Official Release: Famous Men of the 16th & 17th Century
The sequel to Famous Men of the Renaissance and Reformation.
Rather than reprinting Famous Men of Modern Times (which is a bit uneven in both tone and selection), we have made the decision to complete the Famous Men biography series with four new books:
- Famous Men of the 16th & 17th Century (Queen Elizabeth to Louis XIV) – available now
- Famous Men of the 18th Century (Isaac Newton to Robespierre) - 2010
- Famous Men of the 19th Century (Napoleon Bonaparte to Mark Twain) - 2011
- Famous men of the 20th Century (Teddy Roosevelt to Ronald Reagan) - 2012
The 17th century was an age of religious wars and revolutions. The French had seven civil wars of religion from 1570-1590. The German Empire had a religious civil war from 1618-1648. The English had a civil war from 1642-1649. It was also the century in which the English and French settlements were founding colonies in North America at Jamestown, Plymouth, Boston, & Quebec. But learning the wars will not convey to students what the times were like. Biographies will. Twenty-eight key individuals are profiled in chronological order:
Birth Crowned Death
Catherine de’ Medici 1553
Henry of Navarre (Henry IV) 1533
Elizabeth I 1540
Sir Francis Drake 1552
Sir Walter Raleigh 1566
James I 1552
Matteo Ricci 1564
William Shakespeare 1580
John Smith 1583
Gustavus Adolphus 1575
Samuel de Champlain 1564
Cardinal Richelieu 1600
Charles I 1599
Oliver Cromwell 1590
William Bradford 1588
John Winthrop 1623
Blaise Pascal 1606
John Milton 1632
Johannes Vermeer 1630
Charles II 1629
Jan Sobieski 1650
William of Orange (William III) 1632
John Locke 1653
Johan Pachelbel 1638
I am particularly pleased with how the chapters on the colonial founders turned out. John Smith (Jamestown), Samuel de Champlain (Quebec), William Bradford (Plymouth), and John Winthrop (Boston) all have incredible and fascinating stories. A simple comparison of their backgrounds and their reasons for leaving England and France will give students far more understanding about the founding of the colonies than any textbook can.
I also enjoyed greatly retelling the events of the English Civil War, the Restoration, and the Glorious Revolution of 1688. These events (with a number of larger-than-life characters) were critical in shaping the political ideas of America’s Founding Fathers – whose stories I am looking forward to telling in Famous Men of the 18th Century.
I’ve also included accounts of the lives of artists (Rembrandt, Vermeer), a musician (Johan Pachelbel), and writers (Shakespeare & Milton) so that students will become acquainted with more than just the political history of the times.
The reading level is targeted on upper elementary/jr. high, but even older students and adults will find much here that gets left out of the textbook accounts.
Famous Men of the 16th & 17th Century is 28 chapters, 228 pages and retails for $17.95, directly from Greenleaf Press.
Get ‘em while they’re hot off the press!
- Rob Shearer, (author and) Publisher