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Historical Journal 46 (2003), 4

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Historical Journal 46 (2003), 4
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Peter Mandler, Robert Tombs
erscheint vierteljährlich



Historical Journal (HJ)
United Kingdom
Historical Journal Faculty of History West Road Cambridge CB3 9EF
Barthel, Claudia


pp 779-815


This article explores the way in which the Counter Reformation priests sent to England after 1574 cultivated and harnessed the culture of the miraculous in their efforts to reform and evangelize the populace and to defend doctrines and practices assaulted by Protestant polemicists. Drawing on the insights emerging from recent research on Catholic renewal on the Continent, it shows how the seminary clergy and especially the Jesuits fostered traditional beliefs and practices associated with saints, relics, and sacramentals and exploited the potential of exorcisms and visions for didactic and proselytizing purposes. Close examination of these strategies serves to question some existing assumptions about the nature, objectives, and impact of the English Catholic mission and to illuminate the particular challenges that persecution presented to a movement determined to purge popular piety of its ‘superstitious’ accretions. It underlines the tensions between ecclesiastical direction and lay initiative which characterized a context in which Catholicism was a minority Church and highlights the frictions and divisions which these attempts to utilize supernatural power stimulated within the ranks of the Counter Reformation priesthood itself.


1 I am grateful to Patrick Collinson, Anne Dillon, Simon Ditchfield, Mark Greengrass, Sarah Hamilton, Trevor Johnson, Peter Marshall, Ethan Shagan, Andrew Spicer, and the readers for this journal for constructive criticisms of earlier drafts of this article. It has also benefited from the comments of those who heard versions of it read as seminar papers in Denver, Birmingham, and Oxford.

pp 817-841


This article examines the character of John Hynde Cotton, a leading tory opponent of Sir Robert Walpole, who played a particularly puzzling role in the conspiracies behind the Jacobite rebellion of 1745, and the parliaments of George II. Entering a coalition ministry in 1744, he was immersed at the same time in intrigue with the exiled Stuart court, and at one stage pledged to use resignation from government as the signal for rebellion. The article explores the background to his career, tracing the intellectual, professional and kinship networks into which he was pressed, and their impact on his political commitments. Cotton's views on government and society were the product of a man caught up in a conflict between image and reality, torn between a set of different identities: robust doyen of rural squiredom, political and commercial ‘insider’, scholar, and ideologue shaped profoundly by the politico-religious crises of the previous century. The article aims to stimulate a new analysis of the facts of a tory-Jacobite career, and so enhance a debate that is in danger of appearing stale. It aspires to reach a deeper understanding of the meaning and principles of eighteenth-century toryism, beyond the mere counting of ‘Jacobite’ or ‘Hanoverian’ heads.


1 This article grew out of a B.A. dissertation written in 2001. For his supervision of this, and his comments on subsequent drafts, I am indebted to Dr Mark Goldie. I would also like to thank Professor Howard Erskine-Hill for his help with an earlier draft, and his assistance with the study of Jacobitism more generally, and Dr Eveline Cruickshanks for initially suggesting that I return to Sir John Hynde Cotton. I am grateful to the anonymous readers of the Historical Journal, for their comments on my original submission, and acknowledge permission to quote from the manuscripts of Her majesty the Queen.

pp 843-871


Even during his lifetime, the French revolutionary Girondin leader Jacques-Pierre Brissot de Warville's reputation was tarnished by allegations that, before 1789, he was a swindler, police spy, and political pornographer. These charges resurfaced in 1968 in a celebrated article by Robert Darnton, which found miscellaneous, fragmentary evidence to support them, above all in the papers of the pre-revolutionary police chief, Lenoir. Although Darnton's view has been challenged by several historians, no critic has supplied any substantive new evidence, and hence the Brissot debate remains mired in assertions and counter-assertions. This article finally offers such evidence, drawing both on Darnton's main source, the Lenoir papers, and on sources unavailable to him in 1968, notably records of Brissot's Licée de Londres and his embastillement, now on deposit in the Archives Nationales. While acquiting Brissot on all counts, it finds that Darnton's suspicions were not entirely unfounded. Brissot did have compromising links to both police and political pornographers. Nevertherless, allegations that he spied and wrote scandalous pamphlets appear malicious, despite Brissot's arrest on the latter charge in 1784. The article also attempts to explain Brissot's motivations and the lasting implications of his arrest and persecution in shaping Brissot and the French Revolution.


