|King Offa ( 757 - 796 ) |
757 - Offa seizes the Kingdom Mercia after the
murder of his cousin Aethelbald.
776 - Defeats the men of Kent at Otford
779 - Offa defeats Cynewulf of Wessex at Bensington
784 - Offa defeats the Welsh. Around this time work on Offa's Dyke is started marking the border with Wales.
- Egbert son of Eahmund of Kent flees to Wessex and then to exile in the Frankish court of Charlemagne
787 - 1st recorded
Viking raids on England
789 - Beorhtric of Wessex marries Offa's daughter Eadburgh
792 - Aethelred king of Northumbria
marries Offa's daughter Aelfflaed
793 - St Albans Abbey founded. Offa annexes East Anglia and joins it to the kingdom of
793 - Vikings raid the Christian monastery on Lindisfarne
795 - Vikings raid the monastery on Iona in Scotland
- Offa's dyke is completed. The death of Offa marks the end of Mercian supremacy in England. His son Ecgfrith reigns for less
than 6 months
|King Egbert ( 802 - 839 ) |
800 - Around this time the Book of Kells
is written in Ireland
802 - Death of King Beorthric of Wessex
802 - Egbert returns from exile in Charlemagne and becomes
King of Wessex
825 - King Egbert of Wessex wins a decisive victory over King Beornwulf of Mercia at Ellendun. Wessex becomes
the dominant kingdom.
827 - Following his conquest of Mercia, Egbert controls all of England south of the Humber
- Egbert defeats the Northumbrian king at Dore near Sheffield
830 - Wiglif of Mercia revolts against Wessex rule
- Egbert subdues North Wales. He is recognized as overlord of other English kings
836 - Egbert is defeated by the Danes
at Carhampton in Somerset
838 - Defeats Vikings and Cornish at Hingston Down in Cornwall
839 - Death of Egbert. He is
succeeded by his son Aethelwulf
|King Aethelwulf ( 839 - 856 ) |
839 - Aethelwulf succeeds his father Egbert as
King of Wessex
841 - Vikings raid Kent and East Anglia, and establish a settlement at Dublin
842 - Many die in London
and Rochester during Viking raids
844 - Kenneth MacAlpine, King of the Scots, conquers the Picts; founds a unified Scotland
- Vikings are defeated by a Saxon force at the River Parrett
851 - Vikings forces enter Thames estuary and march on Canterbury
- Aethelwulf goes on a pilgrimage to Rome accompanied by his son Alfred
858 - Aethelwulf returns but finds his son Aethelbald
has taken control of Wessex
858 - Aethelwulf dies at Steyning in Sussex. His son Aelthelbald becomes king.
|King Aethelbald ( 856 - 860 ) |
858 - Aethelbald marries his father's widow Judith
- Vikings land on Iceland
860 - Aehelbald dies and his brother Aethelbert become king.
|King Aethelbert ( 860 - 866 ) |
860 - Aethelbert becomes King of Wessex following
the death of his brother Aethelbald
860 - Winchester sacked by the Danes
865 - The Viking 'Great Heathen Army' commanded
by Halfdan and Ivar the Boneless lands in East Anglia and sweeps across England
866 - Vikings take York (Jorvik) and establish
a North British Kingdom
|King Aethelred I ( 866 - 871 ) |
866 - Aethelred becomes king on the death of his
869 - Edmund King of East Anglia resists the Vikings and is killed
870 - Aethelred defeated by the
Danes (Vikings) at Reading
871 - Aethelred and his brother Alfred defeat the Danes at Ashdown
871 - Battle of Meretun,
Hampshire. Aethelred is mortally wounded and dies.
|King Alfred the Great ( 871 - 899 ) |
871 - Alfred becomes King of Wessex following
the death of his brother Aethelred
872 - London falls to Viking raiders
875 - After persistent attacks by Vikings the
monks of Lindesfarne travel through Northumbria and Galloway with the Lindesfarne Gospels.
878 - Guthrum's Danish army
invades Wessex, and Alfred takes refuge on the isle of Athelney. Alfred defeats Guthrum at the battle of Ethandune (Edington)
878 - Treaty of Wedmore divides England into two. Guthrum accepts baptism as a Christian and agrees to leave
Wessex and settle in East Anglia.
884 - Alfred defeats the Danes at Rochester
885 - Alfred imposes rules on South Wales
- Alfred takes London from the Danes. Danelaw - the territory occupied by the Danes in East Anglia is recognised by Alfred
- Guthrum dies. Alfred establishes a permanent army and navy
891 - Anglo Saxon Chronicle, source of much early British
893 - Asser, Bishop of Sherborne, completes his book The Life of Alfred the Great
894 - Northumbrian
and East Angles swear allegiance to Alfred, but promptly break the truce attacking South West England.
