Episodes
Published 08/24/24
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 episode of Not Just the Tudors, first released in January 2022, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb offers her own illuminating interpretation of the aftermath...
Published 07/15/24
In November 1588, a 21-year-old Japanese man called Christopher met Queen Elizabeth I. On the way, he had already become the first recorded Japanese person in North America. His story has been almost totally forgotten until now. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb finds out more about Christopher from Professor Thomas Lockley, author of A Gentleman from Japan which recovers Christopher’s remarkable story.  Presented by Professor Susannah Lipscomb. The...
Published 07/11/24
Despite Catherine of Braganza's crucial place in British history, she has always been overshadowed by stories of Charles II’s many mistresses and forgotten as his boring, powerless wife. This could not be further from the truth. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. Sophie Shorland about her new book The Lost Queen, which not only tells the full story of Catherine de Braganza and her difficult relationship with her husband, but also reveals how she...
Published 07/08/24
Robert Cecil, statesman and spymaster, stood at the heart of the Tudor and then Stuart state, a vital figure in managing the succession from Elizabeth I to James I & VI, warding off military and religious threats and steering the decisions of two very different but equally wilful and hard-to-manage monarchs.  In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Stephen Alford, author of All His Spies: The Secret World of Robert Cecil, about a man who...
Published 07/04/24
Six wives - six lives that we think we know everything about. But beyond their mostly doomed marriages to Henry VIII and, in most cases, tragic ends, here were six women who shaped history in their own unique ways. In a special six part series, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb has been bringing together the most illuminating interviews about the six wives from the Not Just the Tudors archive.  She has also been exploring some of the latest research and speaking to Dr. Charlotte Bolland - curator...
Published 07/01/24
Anne Bonny and Mary Read were pirates who sailed the Caribbean in the early 18th century. For both of them, piracy offered a chance at a freedom otherwise disallowed to women. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb learns more about Bonny and Read from the novelist Francesca de Torres - author of Saltblood, which recreates Mary Read's life - and Dr. Rebecca Simon who wrote the first full-scale biography of the two women.  This episode was edited by Ella Blaxill...
Published 06/26/24
Six wives - six lives that we think we know everything about.  But beyond their mostly doomed marriages to Henry VIII and, in most cases, tragic ends, here were six women who shaped history in their own unique ways. In a special six part series, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb brings together the most illuminating interviews about the six wives from the Not Just the Tudors archive.  She also explores some of the latest research and speaks to Dr. Charlotte Bolland - curator of the National...
Published 06/24/24
Toda Mariko, or Mariko-san, one of the main characters from the new TV series Shogun - adapted from James Clavell's epic novel - is based on a real woman, Hosokawa Gracia. Who was she? Was she the zealous Christian martyr depicted in Jesuit missionary accounts, or a wife duty-bound to protect the honour of her family? Or was she the defiant female warrior of Japanese folklore?  In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Frederik Cryns, who was the...
Published 06/20/24
Six wives - six lives that we think we know everything about. But beyond their mostly doomed marriages to Henry VIII and, in most cases, tragic ends, here were six women who shaped history in their own unique ways. In a special six part series, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb brings together the most illuminating interviews about the six wives from the Not Just the Tudors archive. She also explores some of the latest research and speaks to Dr. Charlotte Bolland - curator of the National Portrait...
Published 06/17/24
Among the male players who performed thousands of new plays in the Elizabethan repertory, the most famous were Richard Burbage and Will Kempe, members of the company known first as the Lord Chamberlain's Men and later the King's Men, the company of William Shakespeare.  In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Professor Siobhan Keenan to find out more about these two extraordinary actors for whom Shakespeare created some of his most enduring...
Published 06/13/24
Six wives - six lives that we think we know everything about.  But beyond their mostly doomed marriages to Henry VIII and, in most cases, tragic ends, here were six women who shaped history in their own unique ways. In a special six part series, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb brings together the most illuminating interviews about the six wives from the Not Just the Tudors archive.  She also explores some of the latest research and speaks to Dr. Charlotte Bolland - curator of the National...
Published 06/10/24
This episode solves the 400-year old mystery of a previously unknown portrait of a young woman, dressed to look just like Queen Elizabeth herself. When Emma Rutherford - the country's leading expert in portrait miniatures - first saw it, she knew that the painting was recognisably by the celebrated Elizabethan court painter Nicholas Hilliard. But who was the mysterious girl depicted? Together, Emma along with Hilliard’s biographer Dr. Elizabeth Goldring set out on some remarkable historical...
