Nicholas Vincent - A Brief History of Britain 1066 - 1485 - Little, Brown Book Group

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A Brief History of Britain 1066 - 1485

By Nicholas Vincent

  • Paperback
  • £8.99

From the Norman Conquest to the Battle of Bosworth Field - how Britain was invaded and become a nation. The first volume in the stunning four volume Brief History of Britain series.

From the Battle of Hastings to the Battle of Bosworth Field, Nicholas Vincent tells the story of how Britain was born.

When William, Duke of Normandy, killed King Harold and seized the throne of England, England's language, culture, politics and law were transformed. Over the next four hundred years, under royal dynasties that looked principally to France for inspiration and ideas, an English identity was born, based in part upon struggle for control over the other parts of the British Isles (Scotland, Wales and Ireland), in part upon rivalry with the kings of France. From these struggles emerged English law and an English Parliament, the English language, English humour and England's first overseas empires.

In this thrilling and accessible account, Nicholas Vincent not only tells the story of the rise and fall of dynasties, but investigates the lives and obsessions of a host of lesser men and women, from archbishops to peasants, and from soldiers to scholars, upon whose enterprise the social and intellectual foundations of Englishness now rest.

This the first book in the four volume Brief History of Britain which brings together some of the leading historians to tell our nation's story from the Norman Conquest of 1066 to the present-day. Combining the latest research with accessible and entertaining story telling, it is the ideal introduction for students and general readers.

Biographical Notes

Nicholas Vincent has published half a dozen books and some fifty academic articles on various aspects of English and European history in the 12th and 13th centuries. He has studied at Oxford, Cambridge, Paris and Canterbury and now is professor at the University of East Anglia.

  • Other details

  • ISBN: 9781845293963
  • Publication date: 23 Jun 2011
  • Page count: 560
  • Imprint: Robinson
Robinson

The Last Hurrah

Graham Viney
Authors:
Graham Viney

'Meticulously researched, and inspiringly evoked, Graham Viney relates the story of the 1947 Royal Tour of South Africa.' Hugo Vickers, author of Elizabeth, The Queen Mother and The Quest for Queen Mary'The literary surprise of the decade . . . a story about a country teetering on the brink of convulsive change and yet almost united, at least for a moment, by love for a king and queen who weren't really ours.' Rian Malan'Brilliantly conveys the glamour and gruelling nature of a tour that temporarily united a divided nation, but ultimately failed to embed South Africa within "a Commonwealth of free peoples and many races". Casting a discerning eye on his royal protagonists and the people they encountered, Viney penetrates beyond the frippery and froth to provide fascinating sidelights on the history of twentieth-century South Africa.' Lady Anne Somerset, author of Elizabeth I and Queen AnneThe Last Hurrah describes in vivid detail a pivotal moment not just in the history of South Africa, that far-flung imperial outpost, but of the British Empire itself. The year 1947 marked the high-water mark of the British Empire in Africa, but also the very moment at which it began to unravel, ahead of the Afrikaner Nationalist victory in South Africa in 1948, which led inexorably to the Republic of South Africa in 1961 and its departure from the Commonwealth. Graham Viney's book not only superbly captures a moment in the life of a fractious, recently formed 'nation', before its descent into nearly five decades of darkness, but also gives us an intimate and revealing portrait of the royal family - King George VI, Queen Elizabeth and the Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret - hard at work in support of the national interest. It seems clear that the present Queen Elizabeth must have learned a great deal from her father, but perhaps particularly her mother, about duty and statecraft in the course of this three-month tour, during which the then princess celebrated her twenty-first birthday. Viney evocatively details the background to the 1947 royal tour of southern Africa, which took in not just the length and breadth of what was then the Union of South Africa, but its neighbours, too: Basutoland (now Lesotho), Bechuanaland (Botswana), Swaziland (very recently renamed the Kingdom of eSwatini), Southern Rhodesia (Zimbabwe) and Northern Rhodesia (Zambia). The royal family travelled ceaselessly, from February to April that year, on a specially commissioned, white-painted train, meeting thousands of people at every stop along the way. The tour was a show of imperial solidarity and a recognition of South Africa's contribution to the Allied cause during the Second World War, specifically that of South African prime minister Jan Smuts, who, though once an adversary in the Boer War and Churchill's jailer, had served in both British war cabinets and been nicknamed 'the handyman of Empire'. Despite concerns and ongoing controversy, wherever the tour took the Royal Family, South Africans of all kinds turned out in their thousands to cheer and welcome them. But India was to gain independence later that same year and just one year later, Smuts had been ousted from power and South Africa set on the path to becoming a republic. The Last Hurrah draws skilfully on many diverse sources, including the Royal Archive at Windsor, to explore not just the troubled politics of the time, but also local society and the royal visitors in richly textured, telling detail. The book includes many photographs of the royal family on tour not previously published, including stills from film footage unearthed in the South African Railway Museum archives.

