Sugar Production in 17th century Colonial Barbados

Part of researching my next novel, The Severed Knot, included learning about sugar production in 17th century Barbados and how this sweet substance transformed the island. Sugar wasn’t just a luxury commodity. It served as the chief form of currency on Barbados (slaves and servants were paid for in pounds of sugar) and fuelled British colonization in the Caribbean. Colonial Barbados was at the centre of the sugar trade going back to the mid-17th century and was known as the Sugar Island. Colonizing Barbados The earliest English settlement was established in 1627 through a private venture corporation headed by the Courteen…

The Countess of Carlisle

This article was originally posted on the English Historical Fiction Authors (EHFA) site on May 4th, 2017. For more in-depth articles on British history, visit the EHFA. You won’t be disappointed. One of the most intriguing characters in historical fiction is Milady de Winter of the Three Musketeers. Alexandre Dumas depicted her as a lethal spy whose loyalties were sold to the highest bidder, notably the Cardinal Richelieu. The inspiration for Milady was a socialite and renowned beauty of her day, Lucy Hay, Countess of Carlisle. Though Lucy was not an agent of Cardinal Richelieu, she held court at a…