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Early Modern (16th-18thC)

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Geoffrey Parker considers the far-reaching consequences of a sudden change of plan by the king of Spain in 1567.

Victoria Gardner looks back at earlier attitudes to Britain’s press freedom and how the withdrawal of the Licensing Act of 1662 spawned a nation of news addicts.

Volume: 63 Issue: 2 2013

In the 1800s Rome became a microcosm for great power rivalries. E.L. Devlin describes a case of ambassadorial privilege that caused controversy between the papacy and the king of France.

Volume: 63 Issue: 5 2013

The wedding of Elizabeth Stuart and Frederick V took place on February 14th 1613.

Volume: 63 Issue: 2 2013

The 19th-century view from Albion of the shortcomings of the US Constitution was remarkably astute, says Frank Prochaska.

Volume: 62 Issue: 3 2012

Jos Damen tells the stories of two unusual men who lived a century apart in the Dutch colony at Elmina in West Africa; a poet who became a tax inspector and a former slave who argued that slavery did not contradict ideas of Christian freedom.

Volume: 62 Issue: 8 2012

The last person burned to death at the stake for heresy was executed on April 11th, 1612.

Volume: 62 Issue: 4 2012

Frederick the Great, the man who made Prussia a leading European power, was born on January 24th, 1712.

Volume: 62 Issue: 1 2012

An 18th-century ménage à trois involving the King of Denmark inspired the recent film, A Royal Affair.  Stella Tillyard considers what makes it a story for our times.

Volume: 62 Issue: 8 2012

Erica Fudge and Richard Thomas explore relationships between people and domestic animals in early modern England and how new types of archaeological evidence are shedding fresh light on one of the most important aspects of life in this period.

Volume: 62 Issue: 12 2012

In 1573 Catherine de’ Medici successfully campaigned for her third son, Henri, Duke of Anjou, to be elected to the throne of Poland. Robert J. Knecht tells the story of his brief, dramatic reign.

Volume: 62 Issue: 7 2012

The illustrious champion of science was created on July 15th, 1662.

Volume: 62 Issue: 7 2012

In the Middle Ages, with the re-emergence of Salic Law, it became impossible for women to succeed to the throne in most European kingdoms. Yet between 1274 and 1512 five queens ruled the Pyrenean kingdom of Navarre, as Elena Woodacre tells their stories.

Volume: 62 Issue: 6 2012

Nicholas Mee recalls Jeremiah Horrocks, the first astronomer to observe Venus cross in front of the Sun, whose discoveries paved the way for the achievements of Isaac Newton.

Volume: 62 Issue: 6 2012

For much of the British Civil Wars the colony of Barbados remained neutral, allowing both Parliamentarian and Royalist exiles to run their plantations and trade side by side. But with the collapse of the king’s cause in the late 1640s matters took a violent turn, as Matthew Parker relates.

Volume: 61 Issue: 7 2011

What was behind Colonel Thomas Blood’s failed attempt to steal the Crown Jewels during the cash-strapped reign of Charles II and how did he survive such a treasonable act? Nigel Jones questions the motives of a notorious 17th-century schemer.

Volume: 61 Issue: 10 2011

Hugh Thomas tells Paul Lay about his unparalleled research into the lives of the extraordinary generation of men who conquered the New World for Golden Age Spain.

Volume: 61 Issue: 3 2011

Richard Cavendish explains how Europe's earliest modern-style banknotes were introduced by the Bank of Stockholm in the 17th century.

Volume: 61 Issue: 7 2011

Though superb works of art in themselves, the wildlife paintings of Francis Barlow are full of rich metaphors that shed light on the anxieties and concerns of a Britain emerging from the horrors of civil war, says Nathan Flis.

Volume: 61 Issue: 7 2011

Ben Sandell examines the origins, influence and significance of a group of often misunderstood radicals.

Issue: 70 2011

Richard Wilkinson argues against the prevailing orthodoxy.

Issue: 69 2011

Despite their mutual loathing and suspicion, James I and his parliaments needed one another, as Andrew Thrush explains. The alternative, ultimately, was civil war.

Volume: 61 Issue: 3 2011

A monarch’s divine ability to cure scrofula was an established ritual when James I came to the English throne in 1603. Initially sceptical of the Catholic characteristics of the ceremony, the king found ways to ‘Protestantise’ it and to reflect his own hands-on approach to kingship, writes Stephen Brogan.

Volume: 61 Issue: 2 2011

Jan Gossaert made his name working for the Burgundian court and was among the first northern artists to visit Rome, writes Susan Foister, curator of 'Jan Gossaert's Renaissance', the only exhibition in more than 45 years of works by this archetypal ‘Old Master’.

Volume: 61 Issue: 2 2011

Patrick Williams reveals the courage of Henry VIII's Spanish wife.

Issue: 69 2011

The linguistic legacy of the King James Bible is immense. But, David Crystal discovers, it is not quite the fount of common expressions that many of its admirers believe it to be.

Volume: 61 Issue: 1 2011

Colin Jones and Emily Richardson reveal a little-known collection of obscene and irreverent 18th-century drawings targetting Madame de Pompadour, the favourite mistress of Louis XV of France.

Volume: 61 Issue: 11 2011

Mary Queen of Scots left Calais for Scotland on August 14th, 1561, aged 18 years old.

Volume: 61 Issue: 8 2011

One of the last popes to play a major role in international affairs, Innocent XI defied Louis XIV, the Sun King, and played a decisive part in the defence of Christianity against the spread of Islam under the auspices of the Ottoman empire, as Graham Darby explains.

Volume: 61 Issue: 5 2011

Queen Anne ordered a racecourse to be built on Ascot Heath in 1711. It was officially opened on August 11th.

Volume: 61 Issue: 8 2011

As the marriage of Prince William and Kate Middleton approaches, Jenifer Roberts looks at the series of 18th-century weddings which led the Portuguese royal family into dynastic crisis.

Volume: 61 Issue: 4 2011

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