Not Just the Tudors

By History Hit

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Subscribers: 715
Reviews: 10

Andrew Brown
 Sep 19, 2022
Superb podcast - covers an amazing range of often unexpected subjects and is a delight to listen to.

lisa
 Aug 29, 2022

Eva Bild
 Jul 28, 2022
I love this podcast! Such a high standard of scholarship, but also such an enjoyment of the stories and the gossip. That's what I read history for!

Michael Caplan
 Dec 11, 2021
A beautifully presented podcast. I love the way Suzannah Lipscomb looks to broaden the discussion to include a reflection on the nature of Historical scholarship.

One of the Best
 Dec 7, 2021
This is a wonderful podcast. I love to get a feeling of how people lived in the past. The fullness of the info gives me the best idea of that. better than any novel, non-fiction book or even film that I've read or seen. Love it!

Description

Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks about everything from the Aztecs to witches, Velázquez to Shakespeare, Mughal India to the Mayflower. Not, in other words, just the Tudors, but most definitely also the Tudors.

Each episode Suzannah is joined by historians and experts to reveal incredible stories about one of the most fascinating periods in history.  You can also subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter, here >



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Episode Date
Huygens: Europe’s Greatest Scientist
37:57

Christiaan Huygens was the greatest scientist working in the vital period between Galileo and Newton, as the scientific revolution gathered pace. He discovered Saturn’s ring, invented the accurate pendulum clock, and devised a wave theory of light far ahead of its time.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to author Hugh Alderney-Williams to find out more about Huygens and why — more even than Newton — he can be called the father of modern science. 


This episode was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Dec 01, 2022
Public Executions in London
35:02

For at least 700 years, presumed criminals were publicly executed in London. Such occasions were often gruesome, gory and very popular.


A new exhibition at the Museum of London Docklands explores this grisly history - who the recipients of capital punishment were, the places where they met their end and how they died, and the crimes that were punishable by death.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb tours the exhibition with curator Tom Ardill.


**WARNING: This episode contains graphic descriptions of executions**


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Nov 28, 2022
Fall of the Ming Dynasty
51:23

In 1627 Zhu Youjian, the Chongzhen Emperor, became the 17th - and what would turn out to be the last - Emperor of China’s Ming Dynasty. It had ruled a vast realm stretching 6.5 million square kilometres for 250 years.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Timothy Brook to discover more about Zhu Youjian’s remarkable life and startling death, and explore the nature of his power and how it collapsed.


This episode was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg.


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! 


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Nov 24, 2022
Football and the Tudors
22:40

Already in 2022 we have celebrated England’s Lionesses winning the Women’s European Championships, and this month you may well be waiting with bated breath to see how England’s men fare in the World Cup. Such anticipation, celebration — and sometimes commiseration — are nothing new in football. In fact, the beautiful game goes back centuries. But what else is there to know about early modern football?


In today’s explainer episode, Professor Susannah Lipscomb takes us through the game: who played it, where it was played, and the rules people played by (or didn’t).


This episode was edited by Aidan Lonergan and produced by Rob Weinberg.


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! To download, go to Android > or Apple store >



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Nov 21, 2022
Henry VIII’s Lost Brother, Prince Arthur
46:21

During the early part of the sixteenth century England should have been ruled by King Arthur Tudor with his wife Catherine of Aragon as Queen. Had the first-born son of Henry VII lived into adulthood, his younger brother would never have become King Henry VIII and married - and divorced - Arthur’s widow, and the subsequent history of England would have been very different. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Sean Cunningham, author of Prince Arthur: The Tudor King Who Never Was, in which he surveys Prince Arthur’s life and assesses what type of king he might have become.


This episode was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Nov 17, 2022
Oliver Cromwell’s Republic
46:15

On 30 January 1649, King Charles I was executed for treason. Within weeks the monarchy had been abolished and the House of Lords discarded. The people were now the sovereign force in the land. What this meant, and where it would lead, no one knew.


In her new book, The Restless Republic: Britain Without a Crown, Anna Keay brings to life a fascinating cast of characters who lived through the turbulent years under Oliver Cromwell. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Anna Keay about the most extraordinary and experimental decade in Britain’s history, when a conservative people tried revolution.


This episode was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Nov 14, 2022
Inca Apocalypse
55:35

For many, the word Inca conjures up images of an ancient civilisation in South America, swiftly conquered by the Spanish in their quest for gold and Christian converts.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb sets out to find out the truth about the Incas with Professor R. Alan Covey. His research has revealed Inca society as wealthy, complex and cosmopolitan, and debunks the common narrative of a rapid, decisive Spanish conquest.


This episode was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg.


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Nov 10, 2022
Life in Tudor England
50:26

What was life really like in Tudor England? This was a society where monarchy was under strain, the church was in crisis, where contending with war, rebellion, plague and poverty was a fact of daily life. Yet it was also an age rich in ideas and ideals, where women asserted their agency and found a literary voice. 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Lucy Wooding, who has written a bold new history of the brilliant, conflicted, visionary world of Tudor England, presenting a starkly different picture of this famous era from the one we thought we know.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! To download, go to Android > or Apple store >




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Nov 07, 2022
Mary I: Myths Vs. Reality
46:49

Queen Mary I was the daughter of Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon. She reigned - as England’s first Queen Regnant - between 1553-1558. Unlike her sister and successor Elizabeth I, Mary’s posthumous reputation has largely focussed on religious persecution. But what does the written evidence from her own lifetime say about the manner in which she ruled?


In today’s edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Valerie Schutte and Dr. Jessica S. Hower. Their extensive research into Queen Mary I asks new questions and seeks new answers that deepen our understanding of her reign, her significance and her impact on the early modern era and its popular culture.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Nov 03, 2022
Sorcery and the Tudor Court
36:27

It's a little known fact that the Tudor monarchs and their councillors used - and feared - magic and the occult. At this time of great religious change and great religious faith, belief in magic was practically orthodox and certainly widespread.


In today’s edition for Hallowe'en, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb delves into Tudor sorcery with Dr. Francis Young who believes it should come as no surprise that magic and politics were so closely linked - for both are concerned with the exercise of power.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Oct 31, 2022
Nur Jahan: Empress of Mughal India
35:44

In 1611, the daughter of a Persian nobleman and widow of a subversive official, became the 20th and favourite wife of the Mughal Emperor Jahangir. Unique and outstanding for the age in which she lived, Nur Jahan rose to become an astute politician, issuing imperial orders and appearing on coins. But she was also a talented dress designer and innovative architect whose work inspired her stepson's Taj Mahal. 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Ruby Lal, author of the deeply researched and evocative biography of Nur Jahan, Empress: The Astonishing Reign of Nur Jahan.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Oct 27, 2022
1549: A Murderous Midsummer
43:25

The so-called “Prayer Book Rebellion” of 1549 saw the people of Devon and Cornwall rising up against the young King Edward VI, determined to halt the religious reforms of the Tudor period. The rebellion led to a siege of Exeter, savage battles with Crown forces, and the deaths of 4,000 local men and women. 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Mark Stoyle, whose new book A Murderous Midsummer: The Western Rising of 1549 offers a definitive account of the year that thousands of men and women rose to defend their faith and their regional identity.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Oct 24, 2022
Eustace Chapuys: Ambassador to the Tudor Court
46:46

Historians would be completely lost without the colourful, crucial insights of Eustace Chapuys, the Spanish Ambassador to Henry VIII's court from 1529 to 1545. Chapuys’ dispatches were filled with personal and insightful observations of the key players around the King. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr Lauren Mackay, author of Inside the Tudor Court, which brings Chapuys to life - a passionate and acerbic man who provided an unparalleled perspective of Henry VIII, his court and the Tudor period.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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For your chance to win five non-fiction history books - including a signed copy of Dan Snow's On This Day in History - please fill out this short survey.


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Oct 20, 2022
Female Sodomy
46:31

Few cases of same-sex acts between women are known in early modern Europe. Yet in the Southern Netherlands, some 25 women were charged with “female sodomy” between c. 1400 and 1550 - and they received the same punishment as their male counterparts. 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Jonas Roelens. He argues that this exceptional repression of female same-sex acts was the result of the relatively high level of liberty and visibility women enjoyed in the Southern Netherlands, compared to other regions. The more visible women were in society, the more women attracted to others of their own sex were at risk of being discovered and penalised.


*WARNING: This episode contains explicit sexual content*`


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


For your chance to win five non-fiction history books - including a signed copy of Dan Snow's On This Day in History - please fill out this short survey.


If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! To download, go to Android > or Apple store



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Oct 17, 2022
Women Letter Writers in the Early Modern Period
49:03

Historians face an enormous challenge finding documents that tell the stories of women in times past. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor James Daybell. His extensive research into women’s letters reveal much about their education, literacy, political aspirations and sense of self in the Early Modern period.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Anisha Deva and produced by Rob Weinberg.


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here


If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! To download, go to Android or Apple store


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Oct 13, 2022
Malay’s Dynasty of Reigning Queens
31:37

The Sultanate of Patani - now part of modern day Thailand - enjoyed a golden age during the reign of four successive queens, which commenced in 1584. Under their rule, the kingdom's economic and military strength greatly increased to the point that it was able to fight off four major Siamese invasions.In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb discovers more about these extraordinary rulers, their power and their influence, to Professor Stefan Amirell, President of the Swedish Historical Association and an expert in female political leadership in world history.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg.


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


For your chance to win five non-fiction history books - including a signed copy of Dan Snow's On This Day in History - please fill out this short survey: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/survey-taken/?sm=IthGeoCcJUiKNx0R8Pv7Ogn50xYWgriQdyDMjMZwy8jmNE1jQh63NtWjK1DQdAssMjnsuFzX5eJOGw0w3NS4sgHthi59y72wWjesdfmNxyU_3D


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Oct 10, 2022
Mary Rose 40: The Legacy of the Mary Rose
43:24

The raising of the Mary Rose 40 years ago - along with some 19,000 objects which sank with her - has become a great boon to Tudor historians, offering an unrivalled glimpse of life at that time. Additionally sixteenth century attempts to depict the tragedy and efforts to retrieve the ship at the time allow us access into aspects of Tudor life that we would have no other way of knowing. 


In the last of her three special episodes on the Mary Rose, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is in Portsmouth to examine what the Mary Rose has revealed to us about life in the Tudor age.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Oct 06, 2022
Mary Rose 40: The Raising of the Mary Rose
49:52

Forty years ago on 11 October 1982, after 437 years under water, Henry VIII’s warship, the Mary Rose, was raised from the seabed of the Solent. But how was such a remarkable feat achieved? How did they go about conserving a Tudor warship and the many objects which were on board? And what has been learned about the people who went down with her?


In the second part of Not Just the Tudors’ mini-series to mark the 40th anniversary of the raising of the Mary Rose, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is in Portsmouth to find out more from Dr. Alexandra Hildred - who was part of the team that excavated the Mary Rose; Professor Eleanor Schofield, the Deputy Chief Executive at the Mary Rose Trust; and Hannah Matthews, a Curator and osteoarchaeologist who has been closely examining the Mary Rose’s human remains.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Oct 03, 2022
Remembering Hilary Mantel
26:25

Dame Hilary Mantel died on 22 September 2022 at the age of 70. Her acclaimed Wolf Hall trilogy - which brought the life of Thomas Cromwell so vividly to life - has sold more than five million copies worldwide. She won the Booker Prize twice - for Wolf Hall and its sequel, Bring Up the Bodies.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb and History Hit's Dan Snow pay tribute to one of the greatest English-language novelists of our century.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


For your chance to win five non-fiction history books - including a signed copy of Dan Snow's On This Day in History - please fill out this short survey.


