Melton prior Institut


Linton- Life in the Collections

Eduard Bernstein:

Stuttgart 1919

Eduard Bernstein’s survey was the first substantial examination of the ancient egalitarian roots of English radicalism. It was this Puritan communitarian tradition which had shaped Linton’s concept of an English Republic decisively. The German social democratic politician and theorist Bernstein was no educated historian, but he managed to open up with his pioneering piece a range of hidden source materials like the writings of the communist Leveller Gerrard Winstanley.

Bernstein’s survey was first published in Stuttgart by Johann Heinrich Wilhelm Dietz in 1895 under the title Kommunistische und demokratisch-sozialistische Strömungen während der englischen Revolution. In England it became accessible only in 1930 in the translation by H.J. Stenning, titled Cromwell and Communism. It was reprinted twice, in 1963 and 1980, and became seminal for the work of the Communist Party Historians Group, especially for the studies on the origins and the progress of the English Civil War by Christopher Hill and Brian Manning.