Hermit of Peking
Hermit of Peking
The arrival of an unpublished memoir offering up a scandalous version of the hitherto blameless public life of the revered oriental scholar, Sir Edmund Backhouse, sets Hugh Trevor-Roper on the trail of an outrageous confidence trickster. One of the great detective stories of our age, told with a pace and an infectious delight in the process of historical research, the Hermit of Peking would have made an outrageously imaginative work of fiction but for the fact that it is all true. Trevor-Roper unearths scholars with bizarre sexual fantasies, eunuchs, rare manuscripts and a malicious dowager Queen, and sets them all against the backdrop of a decadent and intrigue ridden Imperial court.
‘The reader is throughout amused, amazed and enthralled.’ - The Times
‘One of the great classic biographies of an incorrigible rogue... delightful and uproarious.’ - Colin Wilson, Literary Review
Hermit of Peking: The Hidden Life of Sir Edmund Backhouse
Format: 416pp demi pb
Hugh Trevor-Roper, Lord Dacre of Glanton, was born in Northumberland and educated at Charterhouse and Christ Church, Oxford, where he read Classics and Modern History. In 1957 he was appointed Regius Professor of Modern History at Oxford and in 1980 Master of Peterhouse, Cambridge. He died in 2003.
His books include Archbishop Laud (1940), The Last Days of Hitler (1947), The Gentry 1540-1640 (1953), Hitler’s Table Talk (ed. 1953), Historical Essays (1957), Hitler’s War Directives 1939-45 (ed. 1964), The Rise of Christian Europe(1965), Religion, The Reformation and Social Change (1967), The Age of Expansion (ed.1968), The Philby Affair (1968),The European Witch Craze of the 16th and 17th Centuries (1970), Prince and Artists (1976), The Goebbels Diaries (ed. 1978), Renaissance Essays (1985), Catholics, Anglicans and Puritans (1987), and From Counter Reformation to Glorious Revolution (1992).