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Sep 29, 2022
Mary Rose 40: The Sinking of the Mary Rose
43:32

Exactly forty years ago, in a groundbreaking and spectacular piece of marine conservation that captured the imagination of the world, the Mary Rose was raised from the seabed. The warship, commissioned by Henry VIII in 1511, sank on 19 July 1545 during an encounter between French and English fleets in the Solent, between Portsmouth and the Isle of Wight. Perhaps up to 500 men were on board, only 34 survived.


In the first of three specials marking the 40th anniversary of the raising of the Mary Rose, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb travels to Portsmouth to find out why the Mary Rose sank. She's joined by Dr. Dominic Fontana, Retired Senior Lecturer in Geography formerly at the University of Portsmouth, and Dr. Alexandra Hildred, Head of Research and Curator of Ordnance and Human Remains at the Mary Rose Trust.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Sep 26, 2022
Slavery and the Royal African Company
34:51

The Royal African Company was set up in 1660 - by the ruling Stuart family and City of London merchants - to exploit gold fields up the Gambia River. But it soon developed into a brutal and sustained slave trader, shipping more enslaved Africans to the Americas than any other company.


In today’s Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor William Pettigrew, whose research into the Royal African Company grounds the slave trade in politics and not economic forces.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Anisha Deva and produced by Rob Weinberg.


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Sep 22, 2022
The Other Howard Women
44:19

We tend to associate the word ‘dynasty’ with men. But in sixteenth century England, women played a no less important role in these influential families. Among the most powerful were the Howards, which produced two Queens - Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard - as well as numerous women who made their own significant contribution to Tudor life.  


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Nicola Clark. Her research - putting women centre-stage - is leading to a new understanding of the complexity of the early modern dynasty. 


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Sep 15, 2022
Magellan 500: The Man Who Sailed the World
34:22

Exactly 500 years ago, a small band of sailors completed the first ever circumnavigation of the globe, launched by Ferdinand Magellan.  From the armada of five ships and some 270 men that set out, only one ship and 18 men returned. Magellan was not among them, and if he had been, he would hardly have received a hero’s welcome.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb marks the anniversary with Magellan’s award-winning biographer Laurence Bergreen. Together they consider Magellan the man and how his voyage changed the world’s ideas about cosmology and geography.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Sep 12, 2022
The Musicians Who Went to Sea
37:16

Hardly anything has been written about the musicians who carried out many important tasks in England’s maritime ventures during the Elizabethan age. That is until now. Pioneering research has revealed that performers played a vital role, including using music to build relationships with the inhabitants of new found lands.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. James Seth about his discoveries, which shows musicians transcending and breaching boundaries of language, rank, race, religion and nationality to ensure the success of a voyage.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was researched by Esther Arnott, and edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Sep 08, 2022
Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing
24:15

*WARNING: This episode contains very strong language - including the F and C words - and derogatory terms for sex workers. So if you're likely to feel offended by these, please feel free to listen to another episode of Not Just the Tudors!*`


From the Ancient World to today, there have always been two kinds of swearing: testifying to the truth with your hand on the Bible or telling an annoying person to “get lost”. In the Early Modern period, as religion underwent a transformation - and bodily functions that were once public became private - swear words moved to and fro between the sacred and the profane, and sometimes combined. 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb traverses the history of bad language with Dr Melissa Mohr, author of Holy Sh*t: A Brief History of Swearing.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Sep 05, 2022
Shakespeare’s Henry V
42:02

This week marks 600 years since the death of King Henry V, perhaps best known for his military successes during the Hundred Years War against France and in particular his victory at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415.


But because this is Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb has decided to assess Henry V’s rise to power as it was depicted through the pen of William Shakespeare nearly two centuries later. To do so, she’s joined by literary scholar Professor Duncan Salkeld and theatre historian Alice Smith.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg.


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Sep 01, 2022
The "Spectacle of Suffering": A 16th Century Executioner
42:23

The German executioner Meister Frantz Schmidt kept a fascinating journal of all the executions, torture and punishments he administered between 1573 and 1618. 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors - originally released in June 2021 - Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Professor Joel Harrington to talk about Schmidt and further explore public capital punishment in the 16th century, described by historians as the "spectacle of suffering." 


*WARNING! This episode contains graphic descriptions of punishments.*


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Aug 29, 2022
The Private Life of Thomas Cromwell
55:00

Thomas Cromwell was an extraordinary figure in the Tudor court. Lawyer, politician, minister and peer of the realm, Cromwell deployed all of his wisdom, charisma, strategic cunning and considerable intellect to break England away from Rome, reform parliament and create royal supremacy. But who was the real man behind the notoriety?


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to New Zealand-based historian and author Caroline Angus who has transcribed the letters of Thomas Cromwell from their primary sources, revealing the many facets and contradictions of Cromwell’s public and private life.


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Aug 25, 2022
The Borgias
35:41

In Renaissance Italy, the Borgia family were admired for their audacity and their ruthlessness - they even inspired Mario Puzo’s depiction of the Corleones in The Godfather. But do the Borgias deserve their reputation? How did they rise to power? How did a man with so many illegitimate children become Pope?


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Mary Hollingsworth about how the Borgias became history’s most notorious dynasty.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg.


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here >


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Aug 22, 2022
Not Just the Tudors Lates: Elizabeth I on Screen - The Historians’ Verdict
59:02

What do you get when you bring together five top historians in a room with bottles of Prosecco to debate Elizabeth I on screen? History with the gloves off - our first Not Just the Tudors Lates! 


Taking as her starting point the new series Becoming Elizabeth - now streaming on STARZ - Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Dr. Joanne Paul, Jessie Childs, Alex von Tunzelmann and Professor Sarah Churchwell to explore how television and films have depicted the year 1547 when - following the death of Henry VIII - a complex web of relationships determined the course of British history. 


*WARNING! There is some strong language in this episode*


The Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. Audio extracts from Becoming Elizabeth courtesy of STARZ.


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Aug 18, 2022
'Becoming Elizabeth': The Creators
34:10

Queen Elizabeth I has been depicted on the big and small screen more times than most of her contemporaries. Now, a critically acclaimed TV series Becoming Elizabeth - streaming on STARZ - traces the turbulent early years of Elizabeth, negotiating all the political intrigues of the court on her journey towards securing the crown.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Becoming Elizabeth’s writer Anya Reiss and its Executive Producer George Ormond about finding fresh drama and bringing to light little-known episodes and characters in the ever-captivating story of Elizabeth I.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. Audio extract from Becoming Elizabeth courtesy of STARZ.


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Aug 15, 2022
The Witches of Warboys: A Novel Retelling
43:21

The Cambridgeshire village of Warboys was the scene of one of the most famous English witch trials of the sixteenth century. There, the privileged daughters of the respected Squire Throckmorton accused a cantankerous elderly neighbour of witchcraft, sending the impoverished Alice Samuel to her death.


This shocking case is the subject of a dazzling new novel The Bewitching by author Jill Dawson, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb’s guest today. It explores a neglected episode of English history to powerful effect, vividly conveying the brutal tribalism that can erupt in a closed society and how victims can be persuaded to believe in their own wickedness.  


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Aug 11, 2022
Samuel Pepys and his Books
38:56

The great diarist Samuel Pepys was an avid collector of books, news and gossip, and reading was a major part of his life and the lives of his contemporaries.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb delves into Pepys’s life and wide-ranging interests with Dr. Kate Loveman.

Her extensive research offers significant insights into the man, his world and the far-reaching literary and cultural developments of the seventeenth century.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg.


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Aug 08, 2022
The New Model Army
55:27

The New Model Army was one of the most formidable fighting forces ever assembled. It played a crucial role in overthrowing King Charles I, propelling one of its most brilliant generals, Oliver Cromwell, to power during the English Revolution. As a fighting force it engineered regicide, pioneered innovative military tactics, and helped to keep Cromwell in power as Lord Protector until his death.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Ian Gentles to examine how the army’s brilliant battlefield manoeuvring and logistical prowess contributed to its victories.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was researched by Esther Arnott, edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg.


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Aug 04, 2022
The Trial of a Latvian Werewolf
49:22

In 1691, a peasant in Livonia - on the eastern coast of the Baltic Sea - announced before a startled district court that he was a werewolf. Yet far from being in league with the Devil, “Old Thiess” insisted he was one of the “hounds of God,” fierce guardians who battled sorcerers, witches, and even Satan to protect the fields and flocks. Not surprisingly, his judges struggled to make sense of the case.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to two eminent scholars, Professor Carlo Ginzburg and Professor Bruce Lincoln, whose diverging views present a uniquely comparative look at the trial and the startling testimony of Old Thiess. 


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited, mixed and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Aug 01, 2022
The Tudors and Food
33:01

What food - and how much of it - did people eat in the Tudor period? Where did they get it? When did they eat it? What arrangements for cookery and dining were in place in their homes? What did they drink? 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Dr. Mark Dawson, who has closely studied the household accounts of the Willoughby family of Wollaton Hall in Nottingham and Middleton Hall in Warwickshire. Through them, he has been able to trace many interesting developments including the decline in enthusiasm for salted herring, the embracing of new meats such as turkey, and the complex network of supplies through merchants, markets and fairs. 


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was researched by Esther Arnott, edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Jul 28, 2022
Ruffs, Pipes and Pearls
40:56

Ruffs, Pipes and Pearls


When Francis Drake returned home from the Spanish West Indies, he carried with him pearls to present as gifts to Elizabeth I. Around London’s Inns of Court, every gentleman smoked a pipe of American tobacco, believing it projected an air of civility. But the cultural impact of colonisation worked both ways: the Englishmen who settled in Jamestown, Virginia, took with them goffering irons to crimp fabric and make ruffs.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Dr. Lauren Working to explore how England’s desire to colonise the Americas influenced both those they met and those back home, resulting in lasting cultural change.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg. The researcher was Esther Arnott.


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Jul 25, 2022
The Venetian Inquisition
41:40

From the sixteenth century through to the end of the eighteenth century, the Venetian government and the Roman Catholic Church jointly established a tribunal to repress heresy throughout the Republic of Venice. The inquisition also intervened in cases of sacrilege, apostasy, prohibited books, superstition, and witchcraft.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Nicholas Davidson about his deep research into the Venetian archives, which sheds new light on the nature of religious belief in early modern Italy and the activities the Venetian Inquisition sought to prevent.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was researched by Esther Arnott, edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg.


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Jul 21, 2022
Anne of Cleves
40:48

Anne of Cleves was the ‘last woman standing’ of Henry VIII’s wives and the only one buried in Westminster Abbey. How did she manage it? Was she in fact a political refugee, supported by the King? Was she a role model for her step-daughters Mary and Elizabeth? Why was her marriage to Henry doomed from the start?


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by author Heather R. Darsie - editor of maidensandmanuscripts.com - whose research into Anne of Cleves casts a new light on Henry’s fourth Queen, potentially revealing a very different figure than the so-called 'Flanders Mare'.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg.


