Early Modern History Books: C1450 - C1700

  • MPSH
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    This visual exploration of the time in which William Shakespeare lived is filled with jaw-dropping facts and observations. It considers what The Bard was like as a man and covers the cultural changes that took place during his lifetime - 1564-1616.

    From the time of the Tudors to Elizabeth I's reign and the first of the Stuart kings, this book reflects the political changes that were reflected in his works and explains how he worked through maps and illustrations to look at how powerful people viewed their positions in the world.

    Author Jeremy Black also explores the locations of Shakespeare's plays and examines the reasons why he chose to set them in these locations.
  • GLBE
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    A compelling portrait of both William Shakespeare and the history of London during his lifetime, this book reveals just how much the Bard's life was affected by the great city.

    From triumphs including the opening of the Globe playhouse in 1599 to the tragic lives of Shakespeare's contemporaries and the ever-present threat of riots, rebellions and even the plague, this book covers a fascinating era in London's history.

    An acclaimed historian, Catharine Arnold also reveals how acting came of age during Shakespeare's lifetime. Using his own plays and contemporary sources, this is a unique and revealing insight into the development of both London and English theatre.
  • ALVDK
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    For most of the seventeenth century the Netherlands constituted the most important maritime power in the world, with by far the largest merchant fleet and a dominance in seaborne trade that other countries feared and envied. Born out of an 80-year struggle against Spain for independence, the Dutch republic relied on naval power to guarantee its freedom, promote its trade and defend its overseas colonies. The Dutch navy was crucial to its survival and success, yet the ships that made up its fleets are among the least studied of any in the age of sail. The reasons for this include a decentralised administration of five separate admiralties, often producing ships of the same name at the same time, the widespread co-opting of merchantmen into naval fleets, and competing systems of measuring ships, all of which leads to confusion and error. The most significant contribution of this book is to produce the first definitive listing of all Dutch fighting ships - whether purpose-built, purchased, hired or captured - from the heyday of the United Provinces, complete with technical details and summaries of their careers. It also provides an appreciation of the administrative, economic and technical background, and outlines the many campaigns fought by one of the most successful navies in history. With its unique depth of information, this is a work of the utmost importance to every naval historian and general reader interested in the navies of the sailing era.
  • AMILX
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    Athanasius Kircher (1602-80) was acknowledged to be the most learned man of his age. By profession a Jesuit priest, he made himself an authority on every subject under (and above) the sun and published the results of his researches in over thirty lavishly illustrated volumes in Latin. His museum in Rome was famous and visited by everybody in the world of learning. Inevitably, his work has been superseded in most areas of study, but he remains a key figure in the history of ideas and in recent years there has been a revival of interest, in which Joscelyn Godwin has played a leading role. But while every other aspect of his thought has been studied, the fascinating engravings with which he illustrated his ideas have been largely ignored. This book fills that gap. It is divided into 15 chapters grouped by the engravings subject; these illustrations reveal his singular mind and the way he was drawn to mysticism and magic.
  • AYJQR
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    What was it like to live as a royal Tudor? Why were their residences built as they were and what went on inside their walls? Who slept where and with who? Who chose the furnishings? And what were their passions? The Tudors ruled through the day, throughout the night, in the bath, in bed and in the saddle. Their palaces were genuine power houses - the nerve-centre of military operations, the boardroom for all executive decisions and the core of international politics. Houses of Power is the result of Simon Thurley's thirty years of research, picking through architectural digs, and examining financial accounts, original plans and drawings to reconstruct the great Tudor houses and understand how these monarchs shaped their lives. Far more than simply an architectural history - a study of private life as well as politics, diplomacy and court - it gives an entirely new and remarkable insight into the Tudor world.
  • AQHXR
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    This book, published to coincide with a major exhibition at the National Maritime Museum to mark the 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London, centres on Samuel Pepys (1633-1703), the famous diarist and the greatest administrator of the Stuart Age. Not only a passionate diarist, Pepys was also a prolific correspondent who lived through and wrote about all the key events and leading individuals of his time: the Restoration of Charles II, the Great Plague, the Fire of London, the raid of the Dutch fleet in the river Medway, the King's mistresses. Through a series of essays by leading experts, this publication reveals the rich diversity of his career and interests - from the theatre, to advances in science and development of the Royal Navy. His life was so utterly entwined with the extraordinary period he lived through - he was even a witness to the beheading of Charles I - that the book becomes a portrait of the age. Each chapter has two or three essays followed by discussion of specific objects and paintings.
