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Welcome to HBooks

A widespread collective awareness of the histories of Britain, the empire, and the world pervaded Victorian culture. Narratives of the past, tales, lives, accounts, and epics of various kinds were widely available – not only in history books and historical novels, but also in daily, weekly, and monthly publications: journals, magazines, and reviews. These periodicals constituted the popular media of the period.

HBooks showcases the abundance and variety of articles, reviews, and commentary about history published in the British periodical press from 1809 to 1916. HBooks provides metadata and commentary for some 2700 articles and book reviews in nineteen periodicals. The site demonstrates how a variety of periodicals – popular magazines, heavy intellectual reviews, journals for and about children – helped create and maintain the historical culture of the period. It guides users to articles in the full-text online databases available through most academic libraries.

The site was created by Leslie Howsam FRSC, Senior Research Fellow at Ryerson’s Centre for Digital Humanities and Distinguished University Professor Emerita at the University of Windsor. A historian of the book in nineteenth and twentieth-century Britain, she has been investigating the discipline and genre of history as an aspect of the history of the book and print culture since 1998.