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Jul 18, 2022
The Man who Wrote Robinson Crusoe
45:07

In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Alan Downie about an author whose life was at least as colourful as those of the characters he created. Apart from writing one of the most famous books of all time, this writer survived the Great Plague and the Great Fire of London, traded in hosiery, supported freedom of religion and the press, worked as a confidant to William of Orange, as a secret agent and master spy…or so he said. And he died virtually penniless. Who was he?


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Thomas Ntinas and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Jul 14, 2022
Isaac Newton: The Man at the Centre of Gravity
52:56

One of the greatest mathematicians and most influential physicists of all time, Isaac Newton was born into a world of turmoil that shaped him and the avenues he chose to explore. 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to science historian Professor Robert Iliffe about Newton’s remarkable life, his laws of motion and gravity as well as about some of the ideas for which he is less well-known.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie. It was edited by Seyi Adaobi and produced by Rob Weinberg. 


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Jul 11, 2022
Heretic or Martyr? Tudor Poet Anne Askew
30:45

Born in 1521, Anne Askew was condemned as a heretic for her radical Protestantism beliefs during the reign of Henry VIII. Tortured and executed after the Pilgrimage of Grace in 1537, she was also one of the earliest known women poets to compose in the English language. Uniquely, her surviving first-person account of her ordeal and her beliefs led her to being proclaimed as a Protestant martyr. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Jennifer Richards, to explore Anne Askew’s life and literary legacy.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie, the Editor and Producer was Rob Weinberg. Anne Askew’s words are read by Sarah Percival.


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Jul 07, 2022
Surviving Plague in Florence
47:36

Between 1630 and 1631, the city of Florence suffered its last epidemic of plague. Some 12% of the city's population of 75,000 perished.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor John Henderson, historian of epidemics, about how Florence suffered, fought and survived the impact of plague - and what we might have learned from the approach of the Florentine authorities during our own recent pandemic.


The Senior Producer on this episode was Elena Guthrie. It was edited and produced by Rob Weinberg.


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Jul 04, 2022
Elizabeth I: Last Days and Legacy
41:45

In the last years of Elizabeth I’s reign, many of the preoccupations of earlier decades had been abated. Mary, Queen of Scots had finally been executed in 1587; the Spanish Armada was defeated the following year; and the question of the Queen marrying had been shelved. And yet these were years of extraordinary challenge to crown and country, when the woman at the helm was elderly and apparently indecisive.


To round up Queenship month on Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by historian and author Dr. Alex Gajda to discuss the critical last decades of Elizabeth I’s reign and her legacy, and reflect upon its relevance to the current Queen Elizabeth in her Platinum Jubilee year.


For this episode, recorded at St.Cross College Oxford, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie, the Producer and Editor was Rob Weinberg.


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Jun 30, 2022
Global Queenship
42:35

All this month on Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb has been talking to her guests about Queenship. But the focus has inevitably been on European Queens. Yet, if there is some flexibility about the word “Queen”, then the role of a female monarch as a consort or a ruler is actually much more common globally than we might assume.


In this episode, Suzannah talks to Dr. Elena Woodacre. Together they draw on examples from all over the world in the Early Modern period to explore the nature of Queenship, and ask are there constants of Queenship that transcend geography and culture?


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie, the Producer and Editor was Rob Weinberg.


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Jun 27, 2022
The Coronations of Tudor Queens
36:04

Four women were crowned in England between 1509 and 1559: two Queens consort - Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn - and England’s first two Queens regnant, their daughters Mary I and Elizabeth I respectively. The ritual of coronation was crucial for conferring legitimacy and sanctity. 


As part of Not Just the Tudors’ Queenship month, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Alice Hunt about how the ancient ceremony of coronation took on new meanings at a time of enormous upheaval in the monarchy, religion and politics.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie, the Producer was Rob Weinberg and the Editor was Lewis Mason.


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Jun 23, 2022
A Queen By Any Other Name
41:35

Isabel Clara Eugenia was the heir to the kingdoms of Spain and Portugal, but she was never crowned Queen. But despite this, her life provides a fascinating example of early modern female sovereignty, illustrating how benevolence, humility, wifely obedience and piety could be exercised to realise great power and exert great influence.


To discuss this Queen by any other name, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Magdalena Sanchez, Professor of Early Modern History at Gettysburg College, Pennsylvania.


For this episode, the Senior Producer was Elena Guthrie, the Producer was Rob Weinberg and the Editor was Thomas Ntinas.


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Jun 20, 2022
Sister Queens: Mary II and Anne
36:32

To mark the Platinum Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II, June is Queenship month on Not Just the Tudors. Our series continues with a look at two of Britain’s less well-known monarchs - Queen Mary II and her sister Queen Anne. Both were highly competent and courageous Queens with fascinating public and private lives, reigning over periods of immense historical and political importance.


To discuss them, Professor Suzannah Lispcomb is joined by Dr. Hannah Greig - historical advisor for the film, The Favourite.


For this episode, Elena Guthrie was Senior Producer, Rob Weinberg was Producer and the Editor was Thomas Ntinas.


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Jun 16, 2022
Becoming a Queen in Early Modern Europe
42:13

In Early Modern Europe, Queens did not come fully formed. Rather, a series of rites, rituals and ceremonies transformed a hesitant bride into a fully fledged monarch. And beneath all of these contracts and customs were real live women, their emotions running high as they left behind their birth families and embarked on an exciting and terrifying journey into a foreign land to marry a stranger.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Katarzyna Kosior, to look at what it meant to become a Queen particularly in two interconnected dynasties - the Valois of France and the Jagiellonians of Poland.


The Senior Producer on this episode was Elena Guthrie.

The Producer was Rob Weinberg.

It was edited by Seyi Adaobi.


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Jun 13, 2022
King Christina of Sweden
34:50

Not Just the Tudors’ month-long season on Queenship continues with a look at the fascinating Christina Varsa, who was crowned King of Sweden on 20 October 1650.


Christina was one of the most learned women of the 17th century. She never married and after her abdication, she converted to Catholicism and is one of the few women to be buried in the Vatican. She was memorably played by Greta Garbo as a cross-dressing, swashbuckling adventurer. But who was the real Christina of Sweden? How did she come to be crowned King? And is there any truth in the many legends about her? Professor Suzannah Lipscomb tries to get to the truth with Julia Holm from Uppsala University.


The Senior Producer on this episode was Elena Guthrie. The Producer was Rob Weinberg. It was edited by Thomas Ntinas.


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Jun 09, 2022
The Foreignness of Queens
45:43

Not Just the Tudors’ special month-long look at Queenship continues with an exploration of the popular perception of those foreign Queens who came to England in the 16th and 17th centuries.


Catherine of Aragon, Anne of Cleves, Anne of Denmark, Henrietta Maria and Catherine of Braganza have all become part of our national fabric, and yet when they arrived on English shores to be wed, they were very much foreigners. The strong sense of difference that surrounded them even featured in the plays that were written and performed for the thriving theatre culture of the time.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Mira 'Assaf Kafantaris, a specialist in early modern literature, about the works of literature that explored ideas of queenship and cultural mixing, which proliferated from the late 1500s onwards.


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Jun 06, 2022
Queenship in the Renaissance Courts
50:34

Throughout this month, every episode of Not Just the Tudors is honouring Queen Elizabeth II's Platinum Jubilee by focussing on some aspect of Queenship in the Early Modern period. 


In this first exploration, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb looks at Queens Consort - those wives of Kings so well-known to us - to whom we tend to ascribe a passive role. Today's guest Dr. Michelle Beer wants us to rethink that notion. Her work on Margaret Tudor, Queen of Scotland, and Catherine of Aragon suggests that Queens Consort also wielded power in ways that we have not recognised.


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Jun 02, 2022
The Lost Paradise of Granada
36:58

From the early Middle Ages to the present day, travellers have been bewitched by the peerless beauty of Granada. From 1230 until 1492, it was ruled by the Nasrids - Spain's last Islamic dynasty - from their fortress palace of the Alhambra. After capturing Granada to complete the Christian Reconquista, the monarchs Ferdinand and Isabella made the Alhambra the site of their royal court. But what became of the Jews, the Muslims and the Gitanos who were displaced?


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Elizabeth Drayson about this complex and fascinating city and Spain's deep obsession with erasing historical and cultural memory.


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May 30, 2022
The Man Who Broke Michelangelo's Nose
39:31

Pietro Torrigiano is credited with introducing Renaissance art to England in the early years of the 16th century and designed the tomb of Henry VII, but he is best remembered for breaking the nose of Michelangelo in a fight. Torrigiano's tumultuous life took him from Florence to Rome, through Mechelen and London, to Seville, where he finally died in an Inquisition jail.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Felipe Pereda about this arrogant, proud, but nonetheless important, artist.


For more Not Just The Tudors content, subscribe to our Tudor Tuesday newsletter here. If you'd like to learn even more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit - subscribe today! To download, go to Android or Apple store.



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May 26, 2022
Radicals in Exile
36:05

Facing persecution in Elizabethan England, some Catholics chose exile over conformity. Some even cast their lot with foreign monarchs rather than wait for their own rulers to have a change of heart. These so-called “Spanish Elizabethans,” used the most powerful tools at their disposal — paper, pens, and printing presses — to incite war against England, from the years leading up to the Grand Armada until Philip II of Spain's death in 1598.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Freddy Cristóbal Domínguez  whose groundbreaking research is making an important contribution to the study of religious exile in early modern Europe.


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May 23, 2022
Anne Boleyn: Dispelling the Myths
58:34

There are so many myths about Anne Boleyn - among them that she had six fingers, that she was a murderess, even that she was Henry VIII's own daughter. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, released on 19 May to mark the anniversary of the day of Anne Boleyn's execution in 1536, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb sets out to bust some myths with Natalie Grueninger, founder and editor of the On the Tudor Trail website and author of In the Footsteps of Anne Boleyn.


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May 19, 2022
The Siege of Loyalty House
1:01:16

The Civil War was the most traumatic conflict in British history, pitting friends and family members against each other, tearing down the old order.


Award-winning historian Jessie Childs plunges the reader into the shock of the struggle through one of its most dramatic episodes: the siege of Basing House. To the parliamentarian Roundheads, the Hampshire mansion was a bastion of royalism, popery and excess. Its owner was both a Catholic and staunch supporter of Charles I. His motto Love Loyalty was etched into the windows. He refused all terms of surrender.


As royalist strongholds crumbled, Loyalty House, as it became known, stood firm. Over two years, the men, women and children inside were battered, bombarded, starved and gassed. Their resistance became legendary. Inigo Jones designed the fortifications and the women hurled bricks from the roof. But in October 1645, Oliver Cromwell rolled in the heavy guns and the defenders prepared for a last stand.


Drawing on exciting new sources, Childs uncovers the face of the war through a cast of unforgettable characters: the fanatical Puritan preacher who returns from Salem to take on the king; the plant-hunting apothecary who learns to kill as well as heal; the London merchant and colonist who clashes with Basing's aristocratic lord; and Cromwell himself who feels the hand of God on his sword. And we hear too the voices of dozens of ordinary men and women caught in the crossfire.


The Siege of Loyalty House is a thrilling tale of war and peace, terror and faith, friendship and betrayal - and of a world turned upside down.


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May 16, 2022
The Founding of Jamestown
36:03

415 years ago this month, 104 English men and boys landed in North America and established a settlement they called Jamestown in Virginia. Over the course of the 17th Century, a third of a million people left England for the "New World". But in Virginia, it all started from very small beginnings and there was every chance that this venture - like every previous attempt to settle in America would fail. In fact it almost did.  


