Shakespeare’s history plays are for many people the defining versions of England’s medieval monarchs, but can Shakespeare really be trusted? Is Richard III the greatest villain in history or Henry V the embodiment of the perfect, virtuous king? To find out, we are taking a closer look at Shakespeare’s sources, why he was writing history plays in the first place and check three of his most famous plays to see if they are more historical fact or historical fiction.
In life, Richard III was one of England’s most notorious kings but in death, is he responsible for one of the biggest upsets in sporting history? We take a look at the twin stories of Richard III and Leicester City – Premier League champions and subject of one of sport’s greatest underdog stories.
A BBC news story today revealed that descendants from those who fought on either side of the Battle of Bosworth were set to meet in Leicester as part of the commemoration of Richard III’s reinterment. This is now, however, surely overshadowed by the fact that one of the ancestors who fought at Bosworth was a man called Sir Marmaduke Constable, about whom you need to know three things: firstly, his name was Sir Marmaduke Constable; secondly, he had a long and interesting career in a turbulent period of English history; thirdly, he was eventually brought to mortal conclusion by a frog.
Richard III kept a pretty low profile for the first 527 years after his defeat and death in the Battle of Bosworth in 1485, but since his exhumation in 2012 his diary has been much more active. The next week will see him re-interred at Leicester Cathedral (after which his activity levels will quieten down considerably) so read on to find out what is happening where and when, and how you can follow the all of the events.
Despite being dead for over 500 years, King Richard III just keeps on delivering scandal, and now he’s even brought the Queen into the spotlight! A new report on Richard and what we can learn from his DNA initially began with headlines that it is “99.999%” certain that the body is that of Richard III, with the inevitable spoil-sport rejoinder that, on the other hand, they still might not be Richard. However, this was soon upstaged by the revelation that, somewhere in Richard’s family tree, there are confirmed instances of illegitimacy, bringing into question a good five-hundred years of royal succession and even whether the wrong person now sits upon the throne.