Anne de Courcy

From Cleopatra to Elizabeth Taylor, women have found jewels irresistible

25 May 2024 9:00 am

Helen Molesworth has produced a magnificent history of gemstones – their symbolism, provenance, and the legends surrounding the best ones

The perils of waiting on a Tudor queen

11 May 2024 9:00 am

Henry VIII considered the queen’s household a fruitful hunting-ground – for a mistress, a future wife, or a pawn, whose testimony could provide useful damaging evidence

The identical twins who captivated literary London

27 April 2024 9:00 am

Intelligent and beautiful, Celia and Mamaine Paget were loved by some of the greatest writers of the interwar years, but remained uniquely devoted to each other

Love and loathing at Harold Wilson’s No. 10

11 November 2023 9:00 am

Even her enemies considered Marcia Williams the prime minister’s ‘political wife’, and the real force in the Labour party from the mid-1960s to Wilson’s resignation

The many lives of George Weidenfeld, legendary publisher and ladies’ man

2 September 2023 9:00 am

Born in a poor quarter of Vienna, the refugee took London by storm, married four times, survived financial ruin and died eulogised the world over

The perils of being pope

26 August 2023 9:00 am

The power of the medieval papacy resembled that of the Holy Roman Emperor – and like the first Roman emperors, popes attracted envy, scandal and violent retribution

A canter through Britain’s racecourses

20 May 2023 9:00 am

Nicholas Clee provides gripping stories of famous horses, jockeys and trainers, along with a history of racing itself and the best places to watch the spectacle

Gardening’s bad girl: the genius – and malice – of Ellen Willmott

7 May 2022 9:00 am

In October 1897, the grandees of the Royal Horticultural Society gathered to bestow their highest award, the Victoria Medal of…

It’s a wonder any of our great country houses survived the 20th century

20 November 2021 9:00 am

One of Adrian Tinniswood’s recent books, The Long Weekend, is a portrait of country house life in the interwar years.…

The elusive adventures of Catherine Dior

4 September 2021 9:00 am

When Catherine Dior, one of the heroic French Resistance workers captured by the Nazis, came face to face with her…

Shock tactics: the flamboyant life of a Hanoverian maid of honour

17 April 2021 9:00 am

At the masquerade celebrating the end of the War of Austrian Succession no one could take their eyes off the…

Malice and back-stabbing behind Vogue’s glossy exterior

20 March 2021 9:00 am

‘What job do you want here?’ asked the editor of Vogue, interviewing a young hopeful. From behind her black sunglasses…

A love story — with clothes as heroes

7 November 2020 9:00 am

On the weekly ‘opinions’ afternoons, the public would arrive with carefully wrapped parcels holding items to be identified, writes Claire…

The hazards of attending a queen

20 June 2020 9:00 am

When Queen Alexandra chose her ladies in waiting she prudently surrounded herself with elderly and plainish ones, who did not…

There was no fairy tale ending for the lovely Gladys Deacon

7 February 2020 10:00 pm

The story of how Hugo Vickers eventually tracked down the former Gladys Deacon, Duchess of Marlborough is almost as fascinating…

When Cartier was the girls’ best friend

30 November 2019 9:00 am

The word ‘jewel’ makes the heart beat a little faster. Great jewels have always epitomised beauty, love — illicit or…