To learn about the first few years of Jamestown - which includes the true story of Matoaka (better known as Pocahontas) and her marriage to the tobacco cultivator John Rolfe - Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Misha Ewen, author of the forthcoming book, The Virginia Venture: American Colonization and English Society, 1580-1660. 


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May 12, 2022
A Self-Help Manual for the Melancholy
32:53

To mark Mental Health Awareness Week, Not Just the Tudors casts a 21st century eye over "one of the most perplexing, elusive, attractive, and afflicting diseases of the Renaissance" - melancholy - and how it was addressed in "largest, strangest and most unwieldy self-help book ever written": Robert Burton's The Anatomy of Melancholy of 1621. 


So what did people in the 17th century think were the causes, symptoms and cures for melancholy? In this episode, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr Mary Ann Lund - author of A User's Guide to Melancholy, an accessible guide to Burton's work that reveals the Stuart era's approach to mental health. 


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May 09, 2022
Sex & The Tudors
43:43

There’s not an infinite number of ways that humans can act on sexual desire. Human bodies haven’t changed, but the cultural landscape around sex has. What people believed about it, the morality surrounding it, and the paraphernalia concerning it have all changed a lot. Sex has a history, and History Hit has launched a new podcast to explore it called Betwixt the Sheets.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Kate Lister, host of Betwixt the Sheets, to discuss sex, desire, witches, impotence, condoms and syphilis in the 16th and 17th centuries.This episode contains sexually explicit content.


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May 05, 2022
Walter Raleigh's Quest for El Dorado
26:08

Sir Walter Raleigh remains one of the enduring names from the Elizabethan era. He was a true Renaissance man - a statesman, soldier, writer, explorer and a favourite of Queen Elizabeth I. In 1594, Raleigh heard about the legendary golden city of El Dorado and the following year, explored what is now Guyana and eastern Venezuela in search of it. In his account of the expedition The Discovery of Guiana, Raleigh made exaggerated claims as to what had been discovered, contributing to the enduring El Dorado legend, and his own celebrity. 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to writer and historian Mathew Lyons about Raleigh, his dream of finding El Dorado, and the epic scale of his failure.


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May 02, 2022
Suleyman the Magnificent
38:08

The Ottoman Sultan Suleyman I - known as "Suleyman the Magnificent" in the West - was the most feared and powerful man of the sixteenth century. His journey to power was built on brutal choices and intimate relationships - with the Greek slave who became his closest friend, the Venetian plutocrat who sold him gems and won him allies and the Russian consort who stole his heart. Within a decade, Suleyman reached the walls of Vienna, while his pirate admiral Barbarossa dominated the Mediterranean. 


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to award-winning author Christopher de Bellaigue, about his acclaimed new book The Lion House which recounts the first third of Suleyman's reign, a remarkable rise to power which led to his domination of the Middle East, large swathes of north Africa and the Mediterranean.


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Apr 28, 2022
Discovering Hampton Court
28:00

Many of the private and public dramas in the life of Henry VIII took place at Hampton Court Palace. Begun in 1514 for Cardinal Wolsey, Hampton Court became one of Henry VIII's favourite residences. Set in 60 acres of magnificent gardens, much of the Tudor building was destroyed during King William III's massive rebuilding and expansion work, as he sought to create a residence to rival the Palace of Versailles.


In this explainer episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb takes a walk around Hampton Court to take in the sights and tell the story of this spectacular, historic building.


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Apr 25, 2022
Milton's Paradise Lost
29:03

In 1667 - 355 years ago this month - a young London publisher called Samuel Simmons printed a very important book - John Milton's Paradise Lost. Milton had come to the fore in radical politics and, for a time, was considered an enemy of the state. Paradise Lost was published as his dream of a Godly republic became a reality and then crumbled, and as he himself turned blind and experienced the death of his wife and son.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Thomas Corns about the fascinating history of the writing and publishing of one of the greatest epic poems in the English language.


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Apr 21, 2022
How Tudor England Treated Outsiders
47:04

The recently released film Lapwing is set during the Tudor period, one year after the Egyptian Act of 1554 effectively criminalised Romani people and others - generically labelled "Egyptians" - and those who harboured them. Lapwing tells the story of one such family who are exploited by a vengeful salt farmer on the Lincolnshire coast.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb finds out more about the little-remembered Egyptian Act from Dr. John E. Morgan, and more about Lapwing from its writer Laura Turner.


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Apr 18, 2022
Death, Desire, Power & Scandal: The House of Dudley
41:41

The Dudleys were the most brilliant, bold and manipulative of power-hungry Tudor families. Every Tudor monarch made their name either with a Dudley at their side - or by crushing one beneath their feet. With three generations of felled family members, what was it that caused the Dudleys to keep rising so high and falling so low?


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Joanne Paul, author of The House of Dudley: A New History of Tudor England, the story of a noble house competing in the murderous game of musical chairs around the English throne. 


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Apr 14, 2022
The First Woman to Write an Opera
39:00

Francesca Caccini (1587-c.1641) is one of the forgotten women of classical music. She was an exceptional singer and instrumentalist, but above all, an immensely talented composer. Working full time at the Medici court from the age of 20, Caccini became one of its best paid employees. Many of her compositions have been lost, but her only surviving stage work, La liberazione di Ruggiero, is considered to be the oldest opera by a woman composer.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb finds out more about this great and neglected composer from biographer Dr. Anna Beer and Deborah Roberts, Artistic Director of the Brighton Early Music Festival.


The podcast features excerpts of Caccini's music from Ars Lyrica Houston's programme, Italian Sirens, recorded in Zilkha Hall, Hobby Centre for the Performing Arts, Houston, Texas on 12 November 2017 with Sydney Anderson (soprano), Cecilia Duarte (mezzo-soprano) and Matthew Dirst (Artistic Director). Audio courtesy of Ars Lyrica Houston.  


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Apr 11, 2022
The Tudors: Portraits, Power and Politics
34:16

Visitors to the Holburne Museum in Bath are having a close encounter with the most familiar faces in English history. A stunning exhibition, The Tudors: Passion, Power and Politics, includes some of the most iconic Tudor portraits, evoking that torrid era of religious conflict and political intrigue.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb walks round the exhibition with curator Monserrat Pis Marcos to discuss the paintings and the turbulent lives of those portrayed.


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Apr 07, 2022
The Emperor Who Built the Taj Mahal
49:00

The Taj Mahal was commissioned 390 years ago by the Mughal emperor Shah Jahan as a mausoleum for his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. But what can we know about the king from the exquisite love temple he built? What do its inscriptions tell us about Shah Jahan's life, love and faith?


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Father Michael D. Calabria, who has deeply studied this most beautiful and famous of buildings and the Emperor who created it.


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Apr 04, 2022
The Maker of Modern France: King François I
31:54

François I of France not only introduced the Renaissance to France, he became the perfect Renaissance king - an inspiring military leader, a charismatic diplomat, an art collector and a lover of literature. But he was also intensely human and flawed.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to author Leonie Frieda, whose biography of François I brings to life the great monarch who turned France into a great nation.


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Mar 31, 2022
Becoming Anne Boleyn
29:11

March 2022 marks the 500th anniversary of Anne Boleyn's first recorded appearance at the English court. To celebrate, Hever Castle - Anne's childhood home - has staged an exhibition charting her early life, and exploring the factors that moulded her character.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb goes to Hever Castle to talk to Dr. Owen Emmerson and Kate McCaffrey about the exhibition and their new book, Becoming Anne: Connections, Culture, Court. The podcast also features a rendition of "Joyssance vous donneray" by Claudin de Sermisy, sung by Jay Britton.


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Mar 28, 2022
The Founding of Cape Town
39:02

In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb explores the story of a shipwreck that led to the creation of a city and a nation. Exactly 375 years ago, on 25 March 1647, a Dutch cargo ship Nieuw Haarlem foundered in Table Bay’s shallow waters. While 58 crew members were taken back to the Netherlands, 62 remained at the southern tip of Africa. If they had not stayed, says our guest Professor Gerald Groenewald of the University of Johannesburg, the history of colonial South Africa could have turned out very differently.


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Mar 24, 2022
The End of Monasteries: What Happened Next?
40:52

The dissolution of the monasteries under Henry VIII ended almost a millennium of monastic life in England, resulting in a dislocation of people and a disruption of life not seen since the Norman Conquest. Yet newly published research shows that the buildings were not immediately demolished, as was previously imagined.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor James G. Clark whose decades of research into national and regional archives - as well as archaeological remains - has revealed the little-known lives of the last men and women who lived in England's monasteries before the Reformation. 


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Mar 21, 2022
Henry VIII's Most Brilliant Courtier: Sir Thomas Wyatt
52:48

No one represented the complexities of the court of Henry VIII better than Sir Thomas Wyatt, a skilled diplomat who was forced to live with the moral and mortal consequences of his shifting allegiances. He was also an outstanding and pioneering poet, who penned the first English sonnets. His satires covertly speak truth to power, alluding to events that it would have been treasonous to talk about openly.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Susan Brigden, author of Thomas Wyatt: The Heart's Forest, an outstanding biography which won the prestigious Wolfson History Prize.


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Mar 17, 2022
The Real Cyrano de Bergerac
42:28

One of the world's much loved stage and screen characters has just returned to the cinema in a new film version starring Peter Dinklage. But what may not be generally known is that Cyrano de Bergerac was a real person who was sharper, funnier and more modern than the romantic hero he inspired.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Cyrano's biographer Ishbel Addyman, about an extraordinary figure, whose brave, independent and visionary thinking was years ahead of its time.


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Mar 14, 2022
The Queen of Hearts: The Forgotten Stuart Queen
0

As a contribution to International Women's Day last Tuesday, this episode of Not Just the Tudors is a tribute to one of the great - but largely forgotten - Queens of the Early Modern period.


Elizabeth Stuart may only be vaguely recalled today as the sister of King Charles I, the grandmother of King George I, and thus a direct ancestor of our current Queen. But in her lifetime, as the deposed and exiled Queen of Bohemia, Elizabeth was a formidable figure, operating at the epicentre of the political and military struggles that defined 17th century Europe.


Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Nadine Akkerman, whose deep immersion in the archives and masterful detective work, has brought Elizabeth Stuart to life as a canny stateswoman and possessor of a sharp wit, cherished in the hearts of her compatriots.


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Mar 10, 2022
Elizabeth I's Favourite Painter
0

Born in Exeter in 1547, the miniaturist Nicholas Hilliard left to posterity some of the most famous and enduring images of Queen Elizabeth I. But who was this man? How did this brilliant artist rise to become the first English-born court painter but then fall to be imprisoned at the age of 70? In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks about the technicolour of Hilliard's life and legacy with his biographer, Dr. Elizabeth Goldring.


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Mar 07, 2022
How the Tudors Told the Time
0

How time passes - or how it is understood to pass - itself has a fascinating history. For the Tudors, the uneven hours of the Medieval reckoning were cast aside for an age of mechanical clocks and watches, albeit mainly for the elite.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb meets Dr. Christina Faraday, to explore how the Tudors told the time and how, with this cultural shift, timepieces came to have symbolic meaning about a person's status in the portraits of the period.


