Exploring the Banqueting House

This article was originally written for the English Historical Fiction Authors Blog (EHFA) and posted Feb 2, 2016. If you haven’t yet visited the EHFA blog, I encourage you to check out their website (click here) for high quality articles pertaining to English history.   On this anniversary of the execution of King Charles I in 1649, I am reminded of the place where this drama played out–the Banqueting House at Whitehall. Completed in 1622, the Banqueting House is the only remaining structure of Whitehall Palace and is situated across from the Horse Guards. During the Tudor age, the original Banqueting House was little…

The Execution of Charles I

Today is the anniversary of the execution of King Charles I. I have ambivalent thoughts about this. To a degree, I feel some sentimentality, though this is fuelled by the romance of Alexandre Dumas’s novel Twenty Years After when two of the musketeers, Athos and Aramis, were sent to rescue the King. It was my first introduction to the English Civil War, and the scene made a lasting impression on me—blood dripping between the gaps in the scaffold, landing on Athos who had been moments away from spiriting the King away. But that was fiction. On one hand, Charles I was stubborn…