A history of the English-speaking peoples by Winston S. Churchill; 50 editions; First published in ; Subjects: History, Juvenile literature. Request PDF on ResearchGate | On Jan 10, , Sophia Sommer and others published DOWNLOAD [PDF] A History of the English-Speaking. A History of the English-Speaking Peoples. I. The Birth of. Britain by Sir Winston Churchill (review). B. Wilkinson. The Canadian Historical Review, Volume
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Vol. 1 The Birth of Britain A rousing account of the early history of Britain, the work describes the great men and women of the past and their. It is only now when things have quietened down that I present to the public a HISTORY OF THE ENGLISH-SPEAKING PEOPLES. If there was need for it before. Editorial Reviews. Book Description. In the first volume of his majestic history of the English-speaking peoples, Sir Winston S. Churchill chronicles the birth of.
All in all - a great read. The Audible narrator is quite good. I was genuinely interested to see how he would take the U. The Birtho[ Britain. He has implied sympathy for the Confederacy in the U. Great books, not too challenging to read, but excellent to review at large the history of Great Britain without missing any important or trascendental information.
So I stopped and printed out maps of Britain when it was under the control of the Roman Empire which owned much of the known world at the time and, of course, looked on the maps to see where the events were taking place. When I came across words that meant nothing to me, not in my vocabulary, I had to stop, and then look up on my Kindle or computer.
Here are some words and definitions unknown to me until now: You get the idea, reading an unfamiliar word, it not making sense in the context of the sentence, then stopping to look it up and re-read the sentence. As mentioned above, the book began with Brittania, ruled by the Roman Empire. A surprise was how hostile, land grabbing for the purpose of stealing jewels and anything of value, and simply cruel, were the Vikings. I had never read much of their conquests until now.
And of course, had to stop and print out maps of the travels and conquests of the Vikings all over Europe. How the Parlament came to be, the back and forth of powerful earls and lords the resulting wars occurring, both civil and abroad. And imagine this! It was all about money and power.
At one time Britain inhabited and ruled much of France but with the divine intervention of Joan of Arc, France was once again an independent nation. Needless to say, printed map of where Joan of Arc lived and traveled to meet the King and had to stop and read more about Joan of Arc on Internet.
The English Common Law and the Magna Carta both had stand alone chapters knowing the importance of these documents to the basis of the history of law in Britain and ultimately, the United States of America. Further chapters include the importance of the long bow in warring and how it changed history, and the Black Death and the end of the Feudal Age. Feudal system - A political and economic system of Europe from the 9th to about the 15th century, based on the holding of all land in fief or fee and the resulting relation of lord to vassal and characterized by homage, legal and military service of tenants, and forfeiture.
I had heard of the Wars of the Roses, so named because the two Houses of the Plantagenet Dynasties fought among themselves for 30 years, determining what historian is quoted. The House of York white rose and House of Lancaster red rose warred and murdered hundreds of members of the royalty on both sides with one house taking the kingdom, then the other.
Intrigue and deception was the norm of the day. The Earls and Lords were too busy killing each other. It was a marriage made for peace. However, it was not over as historians still debate exactly when the last war was fought. Fortunately for me I read about ten books on Henry VII, his six wives and society of the period, so the ending of this book, takes me up to very close to that period of British history.
I really loved the book. And just one reason I loved it so much was because it seemed to bring all these small subjects together that I had heard about, read about, and studied, unfortunately very little, but now I know how they interrelate. Not historian smart, but Cathy smarter. It took enough time, though; I damned well should feel smarter.
View all 31 comments. Mar 29, Gerry rated it it was amazing Shelves: Sir Winston S. King Henry II legacy is lasting in terms of organization and of the continuance of the British Commonwealth today. The masterpiece of Sir Winston S. Churchill work lays the foundation for the persons who are interested to pursue new interest along old lines — I personally have di Sir Winston S.
Churchill work lays the foundation for the persons who are interested to pursue new interest along old lines — I personally have discovered many topics of interest now and I wish to study deeper, and learn in a fashion that is both eager and willing in the new forthcoming journey of our collective History.
Feel free to share your thoughts on your impressions of this wonderful History. Volume I: I knew that in this first of four Volumes it would not only set the tone for the remainder of the other three — I wanted to ensure I was able to capture the essence of this important History of a nation that has done more good for mankind than harm when one looks at the accomplishments of structure to locations of the many that took the challenge to accomplish, work, study, and learn long before my own existence came into being.
