. Its importance in the city is why the authors have called their tale Sydney's Hard Rock Story. The book traces trachyte's extensive uses, starting with its geology and some of the dramas of Bowral's 'Gib' and its quarrymen. It continues by examining its basic, utilitarian beginnings like kerbing. After designers were awakened to its qualities they used trachyte to create some of our finest commercial streetscapes, as well as monuments, foundation stones, commemorative plaques and paving. A special feature of the book, showcasing many fine and surprising examples of this special stone, is the illustrated trachyte walk in central Sydney. Handsomely illustrated throughout.
Parrots and lorikeets swoop down, vivid, bright and colourful. Black swans glide through the air. Owls stare out from pages, wide-eyed.
A sense of awe swept through natural history circles in eighteenth-century London when the first ships returned from Sydney with their cargo of exotic animals, birds and plants - and striking watercolour illustrations.
The sudden emergence, in 2011, of a large number of these watercolour illustrations has revealed much about the early years of the colony.
Louise Anemaat uncovers never-before-published works from the artists of the First Fleet, including convicts-turned-watercolourists Thomas Watling and John Doody, and the anonymous 'Port Jackson Painter'. She unravels the complex network of natural history collectors who spanned the globe - eagerly acquiring, copying and exchanging these artworks - from New South Wales Surgeon-General John White to passionate British collector Aylmer Bourke Lambert.
There was a place far worse than Changi - Singapore's Outram Road Gaol. Deprivation here was so extreme that there really was a fate worse than death. Stubborn Buggers is the story of twelve Australian POWs who endured and survived the Thai-Burma Railway and Sandakan and then the unimaginable hardships of Outram Road Gaol. It is a story of how they dealt with the brutality of the Japanese military police, the feared Kempeitai. And it is the story of how they found a way to go on living even when facing a future of no hope and slow death. But Stubborn Buggers is about more than suffering and brutality. It is also a story of grit, determination and larrikin humour. It is very much about the triumph of the human spirit.
In the dark days following the fall of Singapore in Februrary 1942, Australia faced its toughest battle yet. It was centrestage and under direct attack from seemingly invincible Japanese forces. Winston Churchill was demanding our best battle-hardened troops stay in North Africa while President Roosevelt called for them to fight the Japanese in Burma. But Prime Minister John Curtin insisted, in an act of defiance, that they return to defend their homeland.Australia had never been more isolated strategically, politically and physically. Or less prepared.In this masterful and gripping account, Roland Perry brings to life the bravery of our fellow Australians: from the forces engaged in brutal frontline fighting in the jungle, sea and air, to the backroom strategic campaigns waged by our politicians, and the sacrifices made on the home front.
The First World War was the blooding of the young Australian nation. Five years after Australia's overwhelming response to Britain's declaration of war, nearly a fifth of the 330,000 Australians who served overseas lay dead. Charles Bean witnessed it all. Appointed official war correspondent with the Australian Imperial Force in 1914, he spent the entire war in Europe at the cutting edge of the military machine. Anzac to Amiens is Bean's remarkable condensation of the twelve-volume official history of Australia's involvement in the Great War. It describes with great clarity and compassion the strategies, the tactical strikes, the shellings and the sacrifices of that terrible and drawn-out conflict. An acknowledged classic of military history, Anzac to Amiens is compelling and compulsory reading for every Australian interested in the nation's bloody coming of age.
Gallipoli was the final resting place for thousands of young Australians. Death struck so fast there was not time for escape or burial. And when Gallipoli was over there was the misery of the European Campaign. Patsy Adam-Smith read over 8000 diaries and letters to write her acclaimed best-seller about the First World War. Soldiers sought her out to tell her why they went, what they saw, and how they felt about that great holocaust. Their simple accounts are more vivid than any novel; the years have not dimmed their memories of lost comrades and the horrors of war. These are the extraordinary experiences of ordinary men - and they strike to the heart. Winner of the Age Book of the Year award when first published in 1978, The Anzacs remains unrivalled as the classic account of Australia's involvement in the First World War.
Phillip Schuler, alongside C.E.W. Bean, was one of Australia's key First World War correspondents. A soldier as well as a journalist, he died on 23 June 1917 of wounds received at Armentieres. His legacy was Australia in Arms, an extraordinary and evocative account of the Australian Imperial Force and their achievements at Anzac, and the first full published account of Australia's role in the Dardanelles campaign. With detailed and compelling on-the-ground accounts from the scene of battle, Australia in Arms is a vivid read and an important part of Australia's Anzac legacy.
Nearly 420,000 Australians enlisted during the First World War, and more than half were killed, wounded or captured. The conflict was the most costly in Australia's history. In the fates of his protagonists in his acclaimed Flesh in Armour - one dies valiantly, one dies in an abject and mentally unhinged state, one survives - Mann pays tribute to the sacrifices of his countrymen and reminds readers of the unforgiving test of character found in war then and now.
A memoir of astonishing power, savagery and ashen lyricism, Storm of Steel depicts Ernst Jünger's experience of combat in the German front line – leading raiding parties, defending trenches against murderous British incursions, and simply enduring as shells tore his comrades apart. One of the greatest books to emerge from the catastrophe of the First World War, it illuminates like no other work not only the horrors but also the fascination of a war that made men keep fighting on for four long years.
When Patsy Adam-Smith wrote Australian Women at War in 1984, her aim was to tap into the memories of all the 'brave, modest, forgotten women' while they were still alive, in order to honour them. Now, for the first time, this iconic volume is republished for an entirely new generation of readers.
'Just a little way down Collins Street, beside Henry Buck's, is a perpetually dark but sheltered laneway called Equitable Place. Here you'll find a number of places to eat and drink. Settle yourself in the window of one, shut your eyes, and picture this scene of yore...' In this much-loved book, Robyn Annear resurrects the village that was early Melbourne - from the arrival of white settlers in 1835 until the first gold rushes shook the town - and brings it to life in vivid colour. Bearbrass was one of the local names by which Melbourne was known and Annear provides a fascinating living portrait of the streetlife of this town. In a lively and engaging style, she overlays her reinvention of Bearbrass with her own impressions and experiences of the modern city, enabling Melburnians and visitors to imagine the early township and remind themselves of the rich history that lies beneath today's modern metropolis.
A chronological account the main periods and events in the Australian story that traces the forces that have shaped the nation from the coming of the first Aborigines to the election of the Abbott government in 2013. The content is political, social and economic, showing how these strands of Australian life interacted in eras of exploration, in boom periods and depressions and droughts, and in a number of wars. The book traces the transition from a convict society to a free one is traced, as is development of representative government and of Federation, the growth of cities, and the careers and influence of key politicians.
IT WAS A MISSION IMPOSSIBLE On 25 April 1915 - the day the Anzacs landed at Gallipoli - Lieutenant Commander Dacre Stoker set out as captain of the Australian submarine AE2 on a mission to breach the treacherous Dardanelles Strait with the intention of disrupting Turkish supply lines to the isolated Gallipoli peninsula. Facing dangerous currents, mines and withering enemy fire, Stoker and his men succeeded where British and French submarines had come to grief. Stoker's achievement meant much in military terms, and even more emotionally in boosting the morale of embattled Allied troops. But what was proclaimed at the time as 'the finest feat in submarine history' has since sunk into oblivion. Few Australians even know their country had a submarine at Gallipoli, much less that it achieved daring feats, torpedoed an enemy craft, and possibly played a pivotal role in Anzac troops staying on the beachhead for eight months. Now, finally, Stoker's Submarine tells the story of a remarkable naval hero and the men under his command. And AE2 herself, still lying intact on the floor of the Sea of Marmara, is celebrated as the most tangible relic of Australia's role at Gallipoli, the crucible of nationhood.
The command came: 'Stop those vehicles!' It was like a red rag to a bull. Instantly streams of 7.62 mm tracer and 50 mm calibre machine gun rounds arced across the night sky and smashed into the bus and truck.Elite SAS Patrol Commander Stuart 'Nev' Bonner takes us inside the extraordinary and dangerous world of secret combat operations in this explosive, behind-the-scenes look at life inside the SAS. A world where capture means torture or death, and every move is trained for with precision detail to bring elite soldiers to the very peak of fighting ability.In a career spanning twenty years, fourteen of them in the SAS, Bonner shares with us the inside story of being out in front and often behind enemy lines.From patrolling the mountains of East Timor to covert operations in Bougainville and the Solomon Islands, from sweeping into the Iraqi desert ahead of invading US forces to cripple Saddam Hussein's communications to patrolling in war-torn Baghdad and being in the middle of the disastrous Operation Anaconda in Afghanistan this is a no-holds-barred account of what it's like to live, eat and breathe SAS.
They were the forward scouts, the mine clearers, the bridge builders and the tunnel rats. They were frequently not just on the front line, but right at the sharp end of the action. They were the legendary Aussie sappers, the army engineers, who were literally everywhere in the fighting against the Vietcong. This special breed of soldier lived hard and played hard. They were there at the beginning of the war. They were also among the last to leave. And on the way, they fought alongside their mates in infantry and tanks and bore the brunt of the Vietcong's revenge. To the rest of the world, Vietnam was a conflict of ideologies. On the ground it was a battle of wits and the sappers were at the forefront. This is their story.
As with the failed attempt to seize the Gallipoli peninsula in 1915, the allied campaign to assist Greece against a seemingly invincible German juggernaut was poorly conceived and probably doomed even as plans were made to assist that country. Like any campaign, however, it holds lessons for the contemporary student of strategy, tactics and history.
Greece presented singular geographic difficulties for the defending forces, its mountainous defiles dictating the distribution of ports, road and rail routes. The primitive state of the national infrastructure did little to help a long-term defensive posture. Operations in Greece proved to be a nightmare, particularly for logistics units, which struggled with primitive communication systems in rugged terrain over which the enemy enjoyed total air superiority.
Poor liaison between the Greek and Commonwealth forces did not help matters, nor was the force deployed adequate for its task. The allies never enjoyed air superiority, nor could they consolidate any in-depth defence in time to be effective. The official British history of the campaign stated that the ‘British campaign on the mainland of Greece was from start to finish a withdrawal’.
A new work by Elizabeth Ellis OAM (author of Rare & Curious) investigating the milieu and the mysteries of the magnificent Sydney Punchbowl , one of the most fascinating treasures of the Mitchell Library in the State Library of New South Wales. A fine and large porcelain bowl manufactured in China as export ware about 1820, the Punchbowl is decorated with a hand-painted panoramic scene of Sydney Cove around the outside and a group of Aboriginal figures as the inner centre-piece, and finished with exquisite Chinese-style floral and gilded bandings. As Elizabeth's book makes clear, the Punchbowl and its intriguing history deserve to be better known, which is why Hordern House has also commissioned a deluxe limited edition replica of the bowl, hand-crafted by Chinese craftsmen in Jingdezhen, China. This book also includes a brief essay on the making of the replica.
Kim Philby was the most notorious British defector and Soviet mole in history. Agent, double agent, traitor and enigma, he betrayed every secret of Allied operations to the Russians in the early years of the Cold War. Philby's two closest friends in the intelligence world, Nicholas Elliott of MI6 and James Jesus Angleton, the CIA intelligence chief, thought they knew Philby better than anyone, and then discovered they had not known him at all. This is a story of intimate duplicity; of loyalty, trust and treachery, class and conscience; of an ideological battle waged by men with cut-glass accents and well-made suits in the comfortable clubs and restaurants of London and Washington; of male friendships forged, and then systematically betrayed. With access to newly released MI5 files and previously unseen family papers, and with the cooperation of former officers of MI6 and the CIA, this definitive biography unlocks what is perhaps the last great secret of the Cold War.
