Monthly Archive: September 2012

Sep 24

Young Reader Favorites: Stories from Beowulf

Beowulf is one of the oldest stories written in the English language and a classic of Anglo-Saxon literature. Aside from its scholarly interest, however, it is a wonderful hero story with terrific appeal to grammar school aged students. The story of Beowulf is a thrilling folktale with plenty of swagger, danger, and heroism, delightful to any adventure-loving child.

Sep 24

Poem: Danegeld by Rudyard Kipling


It is always a temptation to an armed and agile nation,
To call upon a neighbour and to say:
“We invaded you last night—we are quite prepared to fight,
Unless you pay us cash to go away.”

   And that is called asking for Dane-geld,
   And the people who ask it explain
   That you’ve only to pay ’em the Dane-geld
   And then you’ll get rid of the Dane!

Sep 15

British History Core Reading Selections

The Heritage History library contains dozens of books about English History and heroes, but while our complete collection includes over 80 books in its British category, only a few of these can be considered comprehensive histories (also called spines). Since spines are often assigned as required reading, we thought it would be a good idea to introduce these books to those families who are considering a study of English history.

While all of the following books are excellent, Our Island Story by H. E. Marshall is the most well-known. It is recommended by several traditional curriculums and never disappoints. The others, however, are worthy of note, and each is considerably shorter than H. E. Marshall’s landmark work.

Sep 15

Ask Heritage: Why Assign Two Spines instead of One?

When you say every student of Ancient History should read at least two comprehensive histories (sometimes called “spines”) for both Greece and Rome do you mean one after the other or do you mean two different spines over the course of their elementary schooling years, the way the three and four year curriculums suggests? – …

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Sep 14

Featured Series: Makers of England


One of our favorite biographical series is Eva March Tappan’s Makers of England series. This series introduces middle school aged students to the lives of four fascinating kings and queens and each book is entertaining and fast moving.

In all four books, the author emphasizes the childhood and education of the monarch, rather than dwelling on the political events of their reign. In this way the author introduces the reader to the world in which each of her heroes grows to manhood or womanhood. The heroes’ relationships with their parents and tutors, the customs of their society, and the ideas which guided the education of well-brought up children of their age are all explored.

Sep 11

Book Review: Buccaneer and Pirate History

These swashbuckling pirate tales makes for a grand feast of adventure. With chapters such as Masters in Piracy, A Pirate Potentate, and Villainy on a Grand Scale the author recounts the dastardly deeds and desperate feats of dozens of pirates who terrorized the Caribbean Coasts during the age of Piracy. There is no shortage of action in this book; most horrifying exploits are rendered in reasonably good taste, and many of the tales are surprisingly amusing.

Sep 07

September Freebie: 100 American Adventure Stories


Every month Heritage History selects one book from its online collection to give away as a free sample, so that people will see how easy it is use our e-books. Our library contains over 400 books, so it will take a while to go through them all and we’re hoping that some of you history …

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Sep 04

Featured Series: Colonial Children

James Otis, author of the Colonial Children’s series has an extraordinary ability to weave complex characters and communicate vivid images with exceedingly few words. The series was written to appeal to very young readers, and features short chapters, simple sentences, and an illustration on nearly every page. The books can be read by novice readers, yet the stories are rich with character development, drama, and fascinating observations.

Sep 02

Poem: Old Ironsides

Decatur on Old Ironsides

The USS Constitution, also known as “Old Ironsides” was one of the first frigates commissioned by the United States Navy. It was launched in 1797 and five years later was the flagship of the United States campaign against the Barbary Pirates in Tripoli. It was commanded by such great naval heroes as Edward Preble, Stephen Decatur, and Isaac Hull, and saw great service in the War of 1812. By 1830 she was considered unfit for service, but due to great public indignation, best expressed by this poem by Oliver Wendell Holmes Sr., was reconstructed and returned to commission.