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By: Charles Kingsley (1819-1875)

Madam How and Lady Why by Charles Kingsley Madam How and Lady Why

Did you ever wish you knew how to explain natural phenomena such as earthquakes and volcanoes to your children? Search no more, this book has all the answers (at least all the ones that were known in 1869) and gives them in a pedagogical way. Listed on the Ambleside homeschooling list.

By: Thucydides (Θουκυδίδης) (c. 460-395)

The History of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides (Θουκυδίδης) The History of the Peloponnesian War

The History of the Peloponnesian War is an account of the Peloponnesian War in Ancient Greece, fought between the Peloponnesian League (led by Sparta) and the Delian League (led by Athens) in the 5th Century BC. It was written by Thucydides, an Athenian general who served in the war. It is widely considered a classic and regarded as one of the earliest scholarly works of history. The History is divided into eight books. These book divisions are the work of editors in later antiquity. W. R. Connor [...] describes Thucydides as “an artist who responds to, selects and skillfully arranges his material, and develops its symbolic and emotional potential.”

By: Leon Trotsky (1879-1940)

From October to Brest-Litovsk by Leon Trotsky From October to Brest-Litovsk

This account by Trotsky is of the events in Russia from the October Revolution of 1917 in Petrograd, to his signing of the Brest-Litovsk treaty with Germany on 3rd March 1918 which took Russia out of the First World War. The treaty exacted heavy losses for Russia in terms of annexations of land and financial indemnities to Germany. In this extended essay, Trotsky argues the reasons as to why he decided to sign what appears to be a disastrous agreement for Russia.

By: Publius Cornelius Tacitus

Germania by Publius Cornelius Tacitus Germania

The Germania (Latin: De Origine et situ Germanorum, literally The Origin and Situation of the Germans), written by Gaius Cornelius Tacitus around 98, is an ethnographic work on the Germanic tribes outside the Roman Empire. Germania fits squarely within the tradition established by authors from Herodotus to Julius Caesar. Tacitus himself had already written a similar essay on the lands and tribes of Britannia in his Agricola. The Germania begins with a description of the lands, laws, and customs...

The Annals by Publius Cornelius Tacitus The Annals

The Annals was Tacitus’ final work, covering the period from the death of Augustus Caesar in the year 14. He wrote at least 16 books, but books 7-10 and parts of books 5, 6, 11 and 16 are missing. Book 6 ends with the death of Tiberius and books 7-12 presumably covered the reigns of Caligula and Claudius. The remaining books cover the reign of Nero, perhaps until his death in June 68 or until the end of that year, to connect with the Histories. The second half of book 16 is missing, ending with the events of the year 66...

Agricola by Publius Cornelius Tacitus Agricola

The Agricola (Latin: De vita et moribus Iulii Agricolae, lit. On the life and character of Julius Agricola) is a book by the Roman historian Tacitus, written c 98, which recounts the life of his father-in-law Gnaeus Julius Agricola, an eminent Roman general. It also covers, briefly, the geography and ethnography of ancient Britain. As in the Germania, Tacitus favorably contrasts the liberty of the native Britons to the corruption and tyranny of the Empire; the book also contains eloquent and vicious polemics against the rapacity and greed of Rome. This translation by Alfred John Church and William Jackson Brodribb, was first published in 1877.

Tacitus' Histories by Publius Cornelius Tacitus Tacitus' Histories

The Histories was written between 100 and 110 A.D. It covered the Year of Four Emperors following the downfall of Nero, the rise of Vespasian, and the rule of the Flavian Dynasty up to the death of Domitian. Only the first four books and 26 chapters of the fifth book have survived, covering the year 69 and the first part of 70. The work is believed to have continued up to the death of Domitian on September 18, 96. As a prelude to the account of Titus’s suppression of the Great Jewish Revolt, Book 5 features a short ethnographic survey of the ancient Jews as seen from the Roman point of view. This translation was first published in 1912

By: Alexis de Tocqueville (1805-1859)

Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville Democracy in America

Arguably, one of the most influential and insightful pieces of work concerned with American political life, Democracy in America directs itself towards American politics and society, and is considered to be one the best books written on the subject. Published in 2 volumes, in 1835 and 1840, Tocqueville records his findings after studying the thriving nation in his nine month exploratory journey. The young French aristocrat first came to America on an official assignment to study the American penal system, but instead used this as a pretext to study American society...