A monumental history of the nineteenth century, The Transformation of the World offers a panoramic and multifaceted portrait of a world in transition. Jurgen Osterhammel, an eminent scholar who has been called the Braudel of the nineteenth century, moves beyond conventional Eurocentric and chronological accounts of the era, presenting instead a truly global history of breathtaking scope and towering erudition. He examines the powerful and complex forces that drove global change during the long nineteenth century, taking readers from New York to New Delhi, from the Latin American revolutions to the Taiping Rebellion, from the perils and promise of Europe's transatlantic labor markets to the hardships endured by nomadic, tribal peoples across the planet. Osterhammel describes a world increasingly networked by the telegraph, the steamship, and the railways. He explores the changing relationship between human beings and nature, looks at the importance of cities, explains the role slavery and its abolition played in the emergence of new nations, challenges the widely held belief that the nineteenth century witnessed the triumph of the nation-state, and much more. This is the highly anticipated English edition of the spectacularly successful and critically acclaimed German book, which is also being translated into Chinese, Polish, Russian, and French. Indispensable for any historian, The Transformation of the World sheds important new light on this momentous epoch, showing how the nineteenth century paved the way for the global catastrophes of the twentieth century, yet how it also gave rise to pacifism, liberalism, the trade union, and a host of other crucial developments.
When France fell to the Germans in June 1940, the legendary Hotel Ritz on the Place Vendome - an icon of Paris frequented by film stars and celebrity writers, American heiresses and risque flappers, playboys, and princes - was the only luxury hotel of its kind allowed in the occupied city by order of Adolf Hitler.
Tilar J. Mazzeo traces the history of this cultural landmark from its opening in fin de siecle Paris. At its center, The Hotel on Place Vendome is an extraordinary chronicle of life at the Ritz during wartime, when the Hotel was simultaneously headquarters to the highest-ranking German officers, such as Reichsmarshal Hermann Goring, and home to exclusive patrons, including Coco Chanel. Mazzeo takes us into the grand palace's suites, bars, dining rooms, and wine cellars, revealing a hotbed of illicit affairs and deadly intrigue, as well as stunning acts of defiance and treachery.
Rich in detail, illustrated with black-and-white photos, The Hotel on Place Vendome is a remarkable look at this extraordinary crucible where the future of post-war France - and all of post-war Europe - was transformed.
In the tradition of the best writing on human behaviour and moral choices in the face of disaster, physician and reporter Sheri Fink reconstructs five days at New Orleans' Memorial Medical Center during Hurricane Katrina and draws the reader into the lives of those who struggled mightily to survive and to maintain life amidst chaos. After Katrina struck and the floodwaters rose, the power failed, and the heat climbed, exhausted caregivers chose to designate certain patients last for rescue. Months later, several health professionals faced criminal allegations that they deliberately injected numerous patients with drugs to hasten their deaths. Five Days at Memorial, the culmination of six years of reporting, unspools the mystery of what happened in those days, bringing the reader into a hospital fighting for its life and into a conversation about the most terrifying form of health care rationing. In a voice at once involving and fair, masterful and intimate, Fink exposes the hidden dilemmas of end-of-life care and reveals just how ill-prepared we are for the impact of large-scale disasters - and how we can do better. A remarkable book, engrossing from start to finish, Five Days at Memorial radically transforms our understanding of human nature in crisis.
Niall Ferguson's bold, pithy and insightful analysis of the degeneration of the West. The decline of the West is something that has long been prophesied. Symptoms of decline are all around us today: slowing growth, crushing debts, aging populations. But what exactly is amiss with Western civilization? The answer, Niall Ferguson argues, is that our institutions - the intricate frameworks within which a society can flourish or fail - are degenerating. Representative government, the free market, the rule of law and civil society were once the four pillars of West European and North American societies. In our time, however, these institutions have deteriorated. The Great Degeneration is a powerful indictment of an era of negligence and complacency. While the Arab world struggles to adopt democracy, and while China struggles to move from economic liberalization to the rule of law, the West is frittering away the institutional inheritance of centuries. To arrest the decline, Ferguson warns, will take heroic leadership and radical reform.
For generations of readers The Penguin History of the World has been one of the great cultural experiences - the entire story of human endeavour laid out in all its grandeur and folly, drama and pain in a single book; beautifully written, authoritative and thrilling. Now, for the first time, this landmark bestseller has been completely overhauled - not just bringing it up to date, but revising it throughout in the light of new research and discoveries. The impact of this is particularly dramatic on the Ancient World where there has been a revolution in our understanding of many civilizations. The closing sections of the book reflect what now seems to be the inexorable rise of Asia and the increasingly troubled situation in the West. The republication of The Penguin History of the World in hardback is an opportunity to celebrate a book that is both a richly rewarding narrative and a permanent work of reference.
War is one of the greatest human evils. It has ruined livelihoods, provoked unspeakable atrocities and left countless millions dead. It has caused economic chaos and widespread deprivation. And the misery it causes poisons foreign policy for future generations. But, argues bestselling historian Ian Morris, in the very long term, war has in fact been a good thing. In his trademark style combining inter-disciplinary insights, scientific methods and fascinating stories, Morris shows that, paradoxically, war is the only human invention that has allowed us to construct peaceful societies. Without war, we would never have built the huge nation-states which now keep us relatively safe from random acts of violence, and which have given us previously unimaginable wealth. It is thanks to war that we live longer and more comfortable lives than ever before. And yet, if we continue waging war with ever-more deadly weaponry, we will destroy everything we have achieved; so our struggles to manage warfare make the coming decades the most decisive in the history of our civilisation. In War: What Is It Good For? Morris brilliantly dissects humanity's history of warfare to draw startling conclusions about our future.
The Arab Revolt against the Turks in World War One was, in the words of T.E. Lawrence, 'a sideshow of a sideshow'. Amidst the slaughter in European trenches, the Western combatants paid scant attention to the Middle Eastern theatre. As a result, the conflict was shaped to a remarkable degree by a small handful of adventurers and low-level officers far removed from the corridors of power. At the centre of it all was Lawrence. In early 1914 he was an archaeologist excavating ruins in the sands of Syria; by 1917 he was battling both the enemy and his own government to bring about the vision he had for the Arab people. Operating in the Middle East at the same time, but to wildly different ends, were three other important players: a German attache, an American oilman and a committed Zionist. The intertwined paths of these four young men - the schemes they put in place, the battles they fought, the betrayals they endured and committed - mirror the grandeur, intrigue and tragedy of the war in the desert.
What is a homeland? When does it become a national territory? Why have so many people been willing to die for such places throughout the twentieth century? What is the essence of the Promised Land? Following the acclaimed and controversial The Invention of the Jewish People, Shlomo Sand examines the mysterious sacred land that has become the site of the longest-running national struggle of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. The Invention of the Land of Israel deconstructs the age-old legends surrounding the Holy Land and the prejudices that continue to suffocate it. The invention of the modern concept of the Land of Israel in the nineteenth century, he argues, not only facilitated the colonization of the Middle East and the establishment of the State of Israel, it is also what is threatening Israel's existence today.
The First World War, now a century ago, still shapes the world in which we live, and its legacy lives on, in poetry, in prose, in collective memory and political culture. By the time the war ended in 1918, millions lay dead. Three major empires lay shattered by defeat, those of Germany, Austria-Hungary, and the Ottomans. A fourth, Russia, was in the throes of a revolution that helped define the rest of the twentieth century. The Oxford History of the First World War brings together in one volume many of the most distinguished historians of the conflict, in an account that matches the scale of the events. From its causes to its consequences, from the Western Front to the Eastern, from the strategy of the politicians to the tactics of the generals, they chart the course of the war and assess its profound political and human consequences. Chapters on economic mobilization, the impact on women, the role of propaganda, and the rise of socialism establish the wider context of the fighting at sea and in the air, and which ranged on land from the trenches of Flanders to the mountains of the Balkans and the deserts of the Middle East. First published for the 90th anniversary of the 1918 Armistice, this highly illustrated revised edition contains significant new material to mark the 100th anniversary of the war's outbreak.
From the evacuation of France in 1940 to the final dash to Hamburg in 1945, the 5th Royal Tank Regiment were on the front line throughout the Second World War. Theirs was a war that saw them serve in Africa as part of the Desert Rats, before returning to Europe for the Normandy landings. Wherever they went, the notoriety of the 'Filthy Fifth' grew - they revelled in their reputation for fighting by their own rules. The Tank War explains how Britain, having lost its advantage in tank warfare by 1939, regained ground through shifts in tactics and leadership methods, as well as the daring and bravery of the crews themselves. Overturning the received wisdom of much Second World War history, Mark Urban shows how the tank regiments' advances were the equal of the feats of the German Panzer divisions. Drawing on a wealth of new material, from interviews with surviving soldiers to rarely seen archive material, this is an unflinchingly honest, unsentimental and often brutal account of the 5th RTR's wartime experiences. Capturing the characters in the crews and exploring the strategy behind their success, The Tank War is not just the story of an battle hardened unit, but something more extraordinary: the triumph of ordinary men, against long odds, in the darkest of times.
Disease is the true serial killer of human history: the horrors of bubonic plague, cholera, syphilis, smallpox, tuberculosis and the like have claimed more lives and caused more misery than the depredations of warfare, famine and natural disasters combined. Murderous Contagion tells the compelling and at times unbearably moving story of the devastating impact of diseases on humankind - from the Black Death of the 14th century to the Spanish flu of 1918-19 and the AIDS epidemic of the modern era. In this book Mary Dobson also relates the endeavours of physicians and scientists to understand and identify the causes of diseases and find ways of preventing them.This is a timely and revelatory work of popular history by a writer whose knowledge of, and enthusiasm for, her subject shines through her every word.
In the bad, old, politically incorrect days, history was about individuals - kings, queens, emperors, prime ministers, generals, and presidents - and the battles they fought, and lost or won. Today, history is much more likely to be about technological change, economics, and abstract socio-political forces. But that doesn't mean that battles aren't important. If Napoleon hadn't met his Waterloo, after all, the English might be speaking French. Therefore some battles do matter a great deal, even if the reasons why one side won and the other lost might go a lot deeper than the abilities of the generals and soldiers on the day. Organised chronologically from the first battle for which we have sound tactical evidence, Kadesh in 1274 BCE, History's Worst Battles features some of the most disastrous military engagements ever fought, on five continents and in every major conflict from antiquity to modern times.
Throughout our history, animals have been trained to aid human combat literally on the frontline of battle or in support services, carrying essential equipment to areas that are difficult to access by vehicle. Camels, elephants, mules, donkeys, dogs, avian species such as bats and carrier pigeons, and even insects have all played a role, their unique characteristics exploited and finely honed to help save human lives. Animals in Combat explores the training, ability, agility and skill of military animals in different campaigns through history, and looks at the way in which they currently support the tactics of the armed services in modern warfare. It is illustrated throughout with beautiful colour images of animals in action.
