Rebellion: The History of England from James I to the Glorious Revolution

Rebellion: The History of England from James I to the Glorious Revolution Review

Peter Ackroyd has been praised as one of the greatest living chroniclers of Britain and its people. In Rebellion, he continues his dazzling account of the history of England, beginning with the progress south of the Scottish king, James VI, who on the death of Elizabeth I became the first Stuart king of England, and ending with the deposition and flight into exile of his grandson, James II.

The Stuart monarchy brought together the two nations of England and Scotland into one realm, albeit a realm still marked by political divisions that echo to this day. More importantly, perhaps, the Stuart era was marked by the cruel depredations of civil war, and the killing of a king. Shrewd and opinionated, James I was eloquent on matters as diverse as theology, witchcraft, and the abuses of tobacco, but his attitude to the English parliament sowed the seeds of the division that would split the country during the reign of his hapless heir, Charles I. Ackroyd offers a brilliant, warts-and-all portrayal of Charles's nemesis, Oliver Cromwell, Parliament's great military leader and England's only dictator, who began his career as a political liberator but ended it as much of a despot as "that man of blood," the king he executed.

England's turbulent seventeenth century is vividly laid out before us, but so too is the cultural and social life of the period, notable for its extraordinarily rich literature, including Shakespeare's late masterpieces, Jacobean tragedy, the poetry of John Donne and Milton and Thomas Hobbes's great philosophical treatise, Leviathan. In addition to its account of England's royalty, Rebellion also gives us a very real sense of the lives of ordinary English men and women, lived out against a backdrop of constant disruption and uncertainty.

Title:Rebellion: The History of England from James I to the Glorious Revolution
Edition Language:English

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    Rebellion: The History of England from James I to the Glorious Revolution Reviews

  • Jayson

    (B+) 77% | GoodNotes: Women have scant presence in this volume, and aside from religious allegiance, are given little purpose in the story....

  • Leanda Lisle

    If you are bored of the Tudors, then the Stuarts are what you have been waiting for. With their gay lovers, horrible murders, extravagant queens, and glorious revolutions, the dynasty offers enough sc...

  • Susanna - Censored by GoodReads

    Enjoyable, but the historian in me really does wish he'd cite his sources....

  • Bettie

    (view spoiler)[ Bettie's Books (hide spoiler)]...

  • Yzabel Ginsberg

    (I got an ARC of this book courtesy of the publisher through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.)I like to say that you can't really go wrong with Peter Ackroyd, and it seems to be once again...

  • Christine

    Disclaimer: ARC read via Netgalley. I can hear you wondering. You’ve been wondering for the past three years. Do we really need another history of England? There are hundreds, thousands, maybe even...

  • Bryan Alkire

    Update, I give this a 3 Enjoyable history for the most part. This is a very old topic with plenty written on it since the late 17th century. The book moves along pretty well although the literary anal...

  • Kirsti

    So far, I'm amused that James I referred to his heir as "Baby Charles" even when the latter was a grown man about to be married off. I really like the author's inclusion of poems, songs, pamphlets, an...

  • Brian Willis

    Another sterling, straightforward account of the history of England, this time covering the years of the Stuart kings, from 1603-1689. The best section is by definition the Civil War era, the slow dow...

  • Diana

    Review to Come...