Was the battle of Towton as bloody as all that?

Today is the anniversary of the battle of Towton, a violent battle in 1461 which resulted in Edward IV claiming the throne from Henry VI. The battle is often thought to be the bloodiest ever fought on British soil, but is this really the case? Dr Simon Payling, Senior Research Fellow in our Commons 1461-1504 section explores… The battle of Towton on 29 March 1461 … Continue reading Was the battle of Towton as bloody as all that?

Ambassadors in the late middle ages

March’s medieval offering is from Senior Research Fellow, Dr Charles Moreton, who is currently working on our 1461-1504 project. Charles previously worked on our 1422-1461 volumes which are due for publication in the coming weeks. Today he discusses the ambassadors of the crown in the late middle ages… As attested by the recent travails of Her Majesty’s recent representative in Washington, the role of ambassador … Continue reading Ambassadors in the late middle ages

Making the most of a parhelion: the earl of March and the battle of Mortimer’s Cross

In our latest blog Dr Simon Payling, Senior Research Fellow for the Commons 1461-1504 project, looks back to this date in 1461, when a natural phenomenon appeared to the future King Edward IV on the eve of battle… The battle of Mortimer’s Cross has two claims to uniqueness among medieval British battles: it was preceded by the appearance of the meteorological phenomenon of a parhelion and … Continue reading Making the most of a parhelion: the earl of March and the battle of Mortimer’s Cross

Yorkist Parliaments, but not at York

At the beginning of this week, the government sparked debate by announcing the possibility of relocating the House of Lords away from Westminster to the city of York. But this is not the first time that the city has been considered as a parliamentary host, as Dr Hannes Kleineke, editor of our Commons 1461-1504 section, explains… In the light of suggestions that the House of … Continue reading Yorkist Parliaments, but not at York

A turning-point in the Wars of the Roses: the attainders of the Coventry Parliament

In our latest blog Dr Simon Payling, Senior Research Fellow in our 1461-1504 project, discusses the short Lancastrian parliament of 1459 and an Act that would have a lasting impact in the Wars of the Roses… The brief Parliament, which met at Coventry between 20 November and 20 December, 1459, marked a determining moment in the Wars of the Roses. The Lancastrian regime, in the … Continue reading A turning-point in the Wars of the Roses: the attainders of the Coventry Parliament

‘The King’ and I

Dr Hannes Kleineke, editor of the 1461-1504 section, reflects on the experience of acting as a historical adviser for the new Netflix movie ‘The King’. What makes good television? Certainly not the often humdrum details of historical reality with which the professional historian has to concern him or herself. It is thus an interesting experience to be invited to provide historical insights to the producers … Continue reading ‘The King’ and I

Bats and Devils: Henry VI’s ‘seasonally-named’ parliaments

Rather appropriately for our Halloween blog offering, we hear from Dr Hannes Kleineke, editor of our House of Commons 1461-1504 project, on the fifteenth century Parliaments of Bats and Devils as part of our Named Parliaments series… The long reign of Henry VI was not short of high political drama, and so it is perhaps not surprising that is has also given us two of … Continue reading Bats and Devils: Henry VI’s ‘seasonally-named’ parliaments