London : A Social History, Paperback
3 out of 5 (1 rating)


'Roy Porter, a historian of formidable range, turns to urban history in this marvellously lucid, informative and passionate book...Porter's facts are always at the service of the narrative, which has a finely maintained momentum, balancing statistics with the words of historians, diarists and novelists, poets and churchmen: Pepys, Boswell, Fielding, Walpole, Blake, Mayhew, Wells, Woolf, Spark, ...a timely and brilliant book.' - Claire Tomalin, "Evening Standard". 'A vivid celebration of the city, but also an elegy for its decline, bubbling with statistics and anecdote, from Boadicea to Betjeman.' - Richard Holmes, Daily Telegraph Books of the Year.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 560 pages, b&w illustrations, maps
  • Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: British & Irish history
  • ISBN: 9780140105933



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Porter's history of London is readable, entertaining and informative, its only fault being that of length (and of the focus on the 19th century, but this is a matter of taste). While the book itself doesn't slacken in pace or passion, towards the end, the reader cannot but flag at all the facts and figures. Good read though, all said.