As we see the beginning of the British Nation with the foundation of Julius Caesar in the year 55 BC in the Roman Calendar we begin the journey of the same great nation that had at best auspicious beginnings. Sir WSC captures the events in prose as none other could in my opinion.
This clearly comes across in Volume I. His accounting of Battle of Hastings in was a wonderful display of poetic respect.
The chapter on the Blackdeath exposes how after the plague had concluded that the upper classes were in need of serfs to work the land — the serfs attempted to negotiate their position for land, money, and in some cases both as the human race had been decimated not by war; but, by disease — an interesting history to itself when normally the economic value of human life was clearly a point lost to the times.
This begins an awakening of working class peoples to see the value to what they brought and continue to bring in the modern age to a different sort of degree.
King Henry V is of course the first King after Agincourt to send correspondence in English — acknowledging this at the time was quite a dare and the English from French becomes the main language of England — the lower classes of people of the time were already speaking English regularly. My personal opinion of King Henry V was only solidified in this accounting — unfortunately for history King Henry V died earlier that what one would have hoped.
Joan of Arc gets more than an honorable prose in a chapter dedicated to her, King Henry VI was merely lucky to have the strength of his Queen. Volume II: In the first chapter as one would hope we read of the fact in point that though Britain was then-as-is-now an island unto herself that the world around her was not laying idle nor still. The consequence of the monasteries is of course one that provides revenue for a Kingdom suffering from not enough money.
Within this layer would be the future seeds in my opinion of the confusion that modern day people have with genealogical studies of their ancestors. There are many topics in this Volume II that lays the groundwork for further reading. What one needs to keep in mind during the 21st century in reading this detail of heads being lopped off and people being disemboweled for reasons far away from our existence is that this was not the era of political parties — this would evolve much later; however, this was the time of patronage and clientage.
Directions were clear, tendentious rendition and interpretation prevented and each committee then had to submit their section to the next committee for review. In 3 years-time the work was finished when the supervisory committee then reviewed the final draft version — 12 persons on this committee completed the task within 9 months-time.
This is truly King James I lasting legacy — a thorough, complete, and unbiased edition in English of the Holy Scriptures. Volume III: At this juncture it has become clear that the mixture of Church and State was a mixture that everyone knew at the time was lethal; however, the anger of Parliament attempting to create the crown as a figure head is all too apparent. When the South Sea Company fails the previous greed of Members of the House of Commons and of their peers are among the many ruined; greed and fear then as now knows no boundaries of moral compass directions.
Others committed suicide, some were sought by pitch fork and the Post-Master General took poison. In Volume III we enter into the unrest to the 13 Colonies; unrest that had previously lay within embers smoldering until kindle had been placed to the stove. The Revolution of and later a war with Spain had forced a different focus upon Britain an ocean away.
All the while, it was apparent that Colonists in America were learning how to thrive in a vast untamed wilderness with Native Americans or First Nation civilizations. It is a rather fascinating read to see the interpretations of Sir WSC. He gives credit where it is due of course; however, he introduces us to the concerns of the Parliament and King George III.
Moving from the American Revolution the entrance of the French Revolution is no less important. The impact of the French Revolution on the European Continent was in reflection for the English the same sort of situation with their own Revolution of The differences between the two essentially were the foundations of reason and the structure within the political bodies which remained for the citizens of each nation.
For the likes of Robespierre there is no comparison to the English version of Cromwell. Specifically, Burke states that the convulsion in France was not a dignified, orderly change, carried out with due regard for tradition, like the English Revolution of It was however a tail wind from the recent American Revolution — implemented much differently as well.
For their part, the Cossacks themselves and the Tsar forget the methodology employed that helped to kick Napoleon out of Moscow and so there are many sad stories that ensue — only the French seem to have updated their weaponry in the between years of war and Army in these years that followed Waterloo.
Enter Queen Victoria, a woman one can tell by the words of Sir WSC that are held in high respect and regard for the Queen that did so much for her Empire. Sir WSC breaks for a spell — but maintains a link to the History of English Speaking Peoples by providing occasional references to what other matters are going on globally at the time. This matter gets resolved peacefully and the 49th Parallel is assured — America wanted the 54th.
The establishment of British Columbia is the Province connected by railway that assists this international agreement. Churchill then goes on to describe the South African immigration and frontier, and from here he pays respectful history of fact to the foundation of Australia, New Zealand, and the island state of Tasmania.