896 - Naval victory
over the Danes in the Solent
899 - Alfred dies and is buried at Winchester. His son Edward becomes king.
|King Edward The Elder ( 899 - 924 ) |
900 - Edward the Elder, son of Alfred, crowned
901 - Edward the Elder takes the title "King of the Angles and Saxons"
902 - Eric, ruler of
the Danes in East Anglia, dies in the Battle of Holme
910 - Reconquest of Danelaw lands begins. The last great Viking army
sent to ravage England is defeated by an army of Wessex and Mercia.
913 - Edward the Elder recaptures Essex from the Danes
- Edward is accepted as overlord by Ragnald ruler of the Viking Kingdom of York
916 - Edward's sister Aethlfleda of Mercia
attacks and conquers most of Wales
916 - Vikings establish settlements at Dublin and Waterford in Ireland
918 - Edward
becomes ruler of Mercia following the death of his sister Aethlfleda
920 - Edward takes East Anglia from the Danes
- The Scottish King Constantine II submits to Edward
924 - Edward dies at Farndon-on-Dee near Chester leading an army against
the Welsh. He is buried in Winchester.
|King Athelstan ( 924 - 940 ) |
924 - Athelstan becomes King of Wessex and Mercia
on the death of his father Edward the Elder.
926 - Athelstan annexes Northumbria, and forces the kings of Wales, Strathclyde,
the Picts, and the Scots to submit to him
926 - Athelstan marries his sister to Sihtric the Viking King of York to cement
his ties with the North
934 - Athelstan invades Scotland
937 - Battle of Brunanburh: Athelstan defeats alliance of Scots,
Celts, Danes, and Vikings, and takes the title of King of all Britain
940 - Athelstan dies at Gloucester and is buried
|King Edmund ( 940 - 946 ) |
940 - Edmund becomes King. Scandinavian forces
from Northumbria overrun the East Midlands.
942 - Edmund re-establishes control over Northumbria and rules a united England.
- Edmund extends his rule into southern Scotland,
945 - Dunstan becomes abbot of Glastonbury Abbey
945 - Edmund conquers
Strathclyde, but Cumbria is annexed by the Scots.
946 - Edmund murdered at a party in Pucklechurch
|King Edred ( 946 - 955 ) |
946 - Edred succeeds his brother Edmund
- Expulsion of Eric Bloodaxe, last Danish king of York
955 - Edred dies and is buried at Winchester.
|King Edwy (Eadwig) ( 955 - 959 ) |
955 - Edwy crowned at Kingston-upon-Thames
- Dunstan sent into exile by Edwy
957 - Mercians and Northumbrians rebel against Edwy
959 - Edwy dies in Gloucester
|King Edgar ( 959 - 975 ) |
959 - Edgar King of Mercia and Northumbria becomes
King of all England.
965 - Westminster Abbey is founded
973 - Northern Kings submit to Edgar at Chester
975 - Edgar
dies at Winchester
|King Edward The Martyr ( 975 - 978 ) |
975 - 13 year old Edward succeeds to the throne
- Edward the Martyr murdered at Corfe Castle
|King Aethelred II The Unready ( 978 - 1016 ) |
978 - Aethelred, son of Edgar, becomes King of
England following the murder of his half brother Edward
980 - Danes renew their raids on England attacking Chester and
985 - Sweyn I, Forkbeard, rebels against his father Harold Blue-tooth and deposes him
991 - Battle of Maldon:
Byrhtnoth of Essex is defeated by Danish invaders; Aethelred buys off the Danes with 10,000 pounds of silver (Danegeld)
- Aethelred makes a truce with Duke Richard I of Normandy
994 - Danes under Sweyn and Norwegians under Olaf Trygvesson
sail up river Thames and besiege London; bought off by Aethelred
1002 - Aethelred orders a massacre of Danish settlers.
After the death of his first wife Elfleda he marries Emma of Normandy
1012 - The Danes raid Kent, burning Canterbury Cathedral
and murdering Archbishop Alphege
1013 - King Sweyn Forkbeard of Denmark lands in England and is proclaimed king; Aethelred
II the Unready flees to Normandy
1014 - The English recall Aethelred II the Unready as King on the death of Sweyn at Gainsborough
- King Canute II of Denmark & Norway again invades England
|King Edmund II lronside ( 1016 ) |
1016 - Edmund Ironside, son of Aethelred II the
Unready of England, becomes King. At the battle of Abingdon, in Essex, King Canute II of Denmark defeats Edmund. They meet
on the Isle of Alney in the Severn and agree to divide the kingdom into two. Canute takes the land North of the Thames and
Edmund the South.
