How England Made the English

How England Made the English: From Why We Drive on the Left to Why We Don't Talk to Our Neighbours

Non-Fiction, History & Politics, British History
Paperback Published on: 04/04/2013
In stock
Usually dispatched within 2-3 working days
Make and edit your lists in your account
Check click & collect stock near you
Collect today: Pay in shop


Harry Mount's How England Made the English: From Why We Drive on the Left to Why We Don't Talk to Our Neighbours is packed with astonishing facts and wonderful stories.

Q. Why are English train seats so narrow?

A. It's all the Romans' fault. The first Victorian trains were built to the same width as horse-drawn wagons; and they were designed to fit the ruts left in the roads by Roman chariots.

For readers of Paxman's The English, Bryson's Notes on a Small Island and Fox's Watching the English, this intriguing and witty book explains how our national characteristics - our sense of humour, our hobbies, our favourite foods and our behaviour with the opposite sex - are all defined by our nation's extraordinary geography, geology, climate and weather.

You will learn how we would be as freezing cold as Siberia without the Gulf Stream; why we drive on the left-hand side of the road; why the Midlands became the home of the British curry. It identifies the materials that make England, too: the faint pink Aberdeen granite of kerbstones; that precise English mix of air temperature, smell and light that hits you the moment you touch down at Heathrow.

Praise for Harry Mount:

'Highly readable, encyclopeadic, marvellous, illuminating. Mount portrays England via dextrous excavations of its geography, geology, history and weather' Independent

'Fascinating. Mount's an intelligent, funny and always interesting companion' Daily Mail

'Charming and nerdily fact-stuffed' Guardian

Harry Mount is the author of Amo, Amas, Amat and All That, his best-selling book on Latin, and A Lust for Window Sills - A Guide to British Buildings. A journalist for many newspapers and magazines, he has been a New York correspondent and a leader writer for the Daily Telegraph. He studied classics and history at Oxford, and architectural history at the Courtauld Institute. He lives in north London

  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
  • ISBN: 9780670919147
  • Number of pages: 368
  • Weight: 316g
  • Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 23 mm

Customer Reviews

View all
How England Made the English
Packed full of interesting facts and observations
In this book, Harry Mount explains how England and the English people have evolved over time in to what we know today. It is packed full of interesting fac... READ MORE
Adam Winter
How England Made the English
An Interesting read
The English landscape is unlike any other country around the world, from the patchwork fields, to the geology beneath our feet. We have an amazing diversit... READ MORE
Half Man Half Book