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Mar 03, 2022
Same-Sex Marriages in Renaissance Rome
48:21

All this month on the History Hit family of podcasts, we've been marking LGBT+ History Month. To round off the month, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb investigates an extraordinary episode, long denied by scholars. In 1578, a same-sex community that gathered in a church, performing marriages between men, was discovered in Rome. 


Professor Giuseppe Marcocci reveals his ground-breaking research which challenges the accepted historical narrative and helps us to better understand the sentiments of those who were part of this unusual - and at that time, highly subversive - community in Renaissance Rome.


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Feb 28, 2022
Oliver Cromwell's Women
40:53

How can women be reinstated into the narrative of history when their presence is only faintly attested to in the remaining sources? How can fiction help us in imagining their lives? Is it legitimate to write fictionalised versions of people who really lived? In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb addresses these and other questions with Dr. Miranda Malins, a novelist and historian who specialises in the life and career of Oliver Cromwell, his family, and the politics of the era. Her new novel, The Rebel Daughter is a gripping evocation of the Civil War, and the hidden stories of women at the heart of power.


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Feb 24, 2022
Escaping From Slavery in London
40:45

In 1655, White Londoners began advertising in newspapers to retrieve enslaved people who had escaped. Groundbreaking research is bringing to light for the first time these stories of resistance by enslaved workers in Restoration London - including African children as young as eight - shedding light on the construction of a system of racial slavery, which has generally been regarded as happening in the colonies rather than in Britain itself.  


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Simon P. Newman about his new book Freedom Seekers: Escaping from Slavery in Restoration London, which reveals the hidden stories of the enslaved who attempted to escape from captivity.


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Feb 21, 2022
Women's Work in 17th Century London
48:39

In the late 17th century, young women arrived in London to earn their own living, with mistresses setting up shops and supervising female apprentices. Recent groundbreaking research reveals the extent to which single women, wives and widows established themselves in trades guilds both alongside - and separate to - men. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Laura Gowing, author of Ingenious Trades, whose pioneering work sheds a new light on the critical importance and breadth of women's work at the heart of an emerging consumer culture.


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Feb 17, 2022
The Massacre of Glencoe
37:49

In the early hours of 13 February 1692, in the rugged and beautiful mountains of Glencoe in the Scottish Highlands, some 30 members and associates of Clan MacDonald were massacred by the Scottish army. It was a political act, a consequence of the so-called "Glorious Revelation" of 1688-1689. But even by the standards of the time what happened at Glencoe was considered an atrocity and an act of mass murder.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb marks the 330th anniversary of the massacre with Dr. Allan Kennedy from the University of Dundee.


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Feb 14, 2022
Kateryn Parr: Henry VIII's Sixth Queen
47:19

Kateryn Parr - as she herself wrote her name - is often portrayed as a colourless, prudish figure, known mainly for surviving her marriage to King Henry VIII. But Parr's life reads like a Renaissance romance, filled with peril, jealous husbands, personal patronage of the arts, writing and translating.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Susan James, who charts Parr's life and the strategies she employed during her queenship, that ensured her survival, and which provided a role-model for her beloved step-daughter, the future Queen Elizabeth I.


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Feb 10, 2022
China's First Tourists: Travel Writers in the Ming Dynasty
35:18

Around the same time as the Mayflower was landing at Cape Cod, on the other side of the world tourism was thriving in China, giving rise to a fascinating genre of travel writing.


To mark the start of the Chinese New Year - the Year of the Tiger - Professor Suzannah Lipscomb explores the wonderfully rich prose and travel diaries of the period with Professor James Hargett. His research and translations reveal extraordinary insights into the society and culture of the late Ming Dynasty.


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Feb 07, 2022
Edward VI: The Last Boy King
46:57

Edward VI, son of Henry VIII, became King of England at the age of nine. All around him loomed powerful men who hoped to use him to further their own ends. Edward was the only Tudor monarch who was groomed to reign, and it was assumed he would become as commanding a figure as his father had been.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Stephen Alford, to discover the story of a boy learning to rule and emerge from the shadows of the great aristocrats around him - only to die unexpectedly at the age of 15.  


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Feb 03, 2022
Renaissance Antwerp: The Glory Years
51:40

Antwerp during the Renaissance was as sensational as nineteenth-century Paris or twentieth-century New York. For half the sixteenth century, it was the place for breaking rules - religious, sexual and intellectual. But when Antwerp rebelled with the Dutch against the Spanish and lost, all of its glory was buried and its true history rewritten. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to author Michael Pye, whose detailed research has recovered the splendour that was Antwerp, a city learning how to be a power in its own right in the world after feudalism.


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Jan 31, 2022
The Death of Henry VIII
38:13

475 years ago, on 28 January 1547, King Henry VIII died at the age of 55. Just hours before his passing, his last will and testament had been read, stamped, and sealed. Historians have disagreed ever since about its authenticity and validity, and the circumstances of its creation, making Henry's will one of English history's most contested documents, 


In this explainer episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb offers her own illuminating interpretation of the aftermath of Henry VIII's death, the mystery of his will and how misplaced trust can undermine the best-laid plans of a powerful monarch.


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Jan 27, 2022
Henry VIII and the Sport of Jousting
43:05

In the world of King Henry VIII, the paramount place to demonstrate physical strength and manly courage was the joust - and Henry excelled at it.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to historian Dr. Emma Levitt to find out more about what jousting was, why Henry liked it so much, how it was scored, what it cost - and the culture of honour, manhood and physical chivalry that it embodied. 


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Jan 24, 2022
Kate Mosse: The Art of Writing Historical Fiction
48:15

Kate Mosse is the multimillion-selling author of the Languedoc Trilogy - Labyrinth, Sepulchre and Citadel. With her new novel The City of Tears, the second in her series The Burning Chambers, just out in paperback, she tells the story of a family’s fight to stay together and survive against the backdrop of the French Wars of Religion and the St. Bartholomew's Day Massacre of 1572.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Kate Mosse about how she goes about writing historical fiction, researching the events of the past, imagining the characters who lived through them and, most particularly, conjuring up the places she finds inspiring - but as they used to be.


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Jan 20, 2022
Cardinal Wolsey: His Rise and Fall
51:45

No advisor was more important to King Henry VIII than Cardinal Thomas Wolsey. He captured Henry's attention with his brilliance and became his most trusted confidant. But when the King wanted to divorce Catherine of Aragon, not even the eloquent Wolsey could convince the Pope to agree. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Wolsey's biographer Professor Glenn Richardson, about the man who was responsible for building Henry VIII's reputation as England's most impressive king but ended up being accused of treason.


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Jan 17, 2022
Elizabeth I and Mary, Queen of Scots: Rival Queens
41:52

Elizabeth I and Mary, Queen of Scots were cousins who never met - but their fates were intertwined. As their nations were engulfed in religious turmoil and civil wars raged on the continent, these two powerful women struggled for control of the British Isles.  


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb goes to the British Library in London to meet curator Andrea Clarke and visit a stunning exhibition on the rival Queens, which uses original documents and extraordinary objects to show how paranoia turned sisterly affection to suspicion.


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Jan 13, 2022
1492: The Year the Spanish Monarchy Changed the World
33:21

2022 marks the 530th anniversary of 1492 - the year in which Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castille ended centuries of Muslim rule in Spain, expelled the country's Jews, and signed a contract with one Christopher Columbus who set set sail to find the Indies - and the rest is history.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Isabella's biographer Giles Tremlett about her and Ferdinand's pursuit of piety, purity and power and their role in the momentous events of 1492.


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Jan 10, 2022
The Laughing Cavalier and the Man who Painted Him
34:19

One of the most famous paintings in London is The Laughing Cavalier of 1624 by Franz Hals, the great portrait artist of the Dutch Golden Age whose fame has been somewhat eclipsed by Vermeer and Rembrandt. In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb heads off to the Wallace Collection in London to see The Laughing Cavalier - alongside an exquisite, small selection of Hals' male portraits - and to discuss them with curator Lelia Packer.  There is also analysis by contemporary artist Grayson Perry, who features in the exhibition's multimedia guide, created in collaboration with Imagineear. The guide, free with every exhibition ticket, brings the individual portraits to life through rich commentary provided by Perry and other experts.


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Jan 06, 2022
2022: A Year of Major Anniversaries
51:15

Happy New Year from Not Just the Tudors! But what, looking back, can we look forward to in 2022? Our first episode of the year anticipates 12 months filled with fascinating historical exhibitions and important anniversaries - from the raising from the seabed of the Mary Rose 40 years ago in 1982 to the 500th anniversary since the first recorded circumnavigation of the globe, with many more world-shaking events in between. Join Professor Suzannah Lipscomb for everything you ever wanted to know about the coming year.


If you'd like to learn more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit.

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Jan 03, 2022
A Happy Tudor New Year
51:42

For the Tudors, Christmas Day was not traditionally the date when gifts were given. The Twelve Days of Christmas begin on 25 December and end at Epiphany, 6 January - also known as Twelfth Night. In Tudor times, all 12 were feast days, but 1 January was the day when presents were unwrapped.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb dives into how Christmas and New Year were marked by the Tudors and Stuarts, and what kind of gifts they gave, with Dr. Felicity Heal, author of The Power of Gifts: Gift Exchange in Early Modern England.


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Dec 30, 2021
The Biggest Finds of 2021: Review of the Year
41:26

In this special end of the year edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb takes a look back at 2021 and the major events and achievements that have changed the way we understand the Tudors - but not just the Tudors!


Suzannah picks out her five favourite new books from the last 12 months, as well as surveying some of the extraordinary archaeological discoveries that have brought to light previously unknown artefacts, and the painstaking academic research which has increased our knowledge of the period.


If you'd like to learn more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit.

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Dec 27, 2021
Tudor Ghosts and Angels: Spirits of Christmas Past
54:48

To this day, the presence of angels is synonymous with the Christmas story and the momentous events associated with the Nativity. For the Tudors and Stuarts, widespread belief in angels brought a touch of the miraculous to life, but so too did ghosts, although it was sometimes hard to distinguish them from angels - or demons.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb summons up the spirits of times past with historian Dr Laura Sangha, an expert in the beliefs associated with the supernatural in the early modern period.


If you'd like to learn more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit.

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Dec 23, 2021
The Witches of Iceland
38:47

In Iceland in the 17th century, witchcraft accusations, trials and convictions occurred later than in the rest of Europe. But also unusual was the fact that 91% of "witches" executed in Iceland were men. In a country where the weather and rural life was harsh - and traditional superstitions and folk medicine still held sway - the imposed Lutheran influence of Danish rule led to hysteria and a wave of sad and shocking cases.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb finds out more with scholar Dr. Ólína Kjerulf Þorvarðardóttir, a former Member of Iceland's Althing Parliament.


If you'd like to learn more, we have hundreds of history documentaries, ad-free podcasts and audiobooks at History Hit.

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Dec 20, 2021
Tudor Box Set Binge: Shekhar Kapur's Elizabeth
32:01

If you are planning your television viewing over the holidays, especially if you are looking forward to bingeing on the best Tudor dramas and classic film depictions of the era, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb has a few personal recommendations of movies and TV series for you to re-discover this festive season. 


And in the second part of the podcast, she casts an eye over the 1998 Shekhar Kapur film Elizabeth, which starred an Oscar-nominated Cate Blanchett as the eponymous monarch.  It was undoubtedly dazzling to look at, but how did the film stand up as historical fact?


