Three Aspects of Stuart England

Three Aspects of Stuart England

Three Aspects of Stuart England

Three Aspects of Stuart England

Excerpt

MY FIRST WORDS must be to express my very sincere thanks for the invitation to deliver the Whidden Lectures. It has given me the opportunity to enjoy the hospitality of this truly hospitable university, and to offer for your consideration some opinions on the period of history with which my studies have been chiefly concerned. As the first Englishman to be honoured in this way it is perhaps appropriate that I should choose an English subject, and that I should approach it by paying some attention first to the geographical position of Britain. It has long been understood that the position of Britain as an island has a two-sided significance in its history. On the one hand it has served as a protection against attacks and threats of domination from outside, and in its most usual sense the word 'insular' means something like 'inaccessible'. On the other hand, throughout recorded history and in prehistoric times, Britain has been far more accessible to travellers than many continental countries. Geographers explain how its structural slope towards the mainland, the disposition of its ports and rivers, and its internal conformation made it a recipient of peoples and influences from across the Narrow Seas. Then they have shown how, after the great geographical discoveries . . .

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