In the middle of the period covered by this book, one of the most resonant accounts of urban life ever written was composed by the poet Dante. For all its startling vividness, however, Dante's evocation of the city in the Divine Comedy is not easy to interpret.
Once in a long while a work of such scope and magnitude is published that our assumptions about history - its events, its causes, its effects - are fundamentally challenged.
This is not such a work.
Despite over ten years of research on the German Democratic Republic since the fall of the Wall, there has been remarkably little work on 'ordinary East Germans', and so Mark Allinson of Bristol University is to be congratulated on his pioneering contribution.
A distinguished historian of British strategic decision-making in the Great War, David French has now turned his attention to the British army in the Second World War, a shift in focus already signalled by a number of journal articles that have appeared over the last few years.
It is one of the unfortunate realities of the twentieth century that the list of defining world political leaders is shared between those whose actions resulted directly in the greatest number of deaths and those who led the defence when their actions impinged on the rest of the world.
The seventeenth-century Verneys of Claydon House, Buckinghamshire are probably the best documented of all Stuart gentry families, their archives frequently exploited by historians. Their letters enliven general narratives from S.R.
This important new study demonstrates the growing maturity of naval history, for while at first sight it might appear to be aimed at a specialist audience, it skilfully uses a mastery of the specific to enhance our understanding of the general.
Any reviewer must experience an initial sense of admiration if not awe in picking up this 900-page magnum opus.
This book is impressively detailed, showing women's experience of demobilisation and the aftermath of armed conflict - an often neglected area of military study relating to women - as well as their feelings about morality, their male counterparts, uniforms, duties and a slew of other subjects.
Peter Russell's Henry 'the Navigator' is one of those rare books which has had classic, or rather legendary, status even before it was published.