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Dec 16, 2021
Dürer: The Great Renaissance Artist and His World
38:53

Albrecht Dürer was the greatest German artist to come out of the Renaissance, whose high quality woodcuts revolutionised the potential of the medium. A spectacular exhibition at the National Gallery in London - the first major UK show of his work in nearly 20 years - charts Dürer's extensive travels to the Alps, Italy, Venice and the Netherlands, exploring how his journeys fuelled his curiosity and creativity, and increased his fame and influence across the continent. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb goes to the National Gallery and is joined by curator Dr. Susan Foister to tour the show and find out more about Dürer, the world he encountered and how he depicted it.



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Dec 13, 2021
True Crime on the Elizabethan Stage
41:18

The true crime genre - stories of actual murders and other crimes that are then fictionalised - is not a new phenomenon. More than four centuries ago, a series of plays based on real life cases appeared on the London stage. It was a short-lived craze generated by the insatiable early modern appetite for the "three Ms" - melodrama, moralizing and misogyny. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to author Charles Nicholl about the little known phenomenon of Elizabethan true crime, which even influenced the works of William Shakespeare.


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Dec 09, 2021
Writing True Crime: The Murder of Rizzio
34:58

On 9 March 1566, David Rizzio - close friend and private secretary to Mary, Queen of Scots - was stabbed dozens of times in front of the pregnant Queen at the instigation of her husband, Lord Darnley in an apparent bid to destroy both her and her unborn heir so that Darnley himself could rule Scotland. He had also made a bargain with his allies in return for restoring their lands and titles.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to crime novelist Denise Mina about her re-telling of this tale of sex, seduction, secrets and lies, looking at history through a modern lens and exploring the lengths to which men - and women - will go for love and power.


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Dec 06, 2021
Black Tudors: England's Other Countrymen
49:04

Our image of the Tudor era remains overwhelmingly white. But the black presence in England was much greater than has previously been recognised, and Tudor conceptions of race were far more complex than we have been led to believe.  


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Onyeka Nubia whose original research shows that Tudors from many walks of life regularly interacted with people of African descent, both at home and abroad - findings that cast a new light on the Tudor age and our own attitudes towards race relations in history.


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Dec 02, 2021
Who Really Ruled Tudor England?
55:24

Was Henry VIII as all-powerful and tyrannical as we have come to believe? Is the scheming of Thomas Cromwell portrayed in Wolf Hall close to the truth? What were the roles of the clergy, or parliament, or the land-owning gentry, in supporting or influencing the sweeping changes that rocked England during the period?


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor George Bernard. He has been picking apart the conventional view of Tudor society, the work of influential past historians, and the roles of a Machiavellian monarch, the church and individuals, to ask where did the power really lie? And did they really have a choice?


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Nov 29, 2021
The First Gun Crime in London
25:07

Early in the morning of Sunday 13 November 1536, a London merchant named Robert Pakington was shot dead crossing Cheapside as he walked to church. It was the first gun crime in London's history. But who pulled the trigger? In a time of religious turmoil, was Pakington's murder perhaps provoked by his outspoken criticism of the clergy?


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb speaks to historian and writer Derek Wilson, whose novel  The First Horseman launched a series exploring true, unsolved Tudor crimes.


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Nov 25, 2021
Henry VIII's Wives on Stage: Six - The Musical
32:30

Since its first outing at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2017, the stage musical Six has become a worldwide theatre sensation. In it, the six wives of Henry VIII are re-imagined as a girl band, competing to decide who will lead the group based on how much they suffered while married to Henry.


Six was created by two Cambridge undergrads, Toby Marlow and Lucy Moss, while they were studying for their final exams. In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to them, to discover the story of how they brought Henry VIII's six wives out from under their husband's shadow and gave each of them their moment in the spotlight.


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Nov 22, 2021
A Tudor Scandal: Did Thomas Seymour Groom Elizabeth Tudor?
49:48

In 1547, the 14-year-old future Queen Elizabeth I is living with her step-mother Queen Catherine Parr and her new husband Thomas Seymour, uncle to Elizabeth's half-brother King Edward VI. But when Seymour begins an overt flirtation with Elizabeth, she is sent away by Catherine. Later, when Seymour is arrested for treason, Elizabeth and Seymour's relationship comes under close scrutiny.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Elizabeth Norton about this harrowing and potentially damaging episode from the early life of the Virgin Queen.


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Nov 18, 2021
The Making of Oliver Cromwell
46:46

Oliver Cromwell - the only commoner to have become Britain's head of state - has puzzled biographers for centuries. He was a complex character, courageous but at the same time devious and self-serving. But the Cromwell who comes through in his own speeches and writings does not give us the full picture.

 

In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Ronald Hutton about his remarkable new book which reveals a Cromwell who was both genuine in his faith and deliberate in his dishonesty.


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Nov 15, 2021
The Last Witches
56:22

In 1682, three impoverished women from Bideford in Devon were hanged, becoming the last people to be executed for witchcraft in England. The evidence against them was flimsy and their conviction was secured against a background of a baying mob mentality. Yet their story has endured, and their names were chanted as recently as the 1980s, as both inspiration and incantation, by women peace activists at Greenham Common.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to John Callow, whose new book The Last Witches of England demonstrates how the case of the Bideford witches sheds light upon the turbulent religious, political, class and social tensions of the 17th century.  


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Nov 11, 2021
Devil-Land: England Under Siege 1588-1688
37:45

In the 17th century, England was known as "Devil-Land" - a diabolical country torn apart by seditious rebellion, religious extremism and royal collapse. Dr. Clare Jackson has written a dazzling, original account of English history's most turbulent and radical era telling the story of a nation in a state of near continual crisis.  


Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Jackson about England between 1588 and 1688 which was, in many ways, an unstable state, rocked by devastating events from the Gunpowder Plot to the Great Fire of London.


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Nov 08, 2021
The Ottoman Renaissance
44:09

The Ottoman Empire has long been seen as the Islamic-Asian opposite of the Christian-European West. But the reality was very different: the Ottomans played an integral role in European history. Their multiethnic, multilingual, and multi-religious domain reached deep into the heart of the continent, connecting the East and West as never before.  


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Marc David Baer about the extraordinary Ottomans, how their rulers saw themselves as the New Romans, how they fascinated Henry VIII, and how a true picture of their power and influence upends our common concepts of the Renaissance.


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Nov 04, 2021
Singing the News: Ballads in Mid-Tudor England
58:02

In an age before newspapers and mass media, how did the general public keep abreast of what was going on? How did they find out about the seismic changes going on at court, and in the religious life of the country?  


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Jenni Hyde, whose extensive research into the early modern period proves that the news was not only spread by word of mouth and pamphlets, it actually became the stuff of ballads and communal songs.


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Nov 01, 2021
Explainer: The Love Letters of Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn
39:59

In the Vatican Library, there survive 17 highly personal love letters, written in King Henry VIII's own hand to Anne Boleyn between 1527 and 1528. How the letters got there no one exactly knows - they were probably stolen from Anne to be used as evidence in Henry's divorce trial with Catherine of Aragon. 


In the second of her Explainer podcasts, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb explores these extraordinary letters that changed history. The podcast includes excerpts from History Hit's newly released audio book of the Love Letters of Henry VIII to Anne Boleyn, read by Matt Lewis, which can be listened to in full here >


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Oct 28, 2021
The Ruin of All Witches: Life and Death in the New World
56:46

On a remote Massachusetts plantation in 1651, an unpopular local brickmaker was blamed for a wave of animal ailments, children dying and vanishing property. The argumentative Hugh Parsons was accused of being a vengeful witch.  


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Malcolm Gaskill about his research into this dark, real-life folktale of family tragedy, supernatural obsessions and social anxiety in the New World of the Puritans.



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Oct 25, 2021
The Massacre of the Huguenots
49:21

The royal wedding of Marguerite de Valois and Henri de Navarre on 18 August 1572, was designed to reconcile France’s Catholics and Protestants - or Huguenots. But six days later, the execution of Protestant leaders led to a massacre by Catholics of thousands more Protestants in Paris and across France. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Dr. Sophie Nicholls - who is currently writing a popular history of the French Wars of Religion - to explore the events and tensions that led to one of the most frenzied and brutal outbreaks of religious violence in early modern history.



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Oct 21, 2021
The Spanish King of England
44:01

Philip II of Spain - the most powerful monarch of the early modern period - was married to Queen Mary Tudor from 1554 until her death in 1558. But Philip was not merely Mary's King Consort. Rather he was King of England, co-ruler with Mary. But Philip's character and central role in the English monarchy was forever blackened by anti-Catholic versions of Tudor history. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Gonzalo Velasco Berenguer, whose ground-breaking research shows that the reign of Mary and Philip was much more than an anomalous glitch on England's journey towards Protestantism.



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Oct 18, 2021
How Catherine of Aragon Learnt to be Queen
59:06

The Spanish infanta Catalina of Aragon was raised to be a Queen, betrothed at the age of three to the heir apparent of the English throne, Arthur Prince of Wales. Eight years after Arthur's death, she became the first of Henry VIII's six wives. Catalina's mother - Queen Isabella I of Castile - was the most influential person in her life. Witness at an early age to the expulsion of Jews, the defeat of the Moors in Spain, and the triumphal return of Christopher Columbus, Catherine grew up to be a intelligent, highly literate, multi-lingual woman, devoted to her Catholic faith, and a popular, charismatic Queen.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb discovers more about the early life of Catherine with two leading experts: Dr. Theresa Earenfight, Professor of History at Seattle University and author of a forthcoming biography of Catherine, and Emma Cahill Marron, whose dissertation is focused on the Queen's role as a patron of the arts in Tudor England. 



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Oct 14, 2021
The Rebellions of 1549
53:01

In 1549, the Tudor establishment was rocked by a series of popular rebellions, born of deep discontent over the enclosure by wealthy landowners of common land, which were essential to ordinary people's livelihoods. In Norfolk, yeoman Robert Kett agreed to the rebels' demands and offered to lead them, storming and taking the city of Norwich - an act which prompted a brutal response from the full military might of the state.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Andy Wood about the Norfolk insurrection - known as the Ketts Rebellion - and its long-term significance for the development of English society.



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Oct 11, 2021
The First Sexual Revolution
47:07

For most of western history, sex outside of marriage was forbidden by law, with adulterers even facing the death sentence. The church, the state and neighbours all put huge amounts of energy into catching sexual wrongdoers and seeing them punished. But between 1600 and 1800, this entire world-view was shattered by revolutionary new ideas - that consenting adults have the freedom to do what they like with their own bodies, and morality cannot be imposed by force.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Faramerz Dabhoiwala, author of The Origins of Sex, about his groundbreaking research into how the modern approach to sex came about.



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Oct 07, 2021
Lady Jane Grey
50:40

On a cold February morning in 1554, Lady Jane Grey was beheaded for high treason. Named as King Edward VI as his successor, Queen Jane had reigned for just 13 tumultuous days before being imprisoned in the Tower, condemned and executed.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to author and historian Nicola Tallis who reveals the moving, human story of an intelligent, independent and courageous young woman, forced on to the English throne by the great power players in the Tudor court.



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Oct 04, 2021
Sir Thomas More
39:58

Who was Thomas More - Knight, Chancellor and Martyr? His life is paradoxical, with More regarded as both saint and persecutor, Humanist intellectual and bigoted zealot. His religious writings, with their - at times - violent attacks on what he regarded as heresy, have been hotly debated.  


