How did Christianity become the dominant religion in the West?In the early first century, a small group of peasants from the backwaters of the Roman Empire proclaimed that an executed enemy of the state was God’s messiah. Less than four hundred years later it had become the official religion of Rome with some thirty million followers.It could so easily have been a forgotten sect of Judaism.Through meticulous research, Bart Ehrman, an expert on Christian history, texts and traditions, explores th..
From bestselling historian Norman Stone, a deftly told story of Turkey’s relations with its immediate neighbours and the wider world from the 11th century to the present dayWho are the Turks and what role has the empire and nation they forged had on the world stage? Here, the celebrated historian Norman Stone deftly conducts the reader through the complex story of Turkey's past, from the arrival of the Seljuks in Anatolia in the 11th century to the modern republic of the 21st. He brilliantly dra..
From the prize-winning screenwriter of The Theory of Everything and Darkest Hour, The Two Popes is a fascinating, revealing and gripping tale of two very different men whose destinies converge with each other - they both live in the Vatican - and the wider world.On 28 February 2013, a 600-year-old tradition was shattered: the conservative Pope Benedict XVI made a startling announcement. He would resign. Reeling from the news, the College of Cardinals rushed to Rome to congregate in the Sistine C..
'This book is a smasher. The opening movements are possibly the hottest non-fiction I have ever read. The fall of Robert Mugabe was orchestrated from Johannesburg? Douglas Rogers has to be kidding. But he isn't.' - Rian MalanTwo Weeks in November is the thrilling, surreal, unbelievable and often very funny true story of four would-be enemies - a high ranking politician, an exiled human rights lawyer, a dangerous spy and a low-key white businessman turned political fixer - who team up to help uns..
The most acute, informed, and up-to-date account available today of Ukraine and its people, now in its fourth edition. "An interesting and provocative read, which will, one hopes, contribute to the Western understanding of what Ukraine is and why it matters."-Volodymyr Kulyk, Harvard Ukrainian Studies "A spirited and eminently learned investigation of who Ukranians say that they are, how they came to be so, and how others view them. . . . If you re add only one book of Ukraine, this should proba..
A both controversial and comprehensive historical analysis of how the British Empire worked, from Wolfson Prize-winning author and historian John DarwinThe British Empire shaped the world in countless ways: repopulating continents, carving out nations, imposing its own language, technology and values. For perhaps two centuries its expansion and final collapse were the single largest determinant of historical events, and it remains surrounded by myth, misconception and controversy today.John Darw..
**The New York Times Bestseller** **The book of the landmark documentary, The Vietnam War, by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick**The definitive work on the Vietnam War, the conflict that came to define a generation, told from all sides by those who were there.More than forty years after the Vietnam War ended, its legacy continues to fascinate, horrify and inform us. As the first war to be fought in front of TV cameras and beamed around the world, it has been immortalised on film and on the page, and for..
A new narrative history of the Viking Age, interwoven with exploration of the physical remains and landscapes that the Vikings fashioned and walked: their rune-stones and ship burials, settlements and battlefields.To many, the word ‘Viking’ brings to mind red scenes of rape and pillage, of marauders from beyond the sea rampaging around the British coastline in the last gloomy centuries before the Norman Conquest. It is true that Britain in the Viking Age was a turbulent, violent place. The kings..
For thousands of years, humans have built walls and assaulted them, admired walls and reviled them. Great Walls have appeared on nearly every continent, accompanying the rise of cities, nations, and empires.In Walls, David Frye uncovers a story that is more than just bricks and stone: he reveals the startling link between what we build and how we live, who we are and how we came to be. It is nothing less than the story of civilization.Haunting and brilliant. Author: Tom HollandThese are good sto..
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, parado..
THE REAL GAME OF THRONES... The Wars of the Roses were a prolonged brawl over an inheritance by a deeply dysfunctional extended family. The inheritance in question was the throne of England; the story is one of unbridled ambition and murderous treachery.From the 1450s, when the mentally unstable Henry VI struggled to control the violent feuding of his magnates, through the rise and fall of Richard of York, to the chaos and bloodshed of the 1470s which followed Edward IV's accession and his secre..