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    Craig Clunas
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    Ming : 50 Years That Changed China
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    "Cavalier Capital", the first detailed account of Oxford's role as "Royalist capital" to appear for almost three-quarters of a century, examines all aspects of Oxford's experience in the English Civil War. As well as the effects on the town and university, special emphasis is placed on the various aspects of the Royalist occupation, including its role as a major manufacturing centre of munitions and armoury. The King's court and the operation of Royalist government and administration are examined, as are the organisation and life of the soldiers of the garrison. Leading personalities are described, as well as the military campaigns which were focused on Oxford during the war. The final siege leading to the fall of Oxford is also described. The book makes full use of both contemporary and modern accounts, and research, and is copiously illustrated with contemporary and modern illustrations.
  • AFFLD
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    Akbar : The Great Emperor of India
  • AYZRW
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    Li Zhi's iconoclastic interpretations of history, religion, literature, and social relations have fascinated Chinese intellectuals for centuries. His approach synthesized Confucian, Buddhist, and Daoist ethics and incorporated the Neo-Confucian idealism of such thinkers as Wang Yangming (1472-1529). The result was a series of heretical writings that caught fire among Li Zhi's contemporaries, despite an imperial ban on their publication, and intrigued Chinese audiences long after his death. Translated for the first time into English, Li Zhi's bold challenge to established doctrines will captivate anyone curious about the origins of such subtly transgressive works as the sixteenth-century play The Peony Pavilion or the eighteenth-century novel Dream of the Red Chamber. In A Book to Burn and a Book to Keep (Hidden), Li Zhi confronts accepted ideas about gender, questions the true identity of history's heroes and villains, and offers his own readings of Confucius, Laozi, and the Buddha. Fond of vivid sentiment and sharp expression, Li Zhi made no distinction between high and low literary genres in his literary analysis. He refused to support sanctioned ideas about morality and wrote stinging social critiques. Li Zhi praised scholars who risked everything to expose extortion and misrule. In this sophisticated translation, English-speaking readers encounter the best of this heterodox intellectual's vital contribution to Chinese thought and culture.
  • ATHTH
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    Henry Tudor has been called the most unlikely king of England. Yet his rise from obscurity was foretold by the bards, and the familial bloodbath of the Wars of the Roses by 1485 left Henry as the sole adult Lancastrian claimant to the Crown. The hunchback usurper Richard III desperately wanted him dead, and in his exile Henry was left with no choice. He either invaded England or faced being traded to Richard to meet certain death. Henry's father, Edmund, Earl of Richmond, was the son of a queen of England, sister to the king of France, and of an obscure Welsh court servant, who had been born in secrecy away from court. Edmund's death at the beginning of the Wars of the Roses, left Henry to grow up in almost constant danger, imprisonment and exile. In 1485, his 'ragtag' invading army at Bosworth faced overwhelming odds, but succeeded. Henry went on to become England's wisest and greatest king, but it would be his son - Henry VIII - and granddaughter - Elizabeth I - who would take all the credit.
  • ARGLP
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    The story of The Making of India begins in the seventeenth century, when a small seafaring island, one tenth the size of the Indian subcontinent, despatched sailing ships over 11,000 miles on a five-month trading journey in search of new opportunities. In the end they helped build a new nation. The sheer audacity and scale of such an endeavour, the courage and enterprise, have no parallel in world history. This book is the first to assess in a single volume almost all aspects of Britain's remarkable contribution in providing India with its lasting institutional and physical infrastructure, which continues to underpin the world's largest democracy in the twenty-first century.
  • AVHRR
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    The turbulent Tudor age never fails to capture the imagination. But what was it actually like to be a woman during this period? This was a time when death in infancy or during childbirth was rife; when marriage was usually a legal contract, not a matter for love, and the education of women was minimal at best. Yet the Tudor century was also dominated by powerful and characterful women in a way that no era had been before. Elizabeth Norton explores the seven ages of the Tudor woman, from childhood to old age, through the diverging examples of women such as Elizabeth Tudor, Henry VIII's sister who died in infancy; Cecily Burbage, Elizabeth's wet nurse; Mary Howard, widowed but influential at court; Elizabeth Boleyn, mother of a controversial queen; and Elizabeth Barton, a peasant girl who would be lauded as a prophetess. Their stories are interwoven with studies of topics ranging from Tudor toys to contraception to witchcraft, painting a portrait of the lives of queens and serving maids, nuns and harlots, widows and chaperones.