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Tom Betteridge. In his work, he has placed Thomas More in a broader cultural context and argues for a revision to the existing histories of the man and his reputation.



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Sep 30, 2021
The Gunpowder Plot's Tudor Origins
59:55

The Gunpowder Plot is one of the hinge events of British history - an act of terror the roots of which stretch back to the Tudor period and Henry VIII's break with Rome. It's a story of Holy War, divided loyalties and religious hatred. And it has never been more timely. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks gunpowder, treason and plot with historian and broadcaster Jessie Childs, author of the award-winning God’s Traitors



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Sep 27, 2021
The King's Painter: Holbein and the Tudor Court
44:36

In the early 1530s, the painter Hans Holbein the Younger returns to London. His patronage by Anne Boleyn and the influential Thomas Cromwell leads to Holbein creating the full-length portrait of King Henry VIII that has dominated how we have visualised him ever since. 


In this second of a two-part Not Just the Tudors special, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb further explores Holbein's fascinating life and work with three of the world's foremost scholars of the artist - Jeanne Nuechterlein, Franny Moyle and Susan Foister. 



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Sep 23, 2021
The King's Painter: Hans Holbein's Early Years
42:50

Hans Holbein the Younger is celebrated for his hyper-realistic, iconic portraits of Henry VIII, Thomas More, Thomas Cromwell, Anne of Cleves, Jane Seymour and an array of Tudor lords and ladies. But beyond these, Holbein was a humanist, satirist, political propagandist, book designer and religious artist.


In this first of a two-part Not Just the Tudors special exploring the life and work of this multi-faceted genius, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to three of the world's foremost Holbein scholars - Jeanne Nuechterlein, Franny Moyle and Susan Foister - about the early life of Tudor England's artistic giant. 



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Sep 20, 2021
Clothing Tudor Queens
47:14

How did Tudor Queens clothe themselves? How did female fashion change over Henry VIII's reign? Did foreign Queens influence English fashion or adopt it? Did women wear underclothes?


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Maria Hayward about everything there is to know about what Tudor women wore, and why.



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Sep 16, 2021
Islam and the Elizabethans
53:21

Elizabeth I's excommunication by the Pope in 1570 marked the beginning of an extraordinary - and little talked about - English alignment with Muslim powers that were fighting Catholic Spain in the Mediterranean. This engagement with, and awareness of, Islam found its way into scores of plays, including Shakespeare's Othello.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Jerry Brotton about England's fascinating relations with the Muslim world, which were far more extensive, and often more amicable, than we might think.



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Sep 13, 2021
Making Babies in the 17th Century
47:06

Making babies was a mysterious process for people in early modern England. Their ideas about conception, pregnancy, and childbirth tell us much about their attitudes towards gender and power at that time.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Mary Fissell. She has been delving into a wealth of popular sources - ballads, jokes, witchcraft pamphlets, Prayer Books and popular medical manuals - to produce the first account of how women's reproductive bodies were understood in the 17th century.



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Sep 09, 2021
Travels and Travails in the Ottoman Empire
36:13

In July 1596, Fynes Moryson - a Lincolnshire gentleman and travel writer - was struck down with grief when his younger brother died as they crossed the desert on their return from Jerusalem. Moryson described his journeys and devastating experiences two decades later in an account titled Itinerary, at once a personal memoir and a huge manual of travel advice.  


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Eva Johanna Holmberg, whose study of Moryson, his travels and his travails, sheds light on the lives and emotions of people in the early modern period.



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Sep 06, 2021
The Tudors in Love
41:16

The dramas of courtly love have captivated readers and dreamers for centuries. Yet they’re often dismissed as something that existed only in the legends of King Arthur and chivalric fantasy.


But in this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Sarah Gristwood tells Professor Suzannah Lipscomb how the Tudors actually re-enacted the roles of the devoted lovers and capricious mistresses first laid out in the romances of medieval literature - romantic obsessions that shaped the history of Britain.



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Sep 02, 2021
Emotions and the History of Witchcraft
47:54

Not all suspicions of witchcraft led to a formal accusation, and not all such accusations led to trials and execution. During the entire early modern period, the large, Lutheran duchy of Württemberg in southwestern Germany - where there were some 600 accusations - only 350 went to trial, 197 of which ended with burning at the stake. So what does this tell us about how people understood themselves and each other, the psychology and emotions of those accused, and how they tried to defend themselves? 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Laura Kounine, who has been studying how the community, church, and agents of the law sought to identify witches, and the ways in which ordinary men and women fought for their lives in an attempt to avoid execution.



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Aug 30, 2021
Explainer: Henry VIII's Break with Rome
29:56

King Henry VIII was deeply religious and started out as a staunch supporter of the Pope and the Roman Catholic church. But everything changed when Henry's need to produce a male successor led to his wanting to divorce Catherine of Aragon and marry Anne Boleyn. 


In this first of an occasional series of Explainer podcasts, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb offers everything you ever wanted to know about one of the most famous and far-reaching episodes in British history.



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Aug 26, 2021
Awaiting the Apocalypse: The Münster Rebellion
33:37

Between February 1534 and June 1535, the German city of Münster was seized and ruled over by a radical group of Protestant Christians called Anabaptists who believed the Biblical Apocalypse was imminent. Their leader styled himself as a new King Solomon. He took 16 wives and - allegedly - personally executed those who opposed him. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Kat Hill about this extraordinary attempt to create the "New Jerusalem" and its inevitably disastrous outcome.



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Aug 23, 2021
Beauty Tips from the Renaissance
37:36

What was the 16th century ideal of beauty for women? Fat or thin? Blonde or brunette? Pale or tanned? How did women keep clean? Did they remove their body hair?


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb gets the lowdown from Jill Burke - Professor of Renaissance Visual and Material Cultures at the University of Edinburgh - on all the tips to become an authentic Renaissance Woman.



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Aug 19, 2021
"Bloody Mary" vs. "The Virgin Queen"
43:43

Queen Mary I has had a bad press over the centuries, her five-years on the throne overshadowed by her half-sister Elizabeth's 45-year reign. While Elizabeth I is often hailed as "Gloriana" - and one of the greatest ever Britons - "Bloody Mary" more often finds her way onto charts of the most evil women in history. Both childless, Mary is reviled as "barren" while Elizabeth is lauded as the "Virgin Queen".


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Anna Whitelock who puts the case for a more balanced assessment of Mary I as a Queen who pioneered what female rule could look like.



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Aug 16, 2021
The Black Prince of Florence
45:51

In the cut-throat world of Renaissance Florence, Alessandro - the illegitimate son of a Duke and a mixed-race servant - attempts to reassert the Medicis’ faltering grip on the city state. But after just six years in power, Alessandro is murdered by his cousin while anticipating an adulterous liaison.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Catherine Fletcher, author of The Black Prince of Florence, about one man's spectacular rise to power against the odds, and his violent demise.



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Aug 12, 2021
Henry VIII: Defender of the Faith?
48:47

Five hundred years ago in 1521, the title 'Defender of the Faith' was bestowed by Pope Leo X upon King Henry VIII for his defence of the Catholic Church against the threat of Martin Luther. Why did he then break away from Rome and create religious divisions for centuries to come? A new online exhibition - drawn from the colletion of the Society of Antiquaries in London - offers a new perspective on the power Henry wielded, his personality and passions.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb finds out more about this fascinating resource from its curator Dr. John Cooper. View the objects while listening to the podcast here: https://stories.sal.org.uk/henryviii/



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Aug 09, 2021
The Witches of Lorraine
42:11

Between 1570 and 1630, there was intense persecution and thousands of executions of suspected witches in Lorraine, a small duchy on the borders of France and the Holy Roman Empire. In some cases, suspicious citizens waited decades to report their neighbours as witches. But why did they take so long to use the law to eliminate the supposedly dangerous figures who lived amongst them?


Robin Briggs - Emeritus Fellow at All Souls College Oxford - has delved into perhaps the richest surviving archive of witchcraft trials to be found in Europe. In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, he talks to Professor Suzannah Lipscomb about his conclusion that witchcraft was actually perceived as having strong therapeutic possibilities: once a person was identified as the cause of a sickness, they could be induced to take it off again. 



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Aug 05, 2021
Beards Maketh the Man
36:13

For the Tudors and Elizabethans, a beard denoted masculinity while beardlessness indicated boyhood or effeminacy. How a man wore his beard - or not - said a lot about his power and position in society. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to theatre historian Dr. Eleanor Rycroft about her hirsute pursuits, analysing the depiction of beards in portraits and on stage, what their various colours, shapes and sizes meant, and what they tell us about gender attitudes in early modern England.



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Aug 02, 2021
A 17th Century Mexican Superstar Nun
41:22

Though she is relatively unknown outside of Mexico, Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz - poet, playwright and nun - is an icon and national hero in her homeland. She even features on the 200 peso banknote. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Amy Fuller Morgan about the real Sor Juana - misrepresented and mythologised as a subversive upstart, even a martyr - who in fact had a privileged life and the support of the Church and court, and who carefully cultivated her own image and saintly reputation.



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Jul 29, 2021
Queen Catherine Howard: Henry VIII's Fifth Wife
52:27

Catherine Howard was Queen Consort - and fifth wife - to Henry VIII for just 16 months before he had her executed for treason for committing adultery. Since Victorian times, historians have labelled her as lewd and promiscuous, but there was an altogether more complex young woman behind the rumours.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Gareth Russell, author of Young and Damned and Fair, a riveting account of Catherine's tragic marriage to an unstable King, and the tragedy of her life in a dangerous hothouse where the odds were stacked against her. 



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Jul 26, 2021
Martin Luther's World and Legacy
48:47

A controversial figure during his lifetime, Martin Luther set in motion a revolution that split Christianity in the West and left an indelible mark on the world today. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to renowned Luther biographer Lyndal Roper to explore the man behind the carefully crafted image - misogynistic, anti-Semitic, occasionally self-doubting, religiously devout yet with a crude, scatological sense of humour.



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Jul 22, 2021
Rival Queens: Elizabeth I and Catherine de' Medici
46:06

The relationship between Elizabeth I and Catherine de' Medici - the two most powerful Queens of their time - is one of the most intriguing and captivating stories of the 16th century. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Estelle Paranque about her new book Blood, Fire and Gold, which explores how these two formidable women wielded and negotiated power, and were united only in their dislike of Mary, Queen of Scots.



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Jul 19, 2021
Early Modern Feminists
38:07

In this edition of Not Just The Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Hannah Dawson, editor of The Penguin Book of Feminist Writing who draws upon poems, novels and memoirs to show that even in Tudor times, and earlier, there was not only insight that sexism existed, but women were articulating their struggle against patriarchal oppression.




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Jul 15, 2021
Sodomy and Sex Crimes in Early Modern France
54:10

In the 16th and 17th centuries and beyond, certain sexual acts were made capital crimes in England, France and other countries. The offence of "sodomy" embraced a wide range of acts including rape, child abuse and bestiality.  


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Tom Hamilton who has deeply researched the subject, shedding light on what the authorities and ordinary people at the time thought about sex. (This podcast contains some explicit language and descriptions.)



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Jul 12, 2021
The Story of the Death of Anne Boleyn
41:24

The Story of the Death of Anne Boleyn is a long narrative poem written by the secretary to the French ambassador in London within two weeks of the Queen's execution. It was intended as a diplomatic dispatch, relating the astonishing news - in verse - of her demise, along with that of five alleged lovers. 


