A Writer's House in Wales (National Geographic Directions)
By: Jan Morris
Through an exploration of her country home in Wales, acclaimed travel writer Jan Morris discovers the heart of her fascinating country and what it means to be Welsh. Trefan Morys, Morris's home between the sea and mountains of the remote northwest corner of Wales, is the 18th-century stable block of her former family house nearby. Surrounding it are the fields and outbuildings, the mud, sheep, and cattle of a working Welsh farm.She regards this modest building not only as a reflection of herself and her life, but also as epitomizing the small and complex country of Wales, which has defied the world for centuries to preserve its own identity. Morris brilliantly meditates on the beams and stone walls of the house, its jumbled contents, its sounds and smells, its memories and inhabitants, and finally discovers the profoundest meanings of Welshness.
Currently in its 40th printing with its original publisher in the UK, this is the book that one British newspaper has called "travel writing at its best. Bill Bryson must weep when he reads it." Whether describing ruined gothic arches at Glastonbury or hilarious encounters with the inhabitants of Norfolk, Morton recalls a way of life far from gone even at the beginning of a new century.
Jane Austen in Bath: Walking Tours of the Writer's City
By: Katharine Reeve
Jane Austen in Bath: Walking Tours of the Writer’s City is a beautifully illustrated book organized into four walking tours around the city of Bath–where she set both Northanger Abbey and Persuasion–two novels that mirrored her own experience: that of an impressionable, optimistic young girl hoping to meet the man she would marry and later, that of a mature woman disappointed in love. It was in Bath that many of Austen’s own romantic adventures and misadventures occurred, and this book artfully weaves together the story of Austen’s life there with those of her beloved characters.This guidebook describes the places frequented by Austen and her characters. Readers can stroll along the shady, tree-lined walk where Anne Elliot met Captain Wentworth after he returned from seven years at sea, and visit the galleries that hosted the glittering balls where the impressionable young Catherine Moreland made her debut. Bath is an exquisite, perfectly preserved Georgian town located in the stunning countryside just an hour and a half from London. It was a spa town in Austen’s day and still is. The streets, crescents, gardens, and buildings look almost exactly the same as they did then. Many of the places that she frequented are still there–visitors can still buy the traditional Sally Lunn rolls at the same bakery/caf? that Austen frequented; enter the famous Pump Rooms and Assembly Rooms where she drank the waters, gossiped, and danced; stroll the unique Georgian crescents and pleasure gardens where she enjoyed fireworks and lavish public breakfasts; and see the homes Austen and her family lived in, some of which are now open to the public.Jane Austen in Bath is the perfect companion to discovering the vibrant and fashionable social scene of Bath during both Austen’s time and today.
The rediscovery of Scotland's past and a wake-up call about its future, from a leading scholar-journalistScotland has a new Parliament and it has North Sea oil, but is it yet an independent, self-sustaining democracy? Is it a true nation? In Stone Voices, Neal Ascherson launches what he calls an imaginative invasion of his native land, searching for the relationships, themes, and fantasies that make up "Scotland."Beginning with a breathtaking portrait of the country's landscape, and of the way humanity has indelibly marked even its rockiest contours, Ascherson takes us on a journey through Scotland's past, interweaving his historical accounts with a rollicking report on a back-country bus expedition he joined during the 1997 referendum campaign that led to Scotland's first modern Parliament. He asked voters then what kind of country they hoped for, what they feared, and what they expected―questions that animate his book as well.In his search for a nation, Acherson explores many themes: the slow, hybrid formation of the Scottish people over centuries of successive immigrations; the way their most renowned intellectuals and writers came to hate the national church; the peculiar nature of their diaspora; the coexistence of their search for an "authentic" Scotland with the myths others create; and the Scots' proud sense of true independence. Stone Voices enlightens us about Scotland, about Europe, and about the conditions for freedom that we must all seek today."Greatly accessible compendium of scholarly passion." - Kirkus Reviews
This compact volume . . . delivers a solid, comprehensive and entertaining overview of Englands history . . . a delightful source.--Library Journal. A Travellers History of England deals with all the major periods of English history and gives a comprehensive and enjoyable survey of Englands past from prehistoric times to the present.
At Home with Beatrix Potter: The Creator of Peter Rabbit
By: Susan Denyer
As an artist and storyteller Beatrix Potter is world-famous. Of no less importance is her work in protecting some of the finest examples of the Lake District's landscapes and in creating romantic interiors and a beautiful garden at Hill Top, the farmhouse she bought at Near Sawrey in 1905. Her picturesque house and the breathtaking scenery inspired many of Beatrix's stories and drawings. This book looks at the relationship between the Lake District and her work and includes numerous extracts from her letters and diaries, as well as atmospheric photographs from the Beatrix Potter archive.
