A Monarchy Transformed: Britain, 1603-1714

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9780140148275: A Monarchy Transformed: Britain, 1603-1714

The seventeenth century, writes Mark Kishlansky, was “a wheel of transformation in perpetual motion,” a period of political and religious upheaval that defined the nation for decades to come and remains critical for understanding the nation today.
 
Beginning with the accession of James I and concluding with the death of Queen Anne, this compelling account describes the tempestuous events that took place during the Stuart dynasty and provides lively pen portraits of the many fascinating personalities involved. Conspiracies, rebellions, and revolutions jostle side by side with court intrigues, political infighting and the rise of parties. In 1603 Britain was an isolated archipelago; by 1714 it had emerged among the intellectual, commercial, and military centers of the world.
 
“Kishlansky’s century saw one king executed, another exiled, the House of Lords abolished, and the Church of England reconstructed along Presbyterian lines . . . A masterly narrative, shot through with the shrewdness that comes from profound scholarship.”—Jonathan Clark, Spectator
 
“A historian with a real love for the period, a real understanding of many different aspects of it, and an exhilarating style.”—Ronald Hutton, The Times Literary Supplement
 
“This sweeping, dramatic chronicle of a century of Stuart rule will rivet even the general reader with no particular interest in British history.”—Publishers Weekly

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About the Author:

MARK KISHLANSKY is Professor of English and European History at Harvard University. He is a well known author in his field, and lives in the USA.

From Kirkus Reviews:

A beautifully written but narrowly focused narrative of high politics in 17th-century Britain. Kishlansky (English and European History/Harvard) recognizes that history is a story and that a good historian is a storyteller. His strongly delineated point of view contributes to the flow of the narrative, and his enthusiasm for the subject sustains the reader through thickets of detail about high politics and war. Viewing 17th-century Britain through the eyes of those at the top, Kishlansky always comes down on the side of political stability. He successfully avoids uncritical power worship with judicious criticism of both the Stuart monarchs and of Cromwell. However, as a volume in the new Penguin History of Britain (see also Peter Clarke, Hope and Glory: Britain 19001990, p. 186), A Monarchy Transformed is intended to provide a definitive introductory guide for the student and general reader. Although every historian must leave things out of the story, too many important things are neglected in this one. Kishlansky mentions in passing such important matters as Britain's overseas empire, the slave trade, art and literature, science and mathematics, but doesn't weave such materials into his narrative. John Donne is identified merely as a recipient of royal patronage, and John Milton dismissed as an ``ideologue.'' The momentous religious changes of the period are discussed mainly when they influence politics or threaten social stability. What is most disappointing, though, is the treatment of women. Queen Mary is mentioned and Queen Anne gets a chapter, but beyond that women appear at the margins of history, as irrational teenage royal brides or midwives accused of kidnapping children for satanic rituals. Women should not be marginalized in any volume that aspires to the status of a general survey. Although successful as a forceful narrative of politics at the center, this volume is a disappointing general introduction to 17th-century British history. -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Book Description Penguin Books Ltd, United Kingdom, 1997. Paperback. Book Condition: New. 6th Revised edition. Language: English . Brand New Book. The sixth of nine volumes in the major Penguin History of Britain series, A Monarchy Transformed narrates the tempestuous political events of the Stuart dynasty. It charts the reigns of six monarchs, and the course of two revolutions as well as religious upheavals that shook the beliefs of seventeenth-century Britons to the core. Bookseller Inventory # APG9780140148275

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