Northern Ireland’s Sex Scandal that Wasn’t

When four men were accused of an act of ‘gross indecency’ in 1950s Belfast, just three were put on trial. Despite efforts by the unionist government to protect a member of a prominent local family, not everyone was willing to be complicit in a cover-up.

Spycraft and the Glorious Revolution

In the era of the early modern ‘secret state’, two notorious brothers set up an elaborate intelligence network, managing a vast array of spies and informers watchful for Jacobite plots against Britain.

How Mexico Fought Franco

Just two countries supported the Republic during the Spanish Civil War: the Soviet Union and Mexico. While Soviet help came with strings attached, Mexico’s reflected the country’s contentious relationship with its old colonial master.

The Golden Age of Medieval Nostalgia

The 14th century was a period of great upheaval. People yearned for the good old days, when everyone knew their place, prices were lower and kings were better.

André Rigaud: Napoleon’s Man in Haiti

An exiled revolutionary, André Rigaud’s return to the island of his birth changed Haiti’s political destiny. Was he sent back to help reinstate slavery? His enemies would have us believe so.

Putting Pirates on Trial

Mutiny and murder at sea ended in capture for the crew of the pirate ship Revenge. Their trial was a deliberate display of the authority of the British state. How did it unfold?

The Lost Tudor Domesday Book

Once maligned as a record ‘of the dullest kind’, a 1535 audit of Church wealth – the Valor ecclesiasticus – offers a unique view of England’s religious, social and cultural life just months after the break with Rome.

The First Anglo-Burmese War

In March 1824 the East India Company declared war on Burma, the opening salvo in a series of conflicts that would see one empire fall, another expand and leave divisive wounds still felt today.