Historical periods they don't teach enough in BOOKS?

May 2014
280
Portland, Oregon
#1
Inspired by EmperorTigerstar's "school" threads:

Which historical periods are so complex that you can't find books covering more than a narrow subject?
My vote would be the first half of the 16th century. The Italy of the Medici popes, Leonardo, and Michelangelo is a separate subject from the Reformation, which is a separate subject from the conquest of the New World. It leads to the impression that these events happened sequentially rather than all at the same time, influencing each other.
 
Mar 2014
8,881
Canterbury
#4
The Thirty Year's War. For a very, very important conflict, it's hard to find books written in English. Also, the Linn nan Creach - that delightful period of utter anarchy the Highlands of Scotland slipped into. It makes Mad Max look realistic. But historians do not touch it, unless they are reciting dry accounts of land grants and other stuff no-one besides themselves could care about.
 
Oct 2011
3,738
the middle ground
#5
The Thirty Year's War. For a very, very important conflict, it's hard to find books written in English.
Maybe no one wants to follow C. V. Wedgewood? :D
The only name that comes to my (admittedly shallow) mind is Geoffrey Parker - and he concentrates more on Flanders and the Dutch revolt rather than the war in the Holy Roman Empire.
 

Salah

Forum Staff
Oct 2009
23,284
Maryland
#6
Maybe it's different in European bookstores, but in the USA, European history in the period between 1815 and 1914 is almost entirely a blank space. The American Civil War and the Franco-Prussian War, for instance, occurred around the same time and occupy a comparable degree of overall historical relevance. Yet more has been written in English about obscure Civil War generals than about the entire Franco-Prussian conflict.

I'm not simply harping on military history, either. Material about Victoria and Napoleon III is uncommon, and books about most of their peers are basically non-existent.

I like the Victorian/Belle Epoque era on both sides of the Atlantic - but there's a huge disparity between what has been written about Victorian America and Victorian Europe.
 

Salah

Forum Staff
Oct 2009
23,284
Maryland
#7
Here's another nomination - South American history. In the English language, it is almost entirely ignored, apart from the Spanish conquest of Tawantinsuyu (and even that gets minimal press, really).
 
Jul 2009
9,916
#8
The Thirty Year's War. For a very, very important conflict, it's hard to find books written in English. Also, the Linn nan Creach - that delightful period of utter anarchy the Highlands of Scotland slipped into. It makes Mad Max look realistic. But historians do not touch it, unless they are reciting dry accounts of land grants and other stuff no-one besides themselves could care about.
Here are some that I have: :)

C. V. Wedgwood, The Thirty Years War (1938). Dated but well written.

Peter Wilson, The Thirty Years War: Europe's Tragedy (2009).

Marco van der Hoeven, Exercise of Arms: Warfare in the Netherlands, 1568-1648 (1997).

David Parott, Richlieu's Army, 1624-1642 (2001).

John Lynn, Giant of the Grand Siecle, The French Army, 1610-1715 (1997).

Geoffrey Parker, ed., The Thirty Years War (1984/1987).

Steve Murdoch, ed., Scotland and the Thirty Years War, 1618-1648 (2001).

Thomas Barker, Army, Aristocracy, Monarchy: Essays on War Government and Society in Austria, 1618-1780 (1982).

Michael Roberts, Gustavus Adolphus, A History of Sweden, 1611-1632, Vol. II (1958).

Michael Roberts, The Swedish Imperial Experience, 1560-1718 (1979/1984). Not all TYW, but some good stuff.

There are also William Guthrie's two volumes on the battles of the TYW (mostly army lists and other minutiae), and G. Parker's Army of Flanders and the Spanish Road.

As far as eye witness accounts, there are Geoff Mortimer, ed., Eyewitness Accounts of the Thirty Years War 1618-1648 (2002) and of course H.J.C. von Grimmelshausen, Simplicissimus.

Many of these are published by Cambridge and by other academic publishers. There are more in good libraries; too much to read actually.

***

EDIT: I do not have it, but there is an excellent study of the conduct of warfare in the TYW by Fritz Redlich, The German Military Enterpriser and His Work Force, Vol. I (1964).

Also recently published is another good one on how the war was financed and BY WHOM: David Parrott, The Business of War: Military Enterprise (etc.) (2012). I am in the middle of that one.
 
Last edited:
Oct 2011
3,738
the middle ground
#9
Here are some that I have: :)

C. V. Wedgwood, The Thirty Years War (1938). Dated but well written.

Peter Wilson, The Thirty Years War: Europe's Tragedy (2009).

Marco van der Hoeven, Exercise of Arms: Warfare in the Netherlands, 1568-1648 (1997).

David Parott, Richlieu's Army, 1624-1642 (2001).

John Lynn, Giant of the Grand Siecle, The French Army, 1610-1715 (1997).

Geoffrey Parker, ed., The Thirty Years War (1984/1987).

Steve Murdoch, ed., Scotland and the Thirty Years War, 1618-1648 (2001).

Thomas Barker, Army, Aristocracy, Monarchy: Essays on War Government and Society in Austria, 1618-1780 (1982).

Michael Roberts, Gustavus Adolphus, A History of Sweden, 1611-1632, Vol. II (1958).

Michael Roberts, The Swedish Imperial Experience, 1560-1718 (1979/1984). Not all TYW, but some good stuff.

There are also William Guthrie's two volumes on the battles of the TYW (mostly army lists and other minutiae), and G. Parker's Army of Flanders and the Spanish Road.

As far as eye witness accounts, there are Geoff Mortimer, ed., Eyewitness Accounts of the Thirty Years War 1618-1648 (2002) and of course H.J.C. von Grimmelshausen, Simplicissimus.

Many of these are published by Cambridge and by other academic publishers. There are more in good libraries; too much to read actually.

***

EDIT: I do not have it, but there is an excellent study of the conduct of warfare in the TYW by Fritz Redlich, The German Military Enterpriser and His Work Force, Vol. I (1964).

Also recently published is another good one on how the war was financed and BY WHOM: David Parrott, The Business of War: Military Enterprise (etc.) (2012). I am in the middle of that one.
Good list, thanks.
Would that be the Michael Roberts of "military revolution" thesis fame?
 

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