1 The author wishes to thank the Archives Nationales for permission to consult Brissot's papers; the Universities of Waikato and Leeds, the Humanities Research Centre at the Australian National University, and the British Academy for supporting his research; and David Adams, Laurence Brockliss, Simon Dixon, Alan Forrest, Russell Goulbourne, Tom Kaiser, Andrea Kemp, Iain McCalman, David Parker, and the Historical Journal's anonymous readers, for comments on drafts and preliminary discussions.

pp 873-892


Scotland's Unionist culture has already become a world we have lost, investigation of which is hampered by the misleading notion of a ‘Celtic fringe’. Nineteenth-century Lowland Scots were not classified as Celts; indeed they vociferously projected a Teutonic racial identity. Several Scots went so far as to claim not only that the Saxon Scots of the Lowlands were superior to the Celts of the Highlands, but that the people of the Lowlands came from a more purely Anglian stock than the population of southern England. For some Scots the glory of Scottish identity resided in the boast that Lowlanders were more authentically ‘English’ than the English themselves. Moreover, Scottish historians reinterpreted the nation's medieval War of Independence – otherwise a cynosure of patriotism – as an unfortunate civil war within the Saxon race. Curiously, racialism – which was far from monolithic – worked at times both to support and to subvert Scottish involvement in empire. The late nineteenth century also saw the formulation of Scottish proposals for an Anglo-Saxon racial empire including the United States; while Teutonic racialism inflected the nascent Scottish home rule movement as well as the Udal League in Orkney and Shetland.


1 I should like to thank Ewen Cameron, Ted Cowan and Hew Strachan for advice on specific points, and Dauvit Broun, Matthew Hammond, and James Coleman for informative discussions about nineteenth-century Scottish historians.

pp 893-914


Based largely on primary sources, this article concentrates on the Liberal administration led by Count Romanones between December 1915 and April 1917. This is regarded as a crucial moment in the country's transition from elite to mass politics. The social and economic impact of the First World war brought about massive economic dislocation and social distress that in turn generated unprecedented levels of popular mobilization against the regime. Intertwined with domestic uproar, the country was polarized by the question of neutrality. Alienated from the ruling classes by his pro-Allied stance, Romanones was not only the target of a fierce campaign to oust him but also presided over the acceleration of existing movements of social and political protest. At his fall in April 1917, he left behind a storm of discontent and turmoil that threatened to bring down the entire political order.

pp 915-933


The celebrated ‘Cambridge five’ have hitherto been believed to be the first long-term communist penetration agents in HM government, beginning with Donald Maclean in 1935. However, new research indicates that by 1919 another Cambridge man – like four of the ‘five’, a Trinity graduate – had already begun working for Moscow. This article is the first to examine how William Norman Ewer, known as ‘Trilby’ to his co-conspirators, organized networks in Great Britain and France to target the governments of those two powers. Under close Soviet supervision, Ewer's subordinates infiltrated half-a-dozen Whitehall departments, foremost among them Scotland Yard. Operating under the aegis of the home office, the Yard was a vital cog in the machinery of government set up to combat the ‘red menace’ in this country immediately after the First World War. By compromising the lead agency tasked with fighting them, the Bolsheviks thus created the requisite conditions for the metastasis in Great Britain of Soviet espionage in the 1920s.


1 Sincere thanks to the editors, anonymous referees, Christopher Andrew, Gill Bennett, James Bruce, and especially Mathilde von Bülow. The author is indebted to the British Council, the Cambridge Commonwealth Trust, the Cambridge Faculty of History, the Canadian Centennial Scholarship fund, Gonville and Caius College, the Royal Historical Society, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada for their generosity. Cabinet office (CAB), foreign office (FO), and security service (KV) files are at the National Archives (formerly the Public Record Office), London. Fonds Moscou (FM) files are at the Service Historique de l'Armée de Terre (SHAT), Château de Vincennes, France.

pp 935-952


This article explores the official motivation behind the authorization in 1960 of research into the activities of the Special Operations Executive (SOE) during the Second World War by M. R. D. Foot, leading to the publication of SOE in France in 1966. The work has traditionally been viewed as the official response to critical investigative works on SOE published during the 1950s, combined with the vocal campaign of Dame Irene Ward, who made several calls in the House of Commons for an official account of SOE to be published. Material now available at the Public Record Office reveals that these were not the sole considerations in official minds, nor the most significant, concerning the possibility of publishing such a work. The foreign office was particularly concerned that Britain's contribution to wartime resistance in Europe, exemplified by SOE, was being overshadowed by both soviet propoganda, emphasizing the communist contribution to resistance, and the publicity being given to SOE's American counterpart, the Office of Strategic Services (OSS). The ‘campaign’ of Dame Irene Ward, supported by the negative slant given to SOE in the books of Jean Overton Fuller and Elizabeth Nicholas, unknowingly gave support to a frame of mind that was already in existence in favour of an unofficial account of SOE activity, albeit for different reasons.


