Reference Books For Your Library


Sources I've Found Valuable and Invaluable

History - The Facts, Ma'am. Just the Facts.

British Artillery on Land and Sea 1790-1820 1973, Robert Wilkinson-Latham, David & Charles.
This contained some excellent nuggets of information, like a list of the Master of the Ordinance and explanations of the differences between land and naval forces and weapons

With The Guns in the Peninsula, the Peninsula War Journal of Captain William Webber, Royal Artillery 1991, Napoleonic Library, Greenhill Books, London, Presidio Press, California. Edited by Richard Henry Wollocombe.

Britain and the Defeat of Napoleon 1807 - 1815 1998, Rory Muir, Yale University Press
A good read. I love history.

The Victory of Seapower. Winning the Napoleonic War 1806 - 1814 1998, Richard Woodman, Chatham Publishing

The Construction and Fitting of the English Man of War 1650 - 1850. 1987, Peter Goodwin, Naval Insitute Press

Weapons Through the Ages 1976, William Reid, Crescent Books
Frequently used.

A Dictionary of British Ships and Seamen 1980, Grant Uden and Richard Cooper, St. Martin's Press.

Manners and Social History

Life in the English Country House Yale University Press 1978, Mark Girouard.
A must have. Fascinating and specific. Good pictures, too.

Behind the Scenes. Domestic Arrangements in Historic Houses The National Trust 1997, Christina Hardyment.
Really interesting read. Fascinating and specific. Lots of pictures.

An Elegant Madness, High Society in Regency England Viking 1998, Venetia Murray.
Nice to have. Please note, the author is not an historian and sometimes it shows. Cooroborate if you use a fact from this book.

The Oxford Companion to the Law 1980, David M. Walker, Clarendon Press, Oxford
Contains a chronological list of English Monarchy and the names and titles of cabinet members, lots and lots of great definitions.

The Toilet and Cosmetic Arts in Ancient and Modern Times with a review of the Different Theories of Beauty and Copious Allied Information Social, Hygenic and Medical Arnold J. Cooley. Originally Published 1866, Reprinted 1970, Burt Franklin
Includes recipes!

The Complete Guide to Furniture Styles 1959, 1969, Louise Ade Boger, Charles Scribner's Sons

The Collector's Enclyclopedia of Antiques 1973, Edited by Phoebe Phillips, Walter Parrish International Ltd., Crown Publishers, Inc.

The Writer's Guide to Everyday Life in Regency and Victorian England From 1811-1901 1998, Kristine Hughes, Writer's Digest Books.
Ok, but I haven't used it much.

Miscellany - But Some of the Best Stuff is here!

A Dictionary of English Place-Names 1991, A.D. Mills, Oxford University Press
I refer to this dozens of times while I'm deciding on names

The Oxford Guide to Heraldry 1988, Thomas Woodcock, Somerset Herald, John Martin Robinson, Fitzalan Pursuivant Extraordinary, Oxford University Press
Great bits of stuff I wouldn't ever have known about. Pictures and lots in color.

What I Saw in London; or Men and Things in the Great Metropolis 1853, David W. Bartlett, Derby & Miller
I'm glad I never met this man. What a snob, but gives lots of insights into the Victorian mind.

England Without and Within 1885, Richard Grant White, Houghton, Mifflin and Company, The Riverside Press, Cambridge

Fashion - What Did They Wear and When?

The Cut of Women's Clothes 1600-1930 1968, Norah Waugh, Routledge Theatre Arts Books

The Cut of Men's Clothes 1600-1900 1964, Norah Waugh, Routledge Theatre Arts Books

Four Hundred Years of Fashion 1984, Victoria & Albert Museum, William Collins Sons & Co, Ltd.
Color photographs

Pictorial Encyclopedia of Fashion 1968, Ludmila Kybalová, Olga Herbenová, Milena Lamarová, Translated by Claudia Rosoux, Crown Publishers, Inc.

English Women's Clothing in the Nineteenth Century 1990, C. Willet Cunnington, Dover Publications.
A constant source of material. (Pun intended, but I'm serious. This is a great book. You go, Dover!)

Geography and Architecture

Handbook to the Environs of London, containing an account of every town and village and of all places of interest within a circle of twenty miles round London Originally published 1876, James Thorne, 1983 Godfrey Caves Associates
Sometimes inspirational.

Michelin, Great Britian and Ireland 1988, Michelin Tyre , Public Limited Company
Extremely useful.

The Shell Guide to The History of London 1981, W. R. Dalzell, W. W. Norton & Company.
Cannot do without.

The English House 1985, James Chambers, W. W. Norton & Company.

The Last Country Houses 1982, Clive Aslet, Yale University Press


This is a new area of research for me. I haven't finished reading everything listed here. But these are books I either picked up while on vacation in Scotland or that I thought warranted the expense of buying.

Medieval Scotland 1995, Peter Yeoman, B. T Batsford Ltd/Historic Scotland.
Really interesting, too!

Scottish Clans & Tartans 2001, Pitkin Unichrome Ltd. Pitkin Guides

Borthwick Castle Helen Bailey. You'll have to go to Borthwick castle to get this one!

Dictionary of Scottish Building 1996, Glen L. Pride, The Rutland Press (Historic Scotland)

The Companion to Gaelic Scotland 1983, Derick S. Thomson, editor, Gairm Publications
Kind of an encyclopedia for people who already know a fair amount about Scotland. Seems to cover just about everything, but what do I know? Not much right now except you can open to any page and find something interesting and useful.

People and Society in Scotland, Volume II 1830-1914. A Social History of Modern Scotland in Three Volumes 1990, W. Hamish Fraser and R. J. Morris, editors
Well, I'm a used-book store junkie. I knew this would come in handy one day. Too bad they didn't have Vols. 1 and 3.

Highland Swordsmanship, Techniques of the Scottish Swordmasters 2001, Mark Rector, editor, Chivalry Bookshelf
Interesting book. Reprint of source material plus photos of people dressed up and fighting.


Check out the Resources page, for books on writing, magazines and other material about the profession of writing.

If you love words, go here. If you don't, I doubt you got this far on the page anyway.

Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary 1986, Merriam-Webster Inc.

The Elements of Style, Third Edition 1979, William Strunk, Jr., and E.B. White, MacMillan Publishing Company

Bartlett's Familiar Quotations 15th Edition 1982, John Bartlett, Little Brown and Company

On-Line Resources

Encyclopedia Brittanica. Great site. I go there a lot.

The College of Arms. - Official repository of the coats of arms and pedigrees of English, Welsh, Northern Irish and Commonwealth families and their descendants.

Royal Navy During the Napoleonic Era (1793-1815). - Good stuff here.

The Royal Navy. Yes. That Royal Navy. Site is slow as molasses but there's a great slang dictionary if you have the patience...

Focal An Lae, The Word of The Day In Irish by Dennis King

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