History Today

History Today is a monthly magazine published by History Today, Ltd. Founded in 1951, it is owned by Andy Patterson and has a circulation of roughly 30,000 subscribers. Headquarters are based in London, England.The magazine, which is geared towards teachers, students, and those with an interest in history, publishes essays written by some leading history scholars covering myriad periods, regions, topics, and themes in history. It is available in print and online.The print version was founded by Brendan Backen, who worked as the Minister of Information during World War II. He was also the publisher of the Financial Times. Currently, both print and online versions are published under the vision and guide of editor-in-chief, Paul Lay.History Today offers readers articles ranging from atomic medicine to the rise and fall of empires. Each essay comes with illustrations selected by picture editor Sheila Corr. The web edition includes a news digest from web editor, Kathryn Hadley.Subscribers can buy an annual subscription for either the web or print version. Web subscribers can also purchase access to articles from the publication's archives dating back to 1980. The magazine also has a sister publication, History Review, which is aimed at students and is published three times each year.

Articles from Vol. 58, No. 7, July

Eating Your Enemy: Richard Sugg Searches History to Explain the Phenomenon of Aggressive Cannibalism, Following Recent Allegations from Iraq
'One soldier told how a specialist in my unit kept a human finger in his wall locker during his entire tour of duty. The laughing ensued as I heard the story of a soldier in another company eating the charred flesh of an Iraqi civilian, the victim...
Editor's Letter
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Tibet, the 'Forbidden Land' ever since 1793 when it banned foreigners from entering, has long been an object of fascination, perhaps to Britons especially, since Colonel Francis Younghusband forced his way to Lhasa in 1904....
Havana: Clive Foss Enjoys the Architecture of Cuba's Capital, with Varied Elements from Every Era of Its Past Making an Exotic Mix
Thank Fidel Castro for the survival of Latin America's most elegant and well-preserved urban landscape. Havana has changed so little in the last forty years that it resembles a living museum of the years before the Revolution. The city is like a palimpsest,...
Her Father's Roses: Bridget McGing Describes the Fascinating but Heart Breaking Task of Working with Her Mother on the Family Archive, before It Was Too Late
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] I grew up with an archive of epic proportions. In fact, 'with' is not quite the right word. I grew up in an archive. My childhood home was filled with a general miscellany of objects brought out of Czechoslovakia when my opapa...
History as It Happens: Snapshots from the Past
Earliest Caesar Found A life-size bust of Julius Caesar found at Aries in southern France may be the earliest representation of the Roman ruler. The marble bust depicting an ageing Caesar dates to 46 BC and was found in the Rhone River by divers...
I Should Coco: As You Prepare to 'Cover Up' on the Beach This Summer, Lie Back and Enjoy Robert Mighall's True History of Sunbathing
It is received wisdom that Coco Chanel accidentally invented the suntan on a yachting jaunt back in the early 1920s. Like flapper dresses, bobbed hair and automobiles, the suntan seems iconic of the new freedoms of the epoch when the Victorian age...
'Jane': The Strip That Teased: Mark Bryant Examines the History of the Second World War's Favorite Cartoon Pin-Up
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] Jane needs no introduction to those who served in the Allied forces in the Second World War. Originally created as a character in a Daily Mirror cartoon strip, she soon became far more than that, competing with the Varga Girls...
Messages in 6,000 Bottles: When Greg Stemm and John Morris Went Fishing for a Shipwreck Lost with a Cargo of Gold, the SS Republic, Little Could They Have Imagined That 6,000 Glass Bottles Would End Up as the Most Interesting Harvest. the Republic Was a 1,200-Ton Side-Wheel Steamship Devastated in 1865 by the 'Blue God', the Mother of All Hurricanes
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] She had sailed from New York as the South licked its wounds at the end of the Civil War. With the bloodletting over, the country's shelves were bare and, as plantations came to life once more, shipping was booming. Carpetbaggers...
