Dividing the nation and causing massive political change, the English Civil War remains one of the most decisive and dramatic conflicts of English history. Lawrence Stone's account of the factors leading up to the deposition of Charles I in 1642 is widely regarded as a classic in the field. Brilliantly synthesising the historical, political and sociological interpretations of the seventeeth century, Stone explores theories of revolution and traces the social and economic change that led to this period of instability.
The picture that emerges is one where historical interpretation is enriched but not determined by grand theories in the social sciences and, as Stone elegantly argues, one where the upheavals of the seventeenth century are central to the very story of modernity.
This Routledge Classics edition includes a new foreword by Clare Jackson, Trinity Hall, Cambridge.
‘Much the best all-round analysis of the causes of the English Revolution that we have.’ Times Literary Supplement
‘He was that rare person among the academic species, both a historians' historian and a popular one.' Michael Thompson, The Guardian
‘Lawrence Stone belonged to a remarkable generation of British historians who dominated and defined their subject for nearly half a century, and which included Christopher Hill, G.R. Elton, Asa Briggs, J.H. Plumb, Eric Hobsbawm and Edward Thompson. They all wrote widely and well, and reached a large audience in universities and far beyond. But in many ways, Stone was the most creative - and the most controversial - of them all.’ David Cannadine, The Independent
Foreword to the Routledge Classics Edition – Clare Jackson
Preface to the second edition
Part I Historiography
Chapter 1 Theories of revolution
Chapter 2 The social origins of the English Revolution
Part II Interpretation
Chapter 3 The causes of the English Revolution
Chapter 4 Second thoughts in 1985