Volume 41 Issue 2 February 1991

Andrew Boyd tells the story of the ill-fated mission of a papal nuncio whose blundering zeal doomed the hopes of Irish Catholics of profiting from the civil war between Charles I and his Parliament in England.

Douglas Johnson examines the powerful hold Les Invalides exercises over France's historical mythology.

John Crowfoot considers the role flags and anthems have played in defining Soviet and Russian identities, past and present.

Anne Hills on shutting up shop at Spitalfields.

Geoffrey Clarke on netting the Poll Tax in Hastings.

Tony Aldous examines the tensions over digging and conserving in historic town centres such as Lincoln.

Mira Bar-Hillel on plans to rebuild Poland's Elizabethan theatre.

Ann Hughes continues our articles on the Civil War period by investigating the controversies in public debate and the printed word that fuelled religious arguments before and after the Interregnum.

Sir Robert Bruce Lockhart had a distinguished career as a diplomat, writer and director-general of Churchill's Political Warfare Executive during the Second World War. But as a young diplomat and Acting Consul-General in Moscow, he was caught up in a chain of events that included being head of Britain's first mission to the Bolshevik Government, subsequent involvement in a plot to overthrow them, and imprisonment in the Kremlin - worthy of a novel by Le Carré.

Until the late 18th century, few criminal defendants thought it worthwhile to engage a lawyer on their behalf; but in the 1780s things suddenly changed. John Beattie looks at the part William Garrow, a brilliant young defence lawyer, played in altering the course of justice.

David Birmingham draws on the private papers of an 18th-century Swiss cheese farmer to recreate a world whose business sophistication and economic arrangements cut across the context of the rustic joys of an Alpine lifestyle.