John Eglin


The Imaginary Autocrat: Beau Nash and the Invention of Bath
John Eglin (NEH Fellow, 2002-03)

Richard Beau Nash was the original "It boy," the self-invented, style-over-substance ruling impresario of Bath who came from humble beginnings. He is a living illustration of what can be achieved with self-confidence and self-possession, as he became the ever-present match maker, gambler, and businessman at the whirl of balls and games at Bath in the 18th century. John Eglin's brilliant and rewarding book is concerned as much with Nash's invention of himself as it is with the invention of Bath.