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This Sceptred Isle: Empire, Volume 1: 1155-1783 | [Christopher Lee]

This Sceptred Isle: Empire, Volume 1: 1155-1783

Britain had the biggest empire the world has ever known. At one time a quarter of the global land mass was British. Over a third of the world was insured at Lloyds. At his coronation, more than 400 million people saluted George V. Truly, the sun never set on this historical phenomenon. Whatever the day, whatever the hour, somewhere on the globe, the empire worked and played the British game, often absurdly so.
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Publisher's Summary

Britain had the biggest empire the world has ever known. At one time a quarter of the global land mass was British. Over a third of the world was insured at Lloyds. At his coronation, more than 400 million people saluted George V. Truly, the sun never set on this historical phenomenon. Whatever the day, whatever the hour, somewhere on the globe, the empire worked and played the British game, often absurdly so. The story of the British Empire is one of enormous personalities, adventure, scientific and maritime development, and the building of one of the most complex international administrations the world has ever seen. The series shows the history of exploration from the 16th century, but more importantly from the mid-18th century to the period shortly before the First World War.

Don't miss out on the rest of the Sceptred Isle: Empire series, with Volume 2 and Volume 3.

And, if you enjoyed the Empire series, then don't miss This Sceptred Isle's telling of the forming of Britain and The Twentieth Century.

© & (P)2005 BBC Audiobooks Ltd.

What the Critics Say

"Wonderful....This Sceptred Isle has provided one of the greatest treats for listeners in recent years." (Sunday Times)

What Members Say

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  •  
    D. Littman OH 11-27-06
    D. Littman OH 11-27-06 Member Since 2003

    history buff

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1278
    ratings
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    593
    147
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    166
    3
    Overall
    "excellent into to british empire"

    This 90-part history of the British Empire is, at once, an “easy-listen” & profoundly educational. A work that ran on BBC in the UK, it traces how a resource- & population-poor society in England moved over several centuries to being the greatest colonial power in the world. By use of biographical & historical vignettes, with flashes of sardonic humor, the work is an outstanding introduction for the novice on this subject matter but it can also stimulate and educate those quite familiar with this history. The work takes us from the early days of conquest & colonial administration of Ireland & the Americas, through mainstream & colonial conflict with European continental powers, India, Asia, Africa, and elsewhere. As a radio program, it features stronger production values that many other audiobooks, making it a very enjoyable listen to which the reader may return many times to particular segments. And making it a springboard for further readings on the subjects discussed.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Karen Apex, NC, United States 01-28-06
    Karen Apex, NC, United States 01-28-06 Member Since 2001

    I write my reviews under my wife Karen's account. Retired USN Russian linguist/analyst; actor; director; producer. Biography & History focus

    HELPFUL VOTES
    581
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    124
    50
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    0
    Overall
    "Wonderful"

    Well writen and informative. Easy to listen to. The narration is one of the best in the Audible library. The only audiblebook that successfully integrates multiple narrators. If you enjoy history or are an anglophile you will want to listen to this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    ProsaicParadise Laurel, MD United States 05-27-09
    ProsaicParadise Laurel, MD United States 05-27-09 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    28
    2
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    Overall
    "Excellent Overview"

    I stumbled into this series accidentally while looking for history of Australia, and I am so glad that I did. This series is well-paced and informative. Its use of readers of original source material to illustrate the events as they happen is perfectly timed to allow you to understand the mindset of the people who enacted and lived the events. History buffs might find that this is too light for them, but as I definitely needed a refresher it was perfect.

    My only regret is that when I got this the unabridged version was not available! I would have certainly invested in that version.

    Audio quality is excellent and Juliet Stevenson's voice is pleasing and easy to listen to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tim San Antonio, TX, United States 05-22-06
    Tim San Antonio, TX, United States 05-22-06 Member Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    29
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    18
    11
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    Overall
    "Good but flawed"

    An enjoyable listen but flawed by forcing 21st century perspective on historical contexts. Example: Early 1600's piety was just another form of bigotry.(America's Pilgrims) Each episode (chapter) begins with a review of the previous episode and I found that annoying. Perhaps that could be edited out of future BBC Audible offerings. Worthwhile if kept in perspective.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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  • G. Cooper
    Essex, England
    11/1/07
    Overall
    "Enlightening"

    I bought this title to tackle my shameful ignorance of our imperial history, and I have learnt a great deal! This is a wonderful book that I am enjoying dipping into every so often. Juliet Stevenson is a excellent narrator. If you like history and want to know more about the origins of the British Empire, I highly recommend this volume.

    10 of 10 people found this review helpful
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