Lectures on Modern History/Prefatory note


The Lectures on Modern History were delivered by Lord Acton in his ordinary course as Professor in the academical years 1899-1900 and 1900-01. The Inaugural Lecture on the Study of History, here reprinted, was delivered on June 11, 1895. The document printed in Appendix I. is of great interest, as exhibiting the ideals of Lord Acton as a student and the aims of the undertaking which he planned and still bears his name.

It is hoped shortly to issue in another volume the Lectures on the French Revolution, and thus to complete the record of his work as Professor. The Introductory Essay deals exclusively with his Cambridge work. A more general account of his career will precede the volumes of essays and reviews. The editors wish to thank Professor Henry Jackson for his kind advice with regard to the Introduction.

The second impression differs from the first in that a few small errors in the text have been corrected. The editors desire to state that the Lectures are printed from the manuscript exactly in the form in which they were delivered.

J. N. F.
R. V. L.