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Historic Royal Palaces blog

Insights and behind the scenes from our palaces

Insights and behind the scenes from our palaces

The King’s Favourite: George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham

01 February 2024

In the ruthless world of the Stuart court, royal favour was everything. No one knew this better than George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham, whose rise to power was built on the love and patronage of James I.

Frances Stuart and Barbara Villiers

10 February 2023

Learn about the relationship between Frances Stuart and Barbara Villiers, two of the most influential women at the court of King Charles II.

The Real Norman Hartnell: Beyond 'Silver and Gold'

25 February 2022

February is LGBT+ History Month in the UK, which aims to increase the visibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT+) people through the exploration of their history and stories. Collections Curator Matthew Storey looks at one such story.

Frederick Wright Or Kathleen Woodhouse: A First World War Soldier Who Wished To Live As A Woman

15 February 2022

February is LGBT+ History Month in the UK, which aims to increase the visibility of lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT+) people through the exploration of their history and stories. Collections Curator Matthew Story explores one such story.

Queen Anne and Sarah Churchill's last stand off at Kensington Palace

25 February 2021

Holly Marsden, PhD researcher on late-Stuart history, takes us inside Kensington Palace to paint a picture of Queen Anne and Sarah Churchill's final goodbye.

Walter Hungerford and the Buggery Act: LGBTQ+ History and Punishment at the Tower of London

19 February 2021

As part of LGBT History Month, Olivia Martin examines a darker side of the Tower's history. On 28 July 1540, the first execution under the Buggery Act, the first civil law to criminalise homosexual behaviour, happened on Tower Hill.

A Queer Walk through Hampton Court Palace

11 February 2021

When you next visit Hampton Court, bring a queer eye to the palace. Shift your perception. Actively look around you. I promise there is a rich history to find.

Mary Frith, The Cross-Dressing Cavalier

28 February 2020

Frith was a 17th-century public figure who caused much controversy and was arrested many times for wearing clothes made for men. In her lifetime it was this masculine attire that saw her labelled as deviant, rather than her alleged prostitution of women and a business that sold stolen goods. Frith was also an ardent royalist. Here, Holly shares a few of the contradictions of Frith’s fascinating personality.

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu: Georgian Feminism, sexual-fluidity and disease

21 February 2020

To celebrate LGBT History Month, we are exploring some of the lives and loves of LGBT+ people at the palaces throughout history. This week we learn from Holly Marsden, Queer History placement student, about the life of one of Georgian society's most fascinating women: Lady Mary Wortley Montagu.