1016 - Edmund is assassinated a few months later and Canute takes the throne as King Canute of England.
|King Cnut (Canute) ( 1016 - 1035 ) |
1017 - Canute marries Emma of Normandy, the widow
of Aethelred II. Canute divides England into four earldoms - Northumbria Wessex, Mercia and East Anglia.
1027 - Canute
makes a pilgrimage to Rome to demonstrate his alliance with the Church, and attends the coronation of the Pope
1028 - In
addition to his existing kingdoms Canute becomes King of Norway
1035 - Canute dies at the age of 40, and his huge Northern
European empire disintegrates.
|King Harold I Harefoot ( 1035 - 1040 ) |
1035 - Canute's illegitimate son Harold Harefoot
usurps the throne from his half-brother, Harthacanute, the rightful heir who is away fighting in Denmark.
|King Harthacnut ( 1040 - 1042 ) |
1040 - Harold Harefoot dies and Harthacanute accedes
to the throne
|King Edward The Confessor ( 1042 - 1066 ) |
1042 - Harthacanute dies and is succeeded by Edward
the Confessor, son of Aethelred II.
1043 - Earl Leofric founds Coventry Abbey. His wife Lady Godiva according to legend
rides naked through the streets of Coventry
1045 - Edward marries Edith daughter of Earl Godwin of Wessex
1051 - Edward
quarrels with Godwin and banishes the rebellious Godwin family from England. Edward promises the throne to William, Duke of
1052 - Godwin, Earl of Wessex, returns to England.
1053 - Godwin’s son, Harold, becomes principal adviser
to the King.
1056 - Welsh led by Gruffydd ap Llywelyn attack England and burn Hereford Cathedral
1057 - Edward, son
of Edmund Ironside and potential heir to the throne, returns to England but dies mysteriously
1063 - Harold Godwinson (later
Harold II) and his brother Tostig of Northumberland attack Wales. Gruffydd ap Llywelyn is killed by his own troops.
- Harold visits William of Normandy and swears on oath to support his claim to the throne
1065 - Northumbria rebels against
Tostig who is exiled. Harold fails to support his brother and they become bitter enemies.
1066 - Edward dies and Harold
Godwinson is chosen as successor, but William of Normandy declares the throne was promised to him.
|King Harold II ( 1066 ) |
1066 - Harold Godwinson becomes King Harold II
- Harold II fights his brother Tostig and a Viking force under Harold Hadrada and defeats them at Stamford Bridge. He hastily
marches South at the news that William Duke of Normandy with 100 ships has landed at Pevensey Bay and marched into Sussex.
- Harold II is killed at the Battle of Hastings according to legend with an arrow through his eye.
1066 - Edgar the Aethling,
grandson of Edmund II is elected King, but rules for only a few weeks before submitting to William of Normandy
|King William I The Conqueror ( 1066 - 1087 ) |
1066 - William and his Norman army defeat Harold
II and the Anglo Saxons at the Battle of Hastings. Harold is killed and, after subduing the south of the country William is
crowned King of England.
1067 - William suppresses a Saxon revolt in the southwest of England. William's Earls are given
lands driving out the Anglo Saxon lords. Norman French becomes the language of government.
1068 - William puts down a revolt
in the northern counties led by Edwin and Morcar and establishes fortifications. The region is laid waste in an action known
as 'Harrying the North'.
1069 - Swen Estrithson of Denmark lands in the Humber and is welcomed by northern English earls
who join him in expelling the Norman garrison at York. William marches north and reoccupies York
1070 - Hereward the Wake
leads a revolt against the Normans.
1071 - William defeats the revolt led by Hereward the Wake in East Anglia, thus putting
an end to Saxon resistance to his rule.
1072 - William invades Scotland and compels Malcolm III to pay homage to him.
- Suppresses rebellion in Maine in France
1078 - Work begins on the Tower of London
1079 - William begins the construction
of a Norman Cathedral at Winchester.
1079 - Robert, William’s eldest son, leads a rebellion in Normandy, but is defeated
by his father at the Battle of Gerberoi and his life is spared.
1085 - William orders a survey of the shires of England;
the information is recorded in the Domesday Book, which is completed the following year.
