- New Castle, Delaware and London, England: Oak Knoll Press and The British Library, 2008.
- 7.5 x 9.75 inches
- Hardcover, dust jacket
- 624 pages
- ISBN: 9781584562344
Price: $110.00 other currencies
Order Nr. 96667
First edition. Longmans is the oldest commercial publisher in the United Kingdom, founded in London in 1724 by Thomas Longman. Asa Briggs's history is told within the context not only of the book trade, but also of national and international social, economic, intellectual, and cultural history. It tells of the people who ran the firm, the principles they held, and their success as entrepreneurs.
From the start, the Longmans chose titles likely to have a long life. These included Roget's Thesaurus and Gray's Anatomy, which have gone through many editions. Early nineteenth-century Longman authors included William Wordsworth, Robert Southey, and Sir Walter Scott, and by the middle of the century they had become a publishing "Leviathan." Late Victorian authors included A.Conan Doyle, Robert Louis Stevenson, and H. Rider Haggard.
Throughout its history, the House of Longmans has published a variety of important works, covering religion, law, medicine, science, and sport and has been a major publisher of dictionaries and reference books. It has also always been renowned for its educational publishing.
In the twentieth century, it became increasingly international, with branches and subsidiary companies all over the world. Questions of how, why, and with what effectiveness are dealt with in the last chapters of this comprehensive and intriguing study.
Asa Briggs is a leading historian both of the Victorian Age and communications. He has written many books, among which are The Age of Improvement, Victorian People, Victorian Cities and Victorian Things and his magisterial four-volume history of broadcasting in the United Kingdom. Among posts he has held have been those of Vice-Chancellor of the University of Sussex and Chancellor of the Open University.