Twenty true stories of covert military operations, from raids into Laos by elite unit MAC-V-SOG to cut the Ho Chi Minh trail during the Vietnam War to the US Navy SEAL 6 operation Neptune's Spear in Abbottabad which resulted in the death of Osama bin Laden. Lewis shines a light on the 'shadow war' units that conduct clandestine operations and tells in full and fascinating detail the most daring missions of the last fifty years, from the Sayeret Mat'Kal/Mossad 'Wrath of God' mission to assassinate those behind the Munich Olympic massacre of Olympic athletes to the Delta Force mission in Somalia using Black Hawk helicopters which went so tragically wrong.
From the Roman gladius to the fearsome crossbow and the iconic AK-47, various weapons have played a huge role in shaping the history of humanity, becoming central to the creation and crushing of nations, the shaping countries and moulding the modern world. A History of the World in 100 Weapons tell the definitive stories of the weapons whose effects have been most revolutionary, changing the way war is waged and the very world we live in. Compiled with the assistance of a number of leading military historians this collection of fascinating facts about the weapons, is sumptuously illustrated with colour photographs and contemporary images and reveals information about who wielded the weapon and where is was used, clearly explaining the blow-by-blow advance of military weapon technology and expertise across the ages.
The Great War was the first truly global conflict, and it changed the course of world history In this magnum opus, critically-acclaimed historian Peter Hart examines the conflict in every arena around the world, in a history that combines cutting edge scholarship with vivid and unfamiliar eyewitness accounts, from kings and generals, and ordinary soldiers. He focuses in particular on explaining how technology and tactics developed during the conflict - and determines which battles were crucial to its outcome. Combatants from every corner of Earth joined the fray, but their voices are rarely heard together. This is a major history of the conflict whose centenary is fast approaching. Published in paperback for the anniversary of the conflict, this is a pioneering and comprehensive account of the First World War, comparable to Anthony Beevor or Max Hastings.
This title features over 120 large-format illustrations present detailed and fascinating wartime cartography. Key battles such as the Somme, Mons, Gallipoli, Jutland and Ypres are given extensive coverage alongside fascinating detail pieces such as airship raids and stations, communication systems, Orders of Battle, railroad routes and battlefield medical stations. The approach also provides a detailed chronological history of the conflict and will appeal to military historians and family historians alike. The Great War was so devastating - eight million lives were lost globally - that in its aftermath a horrified world expected it to be the final chapter in armed conflict. Mapping The First World War provides a uniquely different perspective on the 'war to end all wars'. An introduction details the causes and progress of the war and is followed by over a hundred maps and charts that show the broad sweep of events, from Germany's 1914 war goals to the final positions of the troops. There are maps depicting movements and battles as well as related documents, such as those on levels of conscription and numbers of weapons. As in all wars, maps were vital to the military organization of all sides during World War I. Before each military event there was the planning, the reconnaissance, and the conjecture as to enemy positions. After the event there would be debriefing, analysis of success and failure, and a redrawing of maps to show new troop positions and boundaries. All of the maps featured in this book have been drawn from the extensive collection held by the National Archives at Kew in west London. Providing a fascinating and unique insight into the planning and organization of military campaigns, Mapping The First World War is essential for anyone interested in military history.
This is a pacy, compelling and penetrating account - from the great Norman Stone. The best short primer on the war in twenty years . (Andrew Roberts). Norman Stone's gripping book tells the narrative of the Second World War in as brief a compass as possible, making a sometimes familiar story utterly fresh and arresting. As with his highly acclaimed World War One: A Short History, there is a compelling sense of a terrible story unfolding, of a sceptical and humorous intelligence at work, and a wish to convey to an audience who may well have no memory of the conflict just how high the stakes were.
A History of the First World War in 100 Objects narrates the causes, progress and outcome of the First World War by telling the stories behind 100 items of material evidence of that cataclysmic and shattering conflict. From weapons that created carnage to affectionate letters home and from unexpected items of trench decoration to the paintings of official war artists, the objects are as extraordinary in their diversity and story-telling power as they are devastating in their poignancy. Each object is depicted on a full page and is the subject of a short chapter that 'fans out' from the item itself to describe the context, the people and the events associated with it. Distinctive and original, A History of the First World War in 100 Objects is a unique commemoration of 'the war to end all wars'.
In March 1944, 76 Allied officers tunnelled out of Stalag Luft III. Of the 73 captured, 50 were shot by direct order of Hitler. This is the story of how a British Bobby from Blackpool, Frank McKenna, was sent to post-war Germany on the express orders from Churchill to bring the Gestapo murderers to justice. In a quest that ranges from the devastated, bombed out cities of Europe to the horrors of the concentrations camps, McKenna is relentless in his pursuit. A gripping read set in the aftermath of World War II.
A brilliant and penetrating new history of the First World War by one of the world's foremost experts on the conflict. Reissued with a new introduction from the author. Hew Strachan is one of the world's foremost experts on the Great War of 1914-18. His on-going three-volume history of the conflict, the first of which was published in 2001, is likely to become the standard academic reference work: Max Hastings called it 'one of the most impressive books of modern history in a generation', while Richard Holmes hailed it as a 'towering achievement'. Now, Hew Strachan brings his immense knowledge to a one-volume work aimed squarely at the general reader. The inspiration behind the major Channel 4 series of the same name, to which Hew was chief consultant, THE FIRST WORLD WAR is a significant addition to the literature on this subject, taking as it does a uniquely global view of what is often misconceived as a prolonged skirmish on the Western Front. Exploring such theatres as the Balkans, Africa and the Ottoman Empire, Strachan assesses Britain's participation in the light of what became a struggle for the defence of liberalism, and show how the war shaped the 'short' twentieth century that followed it. Accessible, compelling and utterly convincing, this is modern history writing at its finest.
Nazi Germany's MP 38 and MP 40 submachine guns are among World War II's most recognizable weapons. Portable and with folding stocks, both were widely issued to airborne troops and became the hallmark of Germany's infantry section and platoon leaders. A million were produced during the conflict - and many found their ways into the hands of paramilitary and irregular forces from Israel to Vietnam after the war. Featuring specially commissioned full-color artwork and period and close-up photographs, this is the story of the origins, combat use, and lasting influence of two of World War II's most famous firearms.
In the waning days of World War II, a little-known battle took place under the frozen seas off the coast of Norway . . . and changed the course of the war. <br> In February of 1944, Germany and Japan devised a desperate plan to escape defeat. The Germans would send Japan a submarine--boat U-864--packed with their most advanced rocket and jet aircraft technology. Japan could then reestablish air superiority in the Pacific, drawing the attention of Allied forces long enough for Germany to regroup. <br> Meanwhile, British code breakers, working with the Norwegian underground, had discovered the plan. But even though they were unable to stop the submarine from embarking, the British submarine HMS Venturer was waiting for it at sea. In a cat-and-mouse battle beneath the waves, they hunted one another, each waiting to strike. The Venturer won the game, becoming the only submarine in history to sink another sub in underwater combat. <br> This is the dramatic, action-packed account of one of the greatest unsung victories in military history, and of a historical moment in the annals of naval warfare.
Over forty years of research has resulted in this exceptional photographic history of life within Colditz Castle, the infamous Second World War prisoner of war camp in Germany, which housed such illustrious names as Douglas Bader, Lorne Welch, Micky Burns and Jack Best. Michael Booker has accumulated a wealth of information from talking to ex-POWs, as well as the German commandant Prawitt and the head of security Captain Eggers. He relates fascinating and hitherto unpublished stories of British, Polish and French prisoners, and their many and varied attempts to escape. In addition, he has amassed a large collection of artefacts and memorabilia, some never seen before, many of which are reproduced throughout this book. Personal recollections abound, and characters like Pat Reid, Dick Howe and Sir Rupert Barry offer their insight into camp activities. This entire collection, sumptuously illustrated, stands as a testament to those who were incarcerated there and is a valuable reference on the subject.
The German 'Blitz' that followed the Battle of Britain killed tens of thousands and laid waste to large areas of many British cities. And although the destruction of 1940-1 was never repeated on the same scale, fears that Hitler possessed a secret weapon of mass destruction never entirely died, and were partially realized in the VI and V2 raids of 1944-5. The British and American response to the 'Blitz', especially from 1943 onwards, was massive and incomparably more devastating - with apocalyptic consequences for German cities such as Hamburg, Dresden, and Berlin, to name but the most prominent. In this ground-breaking new book, German historian Dietmar Suss investigates the effects of the bombing on both Britain and Nazi Germany, showing how these two very different societies sought to withstand the onslaught and keep up morale amidst the material devastation and psychological trauma that was visited upon them. And, as he reflects in the conclusion, this is not a story that is safely confined to the past: the debate over the rights and the wrongs of the mass bombing of British and German cities during World War II remains a highly emotional subject even today.
When World War I began, poet John Masefield had joined the staff of a British hospital for French soldiers, serving briefly in 1915 as a hospital orderly, and later publishing his own account of his experiences. As he was old enough to be exempted from military service, Masefield then visited the United States on a three month lecture tour to collect information on the mood and views of Americans about the war in Europe.
When he returned to England, he submitted a report to the British Foreign Office about the failure of the allied forces in the Dardanelles. As a result of that report, Masefield wrote Gallipoli. This book was an outstanding success, encouraging the British people and lifting them somewhat from the disappointment they had felt as a result of the Allied losses in the Dardanelles.
Published when the terror of Gallipoli was fresh in people’s minds, John Masefield described what the common soldier had endured in that dreadful campaign. His book was written a few months after the Allied withdrawal and is a classic.
From May 1940 the Children's Overseas Reception Board began to move children to safety abroad to Australia, South Africa, Canada and New Zealand. The scheme was extremely popular, and over 200,000 applications were made within just four months. In addition, thousands of children were privately evacuated overseas. The 'sea-vacs', as they became known, had a variety of experiences. After weeks at sea they began a new life thousands of miles away. Letters home took up to twelve weeks to reach their destinations and many of these children were totally cut off from their families in the UK. Most found their new way of life to be a positive one in which they were well cared for; for others it was a miserable, difficult or frightening time as they encountered homesickness, prejudice and even abuse. This book reveals in heartbreaking detail the unique experiences of sea-vacs, and their surprising influence on international wartime policy, used as they were as an attempt to elicit international sympathy and financial support for the British war effort.
Long-awaited, the Normandy landings were the largest amphibious operation in history. Success was achieved by the advent of specialised landing craft - first seen in the landings in North Africa - heavy naval firepower and the creation of two artificial harbours, each the size of the port of Dover, and an underwater pipeline. Operation Neptune: The Prelude to D-Day tells the story of this incredible feat using eyewitness accounts of the landings and the breaching of Hitler's famed 'Atlantic Wall'. David Wragg explores the earlier Allied and Axis experiences with amphibious operations and the planning for Neptune and Overlord. He reveals the naval support needed once the armies were ashore and before continental ports could be captured and cleared of mines, with operations such as minesweeping off the Normandy coast, which led to one of the worst 'friendly fire' incidents of the war. This is the must-read book to understand what made D-Day possible.
This new illustrated volume of one of the most the authoritative texts on World War II concentrates on the Russo-German war from Stalingrad to Berlin. Topics include the strategies and tactics adopted by both sides, partisan and psychological warfare, coalition warfare, and manpower and production problems faced by both countries but by the Germans in particular. With a new introduction by Emmy AwardTM winning historian Bob Carruthers and numerous rare illustrations this powerful book is the ideal companion to the highly acclaimed 'Barbarossa - Hitler Turns East' and makes for a welcome addition to any Second World War library.