1 I would like to express my thanks to Dr Philip Murphy, for reading early drafts of this article and offering valuable advice. I am also grateful to Professor M. R. D. Foot for his comments. Thanks are also due to Helen Langley at the Bodleian Library for allowing access to the papers of Dame Irene Ward while they were being catalogued, and to Mr David J. Greenslade for permission to quote from them.

Historiographical reviews

pp 953-961


The purpose of this review is to take stock as the historiography of rural France pauses for breath following the headlong expansion of the post-Second World War decades. It examines some of the themes that continue to exert an attraction on scholars, and also some of the most recent attempts to challenge and reformulate the research agendas inherited from the Annales historians. The works discussed below raise questions concerning growth and stagnation in the rural economy, the basic characteristics of the rural community, and the role of quantification in rural history.

pp 963-976


This article reviews the recent historiography of religion in modern Britain, concentrating on the debate about secularization and the work of Callum Brown in particular, but also with reference to Sarah Williams and Simon Green. It endorses, broadly, the criticisms made by these and other historians of older assumptions of a one-way, ‘inevitable’ link between modernization and religious decline, but in turn accuses them of attenuating the concept of ‘religion’ in the modern period to the point where it has lost internal sophistication. It suggests, instead, the compatibility of indices of institutional church decline with the persistence of religious identity and limited church affiliation.

Review Articles

VOLUNTARY ANGLICANS Restoration, reformation, and reform, 1660–1828: archbishops of Canterbury and their diocese. By Jeremy Gregory. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. Pp. 355. ISBN 0-19-820830-8. £45.00. The church in an age of danger: parsons and parishioners, 1660–1740. By Donald A. Spaeth. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000. Pp. 279. ISBN 0-521-35313-0. £40.00. The Quakers in English society, 1655–1725. By Adrian Davies. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000. Pp. 262. ISBN 0-19-8280820-0. £40.00. Hawksmoor's London churches: architecture and theology. By Pierre de la Ruffinière du Prey. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2000. Pp. 179. ISBN 0-226-17301-1. £26.50 (hb); 2003. ISBN 0-226-17303-8. £17.50 (pb). The national church in local perspective: the Church of England and the regions, 1660–1800. Edited by Jeremy Gregory and Jeffrey S. Chamberlain. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press, 2003. Pp. 315. ISBN 0-85115-897-8. £50.00.
pp 977-990

The historiography of the eighteenth-century Church of England remains peculiarly preoccupied with vindicating that institution from the condemnation heaped upon it by Anglo-Catholics and Evangelicals in the nineteenth century. The chapters of Jeremy Gregory's Restoration, reformation, and reform characteristically begin with quotations from Victorians on the somnolence and negligence of the Hanoverian Establishment. The starting point is, as it were, a Hogarth cartoon of a corpulent curate and a snoozing congregation. In part this preoccupation is indicative of how little has been done on the subject since the Victorians. Norman Sykes, writing between the 1930s and 1950s, remains an almost solitary beacon for the church's institutional history, though much of his work was biographical, dwelling on clerical high politics rather than on the social fabric of the church in the parishes. About the Hanoverian parish we know little, and probably care less, because without Reformation or Revolution – or nuns or witches – there is little to move the secular-minded to take an interest. It would not, of course, be true to say that nothing has recently been done. There has been something in the field of intellectual history. One thinks of Brian Young's fine Religion and enlightenment in eighteenth-century Britain (1998), a filling out of John Pocock's sketch of an English ‘clerical Enlightenment’ – though most intellectual history of that era prefers the wilder shores of deism, freethinking, and the radical assault on priestcraft. There have been valuable probings of the early eighteenth-century politics of religion (the Sacheverell affair, the charity school movement, the Societies for the Reformation of Manners) and of the late Hanoverian roots of nineteenth-century high churchmanship.

DIPLOMATIC HISTORY SINCE THE CULTURAL TURN Pomp und Politik: Monarchenbegegnungen in Europa zwischen Ancien Régime und Erstem Weltkrieg. By Johannes Paulmann. Paderborn: Schöningh Verlag, 2000. Pp. 478. ISBN 3-506-77160-4. €44.99. Royalty and diplomacy in Europe, 1890–1914. By Roderick R. McLean. Cambridge: University Press, 2001. Pp. xi+239. ISBN 0-8223-1522-X. £35.00. British envoys to Germany, 1816–1866, I: 1816–1829. Camden Fifth Series, Volume 15. Edited by Sabine Freitag and Peter Wende. For the Royal Historical Society in Association with the German Historical Institute London. Pp. xxi+592, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000. ISBN 0-5217-90662. £40.00. Does peace lead to war? Peace settlements and conflict in the modern age. By Matthew Hughes and Matthew Seligmann. Phoenix Mill: Sutton Publishing, 2002. Pp. xiii+242. ISBN 0-7509-2514-0. £20.00.
pp 991-997


