Five Great Albums to Start an Early English Music Journey

It’s been just over 20 years since I first became hooked on early English choral music through singing Byrd’s Ave Verum Corpus in my high school chamber choir.  I talk about that piece a lot – it sums up for me this struggle of humanity; how much do you conform vs…

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Witchcraft in Tudor England

I’m working this week on two podcast episodes with the History, Bitches podcast (which is great) that we’re putting out jointly, on Halloween themes, including witches and ghosts.  Today we recorded ghosts, so different places where Tudor ghosts are meant to be haunting, and tomorrow is witches.  As such, I’ve…

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John Dee: Brilliant Scientist and Occult Philosopher

John Dee

I’ve just recently uploaded a new episode of my Renaissance English History Podcast, which focused on trade and exploration in Elizabethan England.  While researching it, I came upon several interesting men who had major roles in the creation of the Age of Discovery.  One was Sebastian Cabot, the son of…

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Elizabeth I’s Working Holiday in Kenilworth

Kenilworth

It’s not much of a secret that Elizabeth I and Robert Dudley had a Sort Of Thing going on in her court. The famously-Virgin Queen had one possible True Love – Robert Dudley, the 1st Earl of Leicester.  In 1575 Elizabeth was on one of her summer progresses through the…

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Bess of Hardwick: An Elizabethan Woman Who Created Her Own Smart Luck

History can often seem intimidating because it seems like only the stories of dead white men.  And there’s a reason for that.  The white men were the ones who kept most of the records, being the ones who were educated and literate, and so they are the ones about whom…

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Melancholia and Euphemisms from the 17th century to now: John Dowland and Sting

Lasting art is startling in its provocativeness and sensuality, whether it’s just been released, or if it’s 500 years old.  Music is especially striking because it is living – each time it is performed it is renewed, recreated, regenerated.  No two performances are exactly the same, and it’s that living, breathing…

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Richard Hakluyt: England’s first Travel Writer

I’m working on a new Renaissance English History Podcast about trade and exploration (because of course the two were linked – without the possibility of new trading markets, there could be no exploration of new lands).  It’s impossible to read much about any of the early English explorations without stumbling…

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