The Age of Improvement

The Age of Improvement

The Age of Improvement

The Age of Improvement


One of the effects of two world wars and of fifty years of everaccelerating industrial and social revolution has been thegrowing interest of the citizen in the story of his land. Fromthis story he seeks to learn the secret of his country's greatness and away to better living in the future.

There seems, therefore, to be room for a rewriting of the history ofEngland which will hold the interest of the general reader while itappeals at the same time to the student. This new presentation willtake account of the recent discoveries of the archæologist and thehistorian, and will not lose sight of the claims of history to take itsplace among the mental recreations of intelligent people for whomit has no professional concern.

The history will be completed in a series of ten volumes. Thevolumes will be of medium length, and it is hoped that they willprovide a readable narrative of the whole course of the history ofEngland and give proper weight to the different strands which formthe pattern of the story. No attempt has been made to securegeneral uniformity of style or treatment. Each period has its specialproblems, each author his individual technique and mental approach;each volume will be able to stand by itself not only as an expressionof the author's methods, tastes, and experience, but as a coherentpicture of a phase in the history of the country.

There is, nevertheless, a unity of purpose in the series; the authorshave been asked, while avoiding excessive detail, to give particularattention to the interaction of the various aspects of national life andachievement, so that each volume may present a convincing integration of those developments--political, constitutional, economic,social, religious, military, foreign, of cultural--which happen to bedominant at each period. Although considerations of space willprevent minute investigation it should still be possible in a series ofthis length to deal fully with the essential themes.

A short bibliographical note is attached to each volume. This isnot intended to supersede existing lists, but rather to call attentionto recent works and to the standard bibliographies.


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