By: Herodotus of Halicarnassus (440 BC)

Herodotus' Histories by Herodotus of Halicarnassus Herodotus' Histories

The Histories of Herodotus of Halicarnassus is considered the first work of history in Western literature. Written about 440 BC, the Histories tell the story of the war between the Persian Empire and the Greek city-states in the 5th century BC. Herodotus traveled extensively around the ancient world, conducting interviews and collecting stories for his book. The rise of the Persian Empire is chronicled, and the causes for the conflict with Greece. Herodotus treats the conflict as an ideological one, frequently contrasting the absolute power of the Persian king with the democratic government of the Greeks.

By: John H. Haaren (1855-1916)

Famous Men of the Middle Ages by John H. Haaren Famous Men of the Middle Ages

“THE study of history, like the study of a landscape, should begin with the most conspicuous features. Not until these have been fixed in memory will the lesser features fall into their appropriate places and assume their right proportions. The famous men of ancient and modern times are the mountain peaks of history. It is logical then that the study of history should begin with the biographies of these men. Not only is it logical; it is also pedagogical. Experience has proven that in order to attract and hold the child’s attention each conspicuous feature of history presented to him should have an individual for its center...

Famous Men of Greece by John H. Haaren Famous Men of Greece

Famous Men of Greece is a series of biographical sketches written for the purpose of making the study of history lively and interesting by giving insight into the men who lived during this time.

Famous Men of Rome by John H. Haaren Famous Men of Rome

Famous Men of Rome is a series of biographical sketches written for the purpose of making the study of history lively and interesting by giving insight into the men who lived during this time.

By: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930)

Sir Nigel by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Sir Nigel

By 1348 the House of Loring has fallen on hard times. Together, the Black Death and the greedy monks of Waverley have bled away all of the Loring wealth. Even the manor house will have to go to pay their debts.Then a chance encounter with the King of England provides Nigel, the last of the Lorings, with the chance to seek his fortune in the constant wars with France. But more importantly for Nigel it also means that he may be able to do the "three small deeds" that will show he is worthy to ask for the hand of the Lady Mary in marriage.Filled with chivalry, humour, and high romance, Sir Nigel is simply a rattling good yarn.

Book cover Visit to Three Fronts: June 1916

In the course of May 1916, the Italian authorities expressed a desire that some independent observer from Great Britain should visit their lines and report his impressions. It was at the time when our brave and capable allies had sustained a set-back in the Trentino owing to a sudden concentration of the Austrians, supported by very heavy artillery. I was asked to undertake this mission. In order to carry it out properly, I stipulated that I should be allowed to visit the British lines first, so that I might have some standard of comparison...

By: Henry Handel Richardson (1870-1946)

Australia Felix by Henry Handel Richardson Australia Felix

The story of Richard Mahony, a doctor trained in Edinburgh who comes to Ballarat in the gold rush of the 1850s. At first he runs a shop but later he marries and returns to medical practice. His story is interwoven with that of his wife’s brothers and sister. Even after his medical practice becomes successful he is still unhappy living in the colony and decides to return home to Britain. Richard is a restless irritable man whose character is said to be based on the author’s own father. This book is the first of the trilogy ‘The Fortunes of Richard Mahony’, but stands well on its own...

By: Gaston Maspero (1846-1916)

History Of Egypt, Chaldea, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria by Gaston Maspero History Of Egypt, Chaldea, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria

History Of Egypt, Chaldæa, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria is the masterwork of one of the fathers of modern egyptology. This work, in twelve volumes, was translated from the French original, “Histoire ancienne des peuples de l’Orient classique” and published in 1903-1904. Maspero was a largely self-taught master of hieroglyphic translation. In November 1880, he was placed at the head of a French archeological mission, which developed later into the Institut Français d’Archéologie Orientale...