THE harnessing of the power of chemistry was a key factor in determining the shape and duration of the First World War and ultimately became the difference between winning and losing. The industrial-scale carnage and devastation seen on all fronts during the confl ict would not have been possible without the chemistry of war, which generated the huge quantities of metals and explosives required for artillery shells and fuses; for pistol, rifle and machine-gun cartridges; for grenades and trench mortar bombs; and for the mines blown up in tunnelling operations. It also created deadly chemical warfare agents, such as chlorine gas, mustard gas and phosgene, which filled artillery shells or were released in cloud gas operations. However, chemistry was not only a destructive instrument of war but also protected troops and healed the sick and wounded. This double-edged sword is perfectly exemplified by the element chlorine, which served both as a frontline offensive weapon, causing horrific injuries and death, as well as a disinfectant and water-purifying agent, saving many lives. Michael Freemantle, in this fi rst all-encompassing study of the chemistry of the Great War, reveals the true extent of the chemical arms race and how industry evolved to meet the needs for more powerful explosives and deadlier gases, as well as advancements in medicine. From bombs to bullets, tear gas to TNT, camouflage to cordite, this book tells the true story of the horrors of the 'Chemists' War'.
Before espionage entered the era of modern technology, there was the age of George Alexander Hill: a time of swashbuckling secret agents, swordsticks and secret assignations with deadly female spies. The daring escapades of some of the first members of Britain's secret service are revealed in this account of perilous adventure and audacious missions in Imperial and revolutionary Russia. First published in 1932, Hill's rip-roaring narrative recounts tales of his fellow operatives Arthur Ransome - author of Swallows and Amazons and one of the most effective British spies in Russia - and Sidney Reilly - so-called 'Ace of Spies' and architect of a thwarted plot to assassinate the Bolshevik leadership. Unavailable for decades, this lost classic offers fascinating portraits of a world unfathomable to those growing up against a backdrop of WikiLeaks and cyber espionage, and of true-life characters whose exploits were so extraordinary that they have entered the realm of legend.
This is a classic account by one of the officers who took part in one of the great escapades of WWII. In 1943 W. Stanley Moss and Patrick Leigh-Fermor, both serving with Special Forces in the Middle East, decided on a plan to kidnap General Kreipe, Commander of the Sevastopol Division in Crete, and bring him back to Allied occupied Cairo. This is the story of their adventures, working with a fearsome band of partisans, as they daringly capture the General in an ambush and struggle to evade pursuing German troops in the mountainous Cretan landscape to reach their rendezvous for evacuation to safety.
While the campaign in Norway (April to June 1940) was a depressing opening to active hostilities between Britain and Nazi Germany, it led directly to Churchill's war leadership and The Coalition. Both were to prove decisive in the long term. This well researched work opens with a summary of the issues and personalities in British politics in the 1930s. The consequences of appeasement and failure to re-arm quickly became apparent in April 1940. The Royal Navy, which had been the defence priority, found itself seriously threatened by the Luftwaffe's control of the skies. The economies inflicted on the Army were all too obvious when faced by the Wehrmacht. Losses of men and equipment were serious and salutary. The campaign itself is broken down into three phases - the landings in support of the Norwegians, the evacuation from Central Norway which led to Chamberlain's resignation and, finally, the campaign in the North which remained credible until the fall of France. This book, with its informed mix of politics and war fighting, provides a balanced overview of the opening campaign of the Second World War and its consequences.
By August 1918 fortune was on the side of the Allies: America was increasing its contribution of troops and equipment substantially; the morale of the German Army was sinking as it failed to deliver the desired 'knock out blow'; and Field Marshal Sir Douglas Haig found a new confidence, firmly believing that the Allies could at last push the Germans out of France and Belgium. This volume of the best-selling VCs of the First World War series covers the fifty days of the Allied advance from 8 August to 26 September 1918. Arranged chronologically, it tells the story of the sixty-four VC winners during this period. The recipients came from many countries, including Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand; some never lived to know that they had been awarded for their extraordinary bravery, while others returned home to face an uncertain future. This is their story.
Even after the passage of almost a century, the name Passchendaele has lost none of its power to shock and dismay. Reeling from the huge losses in earlier battles, the German army was in no shape to absorb the impact of the Battle of Messines and the subsequent bitter attritional struggle. Throughout the fighting on the Somme the German army had always felt that it had the ability to counter Allied thrusts, but following the shock reverses of April and May 1917, much heart searching had led to the urgent introduction of new tactics of flexible defence. When these in turn were found to be wanting, the psychological damage shook the German defenders badly. But, as this book demonstrates, at trench level the individual soldier of the German Army was still capable of fighting extraordinarily hard, despite being outnumbered, outgunned and subjected to relentless, morale-sapping shelling and gas attacks. The German army drew comfort from the realisation that, although it had had to yield ground and had paid a huge price in casualties, its morale was essentially intact and the British were no closer to a breakthrough in Flanders at the end of the battle than they had been many weeks earlier.
The Nuremberg Trials were held by the four victorious Allied forces of Great Britain, the USA, France and the USSR in the Palace of Justice, Nuremberg from November 1945 to October 1946. Famous for prosecuting the major German war criminals, they also tried the various groups and organisations that were at the heart of Nazi Germany. This fascinating volume is concerned with the trial of the Gestapo and includes all the testimony from the Nuremberg Trials regarding this organisation, including the original indictment, the criminal case put forward for the Gestapo, the closing speeches by the prosecution and defence and the final judgment. The book also includes evidence regarding the S.D. and the defendant Ernst Kaltenbrunner, who was Obergruppenfuhrer and General der Polizei und Waffen-SS. The witnesses called for the trial of the Gestapo and the SD include among others, Karl Hoffmann who was head of the Gestapo in Denmark; Dr. Werner Best, head of Department 1 of the Gestapo, who was relied on by Himmler and Heydrich to develop the legalities of their actions against the enemies of the state and the Jewish problem; Rolf-Heinz Hoeppner, who was responsible for the deportation of Jews and Poles and the settlement of ethnic Germans in Wartheland; and Dieter Wisliceny who participated in the ghettoisation and liquidation of many Jewish communities in Greece, Hungary and Slovakia.
When Hitler launched Operation Barbarossa with his attack on the Soviet Union in June 1941, the Wehrmacht deployed 600,000 troops to the Eastern Front. Their numbers were later swelled by a range of foreign volunteers so that, at the height of World War II, astonishingly one in three men fighting for the Germans in the East was not a native German. Hitler's declaration of the 'struggle against Bolshevism' reverberated throughout all of Europe - it attracted convinced fascists as well as non-Russian eastern Europeans seeking to regain their independence from the USSR. Many of these volunteers subsequently became involved in the atrocities of the Wehrmacht and the SS. Many historical accounts of the war in the East, the bloodiest struggle in world history, not only overlook the role of local helpers and thereby unwittingly play up to subsequent Stalinist propaganda; they also underestimate the importance of German-allied armies fighting on the Eastern Front. Yet it was not just Eastern Europe which provided volunteer soldiers for the Wehrmacht - a number of men from occupied countries, such as France, Norway and Denmark also signed up as volunteers, as well as a small number from neutral countries. For the first time, this book tells the story of these men. Vilified by Hitler for their supposed failures, condemned and forgotten by their homelands for treason and collaboration, their involvement in the war has been largely ignored or swept aside by historians. Rolf-Dieter Muller here offers a fascinating new perspective on a little-known aspect of World War II.
When a Nationalist military uprising was launched in Spain in July 1936, the Spanish Republic's desperate pleas for assistance from the leaders of Britain and France fell on deaf ears. Appalled at the prospect of another European democracy succumbing to fascism, volunteers from across the Continent and beyond flocked to Spain's aid, many to join the International Brigades. More than 2,500 of these men and women came from Britain, Ireland and the Commonwealth, and contrary to popular myth theirs was not an army of adventurers, poets and public school idealists. Overwhelmingly they hailed from modest working class backgrounds, leaving behind their livelihoods and their families to fight in a brutal civil war on foreign soil. Some 500 of them never returned home. In this inspiring and moving oral history, Richard Baxell weaves together a diverse array of testimony to tell the remarkable story of the Britons who took up arms against General Franco. Drawing on his own extensive interviews with survivors, research in archives across Britain, Spain and Russia, as well as first-hand accounts by writers both famous and unknown, Unlikely Warriors presents a startling new interpretation of the Spanish Civil War and follows a band of ordinary men and women who made an extraordinary choice.
The Last Man in Russia is a portrait of the country like no other; a quest to understand the soul of Russia. Award-winning writer Oliver Bullough travels the country from crowded Moscow train to empty windswept village, following in the footsteps of one extraordinary man, the dissident Orthodox priest Father Dmitry. His moving, terrifying story is the story of a nation: famine, war, the frozen wastes of the Gulag, the collapse of communism and now, a people seeking oblivion.
Bullough shows that in a country so willing to crush its citizens, there is also courage, resilience and flickering glimmers of hope.
The dramatic and little-known story of how, in the summer of 1920, Lenin came within a hair's breadth of shattering the painstakingly constructed Versailles peace settlement and spreading Bolshevism to western Europe.
In 1920 the new Soviet state was a mess, following a brutal civil war, and the best way of ensuring its survival appeared to be to export the revolution to Germany, itself economically ruined by defeat in World War I and racked by internal political dissension.
Between Russia and Germany lay Poland, a nation that had only just recovered its independence after more than a century of foreign oppression. But it was economically and militarily weak and its misguided offensive to liberate the Ukraine in the spring of 1920 laid it open to attack. Egged on by Trotsky, Lenin launched a massive westward advance under the flamboyant Marshal Tukhachevsky.
All that Great Britain and France had fought for over four years now seemed at risk. By the middle of August the Russians were only a few kilometres from Warsaw, and Berlin was less than a week's march away. Then occurred the 'Miracle of the Vistula': the Polish army led by Jozef Pilsudski regrouped and achieved one of the most decisive victories in military history.
As a result, the Versailles peace settlement survived, and Lenin was forced to settle for Communism in one country. The battle for Warsaw bought Europe nearly two decades of peace, and communism remained a mainly Russian phenomenon, subsuming many of the autocratic and Byzantine characteristics of Russia's tsarist tradition.
Just over a decade into the new millennium, America is beset by a sense of crisis. The seismic shifts that occurred in the space of a generation have created a country of winners and losers, leaving the social contract in pieces. In The Unwinding, George Packer narrates the story of America over the past three decades, bringing to the task his empathy with people facing difficult challenges, his sharp eye for detail and a gift for weaving together engaging narratives. The Unwinding moves deftly back and forth through the lives of half a dozen characters, including Dean Price, the son of tobacco farmers who becomes an evangelist for a new economy in the rural South; Tammy Thomas, a factory worker in the industrial Midwest trying to survive the collapse of her city; Jeff Connaughton, a Washington careerist; and Peter Thiel, a Silicon Valley billionaire. The narrative alternates these intimately told stories with biographical sketches of the era's leading public figures, from Oprah Winfrey to Steve Jobs, capturing the year-by-year flow of events. The Unwinding portrays a superpower coming apart at the seams, its elites and institutions no longer working, leaving ordinary people to improvise their own schemes for salvation.
