The Secret of World History PDF
by Leopold von Ranke
For the English speaking reader of today, Ranke is surprisingly inaccessible; indeed, he has become something of a patron saint, more praised than read. Now all his major works have been translated, while almost none of his letters, notes, or essays, so important in getting an informal appraisal of his craft of history, is in English. Many of his of books, whether in German or in English, are no longer in print, and the modern reader is less likely to bear up with the four or six volume works which are. Thus the purpose of this anthology is to bring attention to some of the riches which a reader might find in a more extended study of Ranke's histories. Its emphasis is on Ranke as an historian, with translations of essays and addresses which lay down his program for research, politics, and the relationship between and historian's values and his work. It also attempts to give some sense of Ranke's literary skill, by including examples of his historical portraiture from his History of the Popes, History of France, and History of the Reformation. Finally, a selection of letters and brief reflections culled from his works and notes tries to recapture the man, whose own inner development joined with the tendencies of his age to make him a world-historical figure in Ranke's own sense of the word.
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