By: Bertrand Russell

Book cover Proposed Roads to Freedom

Bertrand Russell, 3rd Earl Russell (1872 – 1970) was a British philosopher, logician, mathematician, political activist and Nobel laureate. He led the British “revolt against idealism” in the early 1900s and is considered one of the founders of analytic philosophy along with his predecessor Gottlob Frege and his protégé Ludwig Wittgenstein. In this book, written in 1918, he offers his assessment of three competing streams in the thought of the political left: Marxian socialism, anarchism and syndicalism.

By: Flavius Josephus (37 - c.100)

The Antiquities of the Jews by Flavius Josephus The Antiquities of the Jews

Antiquities of the Jews was a work published by the important Jewish historian Flavius Josephus about the year 93 or 94. It is a history of the Jewish people, written in Greek for Josephus' gentile patrons. Beginning with the creation of Adam and Eve, it follows the events of the historical books of the Hebrew Bible, but sometimes omits or adds information.Volume 1 contains Books 1-5 and ends with the dedication of Samuel and death of Eli the priest.

Minor Works of Josephus by Flavius Josephus Minor Works of Josephus

There are 3 parts to this collection.(1) Against Apion is a two-volume defense of Judaism as classical religion and philosophy, stressing its antiquity, as opposed to what Josephus claimed was the relatively more recent tradition of the Greeks. Some anti-Judean allegations ascribed by Josephus to the Greek writer Apion, and myths accredited to Manetho are also addressed.(2) Discourse To The Greeks Concerning Hades describes the author's views on the afterlife against the prevailing view of the "Greeks" (i...

By: David Hume

History of England from the Invasion of Julius Caesar to the Revolution of 1688, Volume 1A by David Hume History of England from the Invasion of Julius Caesar to the Revolution of 1688, Volume 1A

David Hume is one of the great philosophers of the Western intellectual tradition. His philosophical writings earned him lasting fame and renown; his historical writing earned his bread and butter. His "The History of England from the Invasion of Julius Caesar to the Revolution of 1688", published between 1754 and 1764, was immensely popular and Hume wrote that "the copy-money given me by the booksellers much exceeded any thing formerly known in England; I was become not only independent, but opulent...

By: John Graham Gillam

Gallipoli Diary by John Graham Gillam Gallipoli Diary

World War I was one of the most savage and brutal wars in human history. There were millions of deaths and the tragedy was compounded by the fact that these were all young men in the flower of youth. Both sides suffered heavy losses and this war is also notable for being one in which many new and terrible weapons were introduced by both to slaughter each other. Gallipoli Diary by John Graham Gillam is one of the many personal narratives written by survivors of this bloody conflict. Published in 1918, when memories of the war were still fresh in the minds of those who had experienced it, it is indeed a slice of history for modern-day readers who encounter it nearly a hundred years later.

By: Frederick Douglass (1818-1895)

Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass by Frederick Douglass Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass

Frederick Douglass was born into slavery on a Maryland plantation. He faced hardship as a child, but later encountered owners who were relatively liberal and allowed him to learn to read, write and be in contact with freed slaves. At the age of 20, he escaped from the plantation and made his way to New York. Though he remained a fugitive, he married and changed his name to avoid being caught. He continued his education and became involved in the Abolitionist Movement. He began touring the country, speaking passionately about the unjust, cruel and inhuman practice of slavery...

By: Frederick Douglass (c.1818-1895)

Book cover Collected Articles of Frederick Douglass

These two articles were reproduced as an e-book by Project Gutenberg in 2008 to supplement "...several articles by Frederick Douglass, whose larger work was presented in book form as a January, 1993 Project Gutenberg Etext to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. Day...." The articles narrated here are "My Escape From Slavery" (1881) and "Reconstruction" (1866).

