Confession: a significant error of interpretation in “The Late Lord”

I’m sure it happens to most biographers, but I must confess to an important error of interpretation in The Late Lord. On pp. 181-2, I describe the death of Mary, Countess of Chatham, on 21 May 1821: On Monday, 21 May 1821, Chatham, at home in Hill Street, received the visit of Sir William Bellingham […]

Reviews of “The Late Lord”

“The Late Lord is based on impressive research in the archives and published sources and the author is completely at home in the period. Reiter’s judgment is thoughtful, perceptive and well balanced, while her prose is lively and entertaining. After two hundred years of neglect, Chatham has been immensely fortunate in being the subject of […]

The Late Lord: the book

It is now possible for UK readers to preorder my biography of the 2nd Earl of Chatham! You can order your copy directly from Pen and Sword. It is also available through Amazon (both the UK and US sites). The Late Lord: the life of John Pitt, 2nd Earl of Chatham will be released by […]

John’s later years, Part 3: “the venerable Earl”

Yesterday I thoroughly pillaged the British Library’s excellent 19th Century Newspapers database (… well, *nearly* excellent: I have one or two reservations about the search interface, but that’s another story). I habven’t used it much before, largely because I keep forgetting the 2nd Earl of Chatham clung to life until September 1835, but I found […]

The “Late” Lord Chatham at the Admiralty, 1794

It’s no secret that John was— how shall I put it— not the most punctual of people, and he quite liked the easy life. I certainly haven’t found much to dispute this, although I have found numerous occasions on which he attended public events before eleven o’clock in the morning, so clearly he wasn’t utterly […]

John’s later years, Part 2

So yes, despite my radio silence over the past few days I still have quite a lot of stuff to share that came from my foray into the National Archives last week. Time, then, for my Part 2 of the insight I have gleaned into the later years of the second Earl of Chatham, and […]

Insight into John’s later years (Part 1)

John, Earl of Chatham is fast becoming my Best Research Buddy (BRB for short— and who’m I kidding? Let’s just call him John from here on in for concision’s sake. John, blog readers; blog readers, John. Excellent, now we can move on :-D). The problem is John is one of the Invisible Men in history, […]

“The Severest Censure of this House”: a government is repeatedly defeated in the House of Commons, 1810

Current events in Parliament are very interesting to me as a political historian, although I admit I’d prefer to be watching from the safer distance of, say, a couple of centuries. Since I am a historian, however, and a Napoleonic-era one at that, yesterday’s triple defeat of Theresa May’s government reminded me strongly of the […]

Sheepgate 1809, or how a surfeit of sheep nearly led to a diplomatic incident

In the summer of 1809, Britain and Spain had been allies against France for just over a year. Sir Arthur Wellesley was currently in the Iberian Peninsula with an army of about 30,000 men. Diplomatic relations with Spain, however, remained a little fraught – the two countries had been at war for much of the […]

Short Story: The Arabian

Grey desert arabian, from  here The Late Lord was published exactly a year ago today (11 January). To commemorate the occasion, I am putting up a blog post (gasp!) to publish a short story I wrote six months or so before the book was published, for my own enjoyment. The Arabian is based on an […]