Over the course of his 101-year life, George F. Kenna - author of the X article, father of containment and pre-eminent Cold War authority - filled 20,000 diary pages with philosophy, poetry, vivid description, and keen political and moral insights. Now historian Frank Costigliola has selected and annotated the first public collection of Kennan's diaries. These pages cover a man - and talented writer - who came into greatness during the first stirrings of the Cold War, a man never satisfied with his accomplishments despite the ambassadorships, the years of political influence and the accolades. Together, these diaries tell the complete narrative of Kennan's life, in his own unflinching words, and through him, the arc of world events in the twentieth century.
John Randel Jr. (1787 - 1865) was an eccentric and flamboyant surveyor renowned for his inventiveness as well as his bombast and irascibility. Tasked with gridding what was then an undeveloped, hilly island, Randel recorded the contours of Manhattan down to the rocks on its shores. In The Measure of Manhattan, Marguerite Holloway explores the science and symbolism of surveying; a craft that led to a surprising number of modern technologies. In his precision, Randel sought to tame the land; Holloway explores this philosophy as well as contemporary efforts to envision Manhattan as a wild island again. An eye-opening biography, The Measure of Manhattan is also about the ways we envision and inhabit the world.
Although Abraham Lincoln was among seven presidents who served during the tumultuous years between the end of the Mexican War and the end of the Reconstruction era, history has not been kind to the others: Zachary Taylor, Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan, Andrew Johnson, and Ulysses Grant. In contrast, history sees Abraham Lincoln as a giant in character and deeds. During his presidency, he governed brilliantly, developed the economy, liberated four million people from slavery, reunified the nation, and helped enact the Homestead Act, among other accomplishments. He proved to be not only an outstanding commander in chief but also a skilled diplomat, economist, humanist, educator, and moralist. Lincoln achieved that and more because he was a master of the art of American power. He understood that the struggle for hearts and minds was the essence of politics in a democracy. He asserted power mostly by appealing to people's hopes rather than their fears. All along he tried to shape rather than reflect prevailing public opinions that differed from his own. To that end, he was brilliant at bridging the gap between progressives and conservatives by reining in the former and urging on the latter. His art of power ultimately reflected his unswerving devotion to the Declaration of Independence's principles and the Constitution's institutions, or as he so elegantly expressed it, to a government of the people, by the people, and for the people.
Ilene Cooper deftly moves through more than a century of U.S. history in order to highlight the most influential and diverse group of female leaders who opened doors for women in politics as well as in the nation as a whole. Some women featured include Margaret Chase Smith (the first woman elected to the Senate), Patsy Mink (the first woman of colour to serve in the House) and many present-day powerhouses like Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton. This book is illustrated with fun and lively illustrations from Elizabeth Baddley as well as archival photographs. It also includes an index, a chart of all the women who have served in Congress and appendices that define key terms and governmental procedures such as how laws are created and how political parties work.
The events which unfolded south of Brussels on 18 June 1815 conferred instant immortality on those who took part in them. For the Duke of Wellington, Waterloo consummated victory in a long battle for what he considered to be his due recognition. Whilst he guarded that reputation jealously, he also jeopardised it by his decision to enter politics in what proved to be an especially partisan age. Even the outpouring of national grief which accompanied his death in 1852 could not totally obscure the ambivalence he had aroused in life. The memory of Waterloo, meanwhile, followed its own trajectory. Travellers initially flocked to the battlefield as if drawn by a magnet. What the triumph meant for Britain, and the wider world, moreover, became a battle in itself, one fought variously in the political, literary and artistic theatres of war. As the nineteenth century advanced, it was only Waterloo's less-exalted participants who, relatively, faded from view - or were ignored. Drawing on many under-utilised sources to illuminate some less familiar themes, this timely study offers fresh perspectives on one of Britain's best-known figures, as well as on the nature of heroism. The reader is also given pause for thought as to appropriate forms of commemoration and how national celebrations are prone to manipulation, for their own purposes, by those in government.
The Napoleonic Wars was truly a world-wide conflict and Britain found itself engaged in battles, sieges and amphibious operations around the globe. Following every battle the commanding officer submitted a report back to the Admiralty or the War Office. Presented here together for the first time are those original despatches from some forty generals, captains and admirals detailing more than eighty battles that took place in India, Africa, Europe and the Americas. This unique collection of original documents will prove to be an invaluable resource for historians, students and all those interested in what was one of the most important periods in British military and naval history. The reports include those from some of Britain's most famous battles, the likes of Trafalgar and Waterloo, as well as less well-known but just as important engagements which resulted in the capture of the islands and territories which helped form the greatest empire the world has ever known.
In relative terms, intellectual history is currently enjoying a moment of prominence and self-confidence greater than it has known in decades. Yet surprisingly for a field whose practitioners pride themselves on intellectual self-awareness, its star may have risen along with a decline in self-reflection.
Few recent theoretical statements have attempted to justify intellectual history, to explain what makes its practice worthwhile and methodologically sound. This situation is ironic. The time of bitter and divisive disputes about the place of intellectual history in the humanities may be a living memory, but it is an improbably distant one. Everyone seems to be getting along these days: intellectual historians with other kinds of historians, and intellectual historians with one another. Yet only a generation ago, the field was faced with marginalization - if not extinction - by powerful external forces, which imposed a kind of exile, prompting a period of intense theoretical self-examination and contention. Now intellectual history is ascendant in the profession, and a kind of mutual admiration, almost to the point of complacency, flourishes where bitter polemics once festered.
To reflect on this extraordinary reversal and to chart future directions in the field are the purposes of this collection of essays. They appear at an'interim' moment because the field of European intellectual history stands at a critical juncture. Despite recent successes, intellectual historians can claim today no widespread agreement about how to conduct their work, and they often seem to lack the will to argue out the alternatives. The situation is comfortable.
Yet the absence of self-reflection and theoretical contest - which were once compulsory, and arguably taken to excess - risks devolving into a celebration of eclecticism under a large and cozy tent. If eclecticism is a risk, it is also an opportunity, which offers to intellectual historians the prospect of enriching their own field and the broader practice of history through novel openings and exchange. A wider disciplinary world beckons, as does a frequently elusive interdisciplinary (and international) space.
Intellectual historians have an important role to play in fostering such spaces, and European intellectual historians, in particular, have an interest in doing so at a moment when the study of 'Europe' seems increasingly parochial to many when not connected to the faraway lands Europeans once ruled and where their ideas have long traveled.
In this global and globalising age, at this juncture for the field, it is appropriate to step back from practice to engage in a bout of theoretical reflection. The time is right to take stock of where European intellectual history has been, to assess where it is now, and to reflect on future possibilities.
The Middle East has long been fraught with tension and volatility. However, the recent Arab uprisings have intensified instability, turning this 'hot-spot' into a veritable tinderbox whose potential for implosion has far-reaching regional and global consequences. In this short book, leading Middle East scholar Mohammed Ayoob argues that the Arab Spring has both changed and charged some of the region's thorniest problems - from the rise of political Islam to Iran's nuclear ambitions, the Israel-Palestine conflict to rivalries between key regional powers. Exploring the sources of conflict in the Middle East and their various linkages, Ayoob offers a thoughtful and balanced assessment of whether the region is indeed destined for implosion or whether political sagacity and diplomatic creativity can bring it back from the brink.
With coverage of all the recent events, the new edition of this best-selling book gives a thorough and accessible account of the history behind the Palestine-Israeli conflict, its roots, and the possibilities for the future. The book is divided into two parts - the first by an American rabbi and Professor of Judaism, and the second by a Palestinian lecturer on Islam. The result is a real insight into the situation, with each author giving full vent to the emotions behind the two sides of the debate. Two new chapters outline recent developments, while an updated conclusion consists of a direct debate between the two authors, which raises many issues, yet offers real solutions to which future peace talks may aspire.
Born in London to a Turkish mother and British father, Alev Scott moved to Istanbul to discover what it means to be Turkish in a country going through rapid change, a country with an extraordinary past and an ever more surprising present. From the European buzz of modern-day Constantinople to the Arabic-speaking towns of the south-east, Turkish Awakening investigates a country moving swiftly towards a new position on the world stage. Relating wide-ranging interviews and colourful personal experience, the author charts the evolving course of a country bursting with surprises - none more dramatic than the unexpected political protests of 2013, which have brought to light the emerging demands of a newly awakened Turkish people. The 2013 protests were just one indication of the changes afoot in today's Turkey. Encompassing topics as varied as Aegean camel wrestling, transgender prostitution, politicised soap operas and riot tourism, this is a revelatory, at times humorous, at times moving, portrait of a country which is coming of age.
SIMON BOLI VAR -- El Libertador --freed six countries from Spanish rule and is still the most revered figure in South America today. He traveled from Amazon jungles to the Andes mountains, engaged in endless battles and forged fragile coalitions of competing forces and races. He lived an epic life filled with heroism, tragedy (his only wife died young), and legend (he was saved from an assassination attempt by one of his mistresses). In Bolivar, Marie Arana has written a sweeping biography that is as bold and as passionate as its subject. Drawing on a wealth of primary documents, Arana vividly captures the early nineteenth-century South America that made Bolivar the man he became: fearless general, brilliant strategist, consummate diplomat, dedicated abolitionist, gifted writer, and flawed politician. A major work of history, Bolivar not only portrays a dramatic life in all its glory, but is also a stirring declaration of what it means to be South American.
'Through thick and thin, never separate. Stick together, guard each other, and live for one another.' As Hitler's war intensified, the Ovitz family would have good reason to stand by their mother's mantra. Descending from the cattle train into the death camp of Auschwitz, all twelve emerged in 1945 as survivors - the largest family to survive intact. What saved them? Ironically, the fact that they were sought out by the 'Angel of Death' himself - Dr Joseph Mengele. For seven of the Ovitzes were dwarfs - and not just any dwarfs, but a beloved and highly successful vaudeville act known as the Lilliput Troupe. Together, they were the only all-dwarf ensemble with a full show of their own in the history of entertainment. The Ovitzes intrigued Mengele, and amongst the thousands on whom he performed his loathsome experiments, they became his prize 'patients': 'You're something special, not like the rest of them.' It was this disturbing affection that saved their lives. After being plunged into the darkest moments in modern history, this remarkable troupe emerged with spirits undimmed, and went on to light up Europe and Israel, which offered them a new home, with their unique performances. Giants reveals their moving and inspirational story.
The austere, enigmatic rock gardens of Kyoto, Japan's ancient capital, have never ceased to fascinate garden lovers. Weather-beaten rocks set in an expanse of white sand raked into geometric patterns challenge the idea of a garden as a space chiefly dedicated to the cultivation and appreciation of plants. How did the taste for this kind of garden arise? What do the stones represent? Why aren't there more flowers? This book sets out to answer questions such as these. It explores the Zen characteristics of these gardens, and discusses the impact Zen Buddhism has had on the Japanese way of looking at the natural world. The book considers how these gardens can be seen as artistic representations of Zen consciousness, reflecting the longing for religious enlightenment. This book also shows how key traditional concepts, such as that of using the confined space of a garden to create a landscape in miniature, were reinterpreted in Zen temple gardens. It explores how they make use of traditional imagery, such as those of mountain and sea, and how they reflect that acute sensitivity to the passage of time and the changing of the seasons which characterizes so many other Japanese garden styles. Richly illustrated with newly commissioned photography by Alex Ramsay, this book covers important examples of Japanese Zen temple gardens from the fourteenth century through to the twentieth century. It appeals to readers who are interested in gardens, garden design and garden history, as well as in Zen Buddhism and Zen aesthetics. It also serves as a useful reference book for travellers planning a trip to Japan to visit the country's temples.
