Desertion from active military service has always been a contentious action, especially in times of war. Deserters in the eighteenth century were routinely castigated as poor patriots or traitorous subjects. Recently, scholars have begun to analyse in greater depth how and why desertions occurred, and have demonstrated that political considerations were less important than issues of identity and interest. However, in the context of the American Revolutionary War, historians have focused on the relationship between deserters and the military, arguing that soldiers who left their posts were less integrated into the camp community. This article suggests that the act of desertion was often more than a protest against conditions or discipline, but instead was shaped by a deserter’s connections with civil society rather than the military community.
This article explores the influence of the Hundred Years’ War on Fowey between c.1337 and 1399. In so doing, it employs naval pay rolls to study the contribution the town made to royal fleets and considers the mechanisms which the Crown employed to defend the port from enemy raids. It also examines the degree to which the war was extended though the agency of ‘pirates’. The article argues that the conflict had an all-pervasive effect upon Fowey, but that the costs incurred by the port and its people as a result of this were by no means crippling.
In Anglo-Saxon courts, from the eighth century down to the Norman conquest, ‘officers of the mouth’, bore household titles and served the king and his guests during meals, at least on major occasions. Those butlers (pincernae) and dish-bearers (dapiferi, disciferi) were not mere ‘waiters’ but members of great aristocratic families; serving the king’s table was an honour for them, with all the implications of that word in an early medieval context. Using a variety of sources, particularly the subscription lists of charters, this article examines their rank at court, social origin, degree of proximity to kings and queens, and the nature of their occupation.
As one of Britain’s landmark constitutional reforms, the 1832 Reform Act has attracted considerable historical attention. However, only cursory notice has been paid to the extensive work completed by the 1831–2 boundary commission to reform the nation’s parliamentary boundaries. Drawing on previously unused archival material, this article provides the first sustained analysis of the boundary reforms that took place in England’s ancient boroughs in 1832, revealing the significance of Thomas Drummond, a previously obscure royal engineer and chair of the English and Welsh boundary commission, to the ‘Great Reform Act’. As well as revealing the wider importance of parliamentary boundaries to the passage of reform by 1832, Drummond and the boundary commission established significant precedents for the expansion of the reformed British state and future parliamentary reform.
Anne Boleyn, attributed to John Hoskins. Image from Wikipedia
The Howard family, dukes of Norfolk, are usually described as Catholics and considered to have been religiously ‘conservative’ throughout the early modern period and beyond. Thomas Howard, third duke of Norfolk, the family patriarch at the beginning of the Reformation, is thought to have remained on the conservative ‘side’ and it is assumed that the rest of the family followed his lead. By examining the responses of the Howard women to early religious change, this article argues that this was not the case; families did not react collectively but maintained relationships while occupying different positions across the shifting religious spectrum.
To celebrate Women’s History Month and tie in with the IHR and KCL event on London’s women historians (http://www.history.ac.uk/events/event/7709), we have brought together a selection of articles by women historians published in the journal since 2000. The collection includes academics at various stages of their careers – from eminent professors to early career researchers – and highlights the range and depth of women’s research interests. Articles are free to read throughout 2017.
This article offers a new perspective on the context and significance of the 1553 succession crisis precipitated by the Protestant Edward VI’s abortive bid to exclude his Catholic sister Mary in favour of his evangelical cousin Jane. Challenging the view of Jane’s coup as an evangelical crusade, and of Mary’s victory as the only successful Tudor rebellion, it analyses the constitutional principles behind the new settlement of succession, demonstrates how it was justified to the public and uncovers its Elizabethan legacy. By closely reading a series of key texts, it reshapes our understanding of this seminal event in Tudor history.
The Annual Pollard Prize – named in honour of the IHR’s founding director A. F. Pollard (1869-1948) – was established in 1999, initially as a termly prize for the best paper given at an IHR seminar by a postgraduate or early career researcher (within one year of obtaining the Ph.D). It has grown in popularity over the years with entries increasing in quality, quantity and variety. Papers cover subjects as extensive as our range of seminars. Winners have written on travellers in Britain, colonial policemen, 18th-century footwear retailing, Foot and Mouth disease, saints’ cults and masculinity in the Nazi concentration camps, amongst many other topics. A list of early winners can be found here.
Early copy of the Bulletin of the Institute of Historical Research (1924) announces fourteen IHR seminars. We now offer 74!
First prize is publication in the prestigious IHR journal, Historical Research, and £200 to spend on books from our publisher Wiley. A variable number of runner up prizes are awarded, depending on the quality of applications in any given year. Prizes are publication in the journal and a selection of Wiley books.
