Reading, Writing, And History

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Sympathy for their countrymen in America was widespread among Englishmen on the eve of the Revolution, and it permeated the uppermost layers of British society. Historians, however, Have generally underestimated its strength and neglected its causes. In Bruce Cation’s regular space in this issue, a distinguished British historian examines a phenomenon which goes far to prove that in the past, as in our own times, public opinion about a foreign war was seldom undivided. Dr. Plumb, a professor at Christ’s College, Cambridge, is the author of The First Four Georges and a contributor to The American Heritage Book of the Revolution . —The Editors

Doves and Hawks, 1776