Pax Britannica - The Climax of an Empire (Unabridged)

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Pax Britannica - The Climax of an Empire (Unabridged)

Catalogue No:

NA0036

Release date:

5th July 2011

Barcode:

9781843794707

Length:

17 hours 2 minutes

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Pax Britannica - The Climax of an Empire (Unabridged)


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Jan Morris: Pax Britannica - The Climax of an Empire (Unabridged)

Introduction by Jan Morris

Pax Britannica – The British Empire 1897

Chapter 1: The Heirs of Rome

2: The crowds outside waited in proud excitement…

3: Many and varied energies had swept the British…

Among the better-informed…

4: Within two minutes, we are told…

5: More gratifying still was the tribute of the Empire itself.

6: The procession itself was a superb display…

7: Everybody agreed it was a great success.

Chapter 2: Palm and Pine

2: Outside this heterogeneous mass there shone…

3: All this the British people surveyed…

4: So they were motley origins…

5: Never since the world began, Seeley had written…

6: So it looked to the British.

Chapter 3: Life-lines

2: A favourite map of the time was the kind that showed…

3: Elaborate systems of supply, defence and communication…

The British held key ports and maritime fortresses…

4: Backwards and forwards along the imperial shipping lanes…

5: The British had invented submarine cables…

6: All this vast expertise, of ships and mails…

Chapter 4: Migrations

2: Emigration to the Empire was officially popular.

3: If the Empire dispersed the British…

4: As for the flora and fauna…

5: It multiplied so fast that its progeny became a plague…

6: Saddest of all, in their irrepressible impulse to control…

Chapter 5: Pioneers

2: It was a sign of the imperial times that Rhodesia…

3: 'As for us,' said the Rhodesia Herald…

4: The Company had been, it is true, under a cloud…

5: These were the homely pleasures of a frontier town…

6: But far lower even than the vagrants in the social scale…

7: Salisbury was scarcely a sentimental town.

Chapter 6: The Profit

2: In the 1890s this atavistic view of imperial profit…

3: Trade was a steadier imperial impulse…

The free ports of the Empire…

4: It was a common belief among the late Victorians…

5: Such was the profit-mechanism of Empire…

6: So all these various instincts and impulses of profit…

Chapter 7: The Glory

2: The Empire was at its zenith…

3: Dreams of private glory, too, forced the imperial play…

4: What incentives they were!

5: Many years before Dr. Livingstone had laid another trail…

6: The evangelical mood was now past its prime…

7: On a Governmental level…

8: And there was one more stimulus to splendour…

Chapter 8: Caste

The joke that 'niggers began at Calais' was not entirely a joke.

3: But to be coloured was something else.

4: By the nineties the attitude had hardened.

In England those who believed the East could be…

5: The immediate problems of race arose only…

6: Yet this very class of Anglicized Asians and Africans…

7: Among the settlers and planters of the tropical Empire…

8: A vassal could qualify for respect…

9: On the banks of the Hooghly River in Calcutta…

10: For it was not viciousness, nor even simply conceit…

11: Steevens's unspeakable conceit might speak…

Chapter 9: Islanders

2: Like many another island fortress it had endured…

3: It was a colony exceptional in its beauty…

4: It was quite an elaborate little Government…

5: A mile or so from Government House…

6: Often, when a merchant ship approached the entrance…

7: St. Lucia's Diamond Jubilee accordingly…

8: But then a feu de joie, commented the Voice sourly…

9: Brigade-Surgeon Gouldsbury never returned to St. Lucia…

Chapter 10: Imperial Order

2: The one immoveable thing about it was the Crown.

3: The Crown at the very summit…

4: From the graceful little iron suspension bridge…

5: It was an imperial maxim…

6: Steeped in the traditions of the team spirit…

7: Top jobs in the Empire sometimes went to grandees…

8: The law was different.

9: Loftily above it all, the supreme fount of imperial justice…

10: Not the law as such, but the rule of law…

Chapter 11: Imperial Complexity

2: At one end were the great self-governing colonies…

3: Nothing was uniform.

4: Consider the island of Ascension…

5: Here are a few less spectacular anomalies of Empire.

6: And oddest of all the imperial phenomena was Egypt.

7: Paddling up the Nile with Oxford marmalade…

8: It was all bits and pieces.

Chapter 12: Imperialists in General

2: Nobody, of course, runs so true to type as that.

3: The aristocracy of Empire was the official class…

4: Poor Anglo-Indians!

5: They walked dolorously to and fro under the glare…

6: Among the white settlers everywhere…

7: The maverick patrician escaped all this…

Chapter 13: Imperialists in Particular

2: The age of the great explorers was almost over…

3: There were only three British soldiers…

The second soldier of the Empire was…

4: Alone among the admirals of the imperial Navy…

5: Of the proconsuls in the field of Empire that summer…

6: Two politicians of very different stamp…

Salisbury was a remote enigma to the British public.

7: The men Kipling called 'the doers' were mostly unknown…

Rhodes was first of all a money-maker.