1086 - William writes to the Pope
that England owes no allegiance to the Church of Rome
1086 - Domesday survey of England completed
1087 - William dies
of his injuries after falling from his horse while besieging the French city of Nantes.
|King William II Rufus ( 1087 - 1100 ) |
1087 - William Il accedes to the throne on the
death of his father, William I.
1088 - William crushes a baronial rebellion in Normandy led by his uncle, Odo of Bayeux.
William’s brother, Robert, supports the claims of Normandy to the English throne.
1089 - Ranulf Flambard, leading
adviser to William, is appointed Justiciar (the King’s judicial officer). He begins to levy heavy taxes on the church.
- William leads an invasion of Normandy in an attempt to subdue his brother, Robert.
1091 - William defeats an invasion
of England led by Malcolm III of Scotland.
1092 - Carlisle is captured from Scotland and Cumberland is annexed.
- Malcolm III and the Scots invade England again, but they are defeated and Malcolm is killed at the Battle of Alnwick.
- William suppresses revolt in Northumbria.
1095 - First Crusade begins following a call by Pope Urban II to help free
the Holy Land which has been captured by Muslims.
1098 - William suppresses a Welsh rebellion against the Norman border
1099 - The Crusaders take Jerusalem. The first Crusade ends.
1100 - William is killed by an arrow while out hunting
in the New Forest. Supposedly an accident, it has been suggested that he was shot deliberately on the instructions of his
|King Henry I ( 1100 - 1135 ) |
1100 - Henry I succeeds his brother, William II.
- Henry issues a Charter of Liberties, pledging good governance.
1100 - Henry marries Edith known as Matilda, daughter
of Malcolm III of Scotland.
1101 - Robert of Normandy invades England in an attempt to wrest the English throne from his
brother, Henry. After failing, he signs the Treaty of Alton, which confirms Henry as King of England and Robert as Duke of
1106 - War breaks out between Henry and Robert. Henry defeats Robert at the Battle of Tinchebrai, imprisons him
in Cardiff Castle, and takes control of Normandy.
1118 - Death of Henry's wife Matilda.
1120 - Henry's son and heir,
William, is drowned at sea when returning from Normandy in The White Ship which strikes a rock and sinks. Henry’s
daughter, Matilda, becomes heir.
1121 - Henry marries Adelicia of Louvain
1126 - Henry persuades the barons to accept
Matilda as his lawful successor to the throne.
1128 - Matilda, Henry's only surviving legitimate child, marries Geoffrey
Plantagenet, Count of Anjou.
1135 - Henry I dies in Rouen, France, as a result of food poisoning
|King Stephen ( 1135 - 1154 ) |
1135 - Stephen usurps the throne from Matilda,
1136 - The Earl of Norfolk leads the first rebellion against Stephen starting civil war known as
1136 - Owain Gwynedd of Wales defeats the English at Crug Mawr
1138 - Robert, Earl of Gloucester, an
illegitimate son of Henry I, deserts Stephen and pledges allegiance to Matilda.
1138 - David I of Scotland invades England
in support of his niece, Matilda, but is defeated at Northallerton.
1139 - Matilda leaves France and lands in England.
- Matilda’s forces take Stephen prisoner at the Battle of Lincoln, and Matilda is proclaimed queen.
1141 - Earl Robert
is captured and exchanged for Stephen’s freedom.
1145 - Stephen defeats Matilda’s forces at the Battle of Faringdon.
- Matilda abandons her cause and leaves England.
1147 - Matilda's son Henry Plantagenet (later Henry II) invades England
but runs out of money. Stephen pays for Henry's return to Normandy
1151 - Matilda dies and her son, Henry Plantagenet,
succeeds his father as Count of Anjou.
1153 - Henry lands in England again, and gathers support for further war against
1153 - Henry and Stephen agree terms for ending the civil war. Under the terms of the Treaty of Westminster, Stephen
is to remain King for life, but thereafter the throne passes to Henry.
1154 - Stephen dies.
|King Henry II ( 1154 - 1189 ) |
1154 - Henry II accedes to the throne at the age
of 21 upon the death of his second cousin, Stephen.
1155 - Henry appoints Thomas a Becket as Chancellor of England, a post
that he holds for seven years.
1155 - Pope Adrian IV issues the papal bull Laudabiliter, which gives Henry dispensation
to invade Ireland and bring the Irish Church under the control of the Church of Rome.
1162 - On the death of Archbishop
Theobald, Henry appoints Thomas a Becket as Archbishop of Canterbury in the hope that he will help introduce Church reforms.
