The Birth of Modern Britain by Francis Pryor

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...chatty, rather rambling book, the last in his four-volume archaeological history of Britain.


From the author of ‘Britain BC’, ‘Britain AD’ and ‘Britain in the Middle Ages’ comes the fourth and final part in a critically acclaimed series on Britain's hidden past.

The relevance of archaeology to the study of the ancient world is indisputable. But, when exploring our recent past, does it have any role to play? In ‘The Birth of Modern Britain’ Francis Pryor highlights archaeology’s continued importance to the world around us.

The pioneers of the Industrial Revolution were too busy innovating to record what was happening around them but fortunately the buildings and machines they left behind bring the period to life. During the Second World War, the imminent threat of invasion meant that constructing strong defences was much more important than keeping precise records. As a result, when towns were flattened, archaeology provided the only real means of discovering what had been destroyed.

Surveying the whole post-medieval period, from 1550 until the present day, Francis Pryor takes us on an exhilarating journey, bringing to a gripping conclusion his illuminating study of Britain’s hidden past.


About Francis Pryor

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Dr Francis Pryor has spent thirty years studying the prehistory of the Fens. He has excavated sites as diverse as Bronze Age farms, field systems and entire Iron Age villages. From 1980 he turned his attention to pre-Roman religion and has excavated barrows, ‘henges’ and a large site dating to 3800 B.C. In 1987, with his wife Maisie Taylor, he set up the Fenland Archaeological Trust. He appears frequently on TV’s ‘Time Team’ and is the author of ‘Seahenge’, ‘Britain B.C.’ and ‘Britain A.D.’
Published February 17, 2011 by HarperPress. 299 pages
Genres: History, Travel, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction
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Reviewed by Ian Pindar on Jan 31 2012

...chatty, rather rambling book, the last in his four-volume archaeological history of Britain.

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