First published as part of the best-selling The Oxford Illustrated History of Britain, Christopher Harvie and Colin Matthew's Very Short Introduction to Nineteenth-Century Britain is a sharp but subtle account of remarkable economic and social change and an even more remarkable political stability. Britain in 1789 was overwhelmingly rural, agrarian, multilingual, and almost half Celtic. By 1914, when it faced its greatest test since the defeat of
Napoleon, it was largely urban and English. Christopher Harvie and Colin Matthew show the forces behind Britain's rise to its imperial zenith, and the continuing tensions within the nations and classes of the 'union state'.
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