  • AYEPS
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    'Who hopes still constantly with patience shall obtain victory in their claim' Sometime heir to the English throne, courtier in danger of losing her head, spy-mistress and would-be architect of a united Catholic Britain: Lady Margaret Douglas is the Tudor whose life demands a wider telling. As niece to Henry VIII and half-sister to James V of Scotland, the beautiful and Catholic Margaret held a unique and precarious position in the English court. Throughout her life, she was to navigate treacherous waters: survival necessitated it. Yet Margaret was no passive pawn or bit-part player. As the Protestant Reformations unfolded across the British Isles and the Tudor monarchs struggled to produce heirs, she had ambitions of her own. She wanted to see her family ruling a united, Catholic Britain. When her niece Mary, Queen of Scots was left a widow, Margaret saw her chance. Through a thoroughly Machiavellian combination of timing, networking and family connections, she set in motion a chain of shattering events that would one day see her descendants succeed to the crowns of England, Ireland and Scotland. Morgan Ring has revived the story of Lady Margaret Douglas to vivid and captivating effect. From a richly detailed backdrop of political and religious turbulence Margaret emerges, full of resilience, grace and intelligence. Drawing on previously unexamined archival sources, So High a Blood presents a fascinating and authoritative portrait of a woman with the greatest of ambitions for her family, her faith and her countries.
  • AUXYS
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    James VI & I, the namesake of the King James Version of the Bible, had a series of notorious male favourites. No one denies that these relationships were amorous, but were they sexual? Michael B. Young merges political history with recent scholarship in the history of sexuality to answer that question. More broadly, he shows that James's favourites had a negative impact within the royal family, at court, in Parliament, and in the nation at large. Contemporaries raised the spectre of a sodomitical court and an effeminized nation; some urged James to engage in a more virile foreign policy by embarking on war. Queen Anne encouraged a martial spirit and moulded her oldest son to be more manly than his father. Repercussions continued after James's death, detracting from the majesty of the monarchy and contributing to the outbreak of the Civil War. Persons acquainted with the history of sexuality will find surprising premonitions here of modern homosexuality and homophobia. General readers will find a world of political intrigue coloured by sodomy, pederasty, and gender instability. For readers new to the subject, the book begins with a helpful overview of King James's life.
  • AYLMZ
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    The causes of the three 'English' Civil Wars (1642 to 1645, 1648, and 1651) are complex and controversial - clashes of conviction, belief, and personality, and a struggle between opposing social groups and economic interests. But, whatever the focus of scholarship, many answers can be sought at the local level, among county communities that were far more outward-looking than once suggested. That is why Ian Beckett's in-depth study of Buckinghamshire, one of the pivotal counties during this turbulent period in British history, is of such value. None of the best-known battles or sieges took place in Buckinghamshire, but there was destructive combat in the county on a smaller scale because its location placed it on the front line between the opposing forces - between the royalist headquarters at Oxford and the parliamentarian stronghold of London. As Ian Beckett shows, the impact of war on Bucks was considerable. His analysis gives us an insight into the experience of local communities and the county as a whole - and it reveals much about the experience of the conflict across the country.
  • BMPAT
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    Justin McCarthy (later Lord Mountcashel) was born into a notable family of Irish Jacobites, loyal to the exiled Stuarts, and grew up in France. Their Irish land was regained after the Restoration of Charles II but Justin, as the youngest surviving son, sought a career in the French army (as both his father and oldest brother had done). In 1673 he joined an Irish regiment in French service. He served under the legendary French marshals Turenne and Conde against the Dutch and their Imperial allies and by 1676 was commanding the regiment. He became part of the personal circle of the Catholic Duke of York, the future James II and, after the latter s accession in 1685, Justin helped to transform the Irish army into a Catholic one. When James II was deposed in the Glorious Revolution of 1688 and fled via France to Ireland, Justin was one of the most experienced commanders resisting William s invasion. Unfortunately McCarthy was defeated at the Battle of Newtownbutler (1689), wounded and captured. He escaped and again went into exile in France, where he was the first commander of the famous Irish Brigade until his death in 1694.