- Henry introduces the Constitutions of Clarendon, which place limitations on the Church’s jurisdiction over crimes
committed by the clergy. The Pope refuses to approve the Constitutions, so Thomas a Becket refuses to sign them.
- The Assize of Clarendon establishes trial by jury for the first time.
1166 - Dermot McMurrough, King of Leinster in Ireland,
appeals to Henry to help him oppose a confederation of other Irish kings. In response to the appeal, Henry sends a force led
by Richard de Clare, Earl of Pembroke, thereby beginning the English settlement of Ireland.
1168 - English scholars expelled
from Paris settle in Oxford, where they found a university.
1170 - Pope Alexander III threatens England with an interdict
and forces Henry to a formal reconciliation with Becket. However, the two of them quarrel again when Becket publishes papal
letters voiding Henry’s Constitutions of Clarendon.
1170 - Becket is killed in Canterbury Cathedral on 29 December
by four of Henry’s knights.
1171 - Henry invades Ireland and receives homage from the King of Leinster and the other
kings. Henry is accepted as Lord of Ireland.
1171 - At Cashel Henry makes Irish clergy submit to the authority of Rome
- Canonization of Thomas a Becket.
1173 - Eleanor of Aquitaine and her sons revolt unsuccessfully against her husband Henry
1174 - Henry’s sons Henry, Richard, and Geoffrey lead an unsuccessful rebellion against their father
- Henry creates a framework of justice creating judges and dividing England into six counties
1185 - Lincoln cathedral
is destroyed by an earthquake.
1189 - Henry dies at Chinon castle, Anjou, France
|King Richard I The Lion Heart ( 1189 - 1199 ) |
1189 - Richard I becomes King of England upon
the death of Henry II
1189 - William Longchamp is appointed Chancellor of England and governs the country during Richard’s
1189 - Richard sets out with Philip of France on the Third Crusade to the Holy Land
1191 - William Longchamp
falls from power and Richard’s brother, John, takes over the government
1191 - Richard captures the city of Acre,
Palestine, and defeats Saladin at Arsuuf, near Jaffa
1192 - Richard reaches an agreement with Saladin to guarantee Christians
safe pilgrimage to Jerusalem
1192 - On his way back to England from Palestine, Richard is captured and handed over to Henry
VI, Emperor of Germany. Henry demands a ransom of 100,000 marks from England for Richard’s release from prison
- The ransom is raised in England. Richard is released from captivity.
1195 - Richard returns to England for a brief period,
before leaving to fight in France, never to return to his homeland.
1196 - The Assize of Measures standardizes weights
including the lb (pound) and distance including the yard.
1199 - Richard is mortally wounded by an arrow from a crossbow
in battle at Chalus, in France.
|King John ( 1199 - 1216 ) |
1199 - John accedes to the throne on the death
of his brother, Richard I.
1204 - England loses most of its possessions in France.
1205 - John refuses to accept Stephen
Langton as Archbishop of Canterbury
1208 - Pope Innocent III issues an Interdict against England, banning all church services
except baptisms and funerals
1209 - Pope Innocent III excommunicates John for his confiscation of ecclesiastical property
- Cambridge University founded
1212 - Innocent III declares that John is no longer the rightful King
1213 - John submits
to the Pope’s demands and accepts the authority of the Pope
1214 - Philip Augustus of France defeats the English
at the Battle of Bouvines
1215 - Beginning of the Barons' war. The English Barons march to London to demand rights which
they lay down in the Magna Carta.
1215 - John meets the English barons at Runnymede, agrees
to their demands, and seals the Magna Carta which set limits on the powers of the monarch, lays out the feudal obligations
of the barons, confirms the liberties of the Church, and grants rights to all freemen of the realm and their heirs for ever.
It is the first written constitution.
1215 - The Pope decrees that John need not adhere to the Magna Carta, and civil war
1216 - The barons seek French aid in their fight against John. Prince Louis of France lands in England and captures
the Tower of London
1216 - John flees North and loses his war chest of cash and jewels in the Wash estuary
1216 - John
dies of a fever at Newark and is buried Worcester Cathedral
|King Henry III ( 1216 - 1272 ) |
1216 - Henry III is crowned King at the age of
nine. England is ruled temporarily by two regents, Hubert de Burgh and William the Marshal
1217 - The French lose the battles
of Lincoln and Dover and are driven back to France
1220 - Building of Salisbury cathedral begun
1222 - De Burgh successfully
puts down an insurrection supporting the French king Louis Vlll’s claim to the throne
1227 - Henry takes full control
of the government of England, but retains de Burgh as his main adviser
1232 - Hubert de Burgh is dismissed as adviser
- Henry marries Eleanor of Provence
1237 - The Treaty of York with Alexander II of Scotland agrees the border between England
1238 - Simon de Montfort marries Henry’s sister, Eleanor
1240 - Henry's Great Council is called 'Parliament'
for the first time
1245 - Henry lays the foundation stone for the rebuilding of Westminster Abbey
1258 - The English
barons, led by de Montfort, rebel against Henry’s misgovernment. They present a list of grievances to Henry, who signs
the Provisions of Oxford, which limit royal power
1261 - Henry repudiates the Provisions of Oxford
1264 - The Baron’s
War breaks out. De Montfort defeats Henry at Lewes. Henry is captured.
