Miscellanies

The Women Who Walked Into History

Faced with a crisis in her personal life and an uncertain future, Sarah Stoddart Hazlitt found respite in long, arduous and often dangerous walks. Countless women have followed in her footsteps.

Murder at the Vatican

An unsolved Renaissance mystery casts light on the dark world of extortion, revenge and power politics at the heart of the Catholic Church.

The Vietnam War: A History in Song

The ‘First Television War’ was also documented in over 5,000 songs. From protest to patriotism, popular music reveals the complexity of America’s two-decade long experience struggling against communism in Vietnam.

Queen Boudica, A Life in Legend

A pagan queen, an unruly woman and a valiant warrior: Boudica has lived a varied afterlife in British history. Why is the ancient queen of the Iceni such an enduring figure?

The British Church That Worshipped Hitler

In late 1945, a small self-styled fascist church established itself in southern England, where its members worshipped Adolf Hitler. For the war-weary locals, it was too much: vigilante action was required.

Who Were the Mamluks?

The slave-warriors of medieval Islam overthrew their masters, defeated the Mongols and the Crusaders and established a dynasty that lasted 300 years.

The 17th Century Guide to Sleep

Despite the modern obsession with a good night’s rest, more of us are sleeping less. Perhaps we should pay attention to the advice of early modern doctors.

Helen the Whore and the Curse of Beauty

Said to have ‘the face that launched a thousand ships’, Helen of Troy has been remembered, judged – and hated – by every age since she entered the written record 2,700 years ago. With great beauty comes great resentment. 

Death Comes to the Atacama

Marching through the Atacama during the War of the Pacific, one Chilean general opined that his troops had fought ‘more against the desert than against men’. For those soldiers, the desert became a hell on earth.

Who Worked at Ravensbrück?

In Nazi Germany, a number of female doctors and nurses worked at Ravensbrück concentration camp, where medical treatment was replaced by negligence, experimentation and violence. What led these women to take jobs there?