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The Top Historical Books in the Public Domain

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The hallmark of good literature is the ability to transport us into different minds. We bet it’s time for you to find a cozy reading spot and go back in time with our freshly picked and must-read historical books. Here is our favourite out of the top historical books in the public domain.

The Prince and the Pauper

by Mark Twain

The Prince and the Pauper represents Twain’s first attempt at historical fiction. The story is about two identical young boys, Price Edward – son of King Henry VIII and a Pauper who lives with his abusive father in Offal Court, off Pudding Lane, London.

War and Peace

by Lev Nikolayevich Tolstoy

War and Peace by Tolstoy is usually described as one of his two major masterpieces (of course, the other is Anna Karenina) that tells the story of Russian society during the Napoleonic era. It offers a new type of fiction with a great number of characters caught up in a plot that covered nothing less than the grand title, combined with the equally large topic of youth, age, marriage, and death.

Les Misérables

by Victor Hugo

Written by a French author Victor Hugo, it follows the lives and interactions of several French characters over a twenty-year period in the early 19th century that starts the year of Napoleon’s final defeat.

The Man in the Iron Mask

by Alexandre Dumas

The Man in the Iron Mask is the name given to a young prisoner who languished deep inside the dreaded Bastille with his face hidden from all for eight years long. In revealing the truth, Aramis, one of the original three musketeers bribes his way into the young man’s cell.


by Robert Louis Stevenson

A historical fiction adventure novel by Robert Louis Stevenson and published in 1886. that centers on the tricked young David Balfour who is kidnapped and bound for America. In the process, the ship runs into a turmoil and David is rescued by fugitive Jacobite, Alan Breck Stewart, and his own admission, a “bonny fighter.”

The Last of the Mohicans

by James Fenimore Cooper

First published in January 1826, The Last of the Mohicans is a historical novel by Fenimore Cooper – one of the most popular English-language novels of its time. According to the writer, the story takes place in 1757 during the seven-year war known in America as the French and Indian War.

Ten Years Later

by Alexandre Dumas

Ten Years Later by Alexandre Dumas is the third and last of D’Artagnan Romances following The Three Musketeers and Twenty Years After. Published in 1848 and appeared first in serial form between 1847 and 1850.

The Pathfinder

by James Fenimore Cooper

Being Cooper’s most picturesque historical novel, it is a naval story set on the Great Lakes of the 1750s. The novel illuminates the writer’s interest in American history and experience as a midshipman on Lake Ontario in 1808-09.


by Henry David Thoreau

Published in 1854, it is one of the best-known non-fiction books written by an American and it is otherwise known as “Life in the Woods”. Walden narrates about two years and two months of Thoreau’s life in second-growth forest around the shores of Walden Pond, a stone throw from his friend and family in Concord Massachusetts.

Sybil, or The Two Nations

by Benjamin Disraeli

Sybil or The Two Nations by Benjamin Disraeli is an 1845 historical novel that shares the same year of publication with Friedrich Engel’s The Condition of Working Class in England. The novel expresses the writer’s interest in dealing with the horrific conditions of England’s working class.