Contents

DECEMBER 2011

FEATURES

20 The death that rocked the monarchy Helen Rappaport explains how Prince Albert’s passing sent Queen Victoria spiralling into despair

26 The long road home Rob Attar meets three veterans who took part in an arduous march in the Second World War

30 Explorers of the Nile Tim Jeal describes a dramatic race between 19th-century adventurers to find the source of the river

37 The triumph of the Dambusters James Holland shows how the iconic raid had a devastating impact on the German war effort

44 Stories of the gentry Adam Nicolson charts the rise and fall of the gentry class through the lives of three illustrious families

50 Chaucer and the idea of Englishness Ardis Butterfield considers whether the 14th-century poet really was a champion of the vernacular

4

58 The root of all good Ian Hislop champions a group of Victorian banker philanthropists

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EVERY MONTH

6 Letters

8 Milestones: It happened in December

News 12 Breaking news 15 News round-up

16 World news in context: Greece

29 Opinion by Anna Whitelock

49 Big days in history by Dominic Sandbrook

57 Changing times by Chris Bowlby

61 Book reviews 11 new history books reviewed

73 TV&Radio What’s on this month

Out&About 76 Where history happened:

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Victoria and Albert 82 100 places that made Britain: Verdant Works 84 Ten things to do this month 86 Ye olde travel guide: Pompeii in AD 79

Miscellany 93 Q&A: Your historical questions answered 96 Prize crossword: Win a copy of Great Journeys 97 Puzzles

98 My history hero by Gordon Corera

IDGEMAN

ATTAR/BR

SANDERS/ROB

IN

IBRARY/MART

LICTURE

PEVANS

IMAGES/TOPFOTO/MARY

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USPS Identification Statement BBC HISTORY (ISSN 1469-8552) (USPS 024-177) December 2011 is published 13 times a year by Bristol Magazines Ltd., 9th Floor, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN, UK. Distributed in the US by Evergreen Marketing, 116 Ram Cat Alley, Suite 201, Seneca, SC 29678-3263. Periodicals postage paid at Seneca, SC and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to BBC HISTORY, PO Box 421133, Palm Coast, FL 32142-1133.

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