1265 - Simon de Montfort summons the first directly
elected English Parliament
1265 - Some of the barons break their alliance with de Montfort and, led by Prince Edward, kill
him at the Battle of Evesham
1266 - The Dictum of Kenilworth restores Henry's authority and annuls the Provisions of Oxford
- In the Treaty of Montgomery, Henry recognizes Llywelyn ap Gruffydd as ruler of Wales
1272 - Henry III dies in the Palace
|King Edward I Longshanks ( 1272 - 1307 ) |
1272 - Edward learns that he has succeeded to
the throne on his way home from the Crusade
1274 - Edward is crowned in Westminster Abbey
1282 - Edward invades North
Wales and defeats Llywelyn ap Gruffydd the last ruler of an independent Wales
1284 - Independence of the Welsh is ended
by the Statute of Rhuddlan
1290 - Edward's wife Eleanor dies at Harby in Nottinghamshire. Her body is brought back to London
and a cross erected at each stop along the journey - Geddington, Hardingston, Waltham, and the most famous at Charing Cross.
1292 - Edward chooses John Balliol to be the new King of Scotland
1295 - Model Parliament is summoned
1295 - John
Balliol reneges on his allegiance to Edward and signs alliance with King Philip IV of France
1296 - Edward invades Scotland,
defeats the Scots at Dunbar and deposes Balliol. He then takes over the throne of Scotland and removes the Stone of Scone
1297 - Scots rise against English rule and, led by William Wallace, defeat Edward at the Battle of Stirling
1298 - Edward invades Scotland again and defeats William Wallace at the Battle of Falkirk
1299 - Edward marries
Margaret of France
1301 - Edward makes his son Prince of Wales, a title conferred on every first born son of the monarchy
1305 - William Wallace is executed in London.
1306 - Robert Bruce is crowned King of Scotland
Edward attempts to invade Scotland again, but dies on his way north
|King Edward II ( 1307 - 1327 ) |
1307 - Edward II accedes to the throne on the
death of his father, Edward I.
1308 - Edward’s favourite, Piers Gaveston, is exiled for misgovernment.
Gaveston returns from exile in France.
1310 - Parliament sets up a committee of Lords Ordainers to control the King and
improve administration. The King’s cousin, Thomas, Earl of Lancaster, takes control
1312 - Piers Gaveston is kidnapped
by the King’s opponents and is put to death.
1314 - Edward and the English army are defeated at the Battle of Bannockburn
by Robert Bruce. Scottish independence is assured
1320 - Welsh border barons, father and son, both named Hugh Despenser,
gain the King’s favour,
1320 - The Scots assert their independence by signing the Declaration of Arbroath
- Barons’ rebellion, led by Thomas, Earl of Lancaster, is crushed at the Battle of Boroughbridge in Yorkshire.
- Edward’s wife, Isabella, abandons him and with her lover, Mortimer, seizes power and deposes Edward. The Despensers
are both put to death.
1327 - Edward is formally deposed by Parliament in favour of Edward III, his son, and is murdered
in Berkeley Castle on the orders of his wife, Isabella.
|King Edward III ( 1327 - 1377 ) |
1327 - Edward III accedes to the throne after
his father, Edward II, is formally deposed.
1328 - Edward marries Phillipa of Hanault
1329 - Edward recognizes Scotland
as an independent nation
1330 - Edward takes power after three years of government by his mother, Isabella of France, and
her lover, Roger Mortimer. He imprisons his mother for the rest of her life.
1332 - Parliament is divided into two houses,
Lords and Commons. English becomes the court language replacing Norman French.
1333 - Defeat of Scottish army at Halidon
1337 - Start of 100 Years’ War with France.
1344 - Edward establishes the Order of the Garter
David II of Scotland invades England but is defeated at Neville’s Cross and captured.
1346 - French defeated at the
Battle of Crecy.