A compelling account of Christianity's Jewish beginnings, from one of the world's leading scholars of ancient religion How did a group of charismatic, apocalyptic Jewish missionaries, working to prepare their world for the impending realization of God's promises to Israel, end up inaugurating a movement that would grow into the gentile church? Committed to Jesus's prophecy-"The Kingdom of God is at hand!"-they were, in their own eyes, history's last generation. But in history's eyes, they became..
Winner of the HWA Crown for Best Work of Historical Non-Fiction 2018 Times Book of the YearLess than forty years after the golden age of Elizabeth I, England was at war with itself. At the head of this disintegrating kingdom was Charles I, who would change the face of the monarchy for ever. His reign is one of the most dramatic in history, yet Charles the man remains elusive. To his enemies he was the 'white tyrant of prophecy: to his supporters a murdered innocent. Today many myths still remain..
Why does the West rule? Eminent Stanford polymath Ian Morris answers this provocative question, drawing uniquely on 15,000 years of history and archaeology, and the methods of social science.
In the middle of the eighteenth century, British entrepreneurs unleashed the astounding energies of steam and coal and the world changed forever. Factories, railways and gunboats then propelled the West's rise to power, and computers and nuclear weapons in the twentieth century secured its global suprema..
Why have societies all across the world feared witchcraft? This book delves deeply into its context, beliefs, and origins in Europe's history The witch came to prominence-and often a painful death-in early modern Europe, yet her origins are much more geographically diverse and historically deep. In this landmark book, Ronald Hutton traces witchcraft from the ancient world to the early-modern stake. This book sets the notorious European witch trials in the widest and deepest possible perspective ..
The mass of available data about World War II has never been as large as it is now, yet it has become increasingly complicated to interpret it in a meaningful way. Packed with cleverly designed graphics, charts and diagrams, World War II: Infographics offers a new approach by telling the story of the conflict visually.Encompassing the conflict from its roots to its aftermath, more than 50 themes are treated in great detail, ranging from the rise of the Far Right in pre-war Europe and mass mobili..
INCLUDES NEW MATERIALWRITTEN IN HISTORY celebrates the great letters of world history, creative culture and personal life. Acclaimed historian Simon Sebag Montefiore selects over one hundred letters from ancient times to the twenty-first century: some are noble and inspiring, some despicable and unsettling; some are exquisite works of literature, others brutal, coarse and frankly outrageous; many are erotic, others heartbreaking. The writers vary from Elizabeth I, Rameses the Great and Leonard C..
'Vital reading' STYLIST'...hooting with laughter - what a swashbuckler that Hannah Jewell is' MARINA HYDE'Because 100 Nasty Women is so easy to read and witty, I didn't expect it to be the life changing, important book that I'm discovering it to be' PHILIPPA PERRY'A fantastic addition to your feminist library and historical knowledge.' ANN SHEN, author of Bad Girls Throughout History* * * * * *100 fascinating and brilliantly written stories about history's bravest, baddest but little known 'nast..
Two hundred million years ago the earth consisted of a single vast continent, Pangea, surrounded by a great planetary sea. Continental drift tore apart Pangaea, and for millennia the hemispheres were separate, evolving almost entirely different suites of plants and animals. Columbus's arrival in the Americas brought together these long-separate worlds. Many historians believe that this collision of ecosystems and cultures - the Columbian Exchange - was the most consequential event in human histo..
A brilliant, colourful narrative history of a pivotal year in European history
In 1848, Europe was engulfed in a firestorm of revolution. The streets of cities from Paris to Bucharest and from Berlin to Palermo were barricaded and flooded by armed insurgents proclaiming political liberties and national freedom. The conservative order which had held sway since the fall of Napoleon in 1815 crumbled beneath the revolutionary assault.
This book narrates the breathtaking events which overtook E..
1914-1918, David Stevenson's history of the First World War, has been acclaimed as the definitive one-volume account of the conflictIn the summer of 1914 Europe exploded into a frenzy of mass violence. The war that followed had global repercussions, destroying four empires and costing millions of lives. Even the victorious countries were scarred for a generation, and we still today remain within the conflict's shadow. In this major analysis David Stevenson re-examines the causes, course and impa..
