Creating and Preserving the Digital Republic of Letters

Earlier this week I attended the excellent Durham conference on ‘Intellectual Networks in the Long Seventeenth Century’. With a theme like this it seemed inevitable for participants to talk about the early modern Republic of Letters and to draw parallels between early modern and modern networks around the (known) world. So I had the honour… Continue reading Creating and Preserving the Digital Republic of Letters

Continental Connections: Anglo-European Intellectual Networks, c1500-1800

A Day Workshop at Northumbria University 2 May 2013 Lipman Building, Room 121 Early modern England was more European in outlook than much of the (anglocentric) historiography suggests, and nowhere was this more obvious than in the Republic of Letters, which crossed both territorial and linguistic boundaries. However, this community of scholars and literary figures… Continue reading Continental Connections: Anglo-European Intellectual Networks, c1500-1800

The Archive Closes for Lunch

If you want to do research in Switzerland, you better learn to get up early. I always thought I was an early riser, but compared to the average Swiss person I’m clearly a sleepy head. Arriving at the Berne State Archive just after 8am on a Tuesday morning, I found that most of the other… Continue reading The Archive Closes for Lunch

The First Actresses and some of Charles II’s mistresses

I finally managed to see the First Actresses exhibition on a late Friday evening trip to the National Portrait Gallery after a hard day’s work at the British Library. It was entirely worth it. The NPG has a number of beautiful pictures of Nell Gwyn, Moll Davis, Hester Booth, Lavinia Fenton, Sarah Siddons, Mary Robinson… Continue reading The First Actresses and some of Charles II’s mistresses

Transnational Subjects: Calls for Papers

I am on the editorial board of a new journal, Transnational Subjects: History, Society and Culture. Our first issue will be appearing in October 2011. The journal is print and online, and fully peer-reviewed. Currently we have two open calls for papers. For our second issue, which will be published in May 2012, we invite… Continue reading Transnational Subjects: Calls for Papers

Horace Walpole and Strawberry Hill at the V&A

The little blue-enamelled toothpick case left quite an impression. Not because it was so remarkably beautiful, but because it seemed so random, useless even – in a good way. Many of the items currently on display in the V&A’s exhibition on Horace Walpole and Strawberry Hill are of that quality, and that’s their attraction. There… Continue reading Horace Walpole and Strawberry Hill at the V&A

The fun of deceiving your readers – and being found out

It must have been so much fun being a C17th wit hanging around your favourite tavern or coffee-house thinking up tall stories, scribbling them down and waiting to see how your readers reacted. Would they really believe that shepherds had found the remains of Moses his Tombe (1657) on Mount Nebo, or that Dutch sailors… Continue reading The fun of deceiving your readers – and being found out

French Revolutionaries & English Republicans: A bridge to the Continent

As its subtitle announces Rachel Hammersley’s French Revolutionaries and English Republicans (Woodbridge, 2005) is a study of the Cordeliers Club in Paris between 1790-1794. It traces the Club’s radical policies and associated writings in the years following the rebellion of 1789 and its attempts to influence the National Assembly as it forged a new constitution… Continue reading French Revolutionaries & English Republicans: A bridge to the Continent