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Civil War: The History of England Volume III Hardcover – Unabridged, 25 Sep 2014

4.6 out of 5 stars 96 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan; Main Market Ed. edition (25 Sept. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 023070641X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0230706415
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 4.3 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 96 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 135,511 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Book Description

The third volume of Peter Ackroyd's magisterial six-part History of England, taking readers from the accession of the first Stuart king, James I, to the overthrow of his grandson, James II

From the Inside Flap

In Civil War, Peter Ackroyd continues his dazzling retelling of England's history, beginning with the progress south of the Scottish king, James VI, who on the death of Elizabeth I became the first Stuart king of England, and ending with the deposition and flight into exile of his grandson, James II. The Stuart dynasty brought together the two nations of England and Scotland into one realm, albeit a realm still marked by political divisions that echo to this day. More importantly, perhaps, the Stuart era was scarred by the cruel depredations of civil war, and the killing of a king.

Ackroyd paints a vivid portrait of James I and his heirs. Shrewd and opinionated, the new king was eloquent on matters as diverse as theology, witchcraft and the abuses of tobacco, but his attitude to the English parliament sowed the seeds of the division that would split the country in the reign of his hapless son, Charles I. Ackroyd offers an equally brilliant portrayal - warts and all - of Charles's nemesis Oliver Cromwell, Parliament's great military leader and England's only dictator, who began his career as a political liberator but ended it as much of a despot as 'that man of blood', the king he executed.

England's turbulent seventeenth century is vividly laid out before us, but so too is the cultural and social life of the period, notable for its extraordinarily rich literature, including Shakespeare's late masterpieces, Jacobean tragedy, the poetry of John Donne and Milton and Thomas Hobbes' great philosophical treatise, Leviathan. Civil War also gives us a very real sense of ordinary English men and women, living their lives against a backdrop of constant disruption and uncertainty.

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