A History of the English-Speaking Peoples, Volume 3: The Age of Revolution Paperback – 14 Nov 2002
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Volume III of Sir Winston Churchill's classic History of the English-Speaking Peoples; with an introduction by Andrew Roberts, author of Eminent Churchillians
About the Author
Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965) was prime minister of Great Britain during World War II. Throughout his long and distinguished political career his writing was prolific.
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Top Customer Reviews
HESP reveals Churchill's staggeringly profound understanding of the great currents of history.
The Age of Revolution was published in 1957 and finally in 1958 came The Great Democracies. All four were best-sellers. That they have remained in print for almost half a century is enduring witness to their popularity.
I agree with Sir Arthur Byrant when he said that Churchill's narrative is amongst the most comprehensive and discerning ever written of the English-speaking nations. It is balanced, accurate and reliable.
I regard this book and the other three in the set a very worthwhile purchase.
Lee's abridgment, by the way, also strips out all maps, illustrations and the American colonial impact on British history, which Churchill probably added more with an eye to the potential US sales than anything else. Overall, the complete text is reduced by about 40%.
HESP was a tremendous work of effort. However, I don't sense that Churchill communicates our complex history in a particularly informative, enlightening or exciting way. This is a great pity because such works of his as `My Early Life' and `Thoughts and Adventures' are cracking reads - though of a completely different genre. Similarly, T E Lawrence, one of Churchill's near-contempories, uses very rich, even obscure English in Seven Pillars of Wisdom, yet his narrative is masterly in its clarity and illustration, and whilst it may be a demanding read, it's not heavy going.
So why does HESP stumble? Perhaps because to a considerable extent Churchill needed to rely on a wide group of academic historians to form foundations of the work and, despite his most careful editing and control, and with an eye on publishing deadlines, his inimitable style was somewhat dimmed. Clearly it is no primer and is perhaps of interest to those already well versed in English history and looking for another perspective. If you want to revisit your school-days' history, HESP is probably not the place to start. (02/2013)
In this attempt Churchill succeeds, and these books are a great and very readable story. However, they are coloured by Churchill's own view of the world, his own prejudices and his own ego.
This second volume covers the period from 1689 to 1815. This another eventful period in British history, with the various arguments of the succession following the glorious revolution, and wars with France culminating in the Napoleonic wars. Churchill has done a great job of distilling it down to a few key episodes, and laying out the sequence of events in a clear fashion. My only criticism is the way he dwells upon his ancestor the Duke of Marlborough, the lengthy sections of the book regarding him are a bit distracting from the main story. The triumph of the book is the very readable prose, as he intended it is no scholarly, yet boring analysis, but a highly entertaining romp through the events that made this great nation.
This (and the other three volumes) is highly recommended for those with a casual interest in history, and find the usual text books far too dull. Also, anyone who enjoys a good tale will find much to enjoy here. For an authoritative history text I would advise you to look elsewhere.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Masterful prose, Churchill provides analysis of the bigger picture of politics through the detail of the chronologies, monarchs, battles and events that we know so well.Published 4 months ago by Chris P
As I already had Vols.1,2 and 3 in this edition I am very glad to have at last completed the set with this Vol.4.
Thank you. John Mallinson
Audio book. Beautifully written and then produced in audio. The orator is superb - and what a pleasure to hear every word and name properly pronounced. Read morePublished 12 months ago by SPRish
OK? I am a Chuchill fan anyway, but this is a very readable set and although not anywhere near as detailed as the Oxford 16 volume set, which is very heavy going but good as a... Read morePublished 17 months ago by John