REVIEWS NATIONALITY AND THE PURSUIT OF NATIONAL INDEPENDENCE. Edited by T. W. Moody. Belfast, 1978. Pp. 175. £ 6.50. The Irish Committee of Historical Sciences has been holding a biennial conference since 1955 and subsequently publishing a volume of pro- ceedings. In 1975 it took, for the first time, a single theme: 'the pursuit of national independence'. Whether that decision brought about the degree of coherence which was presumably intended is somewhat open to question. Eight papers, ranging in time from the Dark Ages to the twentieth century and in subject from Ireland to Botswana, tend to become very disparate. There may also have been a slightly unfortunate assumption that there is 'an inseparable connection between the national idea and the principle of self-determination', against which one of the contributors, Professor W. J. Mommsen, uttered an explicit warning. Nevertheless, the observations of eight lively and often deliberately provocative authors offer much to think about and argue with. Welsh historians will do well to ponder on the relevance to their own studies of Mr. 45. Corrain's reflections on the early- Irish sense of nationality and the role in promoting it of his 'mandarin class' of cleric-jurists, poets and royal propagandists. They may find even more in Dr. Rosalind Mitchison's characteristically searching inquiry into the class attitudes of those Scottish nationalists who turned their backs on the past in their pursuit of the economic advantages of a 'completer union' with England. Nor can they fail to find many points of contrast and comparison in Mommsen's powerful paper on imperialism and nationalism between 1870 and 1914, even though he never once mentions Wales. But unquestionably the most relevant essay for them will be Dr. Michael Richter's illuminating contribution on medieval Wales. In his own words, he applies 'some gentle European breeze to the Celtic mists in Wales' with very telling effect. He examines with refreshing breadth and originality the relationship between changing concepts of nationality and the concentra- tion of political authority, especially in Gwynedd, during the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. This paper is essential reading for any serious student of Welsh history. GLANMOR WILLIAMS Swansea FROM ROMAN BRITAIN TO NORMAN ENGLAND. By P. H. Sawyer. Methuen, 1978. Pp. ix, 294. £ 4.95. In the Preface the author announces that 'the present book is not a comprehensive treatment of all topics; attention is rather concentrated on those that appear to be in particular need of some revision'. This proviso conditions the way in which an excellent book will be read and used. The balance is towards the areas where opinion is changing and where recent discoveries, notably those of the archaeologists, are transforming know- ledge. Thus, approximately one third of the book is devoted to Chapter 1,