A Short History of the World
The queen was guillotined, most of Robespierre’s antagonists were guillotined, atheists who argued that there was no Supreme Being were guillotined; day by day, week by week, this infernal new machine chopped off heads and more heads and more. The reign of Robespierre lived, it seemed, on blood; and needed more and more, as an opium-taker needs more and more opium.
Chap. 55, ¶11
H.G. Wells

A Short History of the World

H.G. Wells

Wells’s two-volume Outline of History, published in 1920, was the first general history constructed on an evolutionary, sociological and anthropological basis. It was immensely popular and set the basis for this Short History, which Wells created “to meet the needs of the busy general reader, too driven to study the maps and time charts of that Outline in detail, who wishes to refresh and repair his faded or fragmentary conceptions of the great adventure of mankind.”

Bibliographic Record


Preface    Illustrations

  1. The World in Space
  2. The World in Time
  3. The Beginnings of Life
  4. The Age of Fishes
  5. The Age of the Coal Swamps
  6. The Age of Reptiles
  7. The First Birds and the First Mammals
  8. The Age of Mammals
  9. Monkeys, Apes and Sub-men
  10. The Neanderthaler and the Rhodesian Man
  11. The First True Men
  12. Primitive Thought
  13. The Beginnings of Cultivation
  14. Primitive Neolithic Civilizations
  15. Sumeria, Early Egypt and Writing
  16. Primitive Nomadic Peoples
  17. The First Sea-going Peoples
  18. Egypt, Babylon and Assyria
  19. The Primitive Aryans
  20. The Last Babylonian Empire and the Empire of Darius I
  21. The Early History of the Jews
  22. Priests and Prophets in Judea
  23. The Greeks
  24. The Wars of the Greeks and Persians
  25. The Splendour of Greece
  26. The Empire of Alexander the Great
  27. The Museum and Library at Alexandria
  28. The Life of Gautama Buddha
  29. King Asoka
  30. Confucius and Lao Tse
  31. Rome Comes into History
  32. Rome and Carthage
  33. The Growth of the Roman Empire
  34. Between Rome and China
  35. The Common Man’s Life under the Early Roman Empire
  36. Religious Developments under the Roman Empire
  37. The Teaching of Jesus
  38. The Development of Doctrinal Christianity
  39. The Barbarians Break the Empire into East and West
  40. The Huns and the End of the Western Empire
  41. The Byzantine and Sassanid Empires
  42. The Dynasties of Suy and Tang in China
  43. Muhammad and Islam
  44. The Great Days of the Arabs
  45. The Development of Latin Christendom
  46. The Crusades and the Age of Papal Dominion
  47. Recalcitrant Princes and the Great Schism
  48. The Mongol Conquests
  49. The Intellectual Revival of the Europeans
  50. The Reformation of the Latin Church
  51. The Emperor Charles V
  52. The Age of Political Experiments; of Grand Monarchy and Parliaments and Republicanism in Europe
  53. The New Empires of the Europeans in Asia and Overseas
  54. The American War of Independence
  55. The French Revolution and the Restoration of Monarchy in France
  56. The Uneasy Peace in Europe That Followed the Fall of Napoleon
  57. The Development of Material Knowledge
  58. The Industrial Revolution
  59. The Development of Modern Political and Social Ideas
  60. The Expansion of the United States
  61. The Rise of Germany to Predominance in Europe
  62. The New Overseas Empires of Steamship and Railway
  63. European Aggression in Asia, and the Rise of Japan
  64. The British Empire in 1914
  65. The Age of Armament in Europe, and the Great War of 1914–18
  66. The Revolution and Famine in Russia
  67. The Political and Social Reconstruction of the World