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Pax Britannica
  • ISBN: 9780571290710
  • Pages: 560
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber
  • Binding: Paperback

Pax Britannica

The Climax of an Empire


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Volume II of Jan Morris’s Pax Britannica trilogy

Pax Britannica: The Climax of an Empire is the second instalment of the trilogy of the same name by Jan Morris. It captures the British nation at the very height of its vigour and self-satisfaction, imposing on the rest of the world its traditions and tastes, its idealists and rascals.

This second recreates the British Empire at its dazzling climax – the Diamond Jubilee on Queen Victoria in 1897 was celebrated as a festival of imperial strength, unity, and splendour. This classic work of history portrays the confusion of a nation filled with brilliance and splendour as well as poverty and squalor.

Jan Morris’s trilogy includes Heaven’s Command: An Imperial Progress, Pax Britannica: The Climax of an Empire and Farewell the Trumpets: An Imperial RetreatTogether these three works of history trace the dramatic rise and fall of the British Empire, from the accession of Queen Victoria in 1837 to the death of Winston Churchill in 1965.

‘In scholarship and humour this portrait of the British Empire before its decline and fall might, without undue optimism, be placed upon the same shelf as Edward Gibbon’s history. As a survey of its subject, I doubt that Pax Britannica can ever, in this generation, be surpassed.’ Financial Times

‘One of our finest writers on Empire – alive to its glory, yet with a beady eye for the corruptions and failures which were at its heart, along with the dreams.’ Observer

Dominion over Palm and Pine

When people ask me what they should read about the Empire, I suggest they go to the five volumes of the Oxford History of the British Empire, where they will find a mass of recent research...

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