Royal History

Explore Britain's royal history and heritage with exhibitions, event listings, features, news and web resources collected from museums, archives and historic sites across the UK.

A photo of people excavating a tomb from a pit

Archaeologists open coffin of elderly woman found near Richard III's grave in Leicester friary

The first intact medieval stone coffin in Leicester contained a crucifix and had a holy position close to high altar, say archaeologists who are speculating that the woman's name could have been Emma.

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 picture showing medieval-styled religious figures with beards

Henry III's priceless medieval altar piece was cheap as chips to make says author

New research into England’s oldest medieval altarpiece, the Westminster Retable at Westminster Abbey, reveals it cost no more than the equivalent of a few cows to make.

a photo of two hands examining a skull

Newly released film footage shows "eureka moment" when killer blow to King Richard III was found

New film footage, revealing details of the potential killer blow that claimed the life of King Richard III for the first time, has been released by the University of Leicester.

An image of a painting showing a royal family during tudor times

Henry VIII's gardening manual "shines new light" on King and lost royal garden

Curators at Buckingham Palace believe the King's garden at Whitehall Palace, which was later destroyed by fire, could have been created with the instructions of the world's first gardening manual.

A photo of a luxurious dark red hat from the tudor period with a green feather in it

Luxurious hat given to Henry VIII's Wardrobe Clerk to go on display at Hampton Court Palace

Curators say a hat made of silver and silk, acquired by Hampton Court Palace, could have been thrown into the air by Henry VIII following the surrender of Boulogne in 1544.

An image of a colour oil painting of a medieval king with long hair and a black cap on

Richard III: The tree ring-dated portrait which could show the King's scoliosis as a "costume"

Indications that Richard III had a disability could have been used against him to create the persona of a monster, explains the keeper of the painting which helped identify him.

A photo of raised wooden floorboards in a country house

Fears of demonic spirits following 1605 Gunpowder Plot revealed by witchmarks in Kent

Marks placed on the beams of a room prepared for King James I nod to the state propaganda which pinned the blame for the Gunpowder Plot on Catholics, say experts.

a composite picture showing two images of Elizabeth side by side; the left showing an x-ray of the original

National Portrait Gallery researchers reveal 'airbrushed' Elizabeth I in X-ray of portrait

The NPG's new Tudor portraits exhibition reveals how X-rays of a portrait of Elizabeth I show how the Queen's portrait was overpainted and prettified in the eighteenth century.

An image of an illustration of a young Tudor Queen

Artist's Statement: Jessica Collett on feminism, fluff and Tudor Queens

The young playwright Jessica Collett discusses the "immeasurable" Tudor impact as she prepares to open her play, Mother, Crone, Maiden, at Liverpool's Bluecoat gallery.

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