Edward Vii and the Entente Cordiale by Ian Dunlop - review by Nigel Jones

Nigel Jones

Best of Enemies Worst of Amis

Edward Vii and the Entente Cordiale


Constable 315pp £25 order from our bookshop

WHEN A LAZY sub-editor reaches for an easy cliché to describe the ever-awkward Anglo-French relations, the one that comes most readily to hand is entente cordiale: 'The entente cordiale was looking shaky last night after French president Jacques Chirac launched a blistering attack on Tony Blair ...'

The original entente - not a formal treaty but a vague understanding which settled potential colonial conflicts (Britain got Egypt and France Morocco) and recognised the rising menace of Wilhelmine Germany - was signed exactly a hundred years ago, in April 1904. Constable celebrate the centenary by publishing this narrative,

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