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London: A Social and Cultural History, 1550-1750 Hardcover – July 9, 2012

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 438 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press (July 9, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521896525
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521896528
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.4 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #508,688 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Bucholz and Ward paint a vivid picture of the vibrant, growing city, warts and all ... As an account of how and why London is London ... this is the best book to come along in a generation."
British Heritage

"Bucholz and Ward explore the rise of Europe's preeminent entrepôt and metropolis in this engaging account of London and its people. Their superlative integration of the worlds of high culture and popular experience will enrich the study of English literature, society, and politics from the Reformation through the Enlightenment."
Gary De Krey, Professor of British and European History, St Olaf College

"There is a big story here - how, between 1550 and 1750, London became a great world capital - but there are also a thousand small and even more wonderful stories about the men and women who walked the city's streets. Their experiences, their hopes, and their disappointments come vividly to life in this compulsively readable account."
Lena Cowen Orlin, author of Locating Privacy in Tudor London

"This book is a must for anyone interested in London. It covers the period when London rose from being a quite important Northern European trading center to become the greatest international port in the world at the hub of not just the emerging British Empire but European and North American trade. The internationally connected city, at the center of trade, determined the character of the city it has become today, including the weight of its international finance and trade sectors, its globally diverse population and the worldwide influences on its heritage and contemporary culture."
Ken Livingstone, first Mayor of London

"A compass to navigate in the dark, an A to Z of London's past, from beggars to kings, from Shakespeare to Dr Johnson; Bucholz and Ward have created a compelling picture of the Great Wen in all its premodern glory."
Tim Hitchcock, Professor of Eighteenth-Century History, University of Hertfordshire, and Co-Director of Old Bailey Online

"... a serious and remarkably successful attempt to describe how the city reached the cusp of "modernity", how it emerged from relative obscurity in the middle of the sixteenth century to become, about 200 years later, "the greatest city in Europe", with a population whose distinctive traits are recognizable to this day."
Jonathan Yardley, The Washington Post

"Grounded in the latest scholarship and crafted in engaging prose, this wbook will instruct and delight generations of students and a broader reading public alike. Highly recommended."

"... I can give it a strong recommendation."
Tyler Cowen,

"A fantastic resource for students and scholars of London's diverse and changing communities during the early modern period. Handsomely illustrated with maps, engravings, etchings, paintings and news-sheet covers, the book takes a holistic approach to its subject."
Adam Hansen, The Literary London Journal

"... Robert Bucholz and Joseph Ward have achieved their aim of writing an accessible work which will be of particular value to newcomers to metropolitan history."
P. Gauci, The English Historical Review

"... an impressive resource: Bucholz and Ward synthesize the political and cultural changes they examine with an arsenal of statistics, references, and official and literary quotes. The authors have compiled a comprehensive academic study, a vital resource for scholars of all stages of research in early modern British (and European) geography, architecture and the arts, cultural trends, and governmental and social hierarchy."
Sixteenth Century Journal

Book Description

This book is a history of London from 1550 and 1750, the period of its rise to world-wide prominence. Incorporating recent work in urban history, accounts by contemporary Londoners and tourists, and fictional works featuring the city, it examines how London came to dominate the economic, political, social and cultural life of the British Isles as never before nor since.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Christian Schlect VINE VOICE on July 19, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Readers interested in old London will want to buy and read this fine work of historical synthesis. In fact, it is a volume that will be enjoyed by those who wish to understand--not only London--but also the very underpinnings of much of modern Western civilization.

London is an especially good city to read about for all those who simply enjoy the English language, since so many still-used words and phrases originate from this political, religious, commercial, and literary center.

Professors Bucholz and Ward are to be commended for briskly moving the pace of their book's narrative along, while avoiding academic jargon.

(I recommend all that have not read the works of James Boswell or Samuel Pepys to do so immediately.)
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Taylor on February 6, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Prof Bucholz has command of his subject matter and can tell the story well. I bought this book because I have read others of his and have taken a Teaching Company course that he gave. I have refused to loan out that course because it is so satisfying.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By C. Brand on February 5, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
An absolutely magnificent history and guide to London. Worth reading for anyone interested in the history of England or the London of Pepys and Samuel Johnson
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