"Some particular books I found useful for A Game of Thrones and its sequels deserve mention... Life in a Medieval Castle and Life in a Medieval City, both by Joseph and Frances Gies." —George R.R. Martin, author of the series A Song of Ice and FireMedieval history comes alive in Joseph and Frances Gies's Life in a Medieval Castle, used as a research resource by George R. R. Martin in creating the world of A Game of Thrones.Newly reissued for the first time in decades, Life in a Medieval Castle is the bestselling classic that has introduced countless readers to the wonders of the Middle Ages. Focusing on a castle called Chepstow on the border between England and Wales, acclaimed Medievalists Joseph and Frances Gies offer an exquisite portrait of what day-to-day life was actually like during the era, and of the key role the castle played. The Gieses write eloquently about the many people whose lives revolved around the castle, from the lord and lady to the commoners of the surrounding village. We discover what lords and serfs alike would have worn, eaten, and done for leisure; the songs sung; and the codes of sexual conduct that maintained order. We learn of the essential role of honor in medieval culture, the initiation process undertaken by knights, and how castles attempted to keep the constant threats of outside violence at bay.Exhaustively researched and as engaging as any novel, Life in a Medieval Castle is the definitive text for anyone wishing to learn more about this fascinating era.
A Concise History of Wales (Cambridge Concise Histories)
By: Geraint H. Jenkins
Based on historical research and debates about Wales and Welshness, this volume offers an authoritative and accessible account of the period from Neanderthal times to the opening of the Senedd, the home of the National Assembly for Wales, in 2006. Within a remarkably brief and stimulating compass, Geraint H. Jenkins explores the emergence of Wales as a nation, its changing identities and values, and the transformations its people experienced and survived throughout the centuries. In the face of seemingly overwhelming odds, the Welsh never reconciled themselves to political, social and cultural subordination, and developed ingenious ways of maintaining a distinctive sense of their otherness. The book ends with the coming of political devolution and the emergence of a greater measure of cultural pluralism. Professor Jenkins's lavishly illustrated volume provides enthralling material for scholars, students, general readers, and travellers to Wales.
No city has a more dramatic history than London: fire, plague, and riots have shaken its spirit, but never brought it down. The extraordinary story unfolds here through a combination of artifacts, maps, documents, paintings, photographs, and unparalleled writing. From its origins as a Roman outpost to its role as a source of inspiration for Dickens, the city’s history is filled with tales of mayhem and power. New edition with facsimile documents now printed in the book.
Britons: Forging the Nation 1707-1837; Revised Edition
By: Linda Colley
How was Great Britain made? And what does it mean to be British? This brilliant and seminal book examines how a more cohesive British nation was invented after 1707 and how this new national identity was nurtured through war, religion, trade, and empire. Lavishly illustrated and powerful, Britons remains a major contribution to our understanding of Britain’s past, and continues to influence ongoing controversies about this polity’s survival and future. This edition contains an extensive new preface by the author. “A sweeping survey, . . . evocatively illustrated and engagingly written.”―Harriet Ritvo, New York Times Book Review “Challenging, fascinating, enormously well informed.”―John Barrell, London Review of Books “Linda Colley writes with clarity and grace...Her stimulating book will be, and deserves to be influential”―E. P. Thompson, Dissent Linda Colley is Shelby M. C. Davis 1958 Professor of History at Princeton University. Winner of the Wolfson History Prize A New York Times Notable Book
Welcoming 800,000 visitors each year, Stonehenge is the most famous pre-historic monument in all of Europe. It has inspired modern replicas throughout the world, including one constructed entirely of discarded refrigerators. This curious structure is the subject of cult worship, is a source of pride for Britons, and offers an intellectual challenge for academics. It has captured the imagination and the attention of thousands of people for thousands of years. Over the centuries, “experts” have tried to discover the meaning behind Stonehenge. While each new theory contradicts earlier speculation, every new proposal attributes a purpose to the site. From bards of the twelfth century to Black Sabbath, from William Blake to archaeologists of the twenty-first century, Stonehenge has embodied a wealth of intention. Was it designed for winter solstice, for goddess worship, or as a funerary temple? While all have been suggested, even “proven,” the mystery continues.Through the eyes of its most eloquent apologists, Rosemary Hill guides the reader on a tour of Stonehenge in all its cultural contexts, as a monument to many things―to Renaissance Humanism, Romantic despair, Victorian enterprise, and English Radicalism. In the end, the stones remain compelling because they remain mysterious―apparently simple yet incomprehensible―that is the wonder, the enchantment, of Stonehenge.