By: Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832)

Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott Ivanhoe

Medieval England in the 12th century. The evil Prince John rules England in place of his brother, the noble Richard the Lionheart, who is being held in an Austrian prison by Duke Leopold of Austria, while returning from one of his Crusades. Under the avaricious and Machiavellian John, the Norman aristocrats are in constant conflict with the native Saxon people. Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott is set in these turbulent times. The eponymous hero, Wilfred of Ivanhoe, the son of a Saxon nobleman has been disinherited by his father for following King Richard into war...

Rob Roy by Sir Walter Scott Rob Roy

Rob Roy is a historical novel by Walter Scott. It is narrated by Frank Osbaldistone, the son of an English merchant who travels first to the North of England, and subsequently to the Scottish Highlands to collect a debt stolen from his father. On the way he encounters the larger-than-life title character of Rob Roy MacGregor. Though Rob Roy is not the lead character (in fact the narrative does not move to Scotland until half way through the book) his personality and actions are key to the development of the novel.

Kenilworth by Sir Walter Scott Kenilworth

An Elizabethan era historical novel by Scotland’s master of fiction, Sir Walter Scott. With a cast of historical and created characters, including the Queen herself, Scott presents the sad history and tragic consequences of the secretive marriage of young Amy Robsart and the Earl of Leicester. (Summary by SK)

By: Rabindranath Tagore

The Home and the World by Rabindranath Tagore The Home and the World

Rabindranath Tagore (1861–1941), also known by the sobriquet Gurudev, was a Bengali poet, Brahmo religionist, visual artist, playwright, novelist, and composer whose works reshaped Bengali literature and music in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. He became Asia’s first Nobel laureate when he won the 1913 Nobel Prize in Literature. The Home and the World is a 1916 novel, set in the estate of the rich Bengali noble Nikhil. He lives happily with his beautiful wife Bimala until the appearance of his friend and radical revolutionist, Sandip...

By: George Edmundson (1848-1930)

History of Holland by George Edmundson History of Holland

The title, “History of Holland,” given to this volume is fully justified by the predominant part which the great maritime province of Holland took in the War of Independence and throughout the whole of the subsequent history of the Dutch state and people.

By: Edward Channing (1856-1931)

A Short History of the United States by Edward Channing A Short History of the United States

First published in 1908, A Short History of The United States by Edward Channing aims to provide a compact and concise account of the events that went into the making of the United States of America. Divided into 45 short chapters which are laid out point-wise, the book is designed as a school text book. Each chapter has a section at the end with a set of questions regarding the facts given in it. Beginning with theories about the first European who may have “discovered” the North American...

By: Logan Marshall

The Sinking of the Titanic and Great Sea Disasters by Logan Marshall The Sinking of the Titanic and Great Sea Disasters

Logan Marshall's book "The Sinking of the Titanic and Great Sea Disasters" gives readers a first-hand account of the greatest sea disaster of all time straight from the survivors of the ill-fated sunken ship. Unlike many of the books about the Titanic that was written recently, Logan Marshall was fortunate that he was able to interview the survivors of the Titanic and access to all the important documents about the ship, including the diagrams, maps and actual photographs related to the disaster...

By: Frank Richard Stockton

Round-about Rambles by Frank Richard Stockton Round-about Rambles

ROUND-ABOUT RAMBLES, In Lands of FACT AND FANCYBY FRANK R STOCKTONPREFACECome along, boys and girls! We are off on our rambles. But please do not ask me where we are going. It would delay us very much if I should postpone our start until I had drawn you a map of the route, with all the stopping-places set down. We have far to go, and a great many things to see, and it may be that some of you will be very tired before we get through. If so, I shall be sorry; but it will be a comfort to think that none of us need go any farther than we choose...

By: Thomas D’Arcy McGee

Popular History of Ireland by Thomas D’Arcy McGee Popular History of Ireland

Book 1: Thomas D’Arcy McGee was an Irish refugee and a father of the Canadian confederation. His work on Irish history is comprehensive, encompassing twelve books; Book 1 begins with the earliest modern settlement of Ireland and ends with the 8th century.


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