Early Japanese Railways 1853-1914 is a cultural and engineering history of railway building in Japan during the Meiji era. The importance of early railways in the industrialization of the United States and Europe is a fact all of us are familiar with. To witness the amazing parallel development of the railways in Japan, happening at much the same time as America was connecting its vast hinterland to the East and West coasts, is an eye-opening realization. In Early Japanese Railways 1853-1914, Dan Free tells the fascinating story of the rise of Japanese railways amidst a period of rapid modernization during Japan's Meiji era. Leaving behind centuries of stagnation and isolation, Japan would emerge into the 20th century as a leading modern industrialized state. The development of the railways was a significant factor in the cultural and technological development of Japan during this pivotal period. Free's rare photographic and historical materials concerning Japan's early railways, including a print showing the miniature steam engine brought to Japan by Admiral Perry aboard his Black Ships to demonstrate American superiority, combine to form a richly detailed account that will appeal to students of Japanese history and railway buffs alike. This one-of-a-kind book, Early Japanese Railways 1853-1914, illuminates for non-Japanese-speaking readers the early history of Japanese railroads, and in the process the fascinating story of Japan's prewar industrial modernization.
This new set of reflections looks at key 20th Century moments in the relationship between the US and Japan, focusing on Japanese perceptions of the US: how the Japanese saw Hiroshima, the American occupation and the changes in their own lives. Readers also catch a glimpse of Japanese attitudes towards their own war crimes. Finally, Dower offers blistering comments of George W. Bush's attempts to justify the invasion of Iraq by citing Dower's own work on the US occupation of Japan.
New Edition - An anthology of 2,000 years of Scottish history. In a year which will see the Scots vote on independence, this book is a timely reminder of their country's fascinating past . (Independent). History caught on the hoof and the wing by those who were actually there - a brilliant selection . (Andrew Marr). A vivid, wide-ranging and engrossing account of Scotland's history, composed of eye-witness accounts by those who experienced it first-hand. Contributors range from Tacitus, Mary Queen of Scots and Oliver Cromwell to Adam Smith, David Livingstone and Billy Connolly. These include key historic moments - ranging from Bannockburn and Flodden to the SNP parliamentary victory in 2007 - along with a vast array of wonderfully readable insights into the everyday life of Scotland through the millennia. This is living, accesible history told by crofters, criminals, servants, house-wives, poets, journalists, nurses, politicians, novelists, prisoners, comedians, sportsmen and many more. An unqualified triumph, superb, a real page-turner ...what a stirring, dramatic, poignant story it has been . (Alexander McCall Smith, Spectator). Fascinating and very valuable. Goring gives us vivid snapshots of Scottish life and history from Neolithic times ...should find a place in every Scottish home . (Allan Massie, Scotsman). Rosemary Goring took a degree in Economics and Social History at St Andrews University. She started her career in publishing in the role of in-house editor for Chambers Biographical Dictionary and has since edited and written for many reference books, among them the Larousse Dictionaries of Writers and Literary Characters. She was Literary Editor of Scotland on Sunday for several years before becoming Literary Editor of the Herald.
At the turn of the twenty-first century acclaimed novelist Rana Dasgupta arrived in the Indian capital with a single suitcase. He had no intention of staying for long. But the city beguiled him - he 'fell in love and in hate with it' - and, fourteen years later, Delhi has become his home. Capital tells the story of Delhi's journey from walled city to world city. It is a story of extreme wealth and power, of land grabs and a cityscape changed almost beyond recognition. Everything that was slow, intimate and idiosyncratic has become fast, vast and generic; every aspect of life has been affected - for the poor, the middle classes and the super-rich. Through a series of fascinating personal encounters Dasgupta takes us inside the intoxicating, sometimes terrifying transformation of India's fastest-growing megacity, offering an astonishing 'report from the global future'.
'The final days of the German occupation of the French capital are vividly captured in this fine account of death and deliverance' Sir Max Hastings The liberation of Paris was a momentous point in twentieth-century history, yet it is now largely forgotten outside France. Eleven Days in August is a pulsating hour-by-hour reconstruction of these tumultuous events that shaped the final phase of the war and the future of France, told with the pace of a thriller. While examining the conflicting national and international interests that played out in the bloody street fighting, it tells of how, in eleven dramatic days, people lived, fought and died in the most beautiful city in the world. Above all, it shows that while the liberation of Paris may be attributed to the audacity of the Resistance, the weakness of the Germans and the strength of the Allies, the key to it all was the Parisians who by turn built street barricades and sunbathed on the banks of the Seine, who fought the Germans and simply tried to survive until the Germans finally surrendered, in a billiard room at the Prefecture of Police. One of the most iconic moments in the history of the twentieth century had come to a close, and the face of Paris would never be the same again.
This is the first life of Napoleon, in any language, that makes full use of the new version of his Correspondence compiled by the Foundation Napoleon in Paris to replace the sanitized compilation made under the Second French Empire as a propaganda exercise by his nephew, Napoleon III. All previous lives of Napoleon have relied more on the memoirs of others than on his own uncensored words. Michael Broers' biography draws on the thoughts of Napoleon himself as his incomparable life unfolded. It reveals a man of intense emotion, but also of iron self-discipline; of acute intelligence and immeasurable energy. Tracing his life from its dangerous Corsican roots, through his rejection of his early identity, and the dangerous military encounters of his early career, it tells the story of the sheer determination, ruthlessness and careful calculation that won him the precarious mastery of Europe by 1807. After the epic battles of Austerlitz, Jena and Friedland, France was the dominant land power on the continent. Here is the first life in which Napoleon speaks in his own voice, but not always as he wanted the world to hear him.
Beyond the affluent centre of Paris and other French cities, in the deprived banlieues, a war is going on. This is the French Intifada, a guerrilla war between the French state and the former subjects of its Empire, for whom the mantra of 'liberty, equality, fraternity' conceals a bitter history of domination, oppression, and brutality. This war began in the early 1800s, with Napoleon's aggressive lust for all things Oriental, and led to the armed colonization of Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia, and decades of bloody conflict, all in the name of 'civilization'. Here, against the backdrop of the Arab Spring, Andrew Hussey walks the front lines of this war - from the Gare du Nord in Paris to the souks of Marrakesh and the mosques of Tangier - to tell the strange and complex story of the relationship between secular, republican France and the Muslim world of North Africa. The result is a completely new portrait of an old nation. Combining a fascinating and compulsively readable mix of history, politics and literature with Hussey's years of personal experience travelling across the Arab World, The French Intifada reveals the role played by the countries of the Magreb in shaping French history, and explores the challenge being mounted by today's dispossessed heirs to the colonial project: a challenge that is angrily and violently staking a claim on France's future.
In 'They Eat Horses, Don't They?', Piu Marie Eatwell explores the background to, and the contemporary evidence for, 45 myths and misconceptions about the French. She finds that many of them are simply false, and that even those that are broadly true are rather more complicated than at first sight. In the course of her thorough - and thoroughly entertaining - investigations, we discover there is more to our enigmatic Gallic neighbour than 365 types of cheese, and that the reality of modern French life is very different from the myths that we create about it.
China's spectacular growth has led to visions of the 21st century being dominated by the last major state on earth ruled by a Communist Party, its forward march seemingly unstoppable when contrasted with the West and Japan. In this book, Jonathan Fenby, a leading expert on the People's Republic, makes plain that China, too, faces major challenges which stand in the way of global domination. It has to deal with political, economic, social and international tests, each of which involves structural difficulties that will put the system under strain. The picture of China invoked by admirers to argue that it will rule the world does not accord with reality. Based on Fenby's extensive knowledge of contemporary China, this punchy analysis offers a pragmatic view of where the PRC is heading at a time when its future is too important an issue for wishful theorizing.
This is the disturbing and revealing book that reveals the true extent of China's global power, from China-based investigative journalists Juan Pablo Cardenal and Heriberto Araujo. How rapidly is China spreading its influence around the world? In China's Silent Army two Beijing-based journalists have travelled the globe to meet the many ordinary Chinese people who, through hard work, ingenuity or ruthlessness, often in terrible conditions, are remaking the developing world. From oil workers in Kazakhstan to cheap clothing sellers in Egypt, mineral miners in Congo to farmers in Sudan, they find that China's 'silent army' is redirecting resources and reordering world power on an enormous scale. Here we discover what the political, ecological and economic fallout will be. Reviews: Powerful ...brilliant...The book cuts to the political core . (Michael Sheridan, Sunday Times). Lively and humane...[China's Silent Army] offers essential information for all who wish to learn how the global reach of China Inc is transforming the lives of everyone on this planet . (Frank Dikotter, Literary Review). Excellent macro-economic insights ...but ultimately the human stories are what make it so compelling. ..China's Silent Army ought to be required reading for all EU bureaucrats . (Prospect). Engaging and sympathetic...Fascinating and vivid . (Spectator). [Cardenal and Araujo's] research is prodigious and the facts they unearth startling. In their investigation into Chinese business habits they visited 25 countries, from Siberia to South America via South-East Asia, Africa and the Middle East ...the Chinese should reflect on the questions the book raises. To put it mildly, there appears to be a case to answer . (George Walden, Evening Standard).
In 1659, a vast and unusual map of China arrived in the Bodleian Library, Oxford. It was bequeathed by John Selden, a London business lawyer, political activist, former convict, MP and the city's first Orientalist scholar. Largely ignored, it remained in the bowels of the library, until called up by an inquisitive reader. When Timothy Brook saw it in 2009, he realised that the Selden Map was 'a puzzle that had to be solved': an exceptional artefact, so unsettlingly modern-looking it could almost be a forgery. But it was genuine, and what it has to tell us is astonishing. It shows China, not cut off from the world, but a participant in the embryonic networks of global trade that fuelled the rise of Europe - and which now power China's ascent. And it raises as many question as it answers: how did John Selden acquire it? Where did it come from? Who re-imagined the world in this way? And most importantly - what can it tell us about the world at that time? Brook, like a cartographic detective, has provided answers - including a surprising last-minute revelation of authorship. From the Gobi Desert to the Philippines, from Java to Tibet and into China itself, Brook uses the map (actually a schematic representation of China's relation to astrological heaven) to tease out the varied elements that defined this crucial period in China's history.
China has become the powerhouse of the world economy and home to 1 in 5 of the world's population, yet we know almost nothing of the people who lead it. How does one become the leader of the world's newest superpower? And who holds the real power in the Chinese system? In The New Emperors, the noted China expert Kerry Brown journeys deep into the heart of the secretive Communist Party. China's system might have its roots in peasant rebellion but it is now firmly under the control of a power-conscious Beijing elite, almost half of whose members are related directly to former senior Party leaders. Brown reveals the intrigue and scandal surrounding the internal battle raging between two China's: one founded by Mao on Communist principles, and a modern China in which 'to get rich is glorious'. At the centre of it all sits the latest Party Secretary, Xi Jinping - the son of a revolutionary, with links both to big business and to the People's Liberation Army. His rise to power is symbolic of the new emperors leading the world's next superpower.
