Oxford History of England

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The Oxford History of England is a modern history series of the British Isles, with each individual volume written by historians of that period.

The series was commissioned by Oxford University Press and edited by Sir George Clark, with the first volume (his own The Later Stuarts, 1660–1714) appearing in 1934. The original aim was to produce 14 volumes, taking the story up to 11:00 p.m. on 4 August 1914, the moment when Britain declared war on Germany. In 1965 a fifteenth volume, taking the story up to 1945 was added, and in the 1980s the first volume was superseded by two separate books. Several of the other volumes have been amended and released in new editions over the years.

Many of the volumes are now considered to be key classic works for their respective periods. In recent years some of the volumes have been released as stand-alone works.

A New Oxford History of England was commissioned in 1992 and has produced eleven volumes to date. At least six volumes are still forthcoming.[1]

Volumes and authors[edit]

The volumes in the series are as follows:

Several volumes were subsequently revised by the authors to take into account later research.

Use of the term "England"[edit]

When the series was commissioned:

"England" was still an all-embracing word. It meant indiscriminately England and Wales; Great Britain; the United Kingdom; and even the British Empire. (A. J. P. Taylor, Volume XV: English History, 1914–1945, page v)

Since then there has been a trend in history to restrict the use of the term "England" to the state that existed pre-1707 and to the geographic area it covered and people it contained in the period thereafter. The different authors interpreted "English history" differently, with Taylor opting to write the history of the English people, including the people of Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Empire and Commonwealth where they shared a history with England, but ignoring them where they did not. Other authors opted to treat non-English matters within their remit.[citation needed]


  1. ^ "''New Oxford History of England''". Oup.com. Retrieved 2010-09-27.