The history of Europe was altered forever by the Battle of Blenheim. In this episode I talk about the aftermath of the battle and look at the celebrations in England. The country is delirious with delight and Marlborough is granted the estate of Woodstock and given funds toward the building of a palace to commemorate the victory. That palace was built and named after the battle as Blenheim Palace It is a truly overwhelming place to behold. I’ve visited several times and have always been quite breathless at the sheer scale and extravagance of the building.
In the podcast I speculate on the direction events may have taken if the Franco Bavarian forces had been sucessful in the 1704 Battle of Blenheim and we wander off down several avenues of what if speculation.
In the history podcasts review section I review the All Things Medieval podcast.
I also review the new film, the Duchess which stars Ralph Fiennes and Keira Knightley. This film is based upon the wonderful book ‘Georgiana’ by Amanda Foreman. I highly recommend the book as an intriguing insight into the lives of the rich and famous in 18th century England. As you’ll hear in the podcast, I’m not sure I can recommend the film quite as highly.
I did, however discover a couple of BBC mini series DVDs that I can recommend.
There’s a biopic of Charles II
. This is a lively account of the life of this merry monarch but it makes a case for him also being more politically savvy than he’s usually given credit for.
I also encountered a low budget, but still very watchable BBC docudrama called ‘The Early Churchill’s’ which covers the lives of John and Sarah Churchill, the first Duke and Duchess of Marlborough.
. This is a very long docudrama which contains lots of fascinating detail about this couple although can be a little skimpy as regards the War of the Spanish Succession and the history of europe at the time.
The linguistic history trivia bit in this episode is a look at the word Macaroni and what it meant when bandied around in the coffee houses of 18th century London. It’s a fun word describing quite a bizarre fashion set. You’ll find out more by listening to the podcast either by clicking on the play link at the end of this post or downloading and playing it in Itunes.
As promised in the podcast, here is the link to the program, levelator.
Some of the sources I use for this podcast can be found at Amazon.co.uk in the UK
or at Amazon.com in the United States. There are lots of very useful books there if you want to know more about the War of the Spanish Succession and if you decide to buy any of them then using the links from the pages of Historyzine will send a tiny fraction of money my way which will help offset some of the costs of the podcast.