A Farewell to Arms, Kilts and Sporrans: banning Scottish Highland dress in the aftermath of Culloden

Continuing with November’s local history look at the Scottish presence in Parliament, today Dr Robin Eagles, editor of our Lords 1715-1790 section, casts his eye over attempts to regulate traditional Scottish dress in the eighteenth century. In the winter of 1745, the people of the north and midlands of England were gripped with panic. The rebel Jacobite army led by Charles Edward Stuart had left Scotland earlier in the … Continue reading A Farewell to Arms, Kilts and Sporrans: banning Scottish Highland dress in the aftermath of Culloden

‘None can sit here but a natural liegeman’: Scots at Westminster in the Jacobean era

As a prelude to this month’s spotlight on politics in Scotland to mark St Andrew’s Day, Dr Paul Hunneyball, assistant editor of the House of Lords 1558-1603 project, examines one of the most sensitive questions in early 17th century politics – should Scots be allowed to sit in English parliaments?…  Historical perceptions can be deceptive. The year 1603 is now primarily remembered as the moment when … Continue reading ‘None can sit here but a natural liegeman’: Scots at Westminster in the Jacobean era

Divorce, cuckoldry and bastardy: two unhappy medieval marriages

Today’s blog comes from Dr Charles Moreton, senior research fellow in our Commons 1461-1504 project, who begins our latest blog series all about parliamentarians’ marriages. Here Dr Moreton turns his attention to two particularly unhappy marriages during the 15th century… Unlike some of the blogs to come in this series, the following offers a couple of examples of unhappy marriages. Both of the parliamentarians in … Continue reading Divorce, cuckoldry and bastardy: two unhappy medieval marriages

‘Cakes, Cheese and Zeal’: Puritan Banbury, the Fiennes family and civil war radicalism

In today’s blog Dr Vivienne Larminie, assistant editor of our Commons 1640-1660 project, returns to our local history exploration of political representation in Oxfordshire. First enfranchised in 1554, the constituency of Banbury developed strong Puritan representation in the 17th century, but it wasn’t always welcome… In the mid-seventeenth century the small north Oxfordshire market town of Banbury punched above its weight. Situated at the centre of … Continue reading ‘Cakes, Cheese and Zeal’: Puritan Banbury, the Fiennes family and civil war radicalism

The Mayflower: The New England men at Westminster, 1640-1660

In September 1620, the ship Mayflower set sail, transporting the first Puritan separatists to the ‘New World’. But, even thousands of miles across the sea, ‘New England’ would not be unfamiliar to many of those in Westminster, as our director Dr Stephen Roberts explores… Mayflower sailed from Plymouth, Devon, in September 1620, reaching what became New Plymouth, on the eastern coast of America, in November. … Continue reading The Mayflower: The New England men at Westminster, 1640-1660

Wikidata, British Politicians and the History of Parliament Trust

Today’s post is a guest blog from Andrew Gray of University College London. Andrew explains his Wikidata project which now links to all of the published History of Parliament biographies to the database; he also shares some of the more notable – and perhaps unexpected – anecdotes from his research…  Over the past couple of years, I have been working on a project to build a single … Continue reading Wikidata, British Politicians and the History of Parliament Trust

A Fighting Life: Commemorating Josiah C. Wedgwood, founder of the History of Parliament project

Today we hear from our Public Engagement Officer, Sammy Sturgess about our recent event in Westminster to launch our activities to commemorate the life of the founder of the History of Parliament project and lifelong crusader for democracy, Col. Josiah C. Wedgwood MP…  On 12 June in Parliament, amid the Commons voting on the Lords’ amendments to the Brexit bill, the History of Parliament Trust … Continue reading A Fighting Life: Commemorating Josiah C. Wedgwood, founder of the History of Parliament project

1624 Proceedings: The House of Commons

Today Philip Baker, former Research Fellow of the History of Parliament and Lecturer at Oxford Brookes University, explains the background to and completion of a History of Parliament project for which he was Editor. This new online resource provides access to primary source material relating to the House of Commons during the Parliament of 1624… 394 years ago today, what was to be the final Parliament of … Continue reading 1624 Proceedings: The House of Commons

The Representation of the People Act, 1918: A radical reform measure bill

This is the second in our blog series, women and parliament in this, the centenary year of the Representation of the People Act 1918. Here at the History of Parliament we are closely involved in celebrations, commemorations and projects relating to this anniversary. So today, on the actual anniversary that this Act became law it seemed pertinent to honour its passage. To that end, our … Continue reading The Representation of the People Act, 1918: A radical reform measure bill

Introducing…our new Director

Today’s blog is the first from Stephen Roberts in his new position as Director of the History of Parliament… It is a privilege to be taking over as Director of the History of Parliament, which has for many decades now been one of the UK’s leading historical research organisations, and which is currently engaged in a range of projects, some of long standing and others … Continue reading Introducing…our new Director