This is a study of Europe during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries - a period of economic and cultural upheaval, of dramatic changes in politics, society, and religion, and of constant warring among the emergent states. Richard Bonney draws the many strands of this complex history into a comprehensive and exciting account. Based on extensive research, The European Dynastic States is rich in detail and original in approach. It
covers such diverse themes as the Reformation, witchcraft, diplomacy, population structure, the growth of capitalism, wars of religion, and wars of expansion. Professor Bonney also examines the Scandinavian
countries and Russia, areas frequently neglected by historians. Notes, maps, a chronology, and a guide to further reading will make this book indispensable for students of early modern Europe.
`Profesor Bonney naturally draws on his massive erudition in French state-building as a paradigm or contrast to the rest of the European states; but even where he is synthesizing the work of others there is a clear, constructive authorial presence ... This book is a meticulous, highly scholarly work of reference, helped by an ample and modern bibliography ... It will be referred to often and with confidence.'
Euan Cameron, History
`Very useful volume. Deals well with both themes and narrative. The chronology, maps and lists of rulers are especially useful - I dare say they will prevent the confusion that often arises when students have to flit from topic to topic with little background; it will be possible to locate individual events within reigns and historical context with much greater rapidity. Excellent.'
Dr David Laven, University of Keele
'The most impressive part of the book lies in its treatment of political developments. The sheer clarity with which these are analysed is, time and again, so very striking. Even seasoned scholars stand to learn much from Professor Bonney's ability to give an almost aerial survey of one of the most confused and confusing epochs of European history. His treatment of economic and financial affairs in the final, thematic, section of the book is among the best
and most useful available ... cohorts of grateful students will provide the best accolade of this book, so very useful.'
Jerzy Lukowski, University of Birmingham, Renaissance Studies, Vol. 6, No. 3-4, 1992
'This very comprehensive, indeed formidable, study of the author's definition of dynastic monarchy is a scholarly work ... This text is as comprehensive as any that is available for students in this era. Narrative themes and the introduction to current debates are woven into a very broad and though-provoking study. There is a helpful guide to further reading and a very comprehensive index. This is good value for money.'
Noeline Hall, Australian Journal of Politics and History, No. 3, 1992
'he writes well-organized, well-documented arguments of relentless clarity - ideal qualities in the author of any general textbook, and triumphantly exemplified here ... this is an excellent book ... Resoundingly clear, and offering a confidential lead on most matters, it has all the aids to understanding that students look for. Professor Bonney is particularly lucid ... on all matters financial.'
William Doyle, University of Bristol, French History, Vol. 6, No. 4, Dec '92
'a superb annotated bibliography for each chapter ... A detailed chronology and dynastic charts are placed where they are most useful, at the beginning.'
Donald P. King, Whitman College, Teaching History, Spring 1993
'Bonney makes his argument with a wealth of detail and a critical approach to many of the accepted interpretations of the "early modern" period. Bonney displays superb political narrative. As an experienced guide, Bonney leads the reader through the intricate rivalries of the ruling houses ... For readers already familiar with the basic landscape, Bonney expertly points out usually overlooked features and offers many fresh perspectives.'
Robert B. Luehrs, History, Fall 1993
'a remarkably successful survey and detailed introduction to early modern political history ... The European Dynastic States is an informed and innovative addition to the historical literature on early modern Europe. Each reader will find something here with which to disagree (such is the nature of surveys), but Richard Bonney should be applauded for his useful blend of political and social history and the interpretive potential it offers.'
Edmund M. Kern, Lawrence University, Sixteenth Century Journal XXV/4 (1994)
'Bonney is up to the task. He does a masterful job of imposing form on an enormous sprawl of diverse material ... essentially a reference book, a compact source of basic information about the first phase of the development of the modern nation state ... This is an excellent book. It accomplishes its purpose as a reference work without being impenetrable, it adds thought-provoking interpretation that is not whimsical, and it is up-to-date without being an
William H. Cobb, East Carolina University, Journal of the Association of Historians in North Carolina, Vol. 2, Fall 1994
List of maps; List of tables; Chronology; Part I. Religious Developments in the European Dynastic States: Religious divisions in early modern Europe; Part II. The Development of the European Dynastic States: Europe in the age of the Italian wars 1494-1559; Europe in the age of the wars of religion 1559-1618; The struggle for European hegemony 1618-1660; The outsiders of Europe; Part III. The Structure of the European Dynastic States: The rise of European
absolutism; Population and social structure; The European economy; Court, culture, and community; Conclusion: The European dynastic states; Maps; Notes; Guide to further reading; Index