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Dustmen, drunkards and washerwomen: ‘Petition Mongers in full Cry to St Stephens!! Beware of Wolves in Sheeps Cloathing’, by Isaac Cruikshank, 1795.

What’s the point of petitions?

2019 Longman Shortlist

The six titles on the shortlist for our annual book prize.

Prolix puritan: Richard Baxter, engraving on a 19th-century bookplate.

William (‘Willie’) Lamont (1934-2018) changed our understanding of religion and the civil war.

Fulvia with the head of Cicero, by Pavel Svedomsky, 19th century.

Without political power of her own, Fulvia wielded that of her husbands. 

Every generation has its own Robin, adapted to fit the needs of the time.

Here’s looking at you: the anatomy of an eye, from Opticae Thesaurus (1572), German, woodcut.

The father of modern optics could not have succeeded had he not feigned madness.

General de Gaulle on 18 June 1940 in the recording studio of the BBC at Broadcasting House, London.

The relationship between France, Germany and Britain is at the heart of the European story. Three historical figures embody it.

Revolting: members of the CRS throw grenades during student riots in Paris, 1968.

France’s elite police unit is being compared to the SS – not for the first time.

Safe haven: Fatebenefratelli Hospital, Tiber Island, Rome, 2019.

In one Italian hospital, an invented disease helped save hundreds from the occupying Nazis.

Rainy day: a flooded Piazza San Marco, Venice, 1966.

Founded to safeguard the world’s heritage, UNESCO’s status often threatens what it seeks to protect.