The Whig Supremacy, 1714-1760

The Whig Supremacy, 1714-1760

The Whig Supremacy, 1714-1760

The Whig Supremacy, 1714-1760

Excerpt

Professor Basil Williams, the author of this book, died on 5 January 1950. The success and popularity of the book were due to many qualities, but most of all to the uncommon sympathy and insight which he brought to the England of the first two Georges. Although he was successively a professor in three universities in three different English- speaking countries he did not become an academic teacher until he was over fifty. Before that time he had been, among other things, a clerk in the house of commons, a soldier in a colonial war, a parliamentary candidate, and the loyal friend of some of the most remarkable men of his time. He saw the eighteenth century in the light of this rich experience.

The preparation of this second edition has presented an editorial problem of some delicacy. When The Whig Supremacy was writtenSir Lewis Namier had already made his main contributions to the knowledge of this period, but in the ensuing years and largely through his influence research has been active, expecially in the fields of parliamentary and party history. Mr. Stuart, in addition to such other revision as was needed, has taken into account the results of this research. While making the appropriate corrections he has been careful to disturb the original text as little as possible and to preserve its individual flavour. As in the volumes of this series which have been revised by their own authors, the new matter is not marked as such; but where Mr. Stuart expresses opinions which it is necessary to distinguish from those of Professor Williams the initials 'C.H.S.' are added to the footnotes. A revised Bibliography, by another contributor who remains anonymous, refers the reader to the new literature of the subject.

G. N. C.

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