Since the 1960s it has been claimed that diplomatic history is in decline – upstaged over the decades by more fashionable subjects like social, gender, or cultural history. However, Clio's anaemic patient is alive and kicking as the four books to be reviewed here all clearly show. This renaissance is in some ways due to a modernization process which proves the inherent flexibility of the subject. Diplomatic historians have adopted new methods for their work by amalgamating cultural, semiotic, and anthropological ideas as well as by going global through multiarchival research. Admittedly these progressive developments are still at an early stage, yet Johannes Paulmann's thought-provoking Pomp und Politik which analyses the subtext of ceremonies and symbolic behaviour among monarchs, could be used as an excellent guideline for further studies in this field.

BUYING AND BECOMING: NEW WORK ON THE BRITISH MIDDLE CLASSES Gender, civic culture and consumerism: middle-class identity in Britain, 1800–1940. Edited by Alan Kidd and David Nicholls. Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1999. Pp. xi+223. ISBN 0-7190-5675-4. £14.99. The Victorian parlour: a cultural study. By Thad Logan. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001. Pp. xvii+282. ISBN 0-521-631182-3. £40.00. Shopping for pleasure: women in the making of London's West End. By Erika D. Rappaport. Bognor Regis, UK: J. Wiley for Princeton UP, 2001. Pp. xiii+323. ISBN 0-691-04476-7. £13.95.
pp 999-1004


The history of consumption in nineteenth-century Britain has largely been told as the story of the middle classes. Increasingly, as the three books under review demonstrate, the reverse is also true. The middle classes, they argue, derived their identities in significant measure from their consumerist habits rather than their relation to the means of production or the body politic. That was, as one might imagine, especially the case with women. What they bought, how they shopped, where they lived: these things came to define who a person was. How dramatically the literature on the Victorian middle classes has changed is apparent even from this brief description. Most obviously, the research focus has shifted from structures to identities. The old subjects – the professions, the movements (free trade, the franchise, anti-slavery), evangelical religion – are hardly anywhere to be seen in these volumes. Instead, they take up topics more often associated with French history: urban culture, shopping, interior decoration. With this shift in subjects has also come, either implicitly or explicitly, a sense that the defining characteristics of the British middle classes must be sought in the realm of culture, not politics or production.

Other Reviews

Renaissance lives: portraits of an age. By Theodore K. Rabb. New York: Basic Books, 2000. Pp. xiii+263. ISBN 0-465-06800-6. US $18.00.
pp 1005-1008

Understanding popular violence in the English Revolution: the Colchester plunderers. By John Walter. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1999. Pp. xi+357. ISBN 0-521-65186-7. £40.00.
pp 1008-1010

The Putney debates of 1647: the army, the Levellers and the English state. Edited by Michael Mendle. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001. Pp. xii+297. ISBN 0-521-65015-1. £45.00 (US $65.00).
pp 1010-1011

The glorification of Emperor Leopold I in image, spectacle and text. By Maria Goloubeva. Mainz: Verlag Philipp von Zabern, 2000. Pp. vi+254. ISBN 3 80053 2704 8. DM 78. Reichsständische Libertät und habsburgisches Kaisertum. Edited by Heinz Duchhardt and Matthias Schnettger. Mainz: Verlag Philipp von Zabern, 1999. Pp. x+362. ISBN 3 8053 2577 0. DM 58.
pp 1012-1015

The political economy of British historical experience, 1688–1914. Edited by Donald Winch and Patrick O'Brien. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2002. Pp. x+453. ISBN 0-19-726272-4. £40.00.
pp 1015-1017

Representing the Royal Navy: British sea power, 1750–1815. By Margarette Lincoln. Aldershot: Ashgate, in conjunction with the National Maritime Museum, 2002. Pp. xiii+226. ISBN 0-7546-0830-1. £35.00.
pp 1017-1018

Design and the decorative arts: Britain, 1500–1900. By Michael Snodin and John Styles. London: V&A publications, 2001. Pp. xiv+488. ISBN 1-85177-338-X. £45.00
pp 1019-1020

I documenti diplomatici italiani. Seconda serie: 1870–1896. Vol. XX (26 iuglio 1886–30 iuglio 1887). Ministero degli Affari Esteri: Rome, 1998. Pp. 849. I documenti diplomatici italiani. Seconda serie: 1870–1896. Vol. XXVI (15 dicembre 1893–31 marzo 1895). Ministero degli Affari Esteri: Rome, 1999. Pp. 751.
pp 1020-1024

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