At this point reading through this fascinating history — we move back to the American frontier. He notices that the rock formations of where gold is mined and discovered is similar to the formations in Australia. Ironically, and with great knowledge — the man returns to Australia with this knowledge and discovers gold in the State of Western Australia in From his very experienced position at this stage in life to which he writes of the American Civil War — he ties in historical events in a very balanced fashion; incorporating history of John Quincy Adams, the Monroe Doctrine, the burning embers of North vs.
South or West and South vs. This was a very real prospect for the time and one that Sir WSC is neutral in his very British form of writing. The British and European view of our internal hostility for the time during the reign of Queen Victoria was in fact refreshing and unbiased. The Franco-Prussian War takes center stage — what was the missing link in the Prussian success was the quiet advancements of Krupp Armaments — made during a time where Prussian and German interests were rather scant from the scene.
This has a profound effect in the later hatred of the First World War where the Economic Consequences of the Peace were forever entwined with what had occurred in This said, it was later that the Treaty of Stefano would prevent war in Europe for some 36 years; however, this too led the path down the road to the Great War. What entails from within are quiet developments of alliances following this treaty; it was also the result of the same.
They both had their good points; but, Disraeli was the more preferred between the two when it came to Queen Victoria. American schools can take a note from the history as provided as in depth and as knowledgeable as he was on our internal affairs.
Moving from American Reconstruction — we read of the Boer War; the first event that brought Churchill to the forefront of activity — it is this same chapter and final chapter to which we learn of the love the United Kingdom had for her majestic Queen Victoria — an era concluded with her death and as Sir WSC is compiling these words in the late s he is clearly attempting to write for future generations the era to which he became a man and to which the British Empire had struggled to gain throughout all of her existence.
They are now to become Allies in terrible but victorious wars. And that is not the end. Another phase looms before us, in which alliance will once more be tested and in which it formidable virtues may be to preserve the Peace and Freedom. The future is unknowable, but the past should give us hope. Nor should we seek to define precisely the exact terms of ultimate union. View all 6 comments. Sep 08, Lu Wang rated it it was amazing Recommends it for: I have rarely seen a book of history so deeply personal and analytical at the same time.
By reading this 4-volume book, one gets a glimpse of Winston Churchill's intricate thinking pattern. As one of craftiest politicians of the 20th Century, he led a deeply pacifist British public to rise up against the Nazi's; he predicted America's downfall in Vietnam; he also infamously forced America into WWI at the cost of more than one thousand civilian lives aboard RMS Lusitania. His mastery shines throug I have rarely seen a book of history so deeply personal and analytical at the same time.
His mastery shines through in this book. He eloquently defended every British action from Burgundy to India, as if every aggression was Britain's manifest destiny. Yet, a profound perspective of history permeates this book. This book is a history of heroes, English-speaking heroes who created the Magna Carta, those who fought and triumphed the Boer War, and those who built the Second Empire at the heel of English defeat in the First.
Neither did he hesitate to defend the Victorian decadence of Britain - even the beginning of the end can be polished to shine! After reading this book, you can't help but wonder what kind of people deserve such a leader- the kind of leader who is relentlessly pragmatic, ruthlessly indifferent to human conditions and yet charismatic enough to save an empire from the cusp of an apocalyptic destruction. Perhaps one of my all time favorite books.
I have reread this several times. If you are a lover of history this is it. If not, you will probably be bored to death. Either way a win-win for the rest of us! Jul 26, Aaron Crofut rated it it was amazing Shelves: I absolutely loved this series. Churchill has a written voice unmatched in the English language, and the reader will struggle less with finishing the plus pages than he will in putting the book down. I would absolutely recommend this for those homeschooling middle school aged children, as it provides a delightful overview o "It is all true, or it ought to be; and more and better besides.
I would absolutely recommend this for those homeschooling middle school aged children, as it provides a delightful overview of English and American history up until the start of the 20th Century, with a focus on the rise, evolution, and importance of English institutions. I would also recommend it for adults whose historical gap includes English history, the foundation of American political and social thought. Feb 28, Hannah rated it it was amazing Shelves: Oh my word, if I could give this series 6 stars I would.
It's as good as they come. Outstanding material. Covers British and American history quite well.
Churchill's integrity as a historian is made evident in every book in the series, and he's not lacking in a sense of humor or a sense of scene. He keeps his own opinions on the characters to himself--for the most part--but occasionally flashes out in glorious commentary. His remarks on Catherine Howard are interesting--he so rarely comments on Oh my word, if I could give this series 6 stars I would.
