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CHAPTER I PARENTAGE AND EARLY YEARS "I was born when my country was perishing. Thirty thousand French vomited upon our coasts, drowning the throne of Liberty in waves of blood, such was the sight which struck my eyes." This passionate utterance, penned by Napoleon Buonaparte at the beginning of the French Revolution, describes the state of Corsica in his natal year. The words are instinct with the vehemence of the youth and the extravagant... more...

CHAPTER I PARENTAGE AND EARLY YEARS "I was born when my country was perishing. Thirty thousand French vomited upon our coasts, drowning the throne of Liberty in waves of blood, such was the sight which struck my eyes." This passionate utterance, penned by Napoleon Buonaparte at the beginning of the French Revolution, describes the state of Corsica in his natal year. The words are instinct with the vehemence of the youth and the extravagant... more...

CHAPTER I. War With Russia: Pultusk. Poland and the Poles — The Seat of War — Change in the Character of Napoleon's Army — The Battle of Pultusk — Discontent in the Grand Army — Homesickness of the French — Napoleon's Generals — His Measures of Reorganization — Weakness of the Russians — The Ability of Bennigsen — Failure of the Russian Manœuvers — Napoleon in Warsaw.... more...

This life of Napoleon was first published in 1896 as a book: for the years 1895-96 it ran as a serial in the pages of the Century Magazine. Judging from the sales, it has been read by many tens if not hundreds of thousands of readers; and it has been extensively noticed in the critical journals of both worlds. Throughout these fourteen years the demand has been very large and steady, considering the size and cost of the volumes. Both publishers... more...

PREFACE. It has been my ambition for many years to write a history of Norway, chiefly because no such book, worthy of the name, exists in the English language. When the publishers of the present volume proposed to me to write the story of my native land, I therefore eagerly accepted their offer. The story, however, according to their plan, was to differ in some important respects from a regular history. It was to dwell particularly upon the... more...


BRITAIN BEFORE WRITTEN HISTORY BEGAN 1. The Earliest Inhabitants of England. England was inhabited for many centuries before its written history began. The earliest races that possessed the country were stunted, brutal savages. They used pieces of rough flint for tools and weapons. From flint too they produced fire. They lived by hunting and fishing, and often had no homes but caves and rock shelters. Following the Cave-Men came a race that... more...

Since the appearance of this book in its original form, some seventeen years since, the construction of Railways has continued to make extraordinary progress.  Although Great Britain, first in the field, had then, after about twenty-five years’ work, expended nearly 300 millions sterling in the construction of 8300 miles of railway, it has, during the last seventeen years, expended about 288 millions more in constructing 7780... more...

PREFACE In introducing the student to the history of the development of European culture, the problem of proportion has seemed to me, throughout, the fundamental one. Consequently I have endeavored not only to state matters truly and clearly but also to bring the narrative into harmony with the most recent conceptions of the relative importance of past events and institutions. It has seemed best, in an elementary treatise upon so vast a theme,... more...

CHAPTER I PRIMITIVE CONDITIONS AND RACES The topography of a country is to some extent a prophecy of its future. Had there been no Mississippi coursing for three thousand miles through the North American Continent, no Ohio and Missouri bisecting it from east to west, no great inland seas indenting and watering it, no fertile prairies stretching across its vast areas, how different would have been the history of our own land. Russia is the... more...

INTRODUCTION It will be very reasonably asked why I should consent, though upon a sort of challenge, to write even a popular essay in English history, who make no pretence to particular scholarship and am merely a member of the public. The answer is that I know just enough to know one thing: that a history from the standpoint of a member of the public has not been written. What we call the popular histories should rather be called the... more...