The termination of medieval Parliaments on the demise of the reigning monarch

As much of the nation, and the world, continues to reflect on the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and accession of King Charles III, here Dr Hannes Kleineke from our Commons 1461-1504 project explores the now retired practice of terminating Parliaments following the death of the monarch. By modern convention, the death of a sovereign and the accession of their successor do not … Continue reading The termination of medieval Parliaments on the demise of the reigning monarch

The Aftermath of the Impeachment of Thomas Parker, earl of Macclesfield

In the latest blog for the Georgian Lords, Dr Stuart Handley reassesses the impeachment, and later career, of Thomas Parker, earl of Macclesfield, the last victim of a political impeachment prior to that of Warren Hastings. Corruption and impeachment are terms that have been much in the news, especially with regard to former President Donald Trump, who was impeached, and former Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, … Continue reading The Aftermath of the Impeachment of Thomas Parker, earl of Macclesfield

William Turner and the reformation of gardening

Climate change is making gardening more of a challenge in this country, but at least we have plenty of information on the best plants to use. Five hundred years ago the picture was a lot more confusing. Dr Paul Hunneyball of our Lords 1558-1603 section investigates a major botanical turning point… William Turner’s New Herbal, published in instalments between 1551 and 1568, is one of … Continue reading William Turner and the reformation of gardening

Charles I in search of friends: government in crisis and the rewards of loyalty, 1640-1644

Today we hear from Dr Vivienne Larminie, editor of our Commons 1640-1660 project, who discusses Charles I’s attempts to secure loyalty by giving out peerages and other honours in the early 1640s… By late 1640 the government of Charles I was in deep trouble. A treaty signed at Ripon on 26 October signalled the end of three years of war against his Scottish subjects – the … Continue reading Charles I in search of friends: government in crisis and the rewards of loyalty, 1640-1644

“From wickedness or from weakness”: the beginning of the end for Sir Robert Walpole

During July we welcomed year 12 student Thomas O’Donoghue to the History of Parliament office, to carry out a work experience placement with our research and outreach teams. During his time, Thomas worked with Dr Robin Eagles, editor of our Lords 1715-1790 project, to explore an attempt in 1741 to topple Sir Robert Walpole from power. Here Thomas writes about the impact of two key … Continue reading “From wickedness or from weakness”: the beginning of the end for Sir Robert Walpole

New Project: The House of Lords 1640-1660

In exciting news for the History of Parliament, 2022 sees the winding down of our long-running House of Commons 1640-1660 project and with it the launch of a new section: the House of Lords 1640-1660. Here the section leader, Dr David Scott, introduces the project and the status of Peers in the mid-17th century… In April of this year the History of Parliament launched the … Continue reading New Project: The House of Lords 1640-1660

Before Big Ben there was Old Tom

As the restoration of the Palace of Westminster’s Elizabeth Tower reaches its final stages this summer, Dr Robin Eagles, editor of our House of Lords 1715-1790 project, takes a look at the clock tower that existed before ‘Big Ben’… The story of the at times fraught development of the clock tower of the palace of Westminster is well known. A late addition to Charles Barry’s … Continue reading Before Big Ben there was Old Tom

One of our seals is missing! How a summer vacation brought Charles I’s government to a grinding halt

During the coronavirus pandemic we have grown used to government interventions disrupting our travel plans. However, in 1625 the government itself was disrupted by a holiday in Wales, as Dr Paul Hunneyball of our Lords 1558-1603 section explains… In the context of contemporary British government, the office of lord privy seal – more correctly lord keeper of the privy seal – is a non-job, a … Continue reading One of our seals is missing! How a summer vacation brought Charles I’s government to a grinding halt

‘Too many restrictions could not be thrown in the way of divorce’: Attitudes to Women’s Petitions for Divorce by Act of Parliament 1801-1831

Ahead of next Tuesday’s Virtual IHR Parliaments, Politics and People seminar, we hear from Dr Alison Daniell of the University of Southampton. On 21 June 2022, between 5.15 p.m. and 6.30 p.m., Alison will be responding to your questions about her pre-circulated paper on divorce by Act of Parliament in the early nineteenth century. Alison’s full-length paper is available here. Details of how to join the discussion are available here. Before the 1857 … Continue reading ‘Too many restrictions could not be thrown in the way of divorce’: Attitudes to Women’s Petitions for Divorce by Act of Parliament 1801-1831

Four Scots Lords: One line in a Poem

Inspired by a reference in an early eighteenth-century poem, in the latest blog for the Georgian Lords, Dr Stuart Handley considers the interlinked careers of four Scots peers, who all sat in the House of Lords. The early eighteenth-century poem, Advice to a Painter, by Alexander Robertson of Struan contains a line grouping four Scots peers: Rothes, Ross, Buchan and Belhaven, who were all part … Continue reading Four Scots Lords: One line in a Poem