The Mystery of the ‘Black Box’ and the ‘true’ heirs of Charles II

In the latest blog for the Georgian Lords, Dr Robin Eagles probes the mysteries of the ‘black box’ that was supposed to contain proof of Charles II’s marriage to his mistress, Lucy Walters, and how the family of the duke of Monmouth eventually made its way back into the House of Lords. In February 1735 Parliament was faced with a petition lodged by the Scots … Continue reading The Mystery of the ‘Black Box’ and the ‘true’ heirs of Charles II

‘Our London’: Exeter and the Glorious Revolution

For the next instalment in our Local and Community History Month study of Exeter, Dr Robin Eagles, editor of the House of Lords 1715-90, explores the constituency during the Glorious Revolution of 1688. Despite the changes on the throne, Exeter’s leaders were still concerned with familiar issues… In the 1690s the indefatigable traveller, Celia Fiennes, made a point of visiting Exeter several times during an … Continue reading ‘Our London’: Exeter and the Glorious Revolution

A Queen in Isolation: Mary Beatrice of Modena

On 7 May 1718, James II’s widow, Mary of Modena, died in exile at the palace of St Germain-en-Laye. Displaced as a result of the ‘Glorious Revolution’ Mary had been an important figure for Jacobites and thanks to her good relations with Louis XIV had also established for herself a prominent role in the court of Versailles, where she was granted precedence over all the … Continue reading A Queen in Isolation: Mary Beatrice of Modena

When is a Parliament not a Parliament?

Dr Robin Eagles, Editor of the House of Lords 1660-1832 project kicks off our new series, ‘Named Parliaments’. Here, whilst highlighting a number of Named Parliaments in the seventeenth century, he explores the debate of parliament versus convention or assembly in the early modern period… The question of what is and is not a Parliament might seem a simple one, but on two occasions during … Continue reading When is a Parliament not a Parliament?

Public Petitioning and Parliament, 1689-1760

Today’s blog from Philip Loft, currently a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Cambridge, is part of our week of social media activity about all things petitioning, protest and franchise reform. This is ahead of our public event on the Thursday in Westminster, ‘Parliament and popular sovereignty in the 19th century’. Philip’s paper on petitioning before the development  of radical and mass-platform petitioning in the mid-eighteenth century … Continue reading Public Petitioning and Parliament, 1689-1760

Clarendon’s impeachment

Impeachment is a procedure rarely used in the British Parliament these days, but it is a procedure of historic importance, as discussed in our Director’s Blog here and in our post on its use in the early 17th century here. In today’s post our Director, Dr Paul Seaward, discusses the impeachment of the earl of Clarendon, 350 years ago… The impeachment of the earl of … Continue reading Clarendon’s impeachment

A ‘Glorious’ Revolution?

This week the BBC’s new series ‘British History’s Biggest fibs’ tackles some of the myths surrounding the ‘Glorious Revolution’ of 1688-1689. Dr Robin Eagles casts a glance over some aspects of the revolution’s commemoration… In July 1789 the House of Lords considered a motion introduced by Earl Stanhope for a day of national commemoration to be instituted marking the anniversary of the Glorious Revolution. A … Continue reading A ‘Glorious’ Revolution?

Rage of Party: election day in the 1690-1715 period

Today we go to the polls to vote in European and local elections. Voting was a very different experience at the turn of the 18th century… One of the most prolific periods for elections in Britain occurred long before universal suffrage. After the reforms of the ‘Glorious Revolution’ of 1688-89, parliament passed the Triennial Act, stating that parliament must meet annually and elections be held … Continue reading Rage of Party: election day in the 1690-1715 period