The Shortest History of Europe
A concise review of the European history, a unique angle has been adopted through the writing. The author explains the dreary story with profundity and an easy-to-understand approach.
In The Shortest History of Europe, John Hirst takes us on a fascinating journey through antiquity, the Middle Ages and beyond, bringing European civilisation to life in all its peculiarity and exuberance. Beginning with Greek and Roman learning, Judeo-Christian religion and a Germanic warrior culture, it discusses how this unlikely alliance at the heart of European civilisation came about, producing empires and city-states, inspiring conquests and crusades, and giving rise to such figures as benign emperors, belligerent popes, chivalrous knights and enlightened citizens. Accompanied by lively illustrations and related with clarity and wit, The Shortest History of Europe tells the remarkable story of our shared civilisation.
John Hirst is a leading historian of Australia. His books broke new ground on the convict period and on political and constitutional topics. In this one, published after his retirement, he covers the sweep of European history in only 150 pages. (An outrageous achievement, of course, but not quite as condensed as the Reduced Shakespeare Company's achievement in presenting all the plays in one evening at the threatre.) Based on a series of lectures, this book tells the story of what it means to be European. An easy read, highly recommended to all of us who live in what were once colonies, to remind us of our European heritage. The book deserves a huge readership. No I'm not a friend of John Hirst, and no, I'm not a publisher or bookseller. Just a fan of engaging history.