Sinister histories is the first book to offer a detailed exploration of the Gothic's response to Enlightenment historiography. It uncovers hitherto-neglected relationships between fiction and prominent works of eighteenth-century history, locating the Gothic novel in a range of new interdisciplinary contexts. Drawing on ideas from literary studies, history, politics and philosophy, the book demonstrates the extent to which historical works influenced and shaped Gothic fiction from the 1760s to the early nineteenth century. Through a series of detailed readings of texts from The Castle of Otranto (1764) to Maria, or The Wrongs of Woman (1798), this book offers an alternative account of the Gothic's development and a sustained revaluation of the creative legacies of the French Revolution. -- .