Entries are now being accepted for the 2017 prize. Papers should be sent to email@example.com with a supporting reference from a seminar convenor. The deadline for the prize is 26 May (papers scheduled to be given after that date but within the academic year may be submitted in advance). For more information see here.
As one of the first anti-colonial movements of the twentieth century, the Indian struggle for independence has attracted a vast and rich historiography. Much of this has been focused within the boundaries of India. This article adds a transnational dimension by examining Indian anti-colonial activism in exile. The experience of political exile, both voluntary and involuntary, provides insight into the international dimensions of radical politics. This article tells the story of some of these exiled revolutionaries, looking at radical Indian nationalists in London (1905–10); the emergence of the Ghadar movement in the United States (from 1914); and the early career of anti-colonial revolutionary M. N. Roy (1917–19). It gauges the impact of global events including the First World War and the Bolshevik revolution on the thoughts, ideas, movements, collaborations and confrontations of these actors.
This article analyses the public debates about the two corporate forms used in the seventeenth century to develop England’s international commercial reach: the regulated and joint stock company. It examines pamphlets to assess the changing public postures of the two forms across the period, and challenges histories of seventeenth-century English overseas trade that argue the triumph of free trade over monopoly. The article instead suggests that the public debate about the two company forms contributed to the development of new corporate constitutions derived from both models and therefore recovers the neglected significance of the regulated company in this period.
This article examines the uses to which Cambridge University’s ten-year statute was put suggesting that its popularity from c.1815 reflects both increasing career insecurity among non-graduate clergy, and the closing of traditional non-graduate routes into the Anglican ministry. Using a quantitative study of university calendars and ordination records alongside a review of controversial pamphlet literature, the article documents the degree’s changing popularity and the appearance of a discourse which discredited both it and non-graduate clergy. This discourse also reflects the general anxieties of elite and middling families, threatened by meritocratic trends and eager to secure cultural, occupational and economic privilege.
This article aims to write the army transport mule, which has previously been neglected in the equine historiography of the conflict, into the story of the First World War. It does not aim to tell the entire story of the role of mules in the war, as this deserves fuller investigation. Instead, it focuses on how various British sources depicted the army transport mule and how the actual involvement and treatment of these animals on the Salonica Front accorded with these perceptions.
In recent years, the study of the networks, ideas and identities that bound the ‘British world’ together has proved a rich field of enquiry in imperial history. This article seeks to apply those insights to an issue that dominated much of Britain’s relations with its settler colonies before the First World War: the controversies surrounding the exclusion of Asian migrants. Racial exclusion has garnered a great deal of scholarly attention in recent years. This article builds on that historiography, but also questions its inattention to the British connection, and hence to considerations of imperial power. It analyses how the debate on immigration served as a canvas on which advocates and detractors of exclusion could paint competing concepts of empire, and seeks to understand how policymakers attempted to manage the migration question through a range of spatial and diplomatic solutions. It will attempt, in sum, to show how a global empire dealt with the problems of a world that seemed increasingly divided along racial lines.
This article examines the last twenty years of the life of one of Ireland’s most controversial scholars, the polymath John Pentland Mahaffy. Mahaffy’s name still has wide resonance in Irish historiography owing to his interventions in Irish cultural politics in the decades before 1919. He is frequently seen as an ‘anti-Irish’ figure. This article places Mahaffy in the wider context of international scholarship of the late Victorian era, arguing that he was a cosmopolitan whose overriding concern was not Ireland, or even Britain, but the fracturing of the republic of letters.
In Renaissance Florence, the militia force created by Machiavelli in 1506, then re-established in 1527–30, involved the production of two types of records: the low-level ‘practical’ records which documented the daily running of an army in the field, such as muster rolls, notes and lists; and the upper-level administrative records, such as the correspondence between governing bodies and military officers. An analysis of published and unpublished sources provides evidence of the importance of such documentary practices, and highlights the problems connected to the loss and preservation of low-level military records relating to Renaissance ordinanze and militia.
The twelfth-century chronology of the de Mortemer (later Mortimer) family of Wigmore has proved a difficult and confusing subject. In particular, most scholars have accepted the Complete Peerage genealogy, which incorrectly posits the existence of two distinct lords called Hugh between 1104 and 1181. Here, the English sources are reconsidered alongside independent Norman evidence, resulting in a more robust genealogy and a better context for understanding how the de Mortemers shifted their position from being primarily a Norman family with English and Welsh interests (which they neglected) to being primarily an English one with Norman and Welsh responsibilities (which they did not).