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Welcome to the History of Parliament blog!

Here we share posts about our current research projects, wider parliamentary history, highlights from our events, seminars and conferences, and future publications. The History of Parliament’s core work lies in researching and writing series of volumes depicting Parliamentary life and proceedings throughout the past 700 years. These academically rigorous works contain detailed biographies of parliamentarians, studies of constituencies and introductory surveys. The Sections currently underway … Continue reading Welcome to the History of Parliament blog!

Sex in the Long Parliament

In our latest blog, Dr David Scott of the House of Commons 1640-1660 section looks at the extra-curricular activities of some Members of a supposedly puritan Parliament – at least according to newspaper reports… Sexual licence and parliamentary politics have always enjoyed an intimate relationship, and not even the great puritan preachers of the seventeenth century ( who regularly addressed assembled MPs in the adjacent … Continue reading Sex in the Long Parliament

Women and the municipal franchise

Continuing our series on ‘Women and Parliament’, Dr. Kathryn Rix, Assistant Editor of the House of Commons, 1832-1945 project, looks at a landmark reform to the municipal franchise in 1869. Today – 2nd August – marks 150 years since the 1869 Municipal Franchise Act received royal assent. This measure widened the municipal franchise for the town councils created in 1835 by reducing the amount of … Continue reading Women and the municipal franchise

The Man in the Moon: Peterloo and Satire continued

Our blog series to mark the bicentenary of the Peterloo Massacre continues today with Dr Katie Carpenter‘s second piece about the satirical depiction of the tragedy. Today she discusses The Man in the Moon by William Hone. If you missed the rest of the series and would like a some context to this blog click here to see previous posts. I lately dream’d that, in … Continue reading The Man in the Moon: Peterloo and Satire continued

Alternative uses for the palace of Westminster: the early 17th-century picture

With the palace of Westminster requiring a major restoration programme, and some people suggesting that Parliament should permanently relocate to a new home, Dr Paul Hunneyball of the Lords 1604-29 section considers some of the uses to which the old Palace was put 400 years ago… Since the 19th century, the palace of Westminster has been synonymous with Parliament – but that wasn’t always the … Continue reading Alternative uses for the palace of Westminster: the early 17th-century picture

The History of Parliament at IMC 2019

Today Dr. Hannes Kleineke of our House of Commons 1422-1461 section summarises the History of Parliament Trust’s successful sessions at this year’s International Medieval Congress… To mark the forthcoming publication of the History of Parliament Trust’s volumes for the House of Commons 1422-61, the medieval section organised two sessions at this year’s International Medieval Congress at Leeds. The first of these, chaired by History of … Continue reading The History of Parliament at IMC 2019

Remembering Peterloo: protest, satire and reform

On 11 July 2019 the History of Parliament Trust, the Parliamentary Archives and the Citizens Project hosted Professor Robert Poole, Professor Ian Haywood and Dr Katrina Navickas at an event in the Palace of Westminster. This panel of three leading scholars offered intriguing new insights into the latest research on the Peterloo Massacre. The event accompanied the launch of the ‘Parliament & Peterloo’ exhibition, which … Continue reading Remembering Peterloo: protest, satire and reform

Medieval MP of the Month: John Howard, from the Battle of Castillon to the Battle of Bosworth

Our Medieval MP of the Month series continues with John Howard, one of the only two known soldiers to have been at the Battle of Castillon on this day in 1453. Here’s Dr Charles Moreton of our House of Commons 1422-1504 project with more… Today marks the 566th anniversary of Castillon, the last great battle of the Hundred Years’ War between England and France. Fought … Continue reading Medieval MP of the Month: John Howard, from the Battle of Castillon to the Battle of Bosworth