‘Taylor has done us a great service in making the personal stories of what it was actually like to live through the most crucial year of the twentieth century vivid, compelling and salutary.’ - Roland Philipps, author of A Spy Named Orphan: The Enigma of Donald Maclean
In the autumn of 1938, Europe believed in the promise of peace. Still reeling from the ravages of the Great War, its people were desperate to rebuild their lives in a newly safe and stable era. But only a year later, the fateful ..
‘Jeremy Black skilfully sketches social, cultural and political trends’ – Christina Hardyment, Times audiobook of the week
‘A remarkable mixture of cold history, wide culture and personal experience’
Ciro Paoletti, Secretary General of the Italian Commission of Military History
Despite the Roman Empire’s famous 500-year reign over Europe, parts of Africa and the Middle East, Italy does not have the same long national history as states such as France or England. Divided for much of its history,..
Despite being relatively brief, this very readable history covers environmental, political, social, economic, cultural and artistic elements, and is very open to regional variations and to the extent that the history of the peninsula and of its political groupings was far from inevitable. Its tone is accessible, supported by boxes providing supplemental information, and is perfect for travellers to Spain...
This fully updated edition is recognised as the most comprehensive history of the Knights Templar
Much has been written about the Knights Templar in recent years. A leading specialist in the history of this legendary medieval order now writes a full account of the Knights of the Order of the Temple of Solomon, to give them their full title, bringing the latest findings to a general audience. Putting many of the myths finally to rest, Nicholson recounts a new history of these storm troopers of..
A wonderfully concise and readable, yet comprehensive, history of the Mediterranean Sea, the perfect companion for any visitor -- or indeed, anyone compelled to stay at home.
'The grand object of travelling is to see the shores of the Mediterranean.'
Samuel Johnson, 1776
The Mediterranean has always been a leading stage for world history; it is also visited each year by tens of millions of tourists, both local and international. Jeremy Black provides an account in which the experience of trave..
The key to understanding the Arab world today is unlocking its past. In this authoritative account, John McHugo takes the reader through the political, social and intellectual history of the Arabs from the Roman Empire right up to the present day. Going beyond the headlines, he describes in vivid detail a series of key turning points in Arab history - from the mission of the Prophet Muhammad and the expansion of Islam to the region's interaction with Western ideas and the rise of Islamism.
Winner of the Nayef Al-Rodhan Prize for Global Cultural Understanding 2019Shortlisted for the Cundill History Prize and the Pius Adesanmi Memorial Award'Astonishing, staggering' Ben Okri, Daily TelegraphA groundbreaking new history that will transform our view of West AfricaBy the time of the 'Scramble for Africa' in the late nineteenth century, Africa had already been globally connected for many centuries. Its gold had fuelled the economies of Europe and Islamic world since around 1000, and its..
Continues Neil's landmark exploration of how our land and its people came to be, which began with the acclaimed A HISTORY OF SCOTLAND.
Who were the first Britons, and what sort of world did they occupy? In A HISTORY OF ANCIENT BRITAIN Neil Oliver turns a spotlight on the very beginnings of the story of Britain; on the first people to occupy these islands and their battle for survival. There has been human habitation in Britain, regularly interrupted by Ice Ages, for the best part of a million..
The extraordinary history of Ancient Egyptian civilization - from its earliest origins to the creation of its greatest monument - from specialist John Romer. This exceptional book draws on a lifetime of research and thought to recreate the previously untold story of how a civilization which began with handfuls of semi-itinerant fishermen settled, spread and created a rich, vivid, strange civilization that had its first culmination in the pharaoh Khufu building the Great Pyramid. The book immerse..
Christianity, one of the world's great religions, has had an incalculable impact on human history. This book, now the most comprehensive and up to date single volume work in English, describes not only the main ideas and personalities of Christian history, its organisation and spirituality, but how it has changed politics, sex, and human society.
Diarmaid MacCulloch ranges from Palestine in the first century to India in the third, from Damascus to China in the seventh century and from San Fra..
Khadija was the first believer, to whom the Prophet Muhammad often turned for advice. At a time when strongmen quickly seized power from any female Muslim ruler, Arwa of Yemen reigned alone for five decades. In nineteenth-century Russia, Mukhlisa Bubi championed the rights of women and girls, and became the first Muslim woman judge in modern history. After the Gestapo took down a Resistance network in Paris, British spy Noor Inayat Khan found herself the only undercover radio operator left in th..