8: There were other exceptional imperialists…

Chapter 14: Proconsuls

2: Simla in 1897 was one of the most extraordinary places…

3: In the morning Simla seemed different again…

4: Seven thousand feet up, eighty miles from a railway line…

5: The British Government in India was a despotism…

6: So from top to bottom…

7: But however original the young officers in the field…

8: The Viceroy knew that his was a unique imperial trust.

9: It was a bad year in India…

Chapter 15: Consolations

2: Sport was the first.

3: Drink came next – food did not interest them half so much.

4: They liked their creature comforts…

In Australia the clubs very early became strongholds…

5: Throughout the length and breadth of the Empire…

6: They had developed to a new pitch of finesse…

7: They enjoyed themselves with tourism.

8: One easily detects pathos in these pleasures.

Chapter 16: Challenge and Responses

2: But one of the most enviable advantages…

3: For a century living dangerously, or alone…

4: Into the mystique of every British settlement…

5: But there was to this great communal exploit…

Chapter 17: Stones of Empire

2: Supreme in every imperial city stood the house of God…

3: Next to the house of God, the home of the Empire-builder.

4: Public buildings of the most august elaboration…

5: One day in 1836 Colonel William Light…

6: The British, who generally neglected their waterfronts…

7: 'The Maharajah gave the order…'

The British had a genius for parks…

8: The garden instinct of the English did not always survive…

Chapter 18: Tribal Lays and Images

2: No English Delacroix arose…

3: Few other professional painters made the Empire…

4: Most of the statues in the British Empire…

5: But they were mostly of the Queen.

6: Marches and oratorios, fanfares and even ballets…

7: The difficulty about imperialism as a literary motif…

8: Out of the frenzy three writers emerge…

Yet the third of our writers, a short-sighted journalist…

Nobody saw more clearly through the petty pretences…

9: In literature as in art…

Chapter 19: All by Steam!

2: The British Empire was a development agency…

3: Some of the imperial works really were on the colossal scale.

4: But this was the railway age…

5: There was no grand plan for the railways of the Empire.

In India especially…

6: In the last three decades of the century…

7: They were making a start with tropical medicine.

8: One gets the unfortunate impression…

9: The natives saw this millennium, and it worked.

Chapter 20: Freedmen

2: Canada was still a colony of the British Empire.

3: The imperial hegemony was tactfully exerted.

4: Canada had become a nation, of a sort…

5: The first Europeans in Canada were the French…

6: The British Canadians were loyal to the Crown…

7: An English Canadian, W.H. Drummond…

8: They did not, for example, throw squibs at the Jubilee…

9: It was not a contented country.

Chapter 21: On Guard

2: The land forces of the Empire were drawn…

3: The Army List of 1897 records only nine…

4: This was not a promising formula for modern war…

5: But also at the Queen's command stood another army…

6: It was in India that the martial heroism of Empire…

7: No other imperial war had left memories so hallowed…

8: Between them the two armies of the British Empire…

Chapter 22: At Sea

2: The Royal Navy did not lack self-esteem.

3: These were the extravagances of a lost age…

4: The social structure of the Navy…

5: British naval strategy, such as it was…

Chapter 23: Imperial Effects

2: Let us ourselves, guide in hand, wander around London…

3: And if, like every other visitor, we finally strolled…

4: The New Imperialism was too new…

5: Half without knowing it, the British had picked up…

6: In 1882 there appeared in the list of English cat breeds…

7: A shifting population of colonials moved through London.

8: If the physical imprint of Empire was slight…

9: The New Imperialism was potent politics.

10: But cause and effect were often muddled…

11: So the foreigner's first impression was right in a way.

Chapter 24: Overlords

2: Implanted in this melancholy setting were the Anglo-Irish…

3: Many Anglo-Irish were understandably distressed…

4: The Cadogans stood, ex officio…

5: This queer regime remained undeterred…

6: Much more permanent were the barracks…

7: Of all the cities the British had created across the waters…

8: Ireland was the only one of the Queen's dominions…

9: 'Everything was orderly and peaceable,'…

10: The Irish Times blushed.

11: The noblest cause? Treason or patriotism?

Chapter 25: Omens

2: If precedents were anything to go by…

3: Would the barbarians one day take over?

But it was the sea that counted.

4: On Jubilee evening the Governor of Bombay…

5: In Egypt almost nobody wanted the British to stay…

6: Everything was under control…

7: Was it all worth it?

8: But in that celebratory summer any weakening…

9: It was not to be.

Chapter 26: 'The Song on Your Bugles Blown'

2: Was it a Christian Empire?

3: Yet there was no rule to it.

4: A less involved imperial principle…

5: Plain Englishness, in those days, was a principle.

6: To many Britons this was not enough.

7: But if in some corners of the Empire…

8: This was the saving flaw of British imperialism…

Chapter 27: Finale

2: So their pride was understandable…

3: The New Imperialism quickly subsided.

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