The will of the people? The Middlesex elections of 1769

250 years ago, in April 1769, the electors of Middlesex went to the polls: the third by-election they had experienced that year since one of their two MPs, John Wilkes, had been expelled from Parliament. Dr Robin Eagles, Editor of the House of Lords 1660-1832 Section, examines the background to the election and how Parliament resolved the crisis. John Wilkes had originally been returned as … Continue reading The will of the people? The Middlesex elections of 1769

Hansard at Huddersfield: Making democracy more searchable

Today’s post is a guest blog from Lesley Jeffries of the University of Huddersfield. Lesley explains the Hansard at Huddersfield project which aims to provide some interesting search facilities and visualisations of the results from the record of the UK parliament. I am a linguist working on the language of texts – from poetry to politics – and I sometimes work on what we linguists … Continue reading Hansard at Huddersfield: Making democracy more searchable

The Speaker and the same question: a view from the Victorian Commons

In today’s blog Dr Philip Salmon, editor of the 1832-1945 House of Commons project, explores some of the historical background behind recent Parliamentary rulings relating to Brexit. The rules governing UK parliamentary procedure, not surprisingly, don’t often get much public attention. However, some of the recent decisions by Speaker Bercow serve as an important reminder that the practices of the past can have an important … Continue reading The Speaker and the same question: a view from the Victorian Commons

Henry Bennet, earl of Arlington: a Restoration Politician

Our last Parliaments, Politics and People seminar at the IHR was given by Alan Marshall from Bath Spa University, and considered the political role of the important Restoration politician and key member of the CABAL ministry, Henry Bennet, earl of Arlington This paper dealt with aspects of the political life of Sir Henry Bennet, earl of Arlington, who has been frequently criticized as a statesman. … Continue reading Henry Bennet, earl of Arlington: a Restoration Politician

Bolingbroke’s Reflections upon Exile

For our latest blog @GeorgianLords welcomes Dr Max Skjönsberg (St Andrews) offering some insights into the early philosophical writings of Viscount Bolingbroke, written during the period of his first exile from Britain and after his unhappy involvement with the Jacobite court. Henry St John, Viscount Bolingbroke (1678-1751) was one of the most prominent public figures in Britain in the first half of the eighteenth century, … Continue reading Bolingbroke’s Reflections upon Exile

Crashing out of Monarchy: February 1649 and the making of the English republic

For the final blog in our series on the events during the winter of 1648-9, Dr Patrick Little of the House of Commons 1640-1660 section considers the transition from monarchy to republic after the execution of Charles I…  After the dramatic events of December 1648 and January 1649, which saw the purging of Parliament and the trial and execution of the king, the far-reaching, ‘hard’ revolution that some hoped for … Continue reading Crashing out of Monarchy: February 1649 and the making of the English republic

Taking control: Speaker William Lenthall, precedent and the Long Parliament

In the midst of extraordinary times at Westminster, Dr Vivienne Larminie of the House of Commons 1640-1660 section looks at the response of a pioneering Speaker to the unprecedented challenges of the mid-seventeenth century… On 4 January 1642, in one of the most dramatic and iconic moments in the history of Parliament, Charles I arrived at Westminster with an armed guard.  Having entered the Commons … Continue reading Taking control: Speaker William Lenthall, precedent and the Long Parliament