  • BMJTD
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    Francis I was inconstant, amorous, hot-headed and flawed. Yet he was also arguably the most significant king that France ever had. This is his story. A contemporary of Henry VIII of England, Francis saw himself as the first Renaissance king, a man who was the exemplar of courtly and civilised behaviour throughout Europe. A courageous and heroic warrior, he was also a keen aesthete, an accomplished diplomat and an energetic ruler who turned his country into a force to be reckoned with. Yet he was also capricious, vain and arrogant, taking hugely unnecessary risks, at least one of which nearly resulted in the end of his kingdom. His great feud with his nemesis Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor, defined European diplomacy and sovereignty, but his notorious alliance with the great Ottoman ruler Suleiman the Magnificent threatened to destroy everything. With access to never-before-seen private archives, Leonie Frieda's comprehensive and sympathetic account explores the life of the most human of all Renaissance monarchs - and the most enigmatic.
  • AVLHZ
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    Catherine of Aragon continues to fascinate readers 500 years after she became Henry VIII's first queen. Her life was one of passion and determination, of suffering and hope, but ultimately it is a tragic love story, as circumstances conspired against her. Having lost her first husband, Henry's elder brother Prince Arthur, she endured years of ill health and penury, to make a dazzling second match in Henry VIII. There is no doubt that she was Henry's true love, compatible with him in every respect and, for years, she presided over a majestic court as the personification of his ideal woman. However, Catherine's body failed her in an age when fertility meant life or death. When it became clear that she could no longer bear children, the king's attention turned elsewhere, and his once chivalric devotion became resentment. Catherine's final years were spent in lonely isolation but she never gave up her vision: she was devoted to her faith, her husband and to England, to the extent that she was prepared to be martyred for them. One of the most remarkable women of the Tudor era, Catherine's legendary focus may have contributed to the dissolution of the way of life she typified.
  • AYSEY
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    Hey For Old Robin! was the cry of the Earl of Essex's army during the First Civil War as, contrary to modern popular belief, Robert Devereux was well-liked by the men he led. This book fills a gap in the literature of the Civil Wars, taking up the challenge to write a new history of Essex and his Army and examining the often-repeated view that he was a cautious dullard with little military skill. The two authors Christopher Scott and Alan Turton, both well known published military historians, present a more balanced view of Parliament's first Lord General, bringing him out of the shadow of Cromwell. In doing so they are not afraid to bite the bullet of period and modern criticism of Essex as a strategist and tactician, as well as his reported failings as a man. Based on primary research, including site visits to scenes of his triumphs and disasters, they trace the story of the early campaigns, beginning with Edgehill, then Brentford and Turnham Green, the relief of Gloucester and the retreat to Newbury, the Siege of Reading, the Thames Valley Campaign, the disaster of Lostwithiel and the rebuilding of the army for Second Newbury. Whilst they leave the detailed examination of the various battles fought by Essex and his men to more specialist books, they tell the story of each of the campaigns and share their thoughts on Essex's problems and his decisions and actions. They also examine how the armies were constituted, officered, recruited and maintained, as well as its reductions and transfers. In separate chapters they describe Essex's Foot, the Horse, the Dragoons, The Artillery and The Train, dealing with what the army wore, what it was paid, what weapons it used, the flags it carried and how it was organised, operated and fought. All this is set within a sound understanding and appreciation of the background of the seventeenth century and Essex's place in the socio-political zeitgeist as well as period military thinking and practice. Illustrated with a wealth of seldom-seen contemporary engravings of Essex's officers and friends and newly commissioned maps, as well as uniform and cornets & colours plates, this work is of great use to anyone with an interest in our civil wars including academics, local historians, re-enactors and wargamers.