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor JoAnn DellaNeva, who has been researching a previously unstudied manuscript of the poem. Her translation sheds new light on a work which straddles the domains of literature and history, of chronicle and fiction.



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Jul 08, 2021
Treasures from the National Trust Collections
51:31

Dr Tarnya Cooper is the Curatorial and Collections Director at the National Trust. For her recent book, 125 Treasures from the Collections of the National Trust, she and 60 curators brought together the most extraordinary objects that can be found in National Trust properties around the country.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Tarnya joins Suzannah Lipscomb with her pick of her 12 favourite items, from Cardinal Wolsey’s purse to a "spangled bed."



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Jul 05, 2021
How Coffee and Tobacco Captivated Britain
41:52

When tobacco arrived in Britain in the 1560s, it was hailed as a "holy herb", a miracle cure to improve health and a catalyst for wit and creativity. The coming of coffee - "black as hell, strong as death, sweet as love" - in the mid-17th century, led to the establishment of coffee houses where debates flourished and innovations were born that helped to shape the modern world.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Matthew Green - author of London: A Travel Guide Through Time - about how nicotine and caffeine changed the British way of life.



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Jul 01, 2021
John Heywood: The Tudor Satirist who Kept his Head
56:40

Playwright and musician John Heywood was a devout Catholic humanist and biting satirist - married to Sir Thomas Moore's niece - who managed to survive life as a courtier through the Catholic and Protestant regimes of Henry VIII, Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb finds out more about this fascinating figure with Professor Greg Walker, author of the first full scholarly biography of John Heywood, whose life was a case study of the role of comedy in a period of religious and political extremism.



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Jun 28, 2021
Gold and Glory at Hampton Court
47:02

On 7 June 1520, Henry VIII of England and François I of France met at the Field of Cloth of Gold. For three weeks on English soil in Northern France, the two Kings - and the 12,000 who accompanied them - feasted, jousted, and made merry. This party without parallel was a peace summit between the two countries, arranged by Cardinal Thomas Wolsey. 


A new exhibition at Hampton Court, called Gold and Glory, explores this seminal event through paintings, objects, and manuscripts. In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb takes a tour around the exhibition with one of its curators, Dr. Alden Gregory.



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Jun 24, 2021
The Emperor: The extraordinary Charles V
47:41

Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Professor Geoffrey Parker to explore the extraordinary life and career of Holy Roman Emperor Charles V (1500–1558), who ruled Spain, Germany, the Netherlands, and much of Italy and Central and South America,


Prof. Parker has examined countless surviving written sources, interrogating every dimension of Charles’s long reign, to produce an epic, detailed and vivid life of a complex man and his rule over the world's first transatlantic empire.



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Jun 21, 2021
The Sun King in Love: Louis XIV and his Mistresses
51:07
Louis XIV ruled France for more than 72 years, the longest recorded reign of any monarch of any sovereign country in history. Despite the devotion of his wife Maria Theresa of Spain, Louis took a series of mistresses, a number of them "official", with whom he had numerous illegitimate children. Yet, for the last three decades of his life, after Maria Theresa's death, he settled down more loyally with the Marquise de Maintenon. In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb finds out more about the powerful and fascinating women behind the throne of the Sun King, with Dr Linda Kiernan Knowles.

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Jun 17, 2021
Mary, Queen of Scots
50:29

Mary, Queen of Scots, returned to the news headlines when the rosary she carried to her execution in 1587, was recently stolen from Arundel Castle. It's the latest chapter in the enduring story of this highly romanticised figure.  


Mary reigned over Scotland for just over 24 years between December 1542 until her forced abdication. Considered the legitimate sovereign of England by many Catholics, Mary was seen as a threat to Queen Elizabeth I. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Kate Williams about Mary's tragic life, her disastrous marriages and the plots against Elizabeth that resulted in her execution.



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Jun 14, 2021
Japan's Edo Period and the "Floating World"
55:39
After a century of Civil War, changes in the way Japan was ruled from 1600 onwards meant that Europeans and Christianity made few inroads into Japanese society. Shogun Tokugawa organised Japan into a strict class system and its unique and brilliant culture flourished in isolation. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb navigates the fascinating, floating world of Japan in the 17th century with Professor Timon Screech.

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Jun 10, 2021
Bloody Massacres and the Puritan Poet
40:14

In 1589, Anne Dowriche, the wife of a Puritan minister from Devon, wrote a long and gory poem about the bloody, ongoing conflict between Catholics and Huguenots in France. Dowriche's The French Historie was one of the few sixteenth century books written entirely by a woman. She was also almost alone as a woman in publicly commenting on contemporary political events and speaking up against tyranny.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks to historian Dr. Joanne Paul about Dowriche, who was also one of the first English writers to draw on Machiavelli, and whose works possibly inspired both Marlowe and Shakespeare.  



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Jun 07, 2021
The "Spectacle of Suffering": A 16th Century Executioner
41:55
The German executioner Meister Frantz Schmidt kept a fascinating journal of all the executions, torture and punishments he administered between 1573 and 1618. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Joel Harrington to talk about Schmidt - who showed himself to be an executioner with a conscience - and further explore public capital punishment in the 16th century, described by historians as the "spectacle of suffering." Contains graphic descriptions of punishments.

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Jun 03, 2021
The Dissolution of the Monasteries
37:02

Ordered by King Henry VIII and carried out by Thomas Cromwell, the dissolution of the monasteries was the greatest land re-distribution in England since the Norman Conquest, and the largest windfall of cash to the crown in history. Between 1536 and 1540, 800 religious houses were dissolved leading to nothing less than the wholesale destruction of monasticism.


In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks to writer and historian Mathew Lyons about the dissolution and its far-reaching consequences - on pregnant women, the poor and the libraries of England. 



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May 31, 2021
The Renaissance Lute
46:48

The lute, with its double strings and beautiful decorative detail is a familiar feature of Renaissance paintings. In the sixteenth century, lute music was highly prized in the courts of Europe and lutenists earned handsome sums.


In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks to leading lutenist and musicologist Dr. Lynda Sayce, to explore and hear the lute, how it evolved in different countries, and its cultural importance.



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May 27, 2021
Origins of the English in India
46:10
In the late 16th century, a group of London merchants petitioned Queen Elizabeth I to allow them to build English trade in Asia. She granted a charter in 1600 to support the English East India Company for 15 years, which King James I later turned into rights and perpetuity. In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb talks to historian Dr David Veevers from Queen Mary University of London about his exciting research into the origins of the English - later British - East India Company, which casts a new light on the story of the British in India, especially how the later dominance of the Empire was by no means guaranteed in its earliest days.

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May 24, 2021
Anne Boleyn Special: New Discoveries
43:52

Anne Boleyn has been trending on Twitter after it was announced that secret inscriptions were found hidden in the Book of Hours that she took to her execution. They were discovered by Kate McCaffrey who talks to Suzannah in this special to mark the 485th anniversary of Anne Boleyn's death, on 19 May 1536.


Also in this episode, Suzannah goes to Anne's childhood home of Hever Castle in Kent to meet Dr.Owen Emmerson and delves deep into Anne’s family background with Dr. Lauren MacKay.



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May 20, 2021
Anne Boleyn Special: Life and Afterlives
50:33

In the first of two special podcasts to mark the 485th anniversary of Anne Boleyn's death, Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by a panel of experts to discuss the enduring fascination with Anne's life and demise.


Exploring the different perceptions of Anne and her re-creation through her many afterlives are authors Claire Ridgway and Natalie Grueninger, historian Dr. Stephanie Russo and art historian Roland Hui.



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May 17, 2021
17th Century Female Spies
41:53
If you think that the female spy is a 20th century phenomenon, be it Mata Hari, Mrs Zigzag or Eve Polastri, think again! Accounts of numerous 17th century 'she-intelligencers' have lain undiscovered in archives for centuries. And these remarkable women were much more than the honey-trap accomplices of a Stuart-era George Smiley. In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Nadine Akkerman, author of Invisible Agents: Women and Espionage in Seventeenth-Century Britain to talk about her fascinating quest to unearth the plots and conspiracies involving women spies that have been forgotten by history.

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May 13, 2021
Banqueting like a Tudor
33:28
The Tudors loved a good banquet, to show off their wealth and social status. Guests were plied with the most superb food, made from the most expensive ingredients and displayed in the most outrageous way. Professor Suzannah Lipscomb meets Brigitte Webster to find out more about what the Tudors served at their banquets, how these feasts influenced the habits of the time, and how the availability of sugar - which was thought of as a medicine - transformed their lives (and their dental health!)

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May 10, 2021
The Aztecs: Human Sacrifice, Birth, and Sex
51:09
What we know about the Aztecs of Mexico often comes from the accounts of their Spanish conquerors. But the Aztec culture was far more sophisticated than the European invaders chose to portray. In this edition of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr Caroline Dodds Pennock about the real reasons behind Aztec ritual sacrifice and cannibalism, and their com beliefs about the afterlife, childbirth, gender roles and sexual norms.

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May 06, 2021
John Lyly: The Queer Shakespeare
40:16
John Lyly's name may not be so familiar. He was a playwright and poet writing at the same time as Shakespeare and, in his day, was more famous than the Bard himself. Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr Andy Kesson about Lyly's radical and, frankly, queer works: his plays in which Queen Elizabeth was compared - at court! - to the lesbian poet Sappho, and in which the marriage of two girls dressed as boys is approved by Venus, goddess of love. Why has Lyly been forgotten? And why might he just be the alternative Shakespeare for our times?

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May 03, 2021
Bridewell: The Palace that became a Prison
41:44
In the heart of Shakespeare's London, there was a palace that had become a prison: Bridewell. Professor Duncan Salkeld has explored the records of this notorious destination for the poor and the indigent, vagrants, prostitutes, and the idle. In this episodes of Not Just the Tudors, he shares with Professor Suzannah Lipscomb his fascinating findings about the wayward and the unruly . These include 'Black Luce', a brothel madam probably of African heritage, who has been suggested as a candidate for the 'dark lady' of Shakespeare's sonnets.

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Apr 29, 2021
An Early Modern Teenage Werewolf
34:06
The witch-hunts of sixteenth and seventeenth century Europe are well-known. But did you know that some 300 people were convicted of being werewolves? In this revelatory podcast with Dr. Jan Machielsen, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb travels back to 1603 to find out more about the moving case of Jean Grenier, a self-confessed teenage werewolf from the Basque region of France. Who was he? And what were the tragic circumstances that led to his conviction?

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Apr 29, 2021
Velazquez and the Spanish Court
49:59
Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Laura Cumming - author and art critic for The Observer - about Velázquez, arguably the greatest genius of Spanish painting. They particularly discuss one of the world's most remarkable paintings - Las Meninas ('The Ladies in Waiting'), how the artist rose through the stifling, gilded court of Philip IV, and the way in which Velázquez dignified everyone he painted - from the King himself through to some of the most vulnerable members of his court.

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Apr 29, 2021
Henry VIII's Billionaire Wardrobe
43:14
Venetian ambassador Sebastian Giustinian described Henry VIII as the 'best dressed sovereign in the world'. The King spent the equivalent of £2 million a year on clothes. In this episode with Professor Maria Hayward, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb gets to grips with the sumptuous garments, the fabrics (and exaggerated codpieces) that made up the Tudor king's wonderous wardrobe.

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Apr 29, 2021