A history of Great Britain, volume 1

Title page of 'A history of Great Britain'

Title page of the first volume of 'A history of Great Britain', by David Hume (1754).


In his autobiography, David Hume states that he formed the plan of writing 'The history of England' which he was Keeper of the Advocates Library in Edinburgh.

The first volume originally was published in 1754 as volume 1 of 'The history of Great Britain' — 'containing the reigns of James I and Charles II'

The 'History grew in scope, and Hume twice extended the initial period covered back in time. It then became necessary to entitle his work 'The history of England', and this title was used for the entire series on subsequent re-issue as an eight-volume set.

[NLS shelfmark: C.31.a]

This volume featured in the David Hume display at the National Library of Scotland from 5 May to 28 June 2011.

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