  • AYSYT
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    The Bavarian Army has been overshadowed by those of Gustavus Adolphus' and Wallenstein's Armies, but it was one of only a few armies to have fought throughout the Thirty Years War, first as part of the Catholic League and then an independent army after the Peace of Prague. Among the generals of the Bavarian Army were Count Johan von Tilly and Gottfried von Pappenheim, who are two of the most famous generals of the war. This book covers not only the Bavarian Army's organisation, but also has chapters on recruitment, officers, clothing, weaponry, pay and rations of a soldier during the Thirty Years War. As well as life and death in the army, this book also looks at the women who accompanied it. The chapter on 'civilians and soldiers' looks at the impact of the war on the civilian population, their reaction to it and the infamous sack of Magdeburg which sent shockwaves across Europe. This chapter also looks at the impact on Bavaria by having Swedish, Spanish and Imperialist troops quartered upon it and how this affected the country's war effort. In addition there are chapters on regimental colours and a detailed look into the tactics of the time, including those of Spain, Sweden and the Dutch. As well as using archival and archaeological evidence to throw new light on the subject the author has used several memoirs written by those who served in the army during the war, including Peter Hagendorf who served in Pappenheim 's Regiment of Foot from 1627 until the regiment was disbanded after the war. Hagendorf's vivid account is unique because not only is it a full account of the life of a common soldier during the war, but also records the human side of campaign, including the death of his two wives and all but two of his children. This book is essential reading to anyone interested in the wars of the early seventeenth century, not just the Thirty Years War.
  • BGXJN
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    The theme of the 2016 Conference was 'Professionalism'. War quickens the pace of military and technological change, and the increasing pace and scope of European warfare during the 16th and 17th centuries prepared the ground for the professional military forces we are familiar with today. The speakers at Helion& Company's second annual English Civil War Conference examined a broad range of subjects relating to the increasing professionalisation of military bodies and their personnel throughout the 17th century. Using the Royalist colonel Sir George Lisle as a case study, Serena Jones addresses the concept of a 'professional officer' - exploring whether such a figure existed in the mid-17th century and whether the term itself can be legitimately applied to Lisle and his contemporaries. Stephen Ede-Borrett uses soldiers' personal information found in late-17th century 'Deserters' Notices' in The London Gazette to offer insights into the composition of England's early standing army. Professor Malcolm Wanklyn looks towards the Restoration and examines how the internal dynamics of the New Model Army during the Commonwealth period may have contributed to its failure to prevent the return of the monarchy in 1660. John Barratt focuses on the Royalist 'Northern Horse' during the first English Civil War and assesses how the personal qualities and characteristics of its officers and men contributed to its effectiveness in the field. Andrew Robertshaw examines how the pre-Civil War military experience of the officers of Marmaduke Rawdon's 'London Regiment' contributed to its performance at Basing House and Faringdon Garrison. Dr Jonathan Worton uses the Battle of Montgomery in 1644 to consider the structures and effectiveness of contemporary High Command on both sides. Peter Leadbetter looks back to the early part of the century to examine the men who comprised the pre-Civil War county-trained bands and if (or how) they later participated in the Civil Wars. Finally, Simon Marsh examines the career of James Wemyss and demonstrates how his experiments in artillery technology extended far further than creating the leather guns for which he is best known.
  • BQJGX
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    The thrilling story of the English merchant adventurers who changed the world. In the mid-sixteenth century, England was a small and relatively insignificant kingdom on the periphery of Europe, and it had begun to face a daunting array of social, commercial and political problems. Struggling with a single export - woollen cloth - a group of merchants formed arguably the world's first joint-stock company and set out to seek new markets and trading partners. It was a venture that relied on the very latest scientific innovations and required an extraordinary appetite for risk. At first they headed east, and dreamed of Cathay, with its silks and exotic luxuries. Eventually, they turned west, and so began a new chapter in history. Based on archival research and a bold interpretation of the historical record, New World, Inc. draws a portrait of life in London, on the Atlantic and across the New World, and reveals how profit-hungry business people transformed England into a world power.
  • BSBFJ
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    Eighteenth-century Scotland is famed for generating many of the enlightened ideas which helped to shape the modern world. But there was in the same period another side to the history of the nation. Many of Scotland's people were subjected to coercive and sometimes violent change: traditional and customary relationships were overturned and replaced by the 'rational' exploitation of land use. The Scottish Clearances is a superb and highly original account of this sometimes terrible process, which changed the Lowland countryside forever, as it also did, more infamously, the old society of the Highlands. Based on an extensive use of original sources, this pioneering book is the first to chart this tumultuous saga in one volume, with due attention to evictions and loss of land in both north and south of the Highland line. In the process, old myths are exploded and familiar assumptions undermined. With many fascinating details and the sense of an epic human story, The Scottish Clearances is an evocative memorial to all whose lives were irreparably changed in the interests of economic efficiency. The result created the landscape of Scotland as we know it today, but that came at a price. This is a story of forced clearance, of the destruction of entire communities and of large-scale emigration. Some winners were able to adapt and exploit the new opportunities, but there were also others who lost everything.