Remembered for his popular, historically-themed BBC television lectures, this famous European historian wrote numerous works on the topic of diplomacy in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries. His best-known publications include The Struggle for Mastery in Europe 1848-1918 and The Origins of the Second World War.
He grew up in an affluent, radically liberal household in Lancashire, England, and graduated from Oxford University in the late 1920s. He subsequently accepted teaching positions at the University of Manchester, University College London, and Magdalen College, Oxford.
During the World War II years, he developed close friendships with both Czechoslovakian President Edvard Benes and Hungarian leader Mihaly Karolyi.
His first marriage, to Margaret Adams, resulted in four children. He later married Eve Crosland, with whom he had another two children. Finally, he became the husband of Hungarian-born historian Eva Haraszti.
His first wife was involved in a romantic affair with the renowned Welsh poet Dylan Thomas.