The Foundations of England or, Twelve Centuries of British History (B.C. 55-A.D. 1154) - Vol. 1

The Foundations of England or, Twelve Centuries of British History (B.C. 55-A.D. 1154) - Vol. 1

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The Foundations of England or, Twelve Centuries of British History (B.C. 55-A.D. 1154) - Vol. 1

The Foundations of England or, Twelve Centuries of British History (B.C. 55-A.D. 1154) - Vol. 1

Read FREE!

Excerpt

The favourable reception given by historical scholars to Lancaster and York encourages me to give to the public a further instalment of my work. Reasons to which I need not refer induced me to begin by publishing the last section of my History first. But I do not propose to go on advancing by backward steps, and therefore I now go straight to the period at which the British Islands are first brought within the light of external history. I am fully aware that I am now entering on a track that may be said to have been thoroughly explored, if not beaten flat, by the feet of those who have gone before me. Yet again it might be said what an array of problems and pitfalls does not the rash man face who professes to deal in the spirit of our age with twelve centuries of history! I can only say that the work has not been undertaken to support any preconceived theories, or with any polemical object; that a weary length of years has been devoted to it; and that I have endeavoured to avail myself of all the best lights.

Some thirty years ago the late Mr. C. H. Pearson gave to the world two brightly written volumes that claimed to represent the most advanced state of historical knowledge. But historical research has been actively at work since then; and our knowledge has been proportionately extended. A fresh landmark might fairly now be set up. Public taste, no doubt, of late years has favoured short monographs--"Epochs," and "Lives," and "Studies" dealing with individual situations, or persons, or problems. Such treatment of subjects, when done scientifically, and with proper reference to authorities, is most valuable, the best of all work perhaps. But for those who have to "get up," and those who have to assist others in "getting up," history for definite ends . . .

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