His remarks on Catherine Howard are interesting--he so rarely comments on the appearance of the ladies: P--and I found his insights into the character of Charles II very satisfying. Dec 10, Alexander Kerensky rated it really liked it. It is useful to remember that books tell you as much about their author as they do about their subject; indeed, that's sometimes the point of reading them. And these four were penned by none other than Winston S. Churchill -- soldier, painter, politician, historian, war leader, and often voted the greatest Briton -- or even Anglo -- of the entire second millennium.
Churchill wrote prolifically in his life, whether article It is useful to remember that books tell you as much about their author as they do about their subject; indeed, that's sometimes the point of reading them. Churchill wrote prolifically in his life, whether articles, speeches, novels or histories, and often published expansive multi-volume goliaths. He impressed his personality firmly into everything he did, so it might be prudent to ask if there's anything we can learn about the Grand Old Man from his four-volume, twelve-book, chapter account of the entirety of Anglo history.
Firstly, he's a whig historian. For Churchill The History of the English-Speaking Peoples is a story of unstoppable progress towards a set destiny of world hegemony and endless greatness. He makes much of habeus corpus , of the spreading out of enlightened British folk across the globe, he recites all of the various constitutional debates that led to English Common Law, and he lovingly charts the growth of Parliament as an institution.
It is very triumphalist, and that will bring him censure from more modern historians who aren't so keen on shouting about the British war record and the fact we haven't had a revolution since and that Anglos have controlled the world since at least I think they're too pessimistic.
It's certainly true that not everything the British have done is worthy of praise, and making excuses for some of the Empire's handiwork is downright shameful to attempt, but I don't think it can be seriously denied that the world is a better place for it, in the end, and the new-founded countries Britain left behind are certainly a proud legacy.
Churchill, refreshingly, knows this. On the other hand, I admit some of the things he wrote did make my modern eyes wince. The warning signs were there from the very second chapter, the account of the Bouadicea rebellion: This is probably the most horrible episode which our Island has known. We see the crude and corrupt beginnings of a higher civilisation blotted out by the ferocious uprisings of the native tribes.
Still, it is the primary right of men to die and kill for the land they live in, and to punish with exceptional severity all members of their own race who have warmed their hands at the invaders' hearth.
Well, that's nice. It really says it all, doesn't it? The stupid British natives were too bloodthirsty and resisted the loving embrace of the civilised empire come to invade them, but it's OK because everyone has the right to butcher race traitors.
Of the Tasmanian Genocide off Australia he mentions only that the native tribes met a "tragic" end and "were extinct by the beginning of the twentieth century". He can't quite bring himself to say they were exterminated by the British in the only successful genocide in history. In fact, of the entire period of colonialism he remarks: The nineteenth century was a period of purposeful, progressive, enlightened, tolerant civilisation.
The stir in the world arising from the French Revolution, added to the Industrial Revolution unleashed by the steam-engine and many key-inventions, led inexorably to the democratic age. At the same time the new British Empire or Commonwealth of Nations was based upon government by consent, and the voluntary association of autonomous states under the Crown.
Suffice to say, the fourth volume in particular is stuffed full of some -- how can I put it?
As a final example, when discussing early trade unionism in America Churchill notes that the organisations attracted "a host of fanatics ranging from suffragists to single-taxers". But that does not make him an unworthy guide through history. In fact, I assert some of the most appealing parts of the narrative are Winston's evaluations of the different characters and events, which he can be relied upon to deliver as they exit the scene.
All of these are entertaining and some are downright enlightening. He points out that Charles I, for instance, had genuine qualities as a general, considering he ruled a country that had known seventy years of peace, while Oliver Cromwell is censured because he was the only military dictator England has ever known, ruling with no popular consent by force alone, and parallels are drawn with the twentieth century that I wouldn't have thought of myself.
Burr is nothing more than an "evil genius". He has implied sympathy for the Confederacy in the U. Civil War, but he does a decent enough job justifying it and clearly isn't a fan of slavery. He also gives a much-needed new perspective on the Indian Mutiny: I was genuinely interested to see how he would take the U.
Constitution, but somehow he manages to convincingly portray it as a restatement of British Common Law principles: At first sight this authoritative document presents a sharp contrast with the store of traditions and precedents that make up the unwritten Constitution of Britain. Yet behind it lay no revolutionary theory. It was based not upon the challenging writings of the French philosophers which were soon to set Europe ablaze, but on Old English doctrine, freshly formulated to meet an urgent American need.