A History of Modern Britain by Andrew Marr confronts head-on the victory of shopping over politics. It tells the story of how the great political visions of New Jerusalem or a second Elizabethan Age, rival idealisms, came to be defeated by a culture of consumerism, celebrity and self-gratification. In each decade, political leaders think they know what they are doing, but find themselves confounded. Every time, the British people turn out to be stroppier and harder to herd than predicted.
WINNER OF THE 2019 DUFF COOPER PRIZE
A SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER
'With emotional and psychological insight, Barton unlocks this sleeping giant of our culture. In the process, he has produced a masterpiece.' Sunday Times
The Bible is the central book of Western culture. For the two faiths which hold it sacred, it is the bedrock of their religion, a singular authority on what to believe and how to live. For non-believers too, it has a commanding status: it is one of the great works of world litera..
In 1916, in the middle of the First World War, two men secretly agreed to divide the Middle East between them. Sir Mark Sykes was a visionary politician; François Georges-Picot a diplomat with a grudge. The deal they struck, which was designed to relieve tensions that threatened to engulf the Entente Cordiale, drew a line in the sand from the Mediterranean to the Persian frontier. Territory north of that stark line would go to France; land south of it, to Britain. Against the odds their pact sur..
With a language disappearing every two weeks and neologisms springing up almost daily, an understanding of the origins and currency of language has never seemed more relevant. In this charming volume, a narrative history written explicitly for a young audience, expert linguist David Crystal proves why the story of language deserves retelling.From the first words of an infant to the peculiar modern dialect of text messaging, A Little Book of Language ranges widely, revealing language's myriad int..
A spirited volume on the great adventures of science throughout history, for curious readers of all ages Science is fantastic. It tells us about the infinite reaches of space, the tiniest living organism, the human body, the history of Earth. People have always been doing science because they have always wanted to make sense of the world and harness its power. From ancient Greek philosophers through Einstein and Watson and Crick to the computer-assisted scientists of today, men and women have wo..
This stimulating history of early Christianity revisits the extraordinary birth of a world religion and gives a new slant on a familiar story The relevance of Christianity is as hotly contested today as it has ever been. A New History of Early Christianity shows how our current debates are rooted in the many controversies surrounding the birth of the religion and the earliest attempts to resolve them. Charles Freeman's meticulous historical account of Christianity from its birth in Judaea in the..
A Short History of Byzantium is renowned historian, and author of A History of Venice, John Julius Norwich's classic history of Byzantium. Constantine the Great moved the seat of Roman power to Constantinople in AD 330 and for eleven brutal, bloody centuries, the Byzantine Empire became a beacon of grand magnificence and depraved decadence . . .Here there are the centuries dominated by ferocious arguments over the nature of Christ and his Church. By knowledge, where scholars and scribes preserve..
From the invaders of the dark ages to the aftermath of the coalition, one of Britain's most respected journalists, Simon Jenkins, weaves together a strong narrative with all the most important and interesting dates in a book that characteristically is as stylish as it is authoritative.
A Short History of England sheds light on all the key individuals and events, bringing them together in an enlightening and engaging account of the country's birth, rise to global prominence and then partial ec..
As long as we have been human, we have been mythmakers. In A Short History of Myth, Karen Armstrong holds up the mirror of mythology to show us the history of ourselves, and embarks on a journey that begins at a Neanderthal graveside and ends buried in the heart of the modern novel.
Surprising, powerful and profound, A Short History of Myth examines the world's most ancient art form - the making and telling of stories - and why we still need it.
"Elegantly argued and consistently thought..
'Here lies our leader all cut down, the valiant man in the dust.' The elegiac words of the Battle of Maldon, an epic poem written to celebrate the bravery of an English army defeated by Viking raiders in 991, emerge from a diverse literature - including Beowulf and Bede's Ecclesiastical History - produced by the people known as the Anglo-Saxons: Germanic tribes who migrated to Britain from Lower Saxony and Denmark in the early fifth century CE. The era once known as the 'Dark Ages' was marked by..
