Books

 

THE ORIGINAL BOOK

In this fascinating and original new book, Sam Willis and James Daybell lead us on a journey of historical discovery that tackles some of the greatest historical themes- from the Tudors to the Second World War, from the Roman Empire to the Victorians – but via entirely unexpected subjects.

In these pages, you will find out how the history of the beard is connected to the Crimean War; how the history of paperclips is all about the Stasi; how the history of cats is all about the French Revolution. And who knew that Heinrich Himmler, Tutankhamun and the history of needlework are linked to napalm and Victorian orphans?

Taking the reader on an enthralling and extraordinary journey through thirty different topics, Histories of the Unexpected not only presents a new way of thinking about the past, but also reveals the everyday world around us as never before.

AND NOW…Histories of the Unexpected THE SERIES!

What happens if you apply this idea to well-known periods of the past?

  • Histories of the Unexpected: The Tudors
  • Histories of the Unexpected: The Vikings
  • Histories of the Unexpected: The World War Two
  • Histories of the Unexpected: The Romans

 

THE TUDORS

Traditionally, the Tudors have been understood in a straightforward way but the period really comes alive if you take an unexpected approach to its history. Yes, Tudor monarchs, exploration and religion have a fascinating history…but so too does cannibalism, shrinking, bells, hats, mirrors, monsters, faces, letter-writing and accidents!

THE VIKINGS

Traditionally, the Vikings have been understood in a straightforward way – but the period really comes alive if you take an unexpected approach to its history. Yes, ships, raiding and trade have a fascinating history…but so too do hair, break-ins, toys, teeth, mischief, luck and silk!

THE ROMANS

Traditionally, the Romans have been understood in a straightforward way but the period really comes alive if you take an unexpected approach to its history. Yes, emperors, the development of civilisation and armies all have a fascinating history…but so too do tattoos, collecting, fattening, recycling, walking, poison, fish, inkwells and wicked stepmothers!

WORLD WAR II

Traditionally, the Second World War have been understood in a straightforward way but the period really comes alive if you take an unexpected approach to its history. Yes, battles, bombs and bravery all have a fascinating history…but so too do handkerchiefs, furniture, Mozart, insects, blood, mothers, suicide, darkness, cancer and puppets!

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