Published 06/06/24
Six wives - six lives that we think we know everything about. But beyond their mostly doomed marriages to Henry VIII and, in most cases, tragic ends, here were six women who shaped history in their own unique ways. In this special six part series, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb brings together the most illuminating interviews about the six wives from the Not Just the Tudors archive.  She also explores some of the latest research and speaks to Dr. Charlotte Bolland - curator of the National...
Published 06/03/24
The mid-15th to mid-16th centuries in Europe was an era of political, social, and religious unrest, when the Roman Catholic Church was being questioned by those who sought a more direct connection with God.  In the midst of this turmoil in Germany stood Thomas Müntzer, a preacher, theologian, and reformer. Müntzer's role in the German Peasants War had him labelled variously as a bloodthirsty revolutionary or a people's hero. Martin Luther later described Müntzer as a “ravening wolf” and a...
Published 05/30/24
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, first released in May 2021, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb is joined by Professor Nadine Akkerman, author of Invisible...
Published 05/27/24
Six wives - six lives that we think we know everything about.  But beyond their mostly doomed marriages to Henry VIII and, in most cases, tragic ends, here were six women who shaped history in their own unique ways. In this special six part series, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb brings together the most illuminating interviews about the six wives from the Not Just the Tudors archive.  She also explores some of the latest research and speaks to Dr. Charlotte Bolland - curator of the National...
Published 05/23/24
Margaret Tudor - daughter of King Henry VII, sister to Henry VIII - was married at 13 to James IV of Scotland, learning the skills of statecraft that would enable her to survive his early death and to construct a powerful position in Scotland.  In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb finds out more about Margaret from Dr. Linda Porter. Her new book, The Thistle and the Rose: The Extraordinary Life of Margaret Tudor puts the record straight about a misunderstood and...
Published 05/20/24
The acclaimed TV series Shogun, now screening on Disney+, is based on true events. Its main character John Blackthorne is modelled on William Adams, the English pilot of a Dutch ship that arrived on Japanese shores in 1600 with a handful of survivors. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors - suggested by listener Lucy Canning - Professor Suzannah Lipscomb finds out more about the real history behind Shogun with Giles Milton, best-selling author of Samurai William: The Adventurer Who Unlocked...
Published 05/16/24
Fans of historical fiction and crime novels have been saddened to learn of the recent death of the award-winning, best-selling author C.J. Sansom, just days before the release of Shardlake - the TV series based on his Tudor barrister detective novels. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb pays tribute to a fine author, and a fine fictional creation with the writer and journalist Antonia Senior.  This episode was edited by Ella Blaxill produced by Rob...
Published 05/13/24
**This episode contains conversation about sexual behaviour** In early modern Europe, acting upon same-sex desires was forbidden. We only know of many of the cases because of records of criminal trials. But the evidence of the past does not suggest that we can easily find a straightforward match for modern concepts of homosexuality. In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Sir Noel Malcolm, whose acclaimed new book Forbidden Desire in Early Modern Europe,...
Published 05/09/24
Sir Walter Raleigh remains one of the most famous men of 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, Raleigh made exaggerated claims as to what had been discovered, contributing to the enduring El Dorado legend, and...
Published 05/06/24
In 1603, Queen Elizabeth I died and King James VI of Scotland, became King James I of England.  Elizabeth was a hard act to follow for the Scottish newcomer who faced a host of problems in his first years as king: not only the legacy of his predecessor but also unrest in Ireland, serious questions about his legitimacy on the English throne, and even plots to remove him.  In this episode of Not Just the Tudors - recorded in front of a live audience at the Gloucester History Festival -...
Published 05/01/24
In the 16th and 17th centuries, sailing was a tool of warfare and empire, of conquest and discovery, of trade and travel. But vessels were often lost or wrecked in heavy storms or on unfamiliar routes, through attack and piracy. Many such shipwrecks are still being found.  In this episode of Not Just the Tudors, Professor Suzannah Lipscomb talks to Dr. David Gibbins, maritime archaeologist and author of A History of the World in 12 Shipwrecks. His work as a diver has taken him across the...
Published 04/29/24
The traditional view of the birth of modern science places it firmly in the 17th century with such huge names as Bacon, Descartes, Newton, and Galileo.  But a century earlier there were others - whose names are not so well-known to us - who paved the way for later scientific breakthroughs.  Patrons and particular places in northern Europe developed new technology and encouraged collaborations in an environment where intellectual innovation could occur, laying the foundations for subsequent...
Published 04/25/24