Clytie: The Spurned Nymph

Oil on canvas, 131 x 159 cm
Grand Trianon, Versailles, via the Web Gallery of Art.

Earlier today I walked past a flower and plant stall in Reading and there were so many beautiful plants, including some lovely sunflowers. Although I didn’t buy any sunflowers (I came away with begonias and cornflowers), seeing these sunny flowers reminded me of Clytie. I don’t know about you, but I love mythology and have done since I… Read on

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The Steel and Lace Anthology is out now!

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Hear ye! My novella, The Chambermaid, is part of the Steel and Lace Anthology which is out now as a Kindle eBook on Amazon. The paperback will be available shortly. I feel privileged to have been able to work on this project with six other authors: Anna Belfrage, Anita Seymour, Francine Howarth, M.J. Logue, Susan Ruth, and Kelli… Read on

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‘Pray Stay Till Sunday’ – Queen Anne’s letters to Sarah Churchill, Guest Post by Joanne Limburg

A Want of Kindness TPB Cover

Please welcome Joanne Limburg to The Seventeenth Century Lady! I’ve known Joanne for several years now because we started working on our novels at the same time (me on William & Mary, she on A Want of Kindness). Joanne’s novel is soon to be released (and I’m still looking for a publisher!), so please give a warm welcome to… Read on

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‘The Stuarts in 100 Facts’ is now available to pre-order!

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Hi, Everyone! I hope this finds you all well. I had quite a nice surprise yesterday when I checked my Amazon profile – I saw that 100 Facts is available to pre-order now, and the cover image features Prince William II of Orange. Although not a Stuart himself, he married one (Mary Stuart, Princess Royal and Princess of… Read on

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Lost in the 17th-century – Blog Hop

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St George and the Dragon
1555-58
Oil on canvas, 158 x 100 cm
National Gallery, London, via Web Gallery of Art

Last week, I was tagged by my friend Anna Belfrage in this blog hop. First of all, I’d like to say how much I admire Anna. I’ve known her virtually for a few years and she is a historical fiction writer and has written The Graham Saga. This is a series of books set in the 17th-century, so… Read on

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Frenchman’s Creek (1998 television film)

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Having finished reading the novel a few days ago, last night I sat down to watch the 1998 film version of Frenchman’s Creek. A huge amount of the story was changed. Instead of being set in the Restoration court under Charles II, it was set during the Glorious Revolution in 1688. There are loads of Dutchmen as a… Read on

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Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier

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When I finished listening to the audiobook version of Frenchman’s Creek by Daphne du Maurier, I was left sitting at my kitchen table in floods of tears. What a moving story! The first thing I thought after I finished was that this was rather like The Bridges of Madison County – a woman is married to someone and has children… Read on

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Armonia Celeste’s “Udite, amanti: Music from Seventeenth-Century Barberini Courts”

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Armonia Celeste is a US-based Early music ensemble of three women’s voices and plucked-string period instruments. They specialise in Italian music of the late Renaissance and early Baroque – so as soon as I could I purchased their 2015 album Udite, amanti: Music from Seventeenth-Century Barberini Courts which contains eighteen tracks of excellent music. I knew about them from their Twitter page. (This social… Read on

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The Importance of St. George’s Day

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The 23rd of April is St. George’s Day here in England. There is something inherently romantic in the many artistic depictions of St. George. He is often in full armour, brandishing a weapon, and on the verge of killing a dragon. Later on in this post, I hope to convey the importance of St. George in the history… Read on

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The Great Courses: The Birth of the Modern Mind: the Intellectual History of the 17th and 18th Centuries

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Once again, Audible delivered the goods. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to this excellent lecture series by Professor Alan Charles Kors. For those of you who study philosophy, the content may not bring anything new to the table, but for the rest of us I found it immensely enlightening. Some other reviewers have been overly harsh about Professor Kors’s delivery and… Read on

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The Basilica di San Marco, Venice, Italy

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Two Sundays ago (my how time flies!), I attended the 8am Easter Sunday service at the iconic Basilica di San Marco by the Piazza San Marco, Venezia, Italy. In this, the first of a series of articles from my recent trip to Venice, I would like to briefly cover a fraction of the history of this building and… Read on

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George Jamesone: The ‘Scottish Van Dyck’ – Guest Post by Alison Lodge

Self-portrait holding a miniature portrait of his wife, Aberdeen Art Gallery

Good day to you! Today we have Art Historian Alison Lodge as our guest writer on The Seventeenth Century Lady! I’ve known Alison for several years now on Twitter, where she mainly tweets about 18th-century topics. Today, however, she’s in our century with a wonderful, fact-filled post on George Jamesone: The Scottish Van Dyck! George Jamesone: The ‘Scottish Van Dyck’… Read on