Robinson

Dublin

Thomas Pakenham, Valerie Pakenham
Authors:
Thomas Pakenham, Valerie Pakenham

'Unforgettable . . . no better compilers could have been found' - History Today'Dublin's past comes dazzlingly alive' - Publishing News'Erudite and practical simultaneously' - Gemma Hussey, Irish IndependentDublin's turbulent history, its intensely literary and theatrical character of long literary lineage, its revolutionary ideals and heroes, and its ordinary life are all brought to life in this collection of letters, diaries and memoirs of travellers to the city and by Dubliners themselves. The extracts, from medieval times onwards, include Red Hugh O'Donnell's escape from Dublin Castle, James Joyce's plans for a novel while staying at the Martello Tower, and the seizure of the GPO by Irish volunteers during the Easter Rising. The book also includes gossip and story-telling in the humorous sketches of many famous Dubliners.

Constable

Viceroys

Christopher Lee
Authors:
Christopher Lee

Between 1858 and 1947, twenty British men ruled millions of some of the most remarkable people of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.From the Indian Mutiny to the cruel religious partition of India and the newly formed and named Pakistan, the Viceroy had absolute power, more than the monarch who had sent him. Selected from that exclusive class of English, Scottish and Irish breeding, the aristocracy, the Viceroys were plumed, rode elephants, shot tigers. Even their wives stood when they entered the room. Nevertheless, many of them gave everything for India. The first Viceroy, Canning, exhausted by the Mutiny, buried his wife in Calcutta before he left the subcontinent to die shortly afterwards.The average Viceroy lasted five years and was granted an earldom but rarely a sense of triumph. Did these Viceroys behave as badly as twenty-first century moralists would have us believe? When the Raj was over, the legacy of Empire continued, as the new rulers slipped easily into the offices and styles of the British who had gone. Being 'British' was now a caste.Viceroys is the tale of the British Raj, the last fling of British aristocracy. It is the supreme view of the British in India, portraying the sort of people who went out and the sort of people they were on their return. It is the story of utter power and what men did with it. Moreover, it is also the story of how modern British identity was established and in part the answer to how it was that such a small offshore European island people believed themselves to have the right to sit at the highest institutional tables and judge what was right and unacceptable in other nations and institutions.

Robinson

A Woman Lived Here

Allison Vale
Authors:
Allison Vale

'A pretty awesome present for the feminist in your life' - Caroline Criado Perez, OBE, author of Do It Like a WomanAt the last count, the Blue Plaque Guide honours 903 Londoners, and a walking tour of these sites brings to life the London of a bygone era. But only 111 of these blue plaques commemorate women.Over the centuries, London has been home to thousands of truly remarkable women who have made significant and lasting impacts on every aspect of modern life: from politics and social reform, to the Arts, medicine, science, technology and sport. Many of those women went largely unnoticed, even during their own lifetimes, going about their lives quietly but with courage, conviction, skill and compassion. Others were fearless, strident trail-blazers. Many lived in an era when their achievements were given a male name, clouding the capabilities of women in any field outside of the home or field. A Woman Lived Here shines a spotlight on some of these forgotten women to redress the balance. The stories on these pages commemorate some of the most remarkable of London's women, who set out to make their world a little richer, and in doing so, left an indelible mark on ours.

Abacus

Viking Fire

Justin Hill
Authors:
Justin Hill

A Times Book of the Year 'A literary, intelligent read from a masterful storyteller'In 1035, a young fifteen year old Viking is dragged wounded from the battle. Left for dead, for the next twenty years his adventures lead him over mountains, down the length of Russia and ultimately to Constantinople and the Holy City of Jerusalem.Drawn into political intrigue he will be the lover of Empresses, the murderer of an emperor; he will hold the balance of power in the Byzantine Empire in his hands, and then give it all up for a Russian princess and the chance to return home and lead his own people, where he must fight the demons of his past, his family and his countrymen in a long and bitter war for revenge and power.Told in his own voice, this is the astonishing true story of the most famous warrior in all Christendom: Harald Hardrada, the last Viking.