Scotland has been truly blessed with its great diversity of beautiful landscapes. God’s Own Country’ is surrounded by dramatic seascapes and peppered with fast-flowing rivers, mysterious lochs and high waterfalls. International award-winning photographer Shahbaz Majeed has captured the country’s essence in this collection of stunning images. From world-class cities to spectacular wave-battered cliffs and beaches, from majestic mountains to mist-shrouded glens, this book has it covered. For its proud inhabitants, long-term visitors and even casual tourists, Scotland in Photographs is a must-read. Scan through these photographs and you’ll quickly see why this country has such enduring appeal.
The Age of Shakespeare (Modern Library Chronicles)
By: Frank Kermode
In The Age of Shakespeare, Frank Kermode uses the history and culture of the Elizabethan era to enlighten us about William Shakespeare and his poetry and plays. Opening with the big picture of the religious and dynastic events that defined England in the age of the Tudors, Kermode takes the reader on a tour of Shakespeare’s England, vividly portraying London’s society, its early capitalism, its court, its bursting population, and its epidemics, as well as its arts—including, of course, its theater. Then Kermode focuses on Shakespeare himself and his career, all in the context of the time in which he lived. Kermode reads each play against the backdrop of its probable year of composition, providing new historical insights into Shakspeare’s characters, themes, and sources. The result is an important, lasting, and concise companion guide to the works of Shakespeare by one of our most eminent literary scholars.From the Hardcover edition.
The “spellbinding” (Los Angeles Times) second novel by the acclaimed author of The Songlines and In Patagonia Lewis and Benjamin Jones, identical twins, were born with the century on a farm on the English-Welsh border. For eighty years they live on the farm--sharing the same clothes, tilling the same soil, sleeping in the same bed. Their lives and the lives of their neighbors--farmers, drovers, clergymen, traders, coffin-makers--are only obliquely touched by the chaos of twentieth-century progress. Nevertheless, the twins' world--a few square miles of countryside--is rich in the oddities, the wonders, and the tragedies of the human experience. In this extraordinary novel, Bruce Chatwin has captured every nuance of the Welsh landscape and of the lives and souls of the people who live there.
Now in a special edition marking the 100th anniversary of the author’s birth, Muriel Spark’s classic novel, widely hailed as one of the 20th century’s best. At the staid Marcia Blaine School for Girls, in Edinburgh, Scotland, teacher extraordinaire Miss Jean Brodie is unmistakably, and outspokenly, in her prime. She is passionate in the application of her unorthodox teaching methods, in her attraction to the married art master, Teddy Lloyd, in her affair with the bachelor music master, Gordon Lowther, and—most important—in her dedication to "her girls," the students she selects to be her crème de la crème. Fanatically devoted, each member of the Brodie set—Eunice, Jenny, Mary, Monica, Rose, and Sandy—is "famous for something," and Miss Brodie strives to bring out the best in each one. Determined to instill in them independence, passion, and ambition, Miss Brodie advises her girls, "Safety does not come first. Goodness, Truth, and Beauty come first. Follow me." And they do. But one of them will betray her.
24x36 World Wall Map by Smithsonian Journeys - Tan Oceans Special Edition (24x36 Paper Folded)
By: Smithsonian Journeys
Swiftmaps is proud to partner with Smithsonian Journeys to bring a new and exciting World Map series to the American marketplace. Featuring eye-catching bold and vivid colors complemented with rich vintage tan ocean tones that will make this the perfect reference piece --- sure to stand-out and highlight any home or business wall. The precise detail and digital accuracy shows color-matching visual shaded 3D relief and other physical features without sacrificing the maps readability. Now printed on high-quality 80 lb. paper and professionally FOLDED in a compact 8x10 inch size. FEATURES: 1) Africa centered allowing viewers to see continents complete and intact 2) Clearly labeled country and city names for easy location 3) Latitude and longitude indications 4) Shaded relief of ocean and land topography 4) Desirable Miller Projection. The Smithsonian Journeys wall map series serve not only as a handy reference piece, but as an eye-catching accent for any room or office. NOTE: each map is professionally folded to 8x10 inches and when unfolded the map is 24 inches high and 36 inches wide.