A Natural History of Ghosts: 500 Years of Hunting for Proof - Roger Clarke A natural history of the supernatural from Roger Clarke, lifelong investigator into England's creepiest real-life ghost stories

'Is there anybody out there?' No matter how rationally we order our lives, few of us are completely immune to the suggestion of the uncanny and the fear of the dark. The subject of whether ghosts exist has fascinated some of the finest minds in history and it remains a subject of overwhelming interest today.

This is the first comprehensive, authoritative and readable history of the evolution of the ghost in the west, examining as every good natural history should, the behaviour of the subject in its preferred environment: the stories we tell each other. What explains sightings of ghosts? Why do they fascinate us? What exactly did the haunted see? What did they believe? And what proof is there?

Taking us through the key hauntings that have obsessed the world from the poltergeist of Cock Lane through the true events that inspired The Turn of the Screw and the dark events of Borley Rectory right up to the present day, Roger Clarke unfolds a story of class conflict, charlatans and true believers. His surprising castlist ranges from Samuel Johnson to John Wesley, and from Harry Houdini to Adolf Hitler. Inspired by a childhood spent in two haunted houses, Roger Clarke has spent much of his life trying to see a ghost. Written as grippingly as the best ghost fiction, A Natural History of Ghosts takes us on an unforgettable hunt through the most haunted places of the last five hundred years and our longing to believe.


Nothing better than a spooky book to read over Christmas!

Roger Clarke was the youngest person to become a member of the Society for Psychical Research and is still a keen investigator.

His book sets out detailed accounts of famous hauntings in England from ancient ghost stories, through the Victorian séances, The Angel of Mons, Borley Rectory rounded off by Most Haunted.

I loved the social history discussion on ghosts and hauntings ie: ghosts appeal more to aristocrats and workers, and tend to be ridiculed by the middle classes.

The chapters on The Angel of Mons, the haunted U-boat U65 and the Brown Lady of Raynham Hall were fasinating and prompted more research.

An excellent book for sceptics and enthusiasts alike