1347 - Edward besieges and captures Calais.
1348 - -1350 The Black Death, bubonic plague which caused
the skin to turn black, kills one-third of the English population. It leaves an acute shortage of labour for agriculture and
1356 - Black Prince defeats French at Poitiers capturing King John II of France who is held prisoner for four years.
- David II of Scotland is released from captivity and returns home to Scotland.
1360 - King John II of France is released
on payment of a ransom
1367 - England and France support rivals side in the civil war in Castille
1369 - War breaks
out with France and the French take back most of Aquitaine
1370 - Edward, The Black Prince, sacks Limoges massacring 3,000
1372 - French troops recapture Poitou and Brittany. Naval Battle at La Rochelle.
1373 - John of Gaunt leads
an invasion of France taking his army to the borders of Burgundy.
1373 - John of Gaunt returns to England and takes charge
of government. Edward and his son are ill.
1376 - Parliament gains right to investigate public abuses and impeach offenders;
the first impeachment is of Alice Perrers, Edward’s mistress, and two lords.
1376 - Death of Edward, the Black Prince.
- Edward III dies of a stroke at Sheen Palace, Surrey, aged 64 years
|King Richard II ( 1377 - 1399 ) |
1377 - Ten year old Richard II succeeds his grandfather,
Edward III; the kingdom is ruled at first by the King’s uncles, John of Gaunt and Thomas of Gloucester.
1380 - John
Wycliffe begins to translate the New Testament from Latin into English .
1380 - A Poll Tax is levied, a shilling a head
for the entire male population
1381 - Poll Tax leads to the Peasants’ Revolt. Watt Tyler and John Ball march on London.
- Richard promises that the taxes will be repealed, but as the rebels return they are hunted and executed.
1382 - William
of Wykeham founds Winchester College
1387 - Led by the Duke of Gloucester, the Lords Appellant control the government
- Scots defeat Henry Hotspur at the Battle of Otterburn
1389 - Richard takes control of the government; William of Wykeham
is Lord Chancellor
1394 - Richard leads English army to reconquer west of Ireland.
1396 - Richard marries Isabella daughter
of the King of France and signs a 28 year truce with France.
1397 - Richard takes revenge against Lords Appellant and
exiles Henry Bolingbroke
1398 - Richard (Dick) Whittington becomes Lord Mayor of London
1399 - Bolingbroke becomes Duke
of Lancaster on the death of John of Gaunt, but Richard seizes his possessions. Bolingbroke returns from exile to claim his
inheritance and seizes the throne.
1399 - Richard, who is away fighting at Leinster in Ireland, returns, but is deposed
and imprisoned in Pontefract Castle, where he dies in 1400
|King Henry IV ( 1399 - 1413 ) |
1399 - Henry returns from exile in France to reclaim
his estates seized by Richard II; he claims the throne and is crowned. His coronation was the first since the Norman Conquest
in which the King's address was in English instead of Norman French.
1400 - Richard dies of starvation in Pontefract Castle.
- Death of the poet Geoffrey Chaucer leaving The Canterbury Tales unfinished.
1401 - Owain Glyndwr leads Welsh revolt
against English rule
1402 - State visit to England of Manuel II, the Byzantine emperor
1403 - First rebellion by the
Percy family from Northumberland defeated at the Battle of Shrewsbury.
1404 - Glyndwr makes a treaty with the French, who
send an army in 1405 to support the rebellion against the English.
1405 - Second Percy rebellion takes place
Henry contracts a leprosy-like illness
1408 - Third Percy rebellion takes place.
1413 - Henry dies at Westminster, worn
out by constant revolts and shortage of money.
|King Henry V ( 1413 - 1422 ) |
1413 - Henry accedes to the throne at the age
of 25 upon the death of his father, Henry IV
1414 - Henry adopts the claims of Edward II to the French crown
Henry thwarts the Cambridge plot, an attempt by a group of nobles to replace him on the throne with his cousin, Edmund Mortisner,
Earl of March.
1415 - Henry renews the war against France in order to win back territories lost by his ancestors. After
a five-week siege, he captures Harfleur the leading port in north-west France.
1415 - Battle of Agincourt, at which 6,000
Frenchmen are killed, while less than 400 English soldiers lose their lives.
1416 - Death of Owain Glyndwr, leader of the
1420 - Henry marries Catherine, daughter of Charles VI. Under the treaty of Troy, Henry will become King
of France on the death of Charles VI.
1421 - Birth of Prince Henry, later Henry VI.