Mission to the Roof of the World: Asya Chorley Describes the Relationship between China, Britain and Tibet in the Early Twentieth Century, and Shares the Unique Experiences of the First European Women to Be Invited to Lhasa by the XIII Dalai Lama
[ILLUSTRATIONS OMITTED] 'Never in the history of Anglo-Tibetan relations has our prestige stood higher or the Tibetan attitude been more friendly.' So wrote a relieved Colonel Leslie Weir (1883-1950) in his report to the Government of India at...
Place & Past in Medieval England: Nicholas Orme Asks What Sense Medieval English People Had of the Land They Lived in, and What Ancient Sites and Natural Wonders Did They Visit
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] We live in a commemorating age. We remember our past with centenaries. We care for historic sites. We celebrate our landscape by climbing its highest points and exploring its deepest ones. We visit its extremities, Land's...
Poverty from Workhouse to the Welfare State: In 1909 Beatrice Webb Produced a Controversial Report Which Proposed Abolishing the Stigma and Penury of the Poor Law and Its Workhouses. James Gregory Argues That This Plea for a Less Judgemental Approach to Poverty Created the Foundations of the Modern Welfare State
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] In the late 1880s, the great social investigator Charles Booth (1840-1916) set about mapping the streets of London, with the assistance of his researcher, radical reformer Beatrice Webb (1858-1943). Booth's aim was to understand...
Radical Rowdies: A Public Falling-Out Ended the Close Political Friendship between Two Leaders of Reform in Early Nineteenth-Century Britain. A Familiar Scenario?
'It is, I hope, quite unnecessary for me to repeat my assurance that nothing short of sickness or death shall ever deprive you of the fulfilment of my solemn promise made this day. But I beseech you be careful to do nothing to expose yourself to the...
Solving Stonehenge: Anthony Johnson Argues That an Accurate Interpretation of the Great Monument Rests in the Sophisticated Geometric Principles Employed by Its Neolithic Surveyors
In March 2008 archaeologists excavated at Stonehenge for the first time in over forty years. The results of the excavation will hopefully throw new light on the origins of the little understood early bluestone structure. This was dismantled before...
The First Colour Television Transmission: July 3rd 1928
The leading pioneer in the creation of television, John Logie Baird, was a Scotsman, born in 1888, the son of a Presbyterian minister, and educated in Glasgow. An electrical engineer and an eccentric genius, he was no businessman, his health was precarious...
The Murders at Ekaterinburg: July 17th 1918
Tsar Nicholas II of Russia abdicated after the February revolution of 1917. He and his immediate family were subsequently sent to Tobolsk in western Siberia, where they were humanely treated, but in the following year, after the Bolshevik takeover,...
The Shadow of a King? Charles II in Exile: Charles II Was the Only King of England for Two Hundred Years to Survive Exile and Return to Power. Anna Keay Considers How He Kept Up His Regal Appearances Whilst in Exile, Paving the Way for His Return to the Throne
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] On May 29th, 1660. the morning of his thirtieth birthday, Charles II rode into the capital he had last seen as a twelve-year-old boy. The procession that carried him through the city of London towards Whitehall Palace was...
The Tunguska Event: Nigel Watson Recalls a Mysterious Explosion That Occurred in Deepest Siberia, a Hundred Years Ago
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] At 7.17am on June 30th, 1908, a huge object exploded six miles above the Stony Tunguska River area, central Siberia, causing an atmospheric shockwave that circled the Earth twice. For the following two nights the skies of...
Was There a Military Revolution in Early Modern Europe? Historians Have Long Argued Whether the Years 1500-1700 Saw a Revolutionary Change in the Art and Organization of War
[ILLUSTRATION OMITTED] 'The notion of a "military revolution" distorted the study of early modern military history for decades from the 1950s.' This blunt comment by the distinguished military historian of eighteenth-century Europe, Christopher...