Britain had the biggest empire the world has ever known. At one time a quarter of the global land mass was British. Over a third of the world was insured at Lloyds. At his coronation, more than 400 million people saluted George V. Truly, the sun never set on this historical phenomenon. Whatever the day, whatever the hour, somewhere on the globe, the empire worked and played up and played the British game, often absurdly so.
The story of the British Empire is one of enormous personalities, adventure, scientific and maritime development, and the building of one of the most complex international administrations the world has ever seen.
The series shows the history of exploration from the 16th century, but more importantly from the mid-18th century to the period shortly before the First World War.
"This final tranche of Christopher Lee's fascinating study of British history through its imperial ambitions was never a book at all, but a lively Radio 4 series, and it draws a well illustrated and instructive timeline from Victoria to Churchill to Gandhi and beyond." Karen Robinson,
The Sunday Times
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