Thomas Pakenham

1933 - ; 8th Earl of Longford; usu. Thomas Pakenham; ed. Belvedere Coll., Dublin; and Magdalen Coll., Oxford; historian and author; son of Frank and Elizabeth Pakenham (née Harman); wrote The Mountrains of Rasselas (1959), based on a journey to Ethiopia; worked on Times Lit. Supplement, Sunday Telegraph, and Observer in London; of The Year of Liberty: The Story of the Great Irish Rebellion of 1798 (1969) representing the rebellion as the outcome of govermental abuses and the deorganised fanaticism of a priest-led jacquerie; also The Boer War (1979); writes on trees and forests and chairs the Irish Tree Society; m. ¬†Mary Cecilia Berry, with whom 4 children; Lady Antonia Fraser is a sister and Harriet Harman a cousin.


  • The Year of Liberty: The Story of the Great Irish Rebellion of 1798 (London: Houghton & Stoddard 1969); Do. (London: Panther 1972), 480pp., ill. [facs., maps, ports.; Bibl. pp.417-19]; Do. (London: Abacus 1979, 2015, &c.); Do. [abridged by Tony Buchan] (London: Nicolson¬†& Weidenfeld 1997), 150pp., ill. (maps, some col.).
  • The Boer War (London: Nicolson Weidenfeld 1979), xxii, 659pp., ill. [16 unnum. pp. of pls.; ills., maps, ports.]; Do. [rep. edn.] (London: Abacus 1992); The Scramble for Africa (London: Nicolson & Weidenfeld 1992).
  • The Hountains of Rasselas: An Ethiopian Adventure (London: Nicolson & Weidenfeld 1958; reps. N&W 1998, Seven Dials 1999), 175pp, ill. [some col., maps.];
  • Meetings with Remarkable Trees, texts & photographs by Thomas Pakenham (London: Phoenix Ill. 1996), and Do. [another edn.] (London: Nicolson & Weidenfeld 2015), 192pp.
See also Paul Johnson, with the assistance of Thomas Pakenham, Architecture: Art or Social Service [A Young Fabian Pamphlet 3S6D.] (London: Fabian Society [1963]), 32pp., ill. [plans]; foreword to Mythic Woods: The World's Most Remarkable Forests by Jonathan Roberts (London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson 2004), 175pp., ill. [col.; 30cm.]


Who Fears to Speak?: ‘who were these peasants who could stand up to twelve hours of continuous fighting, who could charge time and time again into the cannon’s mouth ...?’ (p.215; quoted in Canavan, op. cit., p.161.)


Colm Tóibín: ‘New Ways to Kill Your Father: Historical Revisionism’, Tóibín offers criticisms of the standpoint taken by Pakenham on the Rebellion of 1798 in The Year of Liberty. (Cited in Tony Canavan, reviewing rep. edn. of The Year of Liberty, in Books Ireland, Summer 1998, p.161; citing (See Tóibín, ‘New Ways to Kill Your Father: Historical Revisionism’, in Ireland: Towards New Identities?, ed. Karl-Heinz Westarp & Michael Böss, Aarhus UP 1998, pp.28-36).

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