The five Tudor monarchs - Henry VII, Henry VIII, Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I - were some of the most influential rulers in British history. This volume explores all aspects of life in the Tudor age, from life at court (and at the grand country estates where Queen Elizabeth paused during her famous 'progresses') to the day-to-day activities at the teeming taverns and plague-ridden cities of the Tudor kingdom. With chapters on the people, palaces and pastimes of the age, some amusing secrets of the Tudor medicine cabinet and closet, and stories from some of the most fabulous, eccentric and opulent entertainments of the age, it will delight anyone with an interest in Tudor history - or indeed, in British history as a whole.
The royal family's darkest secret and the establishment cover-up. Half a century before Dodi and Diana, another Prince of Wales would be involved in a deadly love triangle with a fabulously wealthy Egyptian prince. Prince Edward was the future King of England, a destiny he would famously forsake over his love for Wallis Simpson. But two decades prior he was involved in another love affair that threatened to jeopardize the royal family. The story took place in maisons de rendezvous, luxurious chateaux in the French countryside providing hospitality for the British upper classes, the richest food, the finest wines and the most beautiful women, the violent and dangerous Paris demi-monde - where many of the women came from - and the Savoy hotel in London, where a murder was committed. This major royal scandal, superbly covered up by the Royal family, the government and the judiciary has remained secret ever since. This is the story of a passionate and deadly love affair set against the dramatic backdrop of the Great War. Edward was enthralled by the 'crazy physical attraction' of Marguerite Alibert, queen of the Paris demi-monde. When he broke off their hidden relationship, Edward thought that he was free of Marguerite. He was wrong. After the war, as a violent thunderstorm raged outside the luxurious Savoy Hotel in London Marguerite fired three shots from a semi-automatic pistol. Her husband, and Egyptian multimillionaire and playboy, was shot dead at point blank range. Marguerite stood trial for murder at the Old Bailey. As Prince Charming and poster boy of the British Empire, Edward now risked exposure as a degenerate wastrel, partying behind the lines while thousands were blown away on the Western Front. Andrew Rose, using his long experience as a barrister and judge, has uncovered a royal scandal carefully airbrushed from history. Edward never quite escaped from Marguerite who had taught the arts of love to a once and future King. The Prince, the Princess and the Perfect Murder is the product of several years' research, accessing unpublished documents held in the Royal Archives and private collections in England and France.
Servants: A Downstairs View of Twentieth-century Britain is the social history of the last century through the eyes of those who served. From the butler, the footman, the maid and the cook of 1900 to the au pairs, cleaners and childminders who took their place seventy years later, a previously unheard class offers a fresh perspective on a dramatic century. Here, the voices of servants and domestic staff, largely ignored by history, are at last brought to life: their daily household routines, attitudes towards their employers, and to each other, throw into sharp and intimate relief the period of feverish social change through which they lived. Sweeping in its scope, extensively researched and brilliantly observed, Servants is an original and fascinating portrait of twentieth-century Britain; an authoritative history that will change and challenge the way we look at society.
Lady Bette, the 14-year-old heiress to the vast Northumberland estates, becomes the victim of a plot by her grandmother, the Countess Howard, to marry her to the dissoloute fortune-hunter Thomas Thynn, a man three times her age with an evil reputation. Revolted by her new husband, Lady Bette flees to Holland. Within weeks, Thynn is gunned down in the street by three hired assassins. Who is behind the contract killing? Is it the Swedish Count Coningsmark, young and glamorous with blond hair down to his waist? Or is it a political assassination as the anti-Catholic press maintains? Thynn was, after all, a key player in the Protestant faction to exclude the Catholic James, Duke of York, as his brother Charles II's successor. N.A. Pickford creates a world of tension and insecurity, of constant plotting and counter-plotting and of rabid anti-Catholicism, where massive street demonstrations and public Papal burnings are weekly events. The action moves from the great landed estates of Syon and Petworth to the cheap taverns and brothels of London, and finally to Newgate and the gallows - the sporting spectacle of the day. In the process, the book gives us a vivid and deeply researched portrait of Restoration society.
'The marriage day was fixed, the wedding dresses were bought, the wedding tour was planned out, the wedding guests were invited. The day came but not the bridegroom...' While Dickens' embittered spinster Miss Havisham stopped all her clocks on her wedding day and 'never since looked upon the light of day', the reality was much brighter for thousands of jilted women. The real Miss Havisham's didn't mope in faded wedding finery - they hired lawyers and struck the first 'no-win, no fee' deals to sue for breach of promise. From the 1790s right up to the 1960s, jilted women (and sometimes rejected suitors) employed a range of tactics to bring false lovers to book. Denise Bates uncovers over 1,000 forgotten cases of women who found very different endings to their fictional counterparts: Mary Ann Smith forged evidence of a courtship to entrap an Earl. Catherine Kempsall shot the man who denied their engagement, Gladys Knowles was awarded a record GBP10,000 in damages by a jury in 1890, Daisy Mons discreetly negotiated a GBP50,000 settlement from a Lord Based on original research, this social history of breach of promise shows that when men behaved badly hell had no fury like a woman scorned!
Bordo's sharp reading of Boleyniana and her clear affection for this proud, unusual woman make this an entertaining, provocative read. -- Boston Globe Part biography, part cultural history, The Creation of Anne Boleyn is a reconstruction of Boleyn's life and an illuminating look at her very active afterlife in the popular imagination. With recent novels, movies, and television shows, Anne has been having a twenty-first-century moment, but Bordo shows how many generations of polemicists, biographers, novelists, and filmmakers have imagined and reimagined her: whore, martyr, cautionary tale, proto- mean girl, feminist icon, and everything in between. Drawing on scholarship and razor-sharp analysis, Bordo probes the complexities of one of history's most intriguing women, teasing out what we actually know about Anne Boleyn and what we think we know about her. Riveting . . . Bordo's eloquent study not only recovers Anne Boleyn for our times but also demonstrates the ways in which legends grow out of the faintest wisps of historical fact. -- Book Page Engrossing . . . Ms. Bordo offers a fascinating discussion. -- New York Times
A history of mapping Britain's roads. The story of Britain's road development - graphically and beautifully illustrated on our maps - is also the story of its political, economic and social history. And the car, more than any other single factor, has shaped our landscape and changed our maps. Busy, bustling, often creaking at the seams, most of us have a love-hate relationship with our roads. Like it or not, our modern lifestyles depend on them - not only for getting there from A to B, but for the distribution of almost everything we buy. Yet once upon a time, the building of roads was seen as a glorious and heroic enterprise. Britain's motorways - 'the cathedrals of the modern world' - are the ultimate expression of our modern age. From the old ways to the motorways, Mapping the Roads, charts the ambitions and hopes of the nation through our maps.
The Girl I Left Behind Me addresses a neglected aspect of the history of the Hanoverian army. From 1685 to the beginning of the Victorian era, army administration attempted to discourage marriage among men in almost all ranks. It fostered a misogynist culture of the bachelor soldier who trifled with feminine hearts and avoided responsibility and commitment. The army's policy was unsuccessful in preventing military marriage. By concentrating on the many soldiers' wives who were unable to win permission to live on the strength of the regiment (entitled to half-rations) and travel with their husbands, this title explores the phenomenon of soldiers who persisted in defying the army's anti-marriage initiatives. Using evidence gathered from ballads, novels, court and parish records, letters, memoirs, and War Office papers, Jennine Hurl-Eamon shows that both soldiers and their wives exerted continual pressure on the state through evocative appeals to officers and civilians, fuelled by wives' pride in performing their own military duty at home. Respectable, companionate couples of all ranks reflect a subculture within the army that recognized the value in Enlightenment femininity. Looking at military marriages within the telescoping contexts of the state, their regimental and civilian communities, and the couples themselves, The Girl I Left Behind Me reveals the range of masculinities beneath the uniform, the positive influence of wives and sweethearts on soldiers' performance of their duties, and the surprising resilience of partnerships severed by war and army anti-marriage policies.
Epic yet eminently readable, penetrating and profoundly moving, 'Congo' traces the fate of one of the world's most devastated countries, second only to war-torn Somalia: the Democratic Republic of Congo. With a span of several hundred years and an enormous cast of characters, 'Congo' chronicles the most dramatic episodes of the nation's history, the people and events that have determined Congo's development - from the slave trade to the ivory and rubber booms; from the arrival of Henry Morton Stanley and his meeting with Dr Livingstone to the brutal regime of Belgium's King Leopold II; from the struggle for independence to Mobutu's exploitative rule; and from Muhammad Ali and George Foreman's world famous 'Rumble in the Jungle' to the civil war over natural resources that began in 1996 and still rages today. David Van Reybrouck interweaves his own family's history with the voices of a diverse range of individuals - charismatic dictators, feuding warlords, child-soldiers, elderly, female smugglers, and many in the African diaspora of Europe and China - to offer a deeply humane approach to political history, focusing squarely on the Congolese perspective in an attempt to return a nation's history to its people.
'Old landmarks fall in nearly every block...and the face of the city is changing so rapidly that the time is not too far distant when a search for a building 50 years old will be in vain.' - Herald, 1925. The demolition firm of Whelan the Wrecker was a Melbourne institution for a hundred years (1892-1992). Its famous sign - 'Whelan the Wrecker is Here' on a pile of shifting rubble - was a laconic masterpiece and served as a vital sign of the city's progress. It's no stretch to say that over three generations, the Whelan family changed the face of Melbourne, demolishing hundreds of buildings in the central city alone. In A City Lost and Found, Robyn Annear uses Whelan's demolition sites as portals to explore layers of the city laid bare by their pick-axes and iron balls. Peering beneath the rubble, she brings to light fantastic stories about Melbourne's building sites and their many incarnations. This is a book about the making - and remaking - of a city.
Historically, photographs of Indigenous Australians were produced in unequal and exploitative circumstances. Today, however, such images represent a rich cultural heritage for descendants, who see them in distinctive and positive ways. Calling the shots brings together researchers who are using this rich archive to explore Aboriginal history, to identify relatives, and to reclaim culture. It reverses the colonial gaze to focus on the interactions between photographer and Indigenous people - and the living meanings the photos have today. The result is a fresh perspective on Australia's past, and on present-day Indigenous identities.
Lucius Cornelius Sulla is one of the central figures of the late Roman Republic. Indeed, he is often considered a major catalyst in the death of the republican system. the ambitious general whose feud with a rival (Marius) led to his marching on Rome with an army at his back, leading to civil war and the terrible internecine bloodletting of the proscriptions. In these things, and in his appropriation of the title of dictator with absolute power, he set a dangerous precedent to be followed by Julius Caesar a generation later. Lynda Telford believes Sulla's portrayal as a monstrous, brutal tyrant is unjustified. While accepting that he was responsible for much bloodshed, she contends that he was no more brutal than many of his contemporaries who have received a kinder press. Moreover, even his harshest measures were motivated not by selfish ambition but by genuine desire to do what he believed best for Rome. The author believes the bias of the surviving sources, and modern biographers, has exaggerated the ill-feeling towards Sulla in his lifetime. After all, he voluntarily laid aside dictatorial power and enjoyed a peaceful retirement without fear of assassination. The contrast to Caesar is obvious. Lynda Telford gives a long overdue reappraisal of this significant personality, considering such factors as the effect of his disfiguring illness. The portrait that emerges is a subtle and nuanced one; her Sulla is very much a human, not a monster.
