Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s ruling Justice and Development Party has consolidated its power with relentless construction projects, pursued at the expense of Turkey’s cosmopolitan heritage. The country’s historic football stadiums are among the collateral.
Robert Colls rises to the challenge of arguing the case for sports history as a serious academic subject, digging deep into its beginnings in the 1960s and winning with a wealth of scholarly works and skilled rhetoric.
When West Germany won the competition for the first time in 1954 they were the unfancied representatives of a divided nation emerging from defeat and humiliation.
A fashionable parade and a scene of sporting contests, St James’s Park was first enclosed by Henry VIII. Marjorie Sykes describes the history of the park, including how James I kept a menagerie and aviary there, to which Charles II added pelicans.
Tzykanion, or polo, formed part of the ritual of life at the court of the Emperors in Constantinople. Expertise on horseback, writes Anthony Bryer, was one of the requirements of Imperial dignity.