St George’s day in York: an invitation from Charles I, 1642

Continuing with our patron saints blog series, Dr Vivienne Larminie, Assistant Editor of our House of Commons 1640-1660 project, explores the loyalty of peers to Charles I during St George’s Day celebrations at York in April 1642… A spring break in the north.  Easter solemnities and rejoicing in York Minster.  Celebrating the feast day of the nation’s patron saint with the king’s court.  Under other … Continue reading St George’s day in York: an invitation from Charles I, 1642

Delivering justice: the sovereignty of the people, God’s judgement and the trial of Charles I

As twists and turns in the Brexit debates at Westminster continue, in the third in our series on the momentous events of the winter of 1648-1649 Dr Vivienne Larminie of the House of Commons 1640-1660 section looks at the contentious background to the setting up of judicial proceedings against Charles I, including a unilateral assertion of sovereignty by the Commons On 8 January 1649, in … Continue reading Delivering justice: the sovereignty of the people, God’s judgement and the trial of Charles I

The State Opening of Parliament: When dissident acts become established acts

Today, the new Parliament will be officially opened. In his guest blog Steven Franklin (Royal Holloway, University of London) discusses the origins and development of the pageantry involved… In 1863 Queen Victoria refused to open parliament, citing her ‘total inability…to perform these functions of her high position which are accompanied by state ceremonials, and which necessitate the appearance in full dress in public’.  Fortunately, the … Continue reading The State Opening of Parliament: When dissident acts become established acts

Sir Edward Coke, Magna Carta, and 17th century rebellion

In the latest in our ongoing series celebrating the anniversaries of Magna Carta and Simon de Montfort’s Parliament, Professor George Garnett discusses the importance of Sir Edward Coke’s 17th century commentary on Magna Carta… Sir Edward Coke’s role in English common law is widely acknowledged to be commensurate with that of his near contemporary William Shakespeare in English literature. But in an important sense his … Continue reading Sir Edward Coke, Magna Carta, and 17th century rebellion

Early Modern ideas about Parliament’s origins

Our series celebrating the anniversaries of Magna Carta and Simon de Montfort’s Parliament continues today. Dr Paul Cavill, Lecturer in Early Modern British History at Cambridge University discusses how the origins of Parliament were viewed in the early modern period… When did the first parliament in England meet? In modern historical consciousness, the answer is straightforward enough: in the year 1265, following the victory of … Continue reading Early Modern ideas about Parliament’s origins

Proceedings in Parliament 1624: the road to publication

In the third in our series of blogs marking the release of the Commons’ proceedings of the 1624 Parliament – with those for April 1624 now available here – Dr. Maija Jansson, Director Emerita of the Yale Center for Parliamentary History, places them in their wider historical context and recounts the protracted story of their publication. The online publication of the Commons’ proceedings in the English Parliament … Continue reading Proceedings in Parliament 1624: the road to publication

Thomson ‘with the wooden leg’

It’s Disability History Month, and in honour of this year’s theme, ‘War and Impairment: The Social Consequences of Disablement’, Dr Vivienne Larminie, Senior Research Fellow of the Commons 1640-60 section, looks at the life of Col. George Thomson who lost a leg at the battle of Cheriton… Over the centuries, military veterans will have been a familiar sight at Westminster, especially in the aftermath of … Continue reading Thomson ‘with the wooden leg’