Sphere

The Death of Robin Hood

Angus Donald
Authors:
Angus Donald

'I charge you, Sir Alan Dale, with administering my death. At the end of the game, I would rather die by your hand than any other' England rebels War rages across the land. In the wake of Magna Carta, King John's treachery is revealed and the barons have risen against him once more. Fighting with them is the Earl of Locksley - the former outlaw Robin Hood - and his right-hand man Sir Alan Dale. France invades When the French enter the fray, with the cruel White Count leading the charge, Robin and Alan must decide where their loyalties lie: with those who would destroy the king and seize his realm or with the beloved land of their birth. A hero who will live for ever Fate is inexorable and Death waits for us all. Or does it? Can Robin Hood pull off his greatest ever trick and cheat the Grim Reaper one last time just as England needs him most?

Hachette Australia

Maralinga

Frank Walker
Authors:
Frank Walker
Robinson

The Ludicrous Laws of Old London

Nigel Cawthorne
Authors:
Nigel Cawthorne
Constable

The Demon's Brood

Desmond Seward
Authors:
Desmond Seward
Robinson

A Brief History of the Battle of Agincourt

Christopher Hibbert
Authors:
Christopher Hibbert

There can be few military victories so complete, or achieved against such heavy odds, as that won by Henry V on 25 October 1415 against Charles VI's army at Agincourt. In the words of one contemporary French chronicler, it was the 'most disgraceful event that had ever happened to the Kingdom of France'.Christopher Hibbert's wonderfully concise account draws on the unusual number of contemporary sources available to historians to describe in lucid detail not only what happened, but how it happened. His classic account of the crushing defeat of the French at Agincourt combines historical rigour with a vigorous and very readable narrative style.

Robinson

A Brief History of Khubilai Khan

Jonathan Clements
Authors:
Jonathan Clements

His grandfather was the bloodthirsty Mongol leader Genghis Khan, his mother a Christian princess. Groomed from childhood for a position of authority, Khubilai snatched the position of Great Khan, becoming the overlord of a Mongol federation that stretched from the Balkans to the Korean coast. His armies conquered the Asian kingdom of Dali and brought down the last defenders of imperial China.Khubilai Khan presided over a glorious Asian renaissance, attracting emissaries from all across the continent, and opening his civil service to 'men with coloured eyes' - administrators from the far west. His reign began the glorious Yuan dynasty that ruled over China for only ninety years, but had a profound impact on Asian history, from international trade to cultural revolution. Jonathan Clements's insightful biography into the life and times of one of China's greatest leaders is a fascinating introduction to an important era, uncovering the man behind Marco Polo's mythic portrait.

Robinson

A Brief Guide To British Battlefields

David Clark
Authors:
David Clark

A very readable work of reference offering a survey in chronological order, from AD 84 to 1746, of the major battles which have taken place on British soil, from the Roman occupation to Culloden, the last battle fought on British soil. In this way, the book can be read as a continuous narrative, while each entry also stands alone as a self-contained guide. The battles are grouped into relevant sections (such as the Wars of the Roses, the English Civil Wars and the Jacobite Rebellions), within broader historical periods. Each period is prefaced by a presentation of the nature of warfare and is enhanced by a feature article of specialist interest. Every entry includes a narrative of events leading up to the battle, a vivid description of the battle itself and an assessment of the long and short-term, consequences. In addition, there is useful information for visits, including precise identification of the location, details of access to and features of each site. The book is illustrated throughout with maps and a plate section.

Robinson

A Brief History of Magna Carta, 2nd Edition

Geoffrey Hindley
Authors:
Geoffrey Hindley
Little, Brown

England, Arise

Juliet Barker
Authors:
Juliet Barker
Sphere

Tudor Agent

Robert Farrington
Authors:
Robert Farrington

1485: Richard III lies dead, and the Wars of the Roses are reaching a murderous endThe Battle of Bosworth Field is over, and Richard III's right-hand man, Henry Morane, faces hanging at the hands of the traitor Sir William Stanley. Eyes closed, awaiting an arrow through the heart that never comes, Morane receives an eleventh-hour reprieve from an unlikely source.With all his friends dead, Morane has no choice but to work for the Lancastrian victor and first Tudor monarch: King Henry VII. In order to win this fair king's trust, Morane must become part of the new English espionage network under spymaster Christopher Urswick.But the first two years of Henry's reign will prove to be violent, and the road to victory in the Wars of the Roses will climax in one final battle of bloody attrition.With the mystery of C.J. Sansom and the epic adventure of Conn Iggulden, Robert Farrington's thrilling novel continues the story begun in The Killing of Richard III

