Arguably the leading British historian of his generation, Hugh Trevor-Roper (1914–2003) is most celebrated and admired as the author of essays. This volume brings together some of the most original and radical writings of his career—many hitherto inaccessible, one never before published, all demonstrating his piercing intellect, urbane wit, and gift for elegant, vivid narrative. This collection focuses on the writing and understanding of history in the eighteenth century and on the great historians and the intellectual context that inspired or provoked their writings. It combines incisive discussion of such figures as Gibbon, Hume, and Carlyle with broad sweeps of analysis and explication. Essays on the Scottish Enlightenment and the Romantic movement are balanced by intimate portraits of lesser-known historians whose significance Trevor-Roper took particular delight in revealing.
~Andrew O’Hagan, New York Review of Books
Praise for Hugh Trevor-Roper’s The Invention of Scotland
“[An] indispensable book.”—Andrew O’Hagan, New York Review of Books
"In every way, this is a wonderfully intelligent and civilized book."--Michael Dirda, Washington Post~Michael Dirda, Washington Post
"The pleasure afforded by these essays arises from their elegant and felicitous prose, spiced with acerbic asides."--The New York Review of Books~New York Review of Books