From "Abbeys," monastic organizations that were important in local-level medieval government, to "Zutphen, Battle of," where the great poet Sir Philip Sidney lost his life in 1586, this 1,000-plus-page tome offers an erudite register of all things British. Editor John Cannon's emphases are sometimes idiosyncratic--the entry for the Beatles, inarguably influential in British and world history, is as short as that for "beagling," a particular kind of rabbit hunting.The Oxford Companion to British Historyis an invaluable and well-written resource for Anglophiles nonetheless.
This massive 1,000+ page guide to all things British is a solemn, sometimes irreverent dissection of the United Kingdom. More than just a reference work describing the doings of politicians and generals. This companion carefully moves into areas not normally covered by such works. There are entries that discuss various major industries - shipbuilding, mining, gas and cotton - and on aspects of private and domestic life, like childbirth, housing, health and food. While the growth, meaning and importance … more