King James VI of Scotland, James I of England podcast….

  Here is a link to a BBC podcast about King James VI of Scotland, who, of course, became James I of England and was the first of our Stuart monarchs. I can’t say I’m a Stuart expert, being much more interested in the Plantagenets, but a monarch is a monarch!

The Rise of the Clans

Neil Oliver‘s latest history series has been shown through December on Monday evenings (BBC1 Scotland) and twenty-four hours later on BBC4. The first part, of three, showed how the power vacuum caused by the sudden deaths of Alexander III and his granddaughter was resolved through the clan system and John Balliol’s abdication so that alliances… Continue reading The Rise of the Clans

A truncated reign and a truncated monarch

Right at the start of this series, Helen Castor (left) takes a black marker pen and illustrates the cause of the 1553 crisis on a large sheet of paper. Beginning with Henry VII, very few of his legitimate male descendants were alive at the start of that year – eliminating the obvious illegitimate cases, we… Continue reading A truncated reign and a truncated monarch

You only reign twice?

Edward of Caernarvon, who was born in 1284, was king of England for nearly twenty years from 1307 as Edward II. What of his childhood? In about October 1289, he was contracted to Margaret, known as the Maid of¬†Norway and Queen of Scotland since 1286 when her grandfather Alexander III died. She was a year… Continue reading You only reign twice?

A Scottish Consort is identified

Late last year, we showed how James VI/I’s grandfathers, James V and Matthew Earl of Lennox, shared the same Y-chromosome. Now there is some facial reconstruction news about his father, Henry Lord Darnley: A student at the University of Dundee, which reconstructed Richard’s face after his identification, has provided the same service for Darnley (above).… Continue reading A Scottish Consort is identified