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Obermann

Obermann by Etienne Pivert de Senancour

Obermann by Etienne Pivert de Senancour

Although it was almost completely ignored by the reading public when it was first published during the period of Napoleonic Wars in 1804, it was rediscovered almost 30 years later by the Romantics, praised by none less than Balzac and George Sand, as well as Franz Liszt and other illustrious persons of that time period.

Obermann is an epistolary novel in the form of a journal intime, in which the inner life of the main character is the most important element, rather than the physical action. The story spans ten years, in which Obermann describes historical events, the progress of philosophical ideas, and, most strikingly, his emotional development.

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Joan of Naples

Joan of Naples by Alexandre Dumas

Joan of Naples by Alexandre Dumas

The celebrated crimes committed during the life of Joan (Joanna I) of Naples span from personal misdeeds (adulteries and mariticide) to regional warfare (like the 1345 War in the Piedmont), and ultimately unraveled her father’s legacy (King Robert the Wise). Dumas projects her story through a deathly lens: beginning with the passing of King Robert the Wise, winding through the untimely demise of nobles, soldiers, and children, then ending at Joan’s own assassination.

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Trinity Site

Trinity Site by White Sands Missile Range

Trinity Site by White Sands Missile Range

These two publications put out by the U.S. government are about the Trinity site in New Mexico where in 1945 the first atomic bomb was tested. Each publication (about 1984 and about 1995) complements the other, though there is some duplication. These are descriptions of the test itself and of the planning and organization leading up to the test. They also tell what was done with the site after the test and how it became a national historic landmark.

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The River War

The River War by Winston Churchill

The River War by Winston Churchill

When the self-proclaimed Mahdi gathered Islamic forces and kicked the Anglo-Egyptians out of the Sudan, he unleashed a backlash. With the image of the heroic General Charles Gordon dying at Khartoum, the British public was ready to support a war to reclaim the lost territories. And when the political time was right, a British-Egyptian-Sudanese expedition led by the redoubtable Herbert Kitchener set out to do just that.

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Myths and Legends of Alaska

Myths and Legends of Alaska

Myths and Legends of Alaska

Editor Katharine Berry Judson collates and presents a narrative history of Alaskan Myths. Originally gathered and recorded by government ethnologists, she paints an overall picture of Alaskan history as told by its many tribes. From the Eskimo to the Tlingit, from the Tsetsaut to the Haida, the origin of the still-wild state begins with the great Bird (often called “Raven”) and branches out, through its legends, in wonderful and amazing directions.

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Concerning Genealogies

Concerning Genealogies by Frank Allaben

Concerning Genealogies by Frank Allaben

Written over a century ago, this comprehensive book offers insight into the methods used (still to this day, in spite of modern computers) to research and compile a family history. As stated in the preface of the book, “Strong emphasis is laid upon the importance of employing the historical method…” which is sorely lacking in today’s computerized compilations.

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The Moors in Spain

The Moors in Spain by Stanley Lane-Poole

The Moors in Spain by Stanley Lane-Poole

“The history of Spain offers us a melancholy contrast. Twelve hundred years ago, Tarik the Moor added the land of the Visigoths to the long catalogue of kingdoms subdued by the Moslems. For nearly eight centuries, under her Mohammedan rulers, Spain set to all Europe a shining example of a civilized and enlightened State. Her fertile provinces, rendered doubly prolific by the industry and engineering skill of her conquerors, bore fruit an hundredfold. Cities innumerable sprang up in the rich valleys of the Guadalquivir and the Guadiana, whose names, and names only, still commemorate the vanished glories of their past.” – Summary by Stanley Lane-Poole

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The History of London

The History of London by Sir Walter Besant

The History of London by Sir Walter Besant

Walter Besant was a novelist and historian, and his topographical and historical writings, ranging from prehistoric times to the nineteenth century, were probably best known through the detailed 10-volume Survey of London published after his death.

This earlier single volume covers, in less depth, the whole period from prehistory until the 19th century. The book appears originally to have been written for boys, and, indeed, the chapters are called “Lessons”. However, it is a very readable history and provides a fascinating insight into both London’s past and the government of the City at the time the book was written.

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History of the Catholic Church – Volume 2

History of the Catholic Church - Volume 2 by James MacCaffrey

History of the Catholic Church – Volume 2 by James MacCaffrey

In this second volume of a two volume set, the focus in on the history of the Catholic Church in England, Scotland, and Ireland, during the period from before the reformation up to the 19th century. Starting with the conditions in these countries before the reformation, it then takes a detailed look at the religious changes and persecutions during the reigns on Henry VIII, Edward VI, and onward.

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The Story of the Barbary Corsairs

The Story of the Barbary Corsairs by Stanley Lane-Poole

The Story of the Barbary Corsairs by Stanley Lane-Poole

A history of the pirating activities along and around the “Barbary coast” between the 15th and 19th centuries, from the time of the pirate, Ujra Barbarossa, to the French control of Algeria in 1830. Although piracy had plagued all the world’s waterways from the first time man decided to trade by boat or ship, authors Lane-Poole and Kelley tell mainly of the origins and “Golden Age” of the Moor pirates who rampaged the Mediterranean Sea from ports of call along the north coast of Africa.

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