The extraordinary creative energy of Renaissance Italy lies at the root of modern Western culture. In her elegant new introduction, Virginia Cox offers a fresh vision of this iconic moment in European cultural history, when between the fourteenth and sixteenth centuries Italy led the world in painting, building, science and literature. Her book explores key artistic, literary and intellectual developments, but also histories of food and fashion, map-making, exploration and anatomy. Alongside tow..
The Phoenicians present a tantalizing face to the ancient historian. Latin sources suggest they once had an extensive literature of history, law, philosophy and religion; but all now is lost. Offering new insights based on recent archaeological discoveries in their heartland of modern-day Lebanon, Mark Woolmer presents a fresh appraisal of this fascinating, yet elusive, Semitic people. Discussing material culture, language and alphabet, religion (including sacred prostitution of women and boys t..
When, in October 1517, Martin Luther pinned his Ninety-Five Theses to the door of All Saints' Church in Wittenberg he shattered the foundations of western Christendom. The Reformation of doctrine and practice that followed Luther's seismic action, and protest against the sale of indulgences, fragmented the Church and overturned previously accepted certainties and priorities. But it did more, challenging the relationship between spiritual and secular authority, perceptions of the supernatural, th..
In 1917 revolutionary fervour swept through Russia, ending centuries of imperial rule and instigating political and social changes that would lead to the formation of the Soviet Union. Arising out of proletariat discontent with the Tsarist autocracy and Lenin's proclaimed version of a Marxist ideology, the revolutionary period saw a complete overhaul of Russian politics and society and led directly to the ensuing civil war. The Soviet Union eventually became the world's first communist state and..
"Masterful...An indispensable warning for our own time." -Samuel Moyn "Magisterial...Covers this dark history with insight and skill...A major intervention into our understanding of 20th-century Europe and the lessons we ought to take away from its history." -The Nation For much of the last century, Europe was haunted by a threat of its own imagining: Judeo-Bolshevism. The belief that Communism was a Jewish plot to destroy the nations of Europe took hold during the Russian Revolution and quickly..
The medieval era is often associated with dynastic struggles, gruesome wars and the formidable influence of the Church. But what about the everyday experience of the royal subjects and common people? Here, alongside the coronations, diplomatic dealings and key battles, can be found the fabric of medieval life as it was really lived, in its folk songs, recipes and local gossip. With a diverse range of entries - one for each day of the year - historian Toni Mount provides an almanac for lovers of ..
The city of Acre, powerfully fortified and richly provisioned, was the last crusader stronghold. When it fell in 1291, two hundred years of Christian crusading in the Holy Land came to a bloody end. With his customary narrative brilliance and immediacy, Roger Crowley chronicles the tumultuous and violent attack on Acre, the heaviest bombardment before the age of gunpowder, which left this once great Mediterranean city a crumbling ruin. The 'Accursed Tower' was the focal point of this siege. As t..
Tobias Buck arrived in Madrid in December 2012, in time to celebrate the bleakest Christmas the city had seen in a generation. Capital and country were reeling from a series of economic shocks that had brought Spain to the brink of ruin. The housing boom had dramatically turned to bust, a large chunk of the nation's banking system was in state hands, businesses were closing across the country, debt was spiralling out of control and unemployment levels had reached a record high.
AFTER THE FALL p..
Against Everything is a thought-provoking study and essential guide to the vicissitudes of everyday life under twenty-first-century capitalism. Mark Greif is one of the most exciting writers of his generation. In this invigorating collection, he challenges us to rethink the ordinary world and take life seriously - in short, to stay honest in dishonest times. In a series of coruscating set pieces he asks why we put ourselves through the pains of exercise, what our concerns about diet or sex does ..
The kind of vision the world needs right now...Pankaj Mishra shouldn't stop thinking' Christopher de Bellaigue, Financial Times
'This is the most astonishing, convincing, and disturbing book I've read in years' Joe Sacco
'Urgent, profound and extraordinarily timely' John Banville
How can we explain the origins of the great wave of paranoid hatreds that seem inescapable in our close-knit world - from American 'shooters' and ISIS to Trump, from a rise in vengeful nationalism across t..