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Danielle de Niese: Beauty of the Baroque album

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Australian-American lyric soprano Danielle de Niese is a name that has been cropping up for several years now on the Early Music scene. About a decade ago or so, Baroque music was quite a niche type of music, but I have noticed a growing trend that seems to indicate it is becoming more mainstream. Even though it was… Read on

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The Reluctant Bride: A Jacobean Tragedy – A Guest Post by Pamela J. Womack

PORTRAIT OF FRANCES COKE, VISCOUNTESS PURBECK (1601-1645) by Michiel Janszoon van Miereveldt.Second daughter of Sir Edward Coke, Lord Chief Justice.In 1617 she married John Viliers.
Credit line : Ashdown House, The Craven Collection (acquired by H.M. Treasury and transferred to The National Trust in 1968) , ©NTPL/John Hammond.

I am very pleased to have Pamela J. Womack’s company today on The Seventeenth Century Lady. I was privileged to read an Advanced Review Copy of her exquisitely crafted novel about the Duke of Buckingham – The Darling of Kings, and her love of the 17th-century shines through all of her work. The reluctant bride: A Jacobean Tragedy… Read on

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Blenheim: The Battle for Europe by Charles Spencer

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Although the Battle of Blenheim took place in the 18th Century, the historical persons involved were extremely important in Late 17th-century European history. This book, published in 2005, was the second work by historian Charles Spencer that I have read, the first being his Killers of the King: The Men Who Dared to Kill Charles I, published last year… Read on

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St. Matthew’s Passion by J.S. Bach at St. Paul’s Cathedral, London

Flagellazione di Cristo by Caravaggio, 1607-10. Museo di Capodimonte, via Wikimedia.

Last night, I went to a live performance of St. Matthew’s Passion by Johann Sebastian Bach at St. Paul’s Cathedral​ with Laura Brennan​. I have only ever heard two pieces from this work, and it was a great pleasure to listen to it in its entirety in such a beautiful and historic cathedral. Bach, who is relevant to… Read on

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The Broken Heart at the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

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Earlier today, I went to the 2:30pm performance of John Ford’s The Broken Heart. John Ford (1586-1639) wrote this tragic play during the Caroline era (reign of Charles I). I thought it was superb and I can honestly say I have rarely had such an amazing time in a theatre. This was my first time inside the relatively… Read on

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World Poetry Day: The Flea by John Donne

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Woman Catching Fleas
1630s
Oil on canvas
Musée Historique, Nancy
Web Gallery of Art

In honour of World Poetry Day, I’ve chosen John Donne’s poem, The Flea. Why? Well, what’s not to like about this classic erotic metaphysical poem? The Flea by  JOHN DONNE Mark but this flea, and mark in this, How little that which thou deniest me is; It sucked me first, and now sucks thee, And in this flea our… Read on

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Alessandro Stradella: Fascinating, Flawed, Forgiven, and Unforgettable: A Guest Post by DM Denton

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Most of the readers of The Seventeenth Century Lady are not only fans of 17th-century history, but also of the Baroque music of that time. It is therefore my pleasure to have DM Denton here with a guest post about Alessandro Stradella – a commonly (and sadly!) overlooked composer of wonderful Italian Baroque music. Alessandro Stradella: Fascinating, Flawed, Forgiven,… Read on

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Weekly Wrap-Up!

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This week, I spent a great deal of time in the National Archives, where I studied the funeral plans for William III, read miscellaneous letters by the Duke of Monmouth, and found more information to go into my book, The Stuarts in 100 Facts. When I was using their wifi connection, I was unhappy to discover that my website… Read on

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‘Rubens & His Legacy- Van Dyck to Cezanne’ Exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts

The Royal Academy entrance

Yesterday I visited the current Rubens exhibition at the Royal Academy of Arts on Piccadilly, London. This was my first time visiting this world-renowned place, and I would like to now share my observations and personal impressions, if I may. Artistic taste is very subjective, as I am well aware, but if you are looking for this to be… Read on

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Was Madame Poisoned? Jealousy, Intrigue, and Murder in the Court of Louis XIV – Guest Post by Jessica Cale

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I recently ‘met’ Jessica Cale via mutual friends on Facebook and I quickly learned that she writes historical fiction set in the 17th-century (yey!). Today, she stopped by The Seventeenth Century Lady with the lamentable story of Minette, Charles II’s youngest sister. The rumours surrounding her death persist to this day. But was Madame poisoned? Was Madame Poisoned?… Read on

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