Charles I

‘Anne Cresacre’, c.1527, by Hans Holbein the Younger

A sumptuous feast of an exhibition: Charles I at the Royal Academy reviewed

27 January 2018 9:00 am

Martin Gayford is overwhelmed by the sheer concentration of visual splendour amassed by Charles I

Providence Island, seen from Crab Cay

Pirates - and puritans - of the Caribbean

3 June 2017 9:00 am

In The Growing Pains of Adrian Mole, Sue Townsend’s hapless teenage diarist, reeling from the news that Argentina has just…

Jeremy Corbyn is taking Labour back to the 1640s

7 January 2017 9:00 am

Jeremy Corbyn will probably enjoy this book — which doesn’t mean you won’t. Asked to name the historical figure he…

Not-so-Gloriana: Queen Elizabeth I in her early sixties. (Studio of Marcus Gheerarts the Younger, c. 1596)

Power slips from Gloriana’s jewelled fingers

21 May 2016 9:00 am

If you’ve been watching Game of Thrones recently, you’ll have seen an old folkloric fantasy in which a bewitching young…

Ford Madox Brown celebrates 17th-century advances in science in his painting ‘William Crabtree watches the Transit of Venus in 1639’

A.C. Grayling reduces history to a game of quidditch

12 March 2016 9:00 am

The 17th century scores highly  — especially England’s part in it — in A.C. Grayling’s ‘points system’ of history. If only the study of the past were that simple, says Ruth Scurr

Velázquez’s portrait of his Moorish assistant Juan de Pareja. The glorious lace collar would surely have fallen foul of Spain’s sumptuary laws

Velázquez’s vanishing act

2 January 2016 9:00 am

This is an extraordinary story. In 1845 John Snare, an unremarkable Reading bookseller, goes to an auction in a defunct…

‘Pan and Syrinx’, 1617, by Peter Paul Rubens

How will the British public take to Rubens’s fatties?

24 January 2015 9:00 am

Are Rubens’s figures too fat for the British to appreciate them? Martin Gayford investigates

Henry VIII, Edward VI, Charles I, George VI and George V

Game of thrones: five kings spanning five centuries launch a new series on royalty

3 January 2015 9:00 am

Nigel Jones reviews the first five titles to appear in a new series on British monarchs

Doctor Scroggy’s War (Photo: Mark Douet)

Charles III is made for numbskulls by numbskulls

27 September 2014 8:00 am

Suppose Charles were to reign as a meddlesome, self-pitying, indecisive plonker. It’s a thought. It’s now a play, too, by…

Oliver Cromwell opening the coffin of Charles I, by Paul Delaroche

Rebellion without a cause: Peter Ackroyd's curious Civil War

20 September 2014 9:00 am

How our perceptions of 17th-century England are dominated by the convulsions of the two decades at its centre! Peter Ackroyd’s…

Music at Midnight, by John Drury - review

28 September 2013 9:00 am

When John Drury, himself an Anglican divine, told James Fenton (the son of a canon of Christ Church) that he…