From the civil wars of the Late Republic to Constantine's bloody reunification of the Empire, elite corps of guardsmen were at the heart of every Roman army. Whether as bodyguards or as shock troops in battle, the fighting skills of praetorians, speculatores, singulares and protectores determined the course of Roman history. Modern scholars tend to present the praetorians as pampered, disloyal and battle-shy, but the Romans knew them as valiant warriors, men who strove to live up to their honorific title pia vindex - loyal and avenging. Closely associated with the Republican praetorian cohorts, and gradually assimilated into the Imperial Praetorian Guard, were the speculatores. A cohort was established by Marc Antony in the 30s BC for the purposes of reconnaissance and intelligence gathering, but soon the speculatores were acting as close bodyguards - a role they maintained until the end of the first century AD. This title will detail the changing nature of these units, their organization and operational successes and failures from their origins in the late Republic through to their unsuccessful struggle against Constantine the Great.
The Hanseatic League was a commercial and defensive federation of merchant guilds based in harbour towns along the North Sea and Baltic coasts of what are now Germany and her neighbours, which eventually dominated maritime trade in Northern Europe and spread its influence much further afield. The League was formed to protect the economic and political interests of member cities throughout a vast and complex trading network. The League continued to operate well into the 17th century, but its golden age was between c.1200 and c.1500; thereafter it failed to take full advantage of the wave of maritime exploration to the west, south and east of Europe. During its 300 years of dominance the League's large ships - called 'cogs' - were at the forefront of maritime technology, were early users of cannon, and were manned by strong fighting crews to defend them from pirates in both open-sea and river warfare. The home cities raised their own armies for mutual defence, and their riches both allowed them, and required them, to invest in fortifications and gunpowder weapons, since as very attractive targets they were subjected to sieges at various times.
In 1217 England was facing her darkest hour, with foreign troops pillaging the country and defeat close at hand. But, at the battle of Lincoln, the seventy-year-old William Marshal led his men to a victory that would secure the future of his nation. Earl of Pembroke, right-hand man to three kings and regent for a fourth, Marshal was one of the most celebrated men in Europe, yet is virtually unknown today, his impact and influence largely forgotten. In this vivid account, Richard Brooks blends colourful contemporary source material with new insights to uncover the tale of this unheralded icon. He traces the rise of Marshal from penniless younger son to renowned knight, national hero and defender of the Magna Carta. What emerges is a fascinating story of a man negotiating the brutal realities of medieval warfare and the conflicting demands of chivalric ideals, and who against the odds defeated the joint French and rebel forces in arguably the most important battle in medieval English history - overshadowing even Agincourt.
We are accustomed to think of England in terms of Shakespeare's 'precious stone set in a silver sea', safe behind its watery ramparts with its naval strength resisting all invaders. To the English of an earlier period - from the 8th to the 11th centuries - such a notion would have seemed ridiculous. The sea, rather than being a defensive wall, was a highway by which successive waves of invaders arrived, bringing destruction and fear in their wake. Deploying a wide range of sources, this new book looks at how English kings after the Norman Conquest learnt to use the Navy of England, a term which at this time included all vessels whether Royal or private and no matter what their ostensible purpose - to increase and safety and prosperity of the kingdom. The design and building of ships and harbour facilities, the development of navigation, ship handling, and the world of the seaman are all described, while comparisons with the navies of England's closest neighbours, with particular focus on France and Scotland, are made, and notable battles including Damme, Dover, Sluys and La Rochelle included to explain the development of battle tactics and the use of arms during the period. The author shows, in this lucid and enlightening narrative, how the unspoken aim of successive monarchs was to begin to build 'the wall' of England, its naval defences, with a success which was to become so apparent in later centuries.
The latter part of the fifteenth century B C saw Egypt's political power reach its zenith, with an empire that stretched from beyond the Euphrates in the north to much of what is now Sudan in the south. The wealth that flowed into Egypt allowed its kings to commission some of the most stupendous temples of all time, some of the greatest dedicated to Amun-Re, King of the Gods. Yet a century later these temples lay derelict, the god's images, names, and titles all erased in an orgy of iconoclasm by Akhenaten, the devotee of a single sun-god. This book traces the history of Egypt from the death of the great warrior-king Thutmose III to the high point of Akhenaten's reign, when the known world brought gifts to his newly-built capital city of Amarna, in particular looking at the way in which the cult of the sun became increasingly important to even 'orthodox' kings, culminating in the transformation of Akhenaten's father, Amenhotep III, into a solar deity in his own right.
There have been many books about the Vikings, but few that see them from their own point of view. Most accounts rely heavily on the records of prejudiced observers (who saw the Vikings only as savage raiders) or the archaeological record, which tells us much about their material culture but little about their values. This classic book reveals how the Vikings saw themselves: portrayed in their own writings or in the reports of people who knew them closely. Using a series of translations from primary sources including runic inscriptions, literary works, rare historical accounts and eye-witness reports, this book brings the Viking world to life.
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.
In the ninth and tenth centuries, the Vikings created an unrivalled cultural network that spanned four continents. Adventurers, farmers, traders, conquerors and sailors, the Vikings were both peaceful and fierce, fighting or bargaining their way through as far as Constantinople in the East, North America and Greenland in the North, the British Isles in the West as well as into the Mediterranean. Throughout their existence, the Vikings encountered a remarkable diversity of peoples and inhabited an expansive and changing world. This beautifully illustrated book explores the core period of the Viking Age from a global perspective, examining how the Vikings drew influences from Christian Europe and the Islamic World and how they created a lasting historical impact on our world today. Highlighting an extraordinary range of objects and featuring new discoveries by archaeologists and metal-detector users, the cultural connections between Europe, Byzantium and the Middle East are explored in absorbing detail. Vikings: life and legend is published to complement a major exhibition developed jointly by the British Museum, the National Museum of Denmark, Copenhagen and the Museum for Prehistory and Early History, Berlin.
The Picts is a survey of the historical and cultural developments in northern Britain between AD 300 and AD 900. Discarding the popular view of the Picts as savages, they are revealed to have been politically successful and culturally adaptive members of the medieval European world. Re-interprets our definition of 'Pict' and provides a vivid depiction of their political and military organization Offers an up-to-date overview of Pictish life within the environment of northern Britain Explains how art such as the 'symbol stones' are historical records as well as evidence of creative inspiration. Draws on a range of transnational and comparative scholarship to place the Picts in their European context
From late antiquity through to the early middle ages, people across north-western Europe were inscribing runes on a range of different objects. Once identified and interpreted by experts, runes provide us with invaluable evidence for the early Germanic languages including English, Dutch, German and the Scandinavian languages and reveal a wealth of information about our early civilisations. Runes employ many techniques from informal scratchings to sophisticated inlaid designs on weapons, or the exquisite relief carvings of the Franks Casket. The task of reading and understanding them involves a good deal of detective-work, calling on expertise from a number of academic disciplines: archaeology, art history, linguistics, and even forensic science. This book tells the story of runes from their mysterious origins, their development as a script, to their use and meaning in the modern world. Illustrated with a range of beautiful objects from jewellery to tools and weapons, Runes will reveal memorials for the dead, business messages, charms and curses, insults and prayers, giving us a glimpse into the languages and cultures of Europeans over a thousand years ago.
The Viking ship is one of the most iconic images of the Viking Age. As well as including well-known vessels such as the spectacular ship-burials from Gokstad and Oseberg in southern Norway, Viking Ships introduces the newly-conserved Roskilde 6 ship from Denmark. Measuring at over 37 metres, this is the longest Viking ship ever discovered and will form the core of the touring exhibition Vikings: life and legend. The Vikings used their shipbuilding skills to command the sea; their famous ships permitted the exploration, colonization and the raids for which they are best known. This book will explore the evolution of their sea-going vessels and celebrate this outstanding feature of the Viking Age.
The Knights Templar were among the most famous of Christian military orders. Created after the First Crusade of 1096 and endorsed by the Catholic Church in 1129, the Order grew rapidly in membership and power. Templar knights were some of the best equipped, trained and disciplined fighting units of the Crusades. But when the Holy Land was lost and the Templars suffered crushing defeats, support for the Order faded and rumours about their secret initiation ceremony created mistrust. When the Order suddenly disappeared, disbanded by the Pope, it gave rise to speculation and legends which have kept the name 'Templar' alive. From Aaron to Zion, The Pocket A-Z of the Knights Templar is an invaluable reference of the places, people, and themes of the Crusades, the Knights Templar and their legacy.
When people think of Richard the Lionheart they recall the scene at the end of every Robin Hood epic when he returns from the Crusades to punish his treacherous brother John and the wicked Sheriff of Nottingham. In reality Richard detested England and the English, was deeply troubled by his own sexuality and was noted for greed, not generosity, and for murder rather than mercy. In youth Richard showed no interest in girls; instead, a taste for cruelty and a rapacity for gold that would literally be the death of him. To save his own skin, he repeatedly abandoned his supporters to an evil fate, and his indifference to women saw the part of queen at his coronation played by his formidable mother, Queen Eleanor. His brief reign bankrupted England twice, destabilised the powerful empire his parents had put together and set the scene for his brother's ruinous rule. So how has Richard come to be known as the noble Christian warrior associated with such bravery and patriotism? Lionheart reveals the scandalous truth about England's hero king - a truth that is far different from the legend that has endured for eight centuries.
The Byzantine Empire was one of the most impressive imperial adventures in history. It ruled much of Europe and Asia Minor for a remarkable eleven hundred years. From Constantine's establishment of Byzantium (renamed Constantinople) as his capital in 324 CE, until the fall of the city to the Ottomans in the fifteenth century, the Byzantines became a powerhouse of literature, art, theology, medicine, law and learning. Dionysios Stathakopoulos here tells a compelling story of military conquest, alliance and reversal, including the terrifying secret weapon of 'Greek fire'. His new short history is above all a narrative of individuals: of powerful rulers like Justinian I, who recovered Italy from the Vandals and oversaw construction of Hagia Sofia (completed in 537); of his notorious queen Theodora, a courtesan who rose improbably to the highest office of imperial first lady; of the charismatic but cuckolded general Belisarius; and of the religious leaders Arius and Athanasius, whose conflicting ideas about Christ and doctrine shook the Empire to its core.
Carthage, the port-city in Tunisia first settled by Phoenicians from Tyre, grew to extend a competitive maritime trading empire all over the Western Mediterranean and beyond, increasingly defended by the best navy of the period. In the 6th century BC this came into confrontation with Greek colonists in Sicily, starting major wars that lasted through the 5th and 4th centuries, and involved much interaction with different Greek forces. During the 3rd century Carthage first clashed with Roman armies, and in the course of three wars that raged over Spain, Sicily and Italy the Romans suffered the greatest defeats in their early history at the hands of Hamilcar, Hannibal and Hasdrubal Barca, leading multinational armies of North Africans and Europeans.
The Incas is a captivating exploration of one of the greatest civilizations ever seen. Seamlessly drawing on history, archaeology, and ethnography, this thoroughly updated new edition integrates advances made in hundreds of new studies conducted over the last decade. * Written by one of the world's leading experts on Inca civilization * Covers Inca history, politics, economy, ideology, society, and military organization * Explores advances in research that include pre-imperial Inca society; the royal capital of Cuzco; the sacred landscape; royal estates; Machu Picchu; provincial relations; the khipu information-recording technology; languages, time frames, gender relations, effects on human biology, and daily life * Explicitly examines how the Inca world view and philosophy affected the character of the empire * Illustrated with over 90 maps, figures, and photographs