This is another fascinating BBC2 series, illustrating English and British history through the evolution of our art. The eight one-hour episodes, narrated by David Threlfall (Men of the World), feature:The Roman and pre-Roman periods, Beowulf, the Norman conquest and the Bayeux Tapestry; The Black Death, Wilton Diptych, Piers Plowman, Chaucer, Julian of Norwich,… Continue reading The art that made us
I have enjoyed watching Michael Portillo’s Great Railway Journeys particularly the programmes that have shown him travelling along the coast of South Wales. He stopped off in places that I know well in Glamorgan, also in places that my ancestors hailed from in Carmarthenshire. However, one programme ended up in Pembroke and I must… Continue reading Michael Portillo’s Great Coastal Railway Journeys and Pembroke Castle
Episode 3 of Lucy Worsley‘s latest TV series is about The Princes in the Tower, and from the outset it’s clear that Lucy is Lady Dracula, because she goes for Richard III’s jugular at every opportunity. The thought that he might be innocent doesn’t seem to occur to her because she’s utterly convinced of… Continue reading Lucy Worsley “proves” Richard III murdered his nephews….!
This was shown on BBC2 during August and the subject has been covered several times in recent years, not least with our old friend Dr. Starkey. However, I am pleased I watched it for two reasons. The first is that The Boleyns: A scandalous family discussed the situation from the perspective of Thomas Boleyn seeking… Continue reading Not just another Anne Boleyn series
Stonehenge is an endless source of curiosity and speculation, with theories abounding and routes/methods considered in considerable depth. Even Merlin gets a look-in, believing by some to have flown the stones from Wales to Wiltshire by means of magic. Well, that’s always a possibility, because Merlin was, perhaps still is, the greatest wizard there ever… Continue reading Stonehenge removed and rebuilt….
On Tuesday 2nd March a new series commences on BBC2 (9 pm) about what may or may not be revealed by the in-depth study of DNA and sequencing genomes. Of course, this will include Richard. How can it not? Especially when Professor Turi King is involved. Richard is surely the most important and prominent historical… Continue reading Will the sequencing of Richard’s genome prove he was good or bad….?
This Mail on Sunday interview with Jonathan Rhys Meyers is sadly, mostly about his current personal problems. However, one or two paragraphs towards the end, should be of interest: But it was his lead role in TV drama The Tudors, as the criminally charismatic Henry VIII, that made everyone take note, even though Rhys Meyers… Continue reading A visible difference
Television history is rarely focused upon Anne (left), except as the final act of the Stuart drama like this or her unfortunate reproductive history in this series. Discussion is, therefore, reduced to the cliches of her fragile family, her weight and her fondness for brandy. She is also omitted from most dramatisations of the time, such… Continue reading The real life of the last Stuart
Last night I watched (on PBS America) a BBC2 Timewatch episode entitled The Mysteries of the Medieval Ship. It concerned the discovery, in June 2002, of a foundered/scuttled medieval vessel of some size, buried in the oozing mud of the Severn Sea – well, the oozing mud of the River Usk, at Newport, to be… Continue reading Has one of the Kingmaker’s pirate ships been found in Newport….?
Today in 1461, which was Palm Sunday, the Battle of Towton was fought, resulting in a Yorkist victory with large scale casualties. Legend has it that Henry VI fled to Muncaster Castle, then in Cumberland, where he gave his host Sir John Pennington a glass drinking bowl. It became known as the “Luck of Muncaster”… Continue reading Where a refugee from Towton fled