Medieval History Podcasts from the National Archives

The National Archives of the United Kingdom have been developing a series of podcasts about British history since 2006, covering all areas of history including the Middle Ages.

The podcasts focus on the records held at the National Archives and how these records can be used by historians and the general public.

Click here to go to the Podcasts section for the National Archives.

Here are the podcasts featuring medieval topics:

Medieval warfare: sources and approaches
29 Jan 2010

An exploration of how records created by the crown before 1485 can be used to study medieval armies, campaigns and battles in Britain and France. The talk will focus on the records of key battles such as Bannockburn, Crécy and Agincourt.

Click here to download the MP3 file

Two Crowns, One King: Henry V and the Treaty of Troyes
07 Oct 2009

The Past Masters team join Henry V in the battle for France. Henry fought the Hundred Years War on two fronts – military and diplomatic – but was the signing of the Treaty of Troyes in 1420 his greatest victory or just a millstone around England’s neck?

Click here to download the MP3 file

Locality, land and livelihood: sources for early local history
20 Mar 2009

An introduction to medieval and early modern sources relating to English and Welsh local history. Sean Cunningham and James Ross explore the vast collection of accounts, surveys, court rolls, inquisitions, deeds and taxation records held at The National Archives.

Click here to download the MP3 file

The parish: administration and records
07 Nov 2008

For hundreds of years the parish was the most important unit of local government. This talk covers the historical administration of the parish, its officials and their records, as well as showing you how you can use these records to trace your ancestors and find out more about their local community.

Click here to download the MP3 file

Was Richard II mad?
03 Jul 2008

Terry Jones, ‘Python’, historian, broadcaster, actor, director and comedian, has called King Richard II a “victim of spin”. Here he sets out to rescue his reputation and lift the lid on the turbulent world of 14th century politics.

Click here to download the MP3 file

Closing the last day: death, memory and landholding in the Inquisitions Post-Mortem, 1216 – 1660
17 Jan 2008

Sean Cunningham tells us how the Inquisitions Post-Mortem (IPMs) or inquests taken after the death of people who were tenants of The Crown reveal a great deal about land use, local customs, and how communal memory had an important social function for our English and Welsh ancestors. This talk looks at how these manuscripts help to paint a picture of local life and land use during the Medieval and Early Modern periods.

Click here to download the MP3 file

From Magna Carta to the parliamentary state: the Fine Rolls of King Henry III 1216-1272
13 Jul 2007

Professor David Carpenter talks about this unique resource preserved at The National Archives and how the records are being made accessible on the web.

Click here to download the MP3 file

Medieval criminals and the law
07 Jun 2007

An introduction to the formidable collection of documents that relate to the law and criminals during the medieval period using case studies. James Ross provides practical tips on how to access the collections, as well as shedding some light on one of the most fascinating areas of medieval society.

Click here to download the MP3 file

King John and Magna Carta
23 May 2007

History has portrayed King John as a tyrannical monarch whose arbitrary conduct forced his barons into rebellion and the eventual restriction of his powers in the iconic charter of liberties, Magna Carta. Using original sources held at The National Archives, Adrian Jobson explores some of the key crises and events of the reign before asking whether King John really deserves his reputation as one of England’s worst kings.

Click here to download the MP3 file

‘In deadly hate?’ Richard III and the War of the Roses
12 Apr 2007

The conflict for the crown in the 15th century has created many of English history’s most vivid characters and thanks to Shakespeare, we have one of our greatest villains in the shape of Richard III. This talk looks at the key sources for this period of civil war, and investigates whether Richard III really did resemble Shakespeare’s destructive monster.

Click here to download the MP3 file

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