The aim of Roderick McLean's book is to assert the continuing importance of monarchs in European politics in the decades immediately before 1914.
Splendid Isolation? Britain, the Balance of Power and the Origins of the First World War / John Charmley
John Charmley is, of course, no stranger to controversy.... How tempting it would be to begin a review of his latest book in this vein.
The Parliament Rolls are the principal record of the meetings of English Parliaments from the 13th to the early 16th centuries. Their importance to scholars of medieval England has long been recognised; between 1776 and 1777 they were edited, under the direction of the Reverend John Strachey, and published as the six-volume edition of Rotuli Parliamentorum.
Dialogus de Scaccario, and Constitutio Domus Regis/The Dialogue of the Exchequer, and The Establishment of the Royal Household / eds. Emilie Amt, Stephen Church
The present volume marks the latest in a succession of modern editions and/or translations of Richard fitzNigel's Dialogus de Scaccario and the Constitutio Domus Regis, stretching back in the case of the former to the edition by A. Hughes, C. G. Crump, and C. Johnson published in 1902.
If there is a popular image of George II, it derives from the Whig historians of the 19th century, who established him as the counterpoint to their chief subject of 18th-century interest, his grandson and successor, George III.
A Man and an Institution: Sir Maurice Hankey, the Cabinet Secretariat and the Custody of Cabinet Secrecy / John F. Naylor
A Man and an Institution is in reality three books combined into one. It is, first, a contribution to a biography of Sir Maurice Hankey, the first Cabinet Secretary; second, a history of the origins of the Cabinet Office and its development until Hankey’s retirement in 1938; and third, an account of how the Cabinet Office came to be the guardian of official secrecy.
Complementing the growing academic interest in pre-modern diplomatic ceremonial, Jan Hennings’ Russia and Courtly Europe explores the relationship between Russia and Europe beyond the traditional portrayal of political incompatibility and clash of cultures from the Peace of Westphalia (1648) until the end of Peter I’s reign in 1725.
Voices of Conscience: Royal Confessors and Political Counsel in Seventeenth-Century Spain and France / Nicole Reinhardt
As suggested by its subtitle, Nicole Reinhardt's fine new book undertakes a double mission. On the one hand, this is a study of a specific practice and the men who participated in it.
As Professor Gunn observes in his foreword, this book has been a long time coming: first mooted in fact in 1985 (a very suitable date). This has had two significant consequences which I shall discuss sequentially.
The consular official has often been a derided figure in the historiography of foreign services, often seen as uneducated, involved in commerce, and corrupt, perhaps personified in the figure of ‘Charles Fortnum’ in Graham Greene’s spy novel The Honorary Consul.(1) Such criticisms were often levelled at consuls.