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Historical Period

William with his half-brothers depicted in the Bayeux Tapestry
Without doubt, the Norman Conquest had an impact on England, but recently historians have stressed its continuity, questioning whether the invasion can be viewed as a cataclysm. After all, any incident claiming the description must have far-reaching…
The trial of Charles I
30 January 1649 was bitterly cold. It was enough to make Charles I, King of England, don two shirts: he didn't want the crowd to see him shivering as he was led to his place of execution. Charles' downfall had come about through unsuitable…
Arbeit Macht Frei, Auschwitz
The Wannsee Conference of 20 January 1942, was a cross-departmental meeting of the Nazi government. Its goal was brutally and clinically simple: to organise the final solution to the Jewish question.
Edward VIII and Wallis Simpson
On 11 December 1936, Edward VIII abdicated after spending just 11 months on the throne. His reason was simple: he wanted to marry the socially-unacceptable love of his life, Wallis Simpson. This left a trail of intrigue, rumour and recrimination…
The Great Storm of 1703 Goodwin Sands
On the night of 26 November 1703, what has been described as the worst storm in the history of the country hit Britain. Over the next eight hours, it reaped terrible damage across Wales and the south of England, and in its wake were thousands of…
The Battle of Stamford Bridge
The year 1066 is remembered in Britain for just one battle: the Battle of Hastings. And why not? After all, it had a profound effect on England, and has been called the most important battle in English history. But its outcome might have been very…
Battle of the Somme
At 7.30 on 1 July 1916, as the whistles fell silent, men climbed out of their trenches and headed across No Man's Land, with the objective of reaching and taking the German lines. So started the Battle of the Somme, remembered as one of the…
William Marshal
William Marshal was the landless younger son of a middle-ranking nobleman, who raised himself through the tournament circuit and serving five crowned kings, to become the de facto regent of England. He was the original celebrity, inspiration for…
Easter Rising
The Easter Rising of 1916 was one in a long line of attempts by Irish republicans to break free from British rule and declare an independent Irish Republic. A bloody and possibly foolhardy revolt, it was bloodily suppressed with far-reaching…
Titanic
RMS Titanic hit an iceberg off the Grand Banks of Newfoundland at 11:40pm on 14 April 1912. Just two hours and forty minutes after the collision with the iceberg, RMS Titanic broke into two and sank. She crashed onto the ocean floor, almost 2.5…
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