The Romance of the Nation

My love of history began when as a small child I flicked through the pages of a large green book belonging to my father.  In fact there were two green books each packed with illustrations and they were bound copies of magazines first published in 1934.

There were detailed diagrams of how things worked, including my favourite, a castle.  This picture showed the attack and defence of a fortress in the days of Edward III when the first cannons were beginning to be used, but catapults and ballistas were still needed for accuracy.

Other illustrations are of famous peopla or events such as this one of Cardinal Wolsey at the height of his powers when he built Hampton Court Palace.

Originally 52 issues of the magazine were printed, edited by Charles Ray and you can read about his other publications here.
Ray described The Romance of the Nation as, "A Stirring Pageant of the British Peoples Through All the Ages."

If it had still been loose copies of the magazines, I might have been tempted to cut out and dress these medieval dollies.

I don't think I ever made any of the complicated models.


  1. Beats those 'Dress this paper doll' books that I used to have. Thinks: a tabbed make your own life-size castle..I could do that!

  2. I will search the pages for a Make Your Own Castle for you.

  3. I too loved those books that my mother had when I was young.(still have them.) I use to trace the paper dolls and clothes and colour them in. They were very handing when doing history project at school

  4. I photocopied some pages for my History classes when I was teaching.