Robert Tombs

The endless myth of British decline

1 October 2023 5:30 pm

The former governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, recently compared the British economy with that of Argentina. This…

The rise of conspiracy history

5 August 2023 9:00 am

Canada’s determination to believe the worst about its past

The trouble with returning the Benin Bronzes

10 June 2023 9:00 am

The trouble with returning the Benin Bronzes

The coronation spoon

6 May 2023 9:00 am

Remainers should be honest about the costs of Brexit

16 April 2023 4:01 pm

Those opposed to leaving the European Union repeatedly accuse Brexit of being based on ignorance fed by lies. The ‘lie’…

Did the Suffragettes really win women the vote?

11 February 2023 8:03 pm

I suppose most people regard the Suffragettes as the exemplary vindication of the right to carry out illegal direct action…

England vs France is far more than a football match

10 December 2022 5:30 pm

When England play France tonight, more will be involved than just a game of football. We all know why. Even those…

Fifa’s president has exposed the trouble with ‘decoloniality’

21 November 2022 8:26 pm

I laughed aloud when I heard Gianni Infantino, president of Fifa, identifying himself sanctimoniously with a whole list of disadvantaged…

These polemics against Brexit both fall into the same trap

6 August 2022 9:00 am

It is good for historians to take the plungeinto political writing, using their knowledgewhere they can to illuminate our present…

What Netflix's RRR gets wrong about the British Raj

19 July 2022 10:05 pm

Netflix is promoting a new pseudo-historical blockbuster. RRR, which stands for Rise, Roar, Revolt, is an Indian film which has been…

Backing Badenoch is a risk the Tories should take

13 July 2022 3:30 pm

Whoever is chosen to lead the Conservative party will be plunged into a storm of problems needing rapid and decisive…

Why is St Paul's Cathedral commemorating a Benin slave trader?

8 March 2022 5:30 pm

The Church of England is rightly sensitive to the evils of slavery and racism. It has announced energetic measures to…

Can Russia ever coexist with the West?

5 March 2022 7:35 pm

Seeing Vladimir Putin’s bloated face and listening to his increasingly unhinged rhetoric makes it tempting to assume that the current…

Cambridge's Jesus College is guilty of double standards

8 February 2022 2:28 am

An event took place in Cambridge last week that was rare enough to reach the national press: a public hearing…

Tony Sewell’s race report critics are guilty of gaslighting

4 April 2021 8:07 pm

The Sewell Report on Race and Ethnic Disparities is courageous, thoughtful and measured. Its relative optimism has triggered a torrent…

The distortion of British history

20 February 2021 7:00 pm

The British Museum has announced the appointment of a curator to study the history of its own collections. On the…

Why Britain chose Brexit

19 December 2020 9:00 am

There was nothing peculiarly British about Brexit

Emmanuel Macron’s great Brexit gamble

15 December 2020 1:13 am

There is an intriguing pattern in our relationship with European integration. A Frenchman vetoed our attempt to join. A Frenchman…

We should not accept Brexit in name only

10 December 2020 1:30 am

Given the seemingly highly technical nature of the current negotiations, members of the public who have normal lives to lead…

Only a ‘good’ Brexit can stop Scottish independence

17 October 2020 9:00 am

Only a ‘good’ Brexit can stop Scottish independence

Coronavirus has exposed the EU’s greatest flaw

12 July 2020 4:00 pm

Politics begins and ends with sovereignty: the duty and right to make the legitimate final decision. We have seen this…

Is Prince Harry really prepared to face up to the Commonwealth's past?

9 July 2020 4:46 pm

When people such as Prince Harry say they want us to face up to the past, do they really mean it?…

11 people who should have statues

14 June 2020 4:02 pm

The Black Lives Matter movement and the ‘Topple the Racists’ campaign have reminded us that monuments in public spaces can…

In defence of the British Empire

8 May 2020 5:00 pm

Is it my imagination, or are the whitened bones of the British Empire being yet again dug up and trampled…

Britain after Brexit: it’s time to decide on our place in the world

11 January 2020 9:00 am

‘Global Britain’: a phrase that provokes mockery and even indignation. As an alternative to EU membership many consider it impossible…