The Making of the English Landscape by W.G. Hoskins

“There are few books that can truly be described as seminal, but this is one of them.” Anna Pavord

“Veils were stripped away as I read the book . . . it was an absolute trailblazer, a revolution.” William Boyd

The Making of the English Countryside is W G Hoskins’ masterpiece, revealing the hidden histories of the landscape. This hugely influential and ground-breaking book changed forever the way we experience the places we live and work.

Read the new introduction by William Boyd

Paperback with flaps | 216 x 156mm | 304 pages

Illustrated throughout with maps and photos

Cover photograph by Fay Goodwin


In stock


William Hoskins (1908-1992) was born in Exeter, Devon, the son of a baker. He won a scholarship to St Hele’s School and later studied at the University of Exeter. In 1931 he became a lecturer at the University of Leicester, where he founded the Department of English Local History in 1948, which went on to pioneer the study of people in their landscapes.  In 1951 he was appointed as Reader in Economic History at Oxford University. He was made a fellow of the British Academy in 1969 and became a CBE in 1971. He wrote and edited many books including The Midland Peasant, Local History in England and Two Thousand Years in Exeter. In 1972 he made a television series for the BBC, based on his best-seller, The Making of the English Landscape. He was also president of the Dartmoor Preservation Association and was elected onto the City Council, to help preserve its historic fabric.

Additional information

Weight400 g
Dimensions14 × 156 × 216 mm

1 review for The Making of the English Landscape by W.G. Hoskins

  1. William Boyd

    ‘You could walk, over the course of a mile or two, through centuries of England’s history. The knowledge supplied by The Making of the English Landscape now revealed the secrets of the landscape around you. What initially had seemed a stereotypically charming scene became gravid with meaning and replete with markers of the remorseless passage of time. A landscape would never be the same.’

    Read William Boyd’s introduction to our new edition of The Making of the English Landscape in the Guardian.

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