...a short and masterly book. Douglas Johnson, New Society ...this scholarly, comprehensive and subtle analysis should be made compulsory reading for all students of the period and, most of all, for the decision-makers of today. John F V Keiger, History This succinct and, above all, admirably clear volume...will be essential reading for all students of the subject, from the sixth form onwards. It is written with a lightness of touch and an eye for the telling anecdote that will commend it to the general reader, too. F R Bridge, British Book News ...it will not provide (readers) with an easy one-sentence answer to the question What caused the Great War? But after reading it, they should have a better sense of the intricate web of history and of the dangers of producing simple answers to complex issues... Paul Kennedy, New York Review of Books Published in Harry Hearder s acclaimed Origins of Modern Wars Series, James Joll s justly-celebrated and best-selling study is not simply another narrative, retracing the powder trail that was finally ignited at Sarajevo. It is an ambitious and wide-ranging analysis of the historical forces at work in the Europe of 1914, and the very different ways in which historians have subsequently attempted to understand them. In this Second Edition, first published in 1992, Professor Joll returned to the text and revised it in the light of recent research. Its most notable new features are the substantial additional material on Italy and the war, and the reworking of the bibliography.Joll, James is the author of 'Origins of the First World War Update', published 2000 under ISBN 9780582418660 and ISBN 0582418666.