The Constitution was a reaffirmation of faith in the principles painfully evolved over the centuries by the English-speaking peoples. It enshrined long-standing English ideas of justice and liberty, henceforth to be regarded on the other side of the Atlantic as basically American. The second thing we learn is that Churchill really likes kings, queens, prime ministers, presidents and wars. He writes about little else. When these books came out Clement Attlee quipped that a better name for them would be Things in History that Interested Me , and he's probably right.
Whether or not this represents a comprehensive history probably depends on how one defines history. If one seeks an account of British government, of monarchs, of conflicts, of strife in the corridors of power, of relations with other countries, this might be the next Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. If one wants to know how your average peasant was doing, it's worthless. The Industrial Revolution is given a paltry few pages, and the development of society prior to that is so overlooked that I didn't even realise muskets had been invented until Marlborough's troops are described as "red".
Great British culture fares little better. John Locke is mentioned only in connection to the Earl Of Shaftesbury, a prominent politician of the time, while Thomas Paine is merely an "extremist" who helped provoke the American War of Independence. He dotes lengthily on Parliament, but that's about it. Instead we have pages and pages and pages and pages and pages of troop movements, campaigning, battles, retreats, marches, treaties, etc.
The war leader considers these things to be more important. I find that very telling of Churchill's personality. How can one define what is "worthy" of being written up as history, really? In the end it's subjective. I forget his name, but there was one Marxist historian who pointed out that millions of people crossed the Rubicon; we just remember Caesar doing it for arbitrary reasons.
The historian must choose which facts to fill his history with, and Churchill has chosen battles and monarchs.
Could one have expected much else? He was, after all, one of those "great men" we hear so much about. A war journalist who wrote histories of the River and Boer Wars, participant in the great cavalry charge at Omdurman, PoW and escapee in South Africa, returning later as liberator, disastrous First Lord of the Admiralty who redeemed himself by enlisting to fight in the trenches, ex-chancellor who made the most spectacular comeback, and finally the spirit of the nation in its -- and his -- finest hour.
Rumour has it that when he was told he had won the Nobel Prize, his face lit up and he rose to his feet, only to fall back in disappointment when he realised it was for Literature. He fought in three wars and was at the political forefront of the two greatest. With this in mind, I don't think he can be blamed for the charge of historical elitism. He has earned the right to praise great people.
Finally, we learn about Churchill's thoughts of the future. Lofty goal. Churchill always saw a certain connection between Anglos not to be found elsewhere. Europe was important to him, but only in the way neighbours are important, and also as a security concern.
The English-speakers around the world were like family. It's certainly true that Britain has never really been a European country: So what are we? Whether or not Churchill's boundless love of the Commonwealth is positively reciprocated is only partly relevant: I suspect the bond is deep enough for unity in the face of whatever awful martial challenge awaits next, even if time has left it in need of a polish. It will be remembered before the end.
Reading the final sentences, I think Churchill knows this too: Here is set out a long story of the English-Speaking Peoples. Another phase looms before us, in which the alliance will once more be tested and in which its formidable virtues may be to preserve Peace and Freedom. Nor should we now seek to define precisely the exact terms of the ultimate union.
Churchill's conclusions on everything from the Magna Carta to the accomplishments of reigns of the first English kings are often quite insightful. In other cases - ie: This work clearly evidences Churchill's interest in military history.
I found his reputation as having spun a "great men of history" narrative is partially deserved. I say "partially" because Churchill also strikes me as incredibly cognizant of political and social changes driven by more mundane organizational and administrative efforts of government over the years.
The latter certainly makes for a less sexy historical narrative, but Churchill covers it convincingly and with energy. While this new era was spawning the beginnings of modern America, England was engaged in a bloody civil war and sustained a Republican experiment under the leadership of Oliver Cromwell.
In this volume Churchill provides an excellent illustration of his unique literary voice, together with an introduction to his thoughts on the forces that shape human affairs. It draws to a close when the British Empire is at its peak - with a staggering one-fifth of the human race presided over by the longest reigning monarch in British history.
Queen Victoria. As with the other volumes it is a history not only of the English-speaking peoples, but also fo the world that they inhabit.
He charts the rise of Germany and the unification of Italy, and examines the situation in the Balkans in - all of which had a deep and lasting impact on the geography of the European continent today. Canada and South Africa; Migration of the Peoples: Identifier-ark ark: Ppi Year There are no reviews yet.