My review of the fantastic new thriller by Antonia Hodgson: The Devil in the Marshalsea.
On the frontiers of Queensland and British Columbia in the mid-nineteenth century, a culture of violence prevailed. Frontier men accommodated violence in their lives as a routine and normal part of frontier living. The Victorian ethos of ‘manliness’ – the possession of essential virtues such as self-restraint, courage and strenuous effort – had within it the potential for violence. On the frontier the practice of manliness often entailed violence and the manly ethos could be distorted to justify and legitimise violent acts.
Who, if any, of these American analysts has found the truth? Does the story of the British right to arms offer anything of value to the modern American gun debate? The academic literature has heretofore been sparse. My two books on gun control in Great Britain both focused mainly on twentieth-century gun policy, rather than the story of the 1689 Bill of Rights and its right to arms.
Anglo-Polish relations improved during the first half of the sixteenth century. The newly established power of the kingdom of Poland-Lithuania probably raised English hopes that English merchants would gain greater access into the Baltic Sea. High-level diplomatic contacts between the two nations became more frequent.