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The Thirty Years War (Bedford History) Hardcover – 1 Dec 1938
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"A book which is, and will long remain, the standard authority on the subject...I doubt if there is anything in any European language which covers the ground so comprehensively and so satisfactorily."
"[Wedgwood] tells a story supremely well....she is by far the best narrative historian writing in the English language. She is a superb stylist, her eye for colorful detail is unerring, and she has an unrivaled capacity for catching the signs and sounds and smells of the past."
-- Lawrence Stone
"God, I love this book. It's the history of an utterly depressing war with no real nobility that ultimately descends into cannibalism. Right up my alley." --Ta-Nehisi Coates, "My 10 Favorite Books," T: New York Times Style Magazine
"The greatest narrative historian of the twentieth century, Wedgwood told complex stories in precise, human terms. The formal perfection and clarity of her prose often recall the work of one of her heroes, Edward Gibbon. Yet she contemplated and described in rapid, vivid detail scenes of past and present horror that would have robbed even the unflappable historian of the Roman Empire of his marmoreal calm. The Thirty Years War shows her at her epic best."
-- From the introduction by Anthony Grafton
"This is a masterful narrative, written by one of the great exponents of that all-too-rare skill. Threading her way through one of the most complex and fraught eras of European history, Wedgwood gives all who have followed her an object lesson in clarity and readability that has not been surpassed."
-- Theodore K. Rabb, Princeton University --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
About the Author
Cicely Veronica Wedgwood (1910-1997) was born into an innovative and intellectual English family. Her father, a direct descendant of the potter Josiah Wedgwood, was the chief general manager of the London and North Eastern Railway and her mother was a novelist and travel writer. After success at Oxford, Wedgwood rejected an academic career and took up writing instead. She published her first history, The Thirty Years War (1938), before her thirtieth birthday, and in the years that followed wrote a succession of chronicles of seventeenth-century Europe that made her one of the most popular and best-known historians in Britain. Her most important works include The King's Peace; The King's War; and William the Silent: William of Nassau, Prince of Orange, 1533-1584, which won the James Tait Black Memorial Prize for biography in 1944. She was a member of the Institute for Advanced Studies, a Dame of the British Empire, and in 1969 became the third woman to be appointed a member of the British Order of Merit.
Anthony Grafton is Henry Putnam University Professor of History and the Humanities at Princeton University. His most recent book is The Culture of Correction in Renaissance Europe. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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on 21 December 2014
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
As readable as a good novel. Wedgwood reduced a long and convoluted (and potentially very dry) set of events to a manageable and fascinating read, and her flare for making the 400 year-old participants so real is impressive. Well-researched and authoritative.
on 7 March 2014
C.V. Wedgwood's extremely well researched account and excellent style makes for compulsive reading. It replaces an old worn-out copy that has been much read. A very nice folio edition, although it lacks the source references of the original.
on 12 April 2015
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
I had a copy of this in the 70's. I had nearly forgotten how good it is. C.V. Wedgewood has a knack for humanising history and revealing the broad sweep in one, well-written sentence. This is not only good history, it is also great literature.
on 28 June 2007
This is entertaining and informative for English speakers, who know virtually nothing of continental history. Whilst the book is old and it is quite possible that new data and documents have made some of it out of date, it sketches well and in an exciting manner the course of events of this last "war of religion" in Europe. There are very interesting points that bear comparison with our own time. France and Spain fought a war by proxy in Germany, thereby saving their own populations from the horrors of war and having others fight it for them! The Catholic French, underwrote and supplied the Northern German and Dutch Protestants, whilst the Catholic Spanish financed the Southern Germans, who also used Protestant mercenaries and generals when it suited them. So it was less a war of religion, than modern geo-politics, where countries far away finance regimes to fight each other.Read it.
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Most recent customer reviews
Would *definitely* recommend to anyone! Caroline Wedgwood makes the whole period come to life; anyone reading this would have thought she was actually there.Read more
A little over 50 years since I struggled with the 30 years War in A level history I decided finally to read this from cover to cover.Read more
Classic volume from 1938. Never really been bettered for an overall view of a tragic episode.
Written in the late 1930s by the then very youthful Veronica Wedgood, this is probably still one of the best books to read about the 30 Years War.Read more