Romance of Empire: South Africa

South-Africa-frontcover-OPBy Ian D. Colvin. Part of the Romance of Empire series produced in London during the first decade of the twentieth century, this dashing sweep of South African colonial history tells the story of the tip of Africa from the first European sighting in the 1400s right through to the end of the Second Anglo-Boer War in 1902. A marvelously politically incorrect book, this work draws upon original colonial records and accounts to provide insights into the story of the longest lasting—and most influential—of European settlements in Africa.

Read the thrilling accounts of the early Portuguese explorations, the arrival of the first Dutch colonists, the growth of the Cape Colony, the advent of slavery and its repercussions, the British occupation of the Cape, the endless frontier “Kaffir Wars”, the Great Trek, the war with the Zulus, and finally the awful clash between Boer and Brit.

An enthralling story, told in a forthright, frank but utterly engrossing style: “It is a little hard to realise that the Portuguese were exploring East Africa when the English were still fighting the Wars of the Roses, and that an army was being led three or four hundred miles up the Zambesi when Shakespeare was little more than a baby. It was the fate of the Portuguese to spend their blood and treasure looking for gold among the fever-stricken jungles and mangrove swamps of South-east Africa. The tales of death and massacre, of battles with cannibals and wild beasts to be found in the old Portuguese records would take a volume to themselves.”

About the author: Ian Duncan Colvin (1877–1938) was a British journalist, historian, and lead writer for the Morning Post newspaper in London (which was later merged into the Daily Telegraph). He specialised in the history of British domestic and foreign affairs, and acquired fame for his collection of works dealing with the extent of the British Empire and its relations with other European powers.

Paperback, 262 pages, 6″ x 9″, $9.95


Hardcover $21.14