Category Archives: 17th Century

The Merchant’s House, Marlborough, Wiltshire.

After our stay at the Stonehenge campsite last Autumn, Gavin and I made our way to Marlborough, which is a lovely town in Wiltshire, England. This amazing house was built for and lived in by a wealthy seventeenth-century silk merchant named Thomas Bayly. The construction is believed to date from between 1653 and 1700, and the interiors have… Read on

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“Maria Merian’s Butterflies” at the Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace

The Queen’s Gallery at Buckingham Palace recently opened their latest exhibition, Maria Merian’s Butterflies on the 15th of April, 2016. According to the Press Office: “The exhibition will tell the extraordinary story of 17th-and-18th-century artist and explorer Maria Sibylla Merian through the superb collection of her work in the Royal Collection. In 1699, at the age of 52, Merian… Read on

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Robert Carey’s Ride: Guest Post by Josh Provan

I’ve travelled from England to Scotland so many times since I was a kid I’ve lost count. Perhaps that is why I find Robert Carey’s ride so interesting. But it was when I was standing before the gates of Richmond Palace, the place where the Tudor dynasty ended, that I really felt that I wanted to tell the… Read on

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Film Review: The Witch (2015)

Released in 2015 in the US and 2016 in the UK, The Witch: A New England Folktale is soon to be released on DVD and Blu-Ray in the UK, having been in theatres in March. Having heard very good things about this film from friends in the US, I finally have the time to review it here. The… Read on

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Review: Masters of the Everyday, a new exhibition at the Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace

Masters of the Everyday, a new exhibition at the Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace. For the purposes of this review, I will only be focusing on the 17th-century exhibition, although there is another which is being presented at the same time, High Spirits: The Comic Art of Thomas Rowlandson, comprising works from one of the wittiest and most popular caricaturists of… Read on

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Book Launch for The Stuarts in 100 Facts!

On Saturday, I held my first-ever physical book launch at the Guildhall here in Windsor, England. It was a beautiful, sunny day and the Ascot Room in which my launch was held was just as lovely. The room has many portraits of notable historical figures and has lovely stained glass windows, an ornate chandelier in the middle of… Read on

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Palazzo della Prigioni, Venice

Back during my trip to Venice in early April, I visited one of the most notorious prisons there. The Palazzo della Prigioni (also known by its nickname, Piombi) is the former prison, which is connected to the Palazzo Ducale by the Ponte dei Sospiri (Bridge of Sighs). Construction began on this building back in the 16th century, so… Read on

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Review: Restoration by Rose Tremain

Rose Tremain’s Restoration is probably one of the most popular novels set in the seventeenth century, and with good reason: it’s a great book. Originally published back in 1989, I was but four years old and obviously far too young to read it. That being said, it is lamentable that it took until 2015 for me to get… Read on

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

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 Importance of St. George’s Day

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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Blenheim: The Battle for Europe by Charles Spencer

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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Groovy Historian Podcast on the Glorious Revolution

Groovy Historian recently invited me to do a podcast with him and we did so earlier today. This is a very short introduction to the Glorious Revolution, so please do not expect a highly detailed analysis! Whilst I am no great orator (in fact, I’m quite a shy person), I do hope that some who haven’t heard about… Read on

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Roxana by Daniel Defoe

After many years of wanting to read Daniel Defoe’s Roxana: The Fortunate Mistress, I have just finished listening to the unabridged Audible audiobook recording of this classic. Daniel Defoe who lived from 1660 – 1731, was a fascinating historical figure: he was a rebel in Monmouth’s Rebellion in 1685, to his work as a spy, and his books A Journal of the Plague… Read on

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Review: ITV’s ‘The Great Fire’

ITV’s drama, The Great Fire, aired last night at 9pm in the UK. This morning, I was asked by many on Twitter for my opinions about this show, but as I don’t have access to live television in my house, I was unable to watch it last night. I saw this episode just now on the iTV player and,… Read on

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Dura Lex Sed Lex: Huguenots and the Promises of Kings: Guest Post by Master Piers Alexander, Scribbler

Please welcome award-winning novelist Piers Alexander to The Seventeenth Century Lady! Dura lex sed lex: The law is harsh, but it is the law. For Huguenots in the 1600s, royal edicts were instruments of hope and despair, both in France and in England. Slaughtered for their faith in the sixteenth century (the St Bartholomew’s Day Massacre of 1572… Read on

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Review: Darling of Kings by P.J. Womack

The Darling of Kings is a brilliant historical novel which charts the meteoric rise and fall of one of the most legendary personages in British history. I was intrigued and excited when I was offered the chance to read this novel about George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham and his relationships, first with King James I and then King Charles I. The Duke of Buckingham has been a source… Read on

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Short story: ‘Princeps Henricus’

This is the short story I recently submitted to the Historical Novel Society Conference on Saturday 6th September. The conference was really interesting and it was fun to meet up with fellow writers and great to learn from the most successful in our genre. There’s always so much to learn, and I was grateful to be able to… Read on

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Lope de Vega’s ‘El Castigo Sin Venganza’ at The Globe

(en Espanol abajo) Contains spoilers! Yesterday, I was fortunate to able to go see the 2pm performance of Lope de Vega’s brilliant 17th-century play of forbidden love and terrible revenge, El Castigo Sin Venganza. This play was written by de Vega in 1631. Lope de Vega is one of most celebrated writers from the Spanish Golden Age – a… Read on

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Castle Howard, Yorkshire

Yesterday on Hoydens and Firebrands, I submitted a short post about He Who Commissioned Castle Howard – Charles Howard,  3rd Earl of Carlisle. Following on from that post, which gives an overview about the life of the Charles Howard, I would like to share what I learned there this weekend and some photos from my visit, if I… Read on

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The Country Wife by William Wycherley

I hope you all enjoyed our first selection for the 17th-Century Book Club, which was William Wycherley’s play, The Country Wife! This was the second time I read the play, and I wish I could have performed in it. I would like to apologise to you all for not having the forum up-and-running as I said I would, but… Read on

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Blakesley Hall, Birmingham

I had a glorious trip to the lovely Blakesley Hall yesterday and I had a truly spiffing time. The sun was out, it wasn’t raining or blowing a gale, so I was well pleased. I was, as some of you know from my tweets, quite disappointed to discover that most historic houses here in the Birmingham area are… Read on

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Prince Rupert of the Rhine: Romantic Hero, Scientist, Cavalier & Lover

There is little doubt that Rupert of the Rhine is still capable of attracting admirers – even after being dead for over 300 years. Not only is he known as one of the Handsomest Men of the 17th Century, but he also was an excellent soldier, scientist, artist and more. And he happened to be a Prince, too.… Read on

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