Literature & Music

Explore Britain's rich literary and musical heritage with events, features, news and web resources collected from hundreds of museums, archives, historic properties and libraries across the UK .

a photo of an open book with writing in it

Book that helped Henry VIII annul his marriage and challenge the Pope discovered in Cornwall

A book that helped Henry VIII to build his case against the Pope and annul his marriage to his first wife, Catherine of Aragon, has been discovered at the National Trust’s Lanhydrock in Cornwall.

a reconstructed head of a man with dark hair, eyebrows and a ribbon in his hair

What did Robert Burns look like? Burns Birthplace Museum on the many faces of The Bard

From a forensic reconstruction to a Lego re-imagining, the Robert Burns birthplace Museum is investigating the many faces of Scotland's favourite son.

a photo of a pair of hands on a manuscript

Millions of images from the world’s endangered archives made available online

The British Library is marking ten years of its groundbreaking Endangered Archives Programme by making over four million images from endangered archives all over the world available online.

A photo of the model for a new entrance to a historic outdoor building in parkland

Shakespeare's last home to rise again in tale of Warwickshire schoolboy made good

New Place and Nash's House, where William Shakespeare's family lived for 19 years, have been awarded £1.8 million in funding ahead of the 400th anniversary of his death.

A black and white photo of a woman sitting in a library writing on a piece of paper

Ian Rankin to launch £250,000 fundraising bid for vast archive of post-war author Muriel Spark

The National Library of Scotland will complete its 46-metre Muriel Spark archive, formed by the Edinburgh author's personal hoard, if a high-profile fundraising bid succeeds.

A photo of a piece of paper with black ink writing on it

Life before Google: Dundee library reveals questions asked by public 70 years before seach engines

Inspired by a recent discovery at New York Public Library, librarians in Dundee found index cards of some of the questions asked by the public 70 years ago. Knickers and knickerbockers feature.

A black and white photo of a man sitting at a writing desk inside his home

Scrap of paper at Benjamin Britten's home shows start of Wilfred Owen inspiration for War Requiem

A scrap of paper found by chance at the huge archive of Benjamin Britten, in Aldeburgh, could represent the moment when the composer found inspiration for the famous choral work.

A photo of a woman standing next to a small statue of a 19th century midshipman

Curator's Choice: Louisa Price on The Little Wooden Midshipman at the Charles Dickens Museum

Charles Dickens described "affectionately patting" his "old acquaintance" - a sign which guarded a shop in London's bustling shopping quarter 150 years ago.

a photo of an open book with portrait of Jane Austen on its frontispiece

Culture24's top ten literary history and heritage stories of 2014

From a note left by Jane Austen to the dirty doodles left in some of our most priceless tomes, here's our top ten of the most popular literary history stories on during 2014.

A photo of two children locking arms with a statue outside a historic house

Peter Pan birthplace to become Scottish Centre for Children's Stories after winning £1.8 million

The house that inspired JM Barrie to pen the children's novel Peter Pan has received a £1.8 million Lottery grant, which will see it transformed into a children's literature centre.

a photograph of a man with short hair and a moustache

Archive discovery confirms George Orwell really lived the low life for his reportage

A court record unearthed in a London archive details George Orwell's 1931 conviction for being ‘drunk and incapable’ and lends foundation to the lore surrounding Orwell’s truthfulness as a......

Colour photo of a writer

Artist's Statement: Susie Parr on the Black Country Allotment Society

Susie Parr teams up with Multistory in Sandwell to produce nine essays about allotments in the Black Country. The writer tells us more.

A photo of the front of a notebook

Arthur Conan Doyle notebook containing first ever lines of Sherlock Holmes goes on show

A notebook described as "very precious" by Arthur Conan Doyle's son, used when the author practised medicine in Southsea during the 1880s, is revealed by the Museum of London.

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