Upcoming Books and Events for October 2015

Quite a few books this month, including one I missed since I didn’t get around to a September round-up.

Books and Recordings

Delve into the world of Tudor Food and Drink with Terry Breverton’s The Tudor Kitchen: What the Tudors Ate & Drank, which is already out in the UK and will be out in the US in November.

Alison Weir’s latest Tudor biography is The Lost Tudor Princess: The Life of Margaret Douglas Countess of Lennox and is out at the beginning of October in the UK. The US version will be out either in late November or early January 2016 depending on which of my conflicting pieces of information is correct.

Next up is something I know some Tudor history fans have wanted to see for a while – Steven Gunn has updated his earlier (very hard to find!) biography of Charles Brandon with the new title Charles Brandon: Henry VIII’s Closest Friend. The book is out in mid-October in the UK and mid-November in the US.

Finally, for the books this month, a collection of essays entitled The Shakespeare Circle edited by Paul Edmondson and Stanley Wells will be out at the end of October in the UK and late November in the US. This collection focusses on the people that Shakespeare would have interacted with in his life and sounds like an interesting approach to Shakespeare biography.

And for the first time in a while, I’ve added a musical recording to the round-up! Anne Boleyn’s Songbook recorded by Alamire was released in September in the UK and will be out in the US in October.


Just a reminder, the second of this fall’s BBC History Weekends is on October 15-18 in Malmesbury. More information is available here

And finally, the National Portrait Gallery, London launched Simon Schama’s Face of Britain exhibition on September 16 and it will run through January 4, 2016. More information on the exhibition here

Sunday Short Takes

Short round-up this week!

* Duke of Gloucester launches £500,000 Fotheringhay Church appealThe Duke visited the church on Wednesday, September 16, to kick-start the appeal to raise the cash to repair the roof and windows, as well as providing a water supply, heating and disabled access. – I was hoping to get to Fotheringhay on this year’s trip but I ended up unable to squeeze it in so it had to get moved to the ‘some future trip’ list. Maybe I’ll get to visit a newly-repaired church in a few years!

* Westminster Abbey lavatory block gives way to medieval burial findRemains of at least 50 people, all believed to date from 11th and early 12th century, discovered during demolition work to make space for new tower – These skeletons way pre-date the Tudor period, but I can’t pass up any interesting story related to Westminster Abbey!

* The stuff of the living pastHistorians try to produce as total a view of the past as possible. Yet does our concern with facts isolate us from how material culture influenced lived experience, asks Suzannah Lipscomb?

Sunday Short Takes

This first story really caught my eye and I will be extremely jealous of the people who get to do it!

* Westminster Abbey to open Henry V’s Chantry Chapel – Includes details for how to enter the ticket lottery

* Exciting find made by archaeologists at Bradgate Park digThe first season of the archaeological dig, organised by the University of Leicester, has ended and turned up trenchfuls of new Leicestershire history.

And finally, here is a story about the upcoming release of a performance of music from Anne Boleyn’s songbook, including videos of Alamire performing some of the music:

* Anne Boleyn put together a songbook – and now one choir is bringing it to lifeWhat was Anne Boleyn’s taste in music? Who were her favourite composers? And what would this music have originally sounded like? Conductor David Skinner has set himself the task of finding out.

Sunday Short Takes – catch-up edition

Hello all… so the Sunday posts have been a little quiet of late! Things have been very crazy for the past month or so, so I’ve been really trying to take the weekends off from *everything* (except laundry!) and just relax and recharge to tackle another work week. Things are sort of calming down (or, probably more accurately, I’m finally learning some new job duties well enough that they don’t take as much time and I’m not as stressed by them) so I hope to get back into a groove with Sunday posts when there is enough news to post about.

I missed the upcoming books and events for September post, so I’ll mention below a couple of things that would have been in that post. The rest will be in the October round-up.

* Tudor tunes: music at the courts of Henry VIII, Elizabeth I and James VI and I

* First 3D model of church where remains of Richard III laid were laid created by DMU

* Cod bones from Mary Rose reveal globalized fish trade in Tudor England

* Renovation of Tudor chapel at The Vyne begins – More information from the National Trust website: New technology saves exquisite Tudor stained glass

And a few items that would have been on the September books and events round-up:

* The Anne Boleyn Files Tudor Calendar 2016 Now Available

* BBC History Magazine’s York History Weekend 25th – 27th September 2015

* BBC History Magazine’s Malmesbury History Weekend 15th – 18th October 2015

Sunday Short Takes

Finally, enough stories to do another round-up!

* The Roanoke Island Colony: Lost, and Found? – Some new developments in the search for the Lost Colony (one of my all-time favorite historical mysteries!)

* 12 buildings in use today that were around when King Richard III was on the throne

* The story that has lit up my alerts the most over the past week was about the discovery of a pipe in Shakespeare’s garden that tested positive for cannabis that created a lot of “Shakespeare was a pothead” headlines. Thankfully at least one article I came across took a more skeptical view of directly associating the find with the Bard himself: How the Web Got Suckered into Thinking Shakespeare Was a Stoner

* Wanna spend the night at Hampton Court Palace? You’ll have the chance on the night of September 26!

* Another neat opportunity – apply to be in the studio audience for the next Great History Quiz at the BBC, this time featuring the Tudors, on September 8.

And finally –

* A neat video from Historic Royal Palaces demonstrating how they wash their tapestries

Picture of the Week #342

Entrance of Blickling Hall. Photo May 2015.

As I’m sure many of you know, the current Blickling Hall post-dates the Tudor period and was built over the estate that belonged to the Boleyns. Still, I would heartily recommend a visit if you’re traveling in Norfolk, especially if you’re a garden enthusiast.

Upcoming Books and Events for August 2015

Another short round-up this month, which no doubt means I’ve missed some things.


Both of these are books that have been previously released and will be out in the US later on August 19:

David Loades’ latest work The Seymours of Wolf Hall:

And The Middle Ages Unlocked: A Guide to Life in Medieval England 1050-1300 by Gillian Polack and Katrin Kania:


Although it isn’t until September, I thought I would go ahead and list the first of two BBC History Magazine’s History Weekends occurring this year since I know they are quite popular! The September event will be the weekend of the 25th to the 27th and will be held in York. The speaker list and ticket information are available here.

Picture of the Week #341

Palmer’s house at Mary Arden’s Farm, Wilmote (near Stratford-upon-Avon). Photo May 2015.

Mary Arden’s farm is another place I’ve been able to check off my list of places to properly visit after only driving by on a previous trip. I spent a good part of the day at the farm touring all their living history demos and visiting the buildings – very enjoyable!

Sunday Short Takes

These links are from last week but since I didn’t have any new ones to add this week I figured I’d go ahead and post these two:

* Shakespeare schoolroom to be restored in £1.4m schemeA building where William Shakespeare went to school and saw theatre performances is to be restored thanks to a £1.4m lottery grant.

* New Bodleian Libraries website makes academic material publicA new website has made thousands of books, maps and manuscripts from the Bodleian Libraries in Oxford available to the public. Direct link to Bodleian website here

Picture of the Week #339

Framlingham Castle across the mere. Photo May 2015.

This seemed like a good time to use one of the new photos of Framlingham Castle from this year’s trip. It was there this week in 1553 that Mary I rallied to defend her claim to the throne during the brief reign of Jane Grey.