Cape Town is emerging at the end of the twentieth century as a town of international status, the premier city of the new South Africa. Now it is time to look back at the town's rich and exciting past. In this well-informed and immensely readable account, the three authors - all historians at the University of Cape Town - trace the changing character of the city and portray the varied lives and experiences of its inhabitants - black and white, rich and poor, slave and free, Christian and Muslim. Beginning in the seventeenth century with the tiny Dutch settlement, hemmed in by mountains and looking out to sea, the book charts the growth of Cape Town over almost three centuries, ending with the British colonial city, poised confidently on the threshold of the twentieth century. This social history of Cape Town under Dutch and British rule is sure to remain the definitive history of the city for many years. The book is illustrated throughout with a wealth of maps, paintings and photographs in both colour and black and white, and has been beautifully designed.