The extraordinary personalities, their individual stories and the images they employed are interesting in themselves, but set in a wider context they also demonstrate the changing tradition of pretence and rebellion. The authors examine fundamental concepts of loyalty and group identity in a commentary on the nature of legitimate power and established sovereignty. Their analysis reveals the convenient fictions, collective myths and pseudo-histories inherent even today in the construction and maintenance of a dynasty or modern nation.
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(238mm x 168mm x mm)
British Museum Press
Publisher: British Museum Press
Country of Publication:
UK Kirkus Review »
There's something fascinating and occasionally even romantic about individuals who challenge the ruling power. Ever since Adam and Eve human beings have rebelled against authority and starting with ancient times, this book examines a cross-section of would-be rulers, some successful, others not, examining myth and fact and exploring fundamental notions of loyalty and power. Rather than take a chronological, case by case approach, the authors have chosen a bolder, thematic structure - kings and imposters; dreamers and hoaxers, and so on, which makes for interesting and unexpected links. A final chapter examines communal impostures and the creation of mythical national histories in support of individual nations' 'pedigrees'. A readable and provocative 'take' on the history and meaning of rule. (Contains some, mostly black and white illustrations.) (Kirkus UK)
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Author Biography - Clive Cheesman
Clive Cheesman was formerly a curator in the Department of Coins & Medals in The British Museum and is now Rouge Dragon Pursuivant at the College of Arms, London. Jonathan Williams is curator of Roman and Iron Age coins in the same department and the editor of Money: A History. Both contributed to the World of Money CD-ROM.