Constable

The Battlefields of the First World War

Peter Barton
Authors:
Peter Barton

Here are the great battlefields of the First World War as you have never seen them before, from the first cavalry skirmishes, through the horrors of the Somme and Passchendaele, to the final weeks of conflict.A revelatory, unique collection of panoramic photographs covering the whole of the British sectors of the Western Front, end to end. No other work shows like this the actual ground on which the battles were fought and about which so many words continue to be written. The vast battlescapes are interspersed with poignant individual photographs and the recollections of the soldiers caught in the action.The last time most of the panoramas were viewed - in the trenches - they were marked TOP-SECRET and destined for the eyes of the commanding officer only. Taken at huge personal risk by specialist photographers during the war, the panoramas reveal what no other photographs can - the view beyond the trench parapet - and a great deal more. Each panorama offers a view of up to 160 degrees, so sharply focused that the individual figures of a waiting sniper or a soldier picking lice from his shirt can be made out.They document a lost world.This slipcased edition features 60 recently discovered German panoramas, plus a DVD containing the full complement of 350 panoramas in interactive, zoomable form; as well as updated mapping throughout.

Constable

Bizarre London

David Long
Authors:
David Long

A fascinating tour of London's strangest and most intriguing locations. Ranging from architectural evidence of past incidents and stories of life beneath the city, to anecdotes of magic, mystery and murder, this is a perfect companion for the curious Londoner. It includes: A Museum of Magical Curiosities; The City's Lost Tunnels and Citadels; The Ghost of a "She-Wolf; The Bawdy House Riots; The Story of 'Jack the Stripper'; The Atmospheric Railway; The Thames Ringway Bicycle Race; A Banker Hanged at Newgate; The Crossdressing Highwayman; Bluebottles, Rozzers and Woodentops; The Hidden Statue of a Beaver; The 'Belgravia of Death'; Whitehall's Licensed Brothel; Pin-Makers, Mole-Takers and Rat Catchers; Drinking in 'The Bucket of Blood'; London's Most Haunted House.All of London is here!

Constable

Sir Francis Walsingham

Derek Wilson
Authors:
Derek Wilson

During the brief reign of the Queen Mary, Walsingham was a Protestant exile in Italy. Returning home when Elizabeth assumed the throne, from 1570 he became a diplomat to the arch-pragmatist Queen. He was often troubled by her inconsistent policy decisions and for allowing the exile in England of Mary Queen of Scots. His triumph came in 1587 when Mary was at last beheaded after the cunning defeat of the Babington plot. A powerful, if enigmatic figure, loathed by his adversaries and deeply admired by friends and allies, Walsingham became the master co-ordinator of a feared pan-European spy network. His spies underpinned his organisation of national resistance to the Spanish Armada, but devotion and duty to Elizabeth was costly and Walsingham died two years later in penury.Historian and storyteller Derek Wilson delves deeply into the life of a fascinating and highly influential figure, bringing us tales of deceit, betrayal and loyalty along the way; popular history of the highest calibre.see www.derekwilson.com

Robinson

A Brief History of Henry VIII

Derek Wilson
Authors:
Derek Wilson

Henry VIII changed the course of English life more completely than any monarch since the Conquest. In the portraits of Holbein, Henry Tudor stands proud as one of the most powerful figures in renaissance Europe. But is the portrait just a bluff?In his new book Derek Wilson explores the myths behind the image of the Tudor Lion. He was the monarch that delivered the Reformation to England yet Luther called him 'A fool, a liar and a damnable rotten worm'. As a young man he gained a reputation as an intellectual and fair prince yet he ruled the nation like a tyrant. He treated his subjects as cruelly as he treated his wives. Based on a wealth of new material and a life time's knowledge of the subject Derek Wilson exposes a new portrait of a much misunderstood King.PRAISE FOR DEREK WILSON'S PREVIOUS WORKS:The Uncrowned Kings of England: 'Stimulating and authorative.' John Guy'Masterly. [Wilson] has a deep understanding of...characters, reaching out accross the centuries.' Sunday TimesHans Holbein: Portrait of an Unknown Man:'Fascinating.' Sarah Bradford, Daily Telegraph'Highly readable...The most accurate and vivid portrayal to date.' Alison Weir

Robinson

The Uncrowned Kings of England

Derek Wilson
Authors:
Derek Wilson