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History

The rich tapestry of Britain’s history is full of fascinating characters, imposing castles and literary heroes. From the Battle of Hastings in 1066 to the Battle of Britain, the Tudor period to the Victorian era, Shakespeare to Dickens, Britain has a unique heritage like no other. Much of this historical treasure trove has been preserved to inspire us today.
Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo at Edinburgh Castle

Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo: five things you might not know

Scotland’s military tattoo is welcoming 1,200 performers from across the globe, including more than 250 piers and drummers, five UK military bands and a performance team from Japan 

The Meeting of Edward V (1470-1483) and his Brother Richard, Duke of York (1473-1483) contemplated by King Richard III by James Northcote

Who was Richard III? Where was his body found?

Richard III was caricatured by Shakespeare and accused of killing his nephews, while his remains were found under a car park in Leicester. He reigned from 1483-1485

Anne Hathaway's cottage

Shakespeare’s gardens: in pictures

There’s more to Shakespeare’s home county of Warwickshire than Stratford-upon-Avon. Here we take a tour of some of its most splendid gardens, from the grounds of Compton Verney to Anne Hathaway’s cottage

King Edward VIII with Wallis SImpson

Who was Edward VIII? Why did he abdicate?

King Edward VIII reigned for less than a year, abdicating so that he could marry American socialite and divorcee Wallis Simpson. He was on the throne in 1936

Queen Victoria (1819-1901) by Richard Rothwell (1800-1868) after Thomas Sully

Who was Queen Victoria? What was her role in the British Empire?

Queen Victoria presided over a time of industrial expansion, educational advances, the abolition of slavery and workers’ welfare. She reigned from 1837-1901

A portrait of Henry V of England

Who was Henry V? What was his role in Agincourt?

Henry V secured victory at the Battle of Agincourt and helped cement English as Britain’s national language. He reigned from 1413-1422

Edward I

Who was Edward I? Was he really a heartless leader?

King Edward I took an aggressive approach to Wales and Scotland – although he was rather fond of his wife. He reigned from 1272-1307

Llansteffan Castle in Wales

Who was Llywelyn the Great? Which Welsh castles did he conquer?

Llywelyn ap Iorwerth was the greatest Welsh statesman of the Middle Ages. He ruled from 1195-1240

A statue of King Richard I stands outside the Houses of Parliament, London

Who was Richard I? What was his part in the Crusades?

Richard I – also known as Richard the Lionheart – led the Third Crusade and conquered Cyprus. He reigned from 1189-1199

King George III

Who was George III? What was his role in the American War of Independence?

Under King George III, Britain lost the American War of Independence, but won the Seven Years’ War and the Napoleonic Wars. He reigned from 1760 to 1820 With no surviving heir, the death of Queen…