The Barbarous Years

The Barbarous Years

The Peopling of British North America : the Conflict of Civilizations, 1600-1675

eBook - 2012
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Random House, Inc.

Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize

A compelling, fresh account of the first great transit of people from Britain, Europe, and Africa to British North America, their involvements with each other, and their struggles with the indigenous peoples of the eastern seaboard.


The immigrants were a mixed multitude. They came from England, the Netherlands, the German and Italian states, France, Africa, Sweden, and Finland, and they moved to the western hemisphere for different reasons, from different social backgrounds and cultures. They represented a spectrum of religious attachments. In the early years, their stories are not mainly of triumph but of confusion, failure, violence, and the loss of civility as they sought to normalize situations and recapture lost worlds. It was a thoroughly brutal encounter—not only between the Europeans and native peoples and between Europeans and Africans, but among Europeans themselves, as they sought to control and prosper in the new configurations of life that were emerging around them.



Baker & Taylor
A Pulitzer Prize- and National Book Award-winning historian presents an account of the first great transit of people from Britain, Europe and Africa to the North American British colonies, evaluating its diversity, the survival struggles of immigrants and their relationships with the indigenous populations of the Eastern seaboard. 25,000 first printing.

Publisher: New York : Alfred A. Knopf, 2012
ISBN: 9780307960825
030796082X
Branch Call Number: E-BOOK
Characteristics: 1 online resource

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roycerowe Nov 19, 2012

Mr. Bailyn is at his best writing about New England—familiar terrain—and recounting the travails and then rapid growth of the Massachusetts Bay Colony after 1620. This section could stand on its own as a short book on the subject: The author colorfully portrays the Puritan leaders, their propensity for schism and the relentless struggles between doctrinal compromisers and the pure of heart. Puritans eagerly resorted to flogging, dismembering and burning their opponents. These were barbarous years indeed.

Throughout the book, Mr. Bailyn patiently explains the origins of the people who migrated to America. Readers learn which regions of England, the Netherlands and Scandinavia produced the most migrants, which social classes were best represented, and the extent to which young males predominated within various migrant flows.

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