Examining the question of whether there is still a ruling class in Britain, John Scott presents an account of the historical development of the British upper class, the development of industrial and financial dynasties, town and country society as well as of London and the political world. Photographs and other illustrations cover subjects as diverse as public school fees, the structure of parliament, and the dates and events of the 'Season'.
How many are still alive today?
How do we measure wealth through the ages and how do today's wealth giants like Murdoch and Packer compare with those in the past?
This extraordinary social history lists over 200 of the wealthiest Australians of all time. Readers will delight in the astonishing history of these individuals:
* the surgeon who joined in the 1797 Mutiny of the British fleet and was transported to Sydney, who then developed the largest medical practice in the colony and became a major landowner;
* one of the most famous Australians who allegedly amassed his wealth by getting officers and small landholders drunk at his public house and then allowing them to sign away their rights to their possessions as security for their debts;
* the director of the Bank of New South Wales who committed suicide due to a bad case of depression and gout;
* the pronounced lunatic' who got into constant strife with the governor;
* the grazier who was stabbed in the groin with a pair of sheep-shears;
* one of Australia's richest ever women and the great mystery surrounding her.
With detailed information on how they made their money and what sort of people they were and are, The All-time Australian 200 Rich List paints a lively portrait of these distinctive individuals. Some of them were transported as convicts, others had de facto relationships with convicts, and yet as a group they became the nation's wealthiest people and formed the very foundation of our traditional ideas about how Australian history and its economic development were created.
Professor William D. Rubinstein has 14 books to his credit, including Men of Property: The Very Wealthy in Britain Since the Industrial Revolution (Rutgers University Press, 1981), The Jews in Australia (AE Press, 1986) and Jews in the Sixth Continent edited by W.D. Rubinstein (Allen + Unwin, 1987). He holds the Chair in History at the University of Aberystwyth (Wales) and previously held academic posts at the Australian National and Deakin Universities.