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The english and their history by the professor of french history at cambridge robert tombs is a work of supreme intelligence in this vigorous subtle and penetrating book tombs defies the proprieties of our politically motivated national history curriculum to rethink and revise notions of national identity. In the english and their history the first full length account to appear in one volume for many decades robert tombs gives us the history of the english people and of how the stories they have told about themselves have shaped them from the prehistoric dreamtime through to the present day if a nation is a group of people with a sense of kinship a political identity. The english and their history by the professor of french history at cambridge robert tombs is a work of supreme intelligenceintelligence cuts its way through orthodoxy dogmas traditions and . English has its roots in the languages of the germanic peoples of northern europe during the roman empire most of the germanic inhabited area remained independent from rome although some southwestern parts were within the empiresome germanics served in the roman military and troops from germanic tribes such as the tungri batavi menapii and frisii served in britain under roman command. Robert tombss momentous the english and their history is both a startlingly fresh and a uniquely inclusive account of the people who have a claim to be the oldest nation in the world the english first came into existence as an idea before they had a common ruler and before the country they lived