1422 - Henry V dies in France of
dysentery before he can succeed to the French throne. King Charles VI of France dies the following month, leaving Henry VI,
Henry’s 10-month-old son, as King of France and England.
|King Henry VI ( 1422 - 1461 ) |
1422 - Henry aged 8 months becomes King of England
on the death of his father, Henry V, and then, two months later, King of France on the death of his grandfather, Charles VI.
- John, Duke of Bedford, is appointed Regent of France; Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester, becomes Regent of England.
Henry VI is crowned King of England
1429 - The young peasant girl Joan of Arc begins her campaign to expel the English
from France. She inspires the French army which relieves Orleans besieged by English troops.
1431 - The English capture
Joan of Arc. She is burned at the stake as a witch and heretic in Rouen on 30 May.
1431 - Henry VI of England is crowned
King of France in Paris
1437 - Henry assumes personal rule of England
1440 - Eton college founded giving free education
to 70 scholars
1445 - Henry marries Margaret of Anjou
1453 - End of 100 Years’ War. Gascony and Normandy fall
to the French. England retains only Calais and The Channel Islands.
1453 - Henry becomes mentally ill. Richard, Duke of
York, is made Protector during Henry’s illness
1453 - Battle of Heworth between supporters of the Neville and Percy
families marks the beginning of the feud between the Houses of York and Lancaster
1454 - Henry regains his senses but disaffected
nobles take matters into their own hands. Supporters of the Dukes of York and Lancaster take sides.
1455 - Beginning of
the 'Wars of the Roses'. Duke of York is dismissed. York raises an army and defeats the King’s Lancastrian forces at
the Battle of St. Albans.The Lancastrian leader, the Duke of Somerset, is killed. York takes over the government of England.
- Henry unsuccessfully tries to broker peace between the Yorkists and Lancastrians.
1459 - War is renewed and the Lancastrians
are defeated at Blore Heath; the Yorkists are then defeated at Ludford Bridge near Ludlow. Parliament declares York a traitor
and he escapes to Ireland.
1460 - Yorkist army led by Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick, defeats Lancastrians at the Battle
of Northampton. Henry VI is captured and his wife, Margaret, escapes to Scotland. Richard of York is again Protector.
- Margaret raises a Lancastrian army in the north and defeats and kills Richard of York at Wakefield. Henry VI captured by
the Yorkists at Northampton. Earl of Warwick takes London for the Yorkists.
1461 - Yorkists win Battle of Mortimers Cross.
Queen Margaret marches her army South, defeats Earl of Warwick at St Albans, and frees Henry. Edward, son of Richard of York,
defeats Margaret's Lancastrian forces on 29 March at the Battle of Towton - the largest and bloodiest battle ever on British
soil when 28,000 lose their lives. Margaret and Henry flee to Scotland. Henry is deposed by Edward who declares himself King
1462 - Lancastrian revolts are suppressed.
1464 - Warwick defeats Lancastrians at Battle of Hexham; Henry
VI is captured and brought to the Tower of London.
1469 - Warwick falls out with Edward IV, and defeats him at Edgecote.
They are later reconciled but Warwick is banished. He makes peace with Margaret, returns to England with an army, and Edward
flees to Flanders. Henry VI is restored to the throne.
1471 - Edward returns to England and defeats and kills Warwick at
the Battle of Barnet. Margaret is defeated at the Battle of Tewkesbury; her son Edward, Prince of Wales, heir to the Lancastrian
throne is killed in battle.
1471 - Henry is murdered by being stabbed to death in the Tower of London.
|King Edward IV ( 1461 - 1483 ) |
1461 - Edward, son of Richard of York, is declared
king by the Earl of Warwick following the Yorkist victory at the Battle of Towton.
1464 - Warwick defeats Lancastrians
at Battle of Hexham; Henry VI is captured and brought to the Tower of London.
1464 - Edward marries Elizabeth Woodville,
the widow of a commoner, offending Warwick.
1469 - Warwick falls out with Edward IV, and defeats him at Edgecote. They
are later reconciled but Warwick is banished. He makes peace with Margaret, returns to England with an army, and Edward flees
to Flanders. Henry VI is restored to the throne.
1471 - Edward returns to England from Flanders and defeats and kills Warwick
at the Battle of Barnet.
1471 - Margaret is defeated at the Battle of Tewkesbury and the Lancastrian heir, Prince Edward,
is killed. Soon after, Henry VI is murdered in the Tower of London.
1474 - Edward grants privileges to the Hanseatic League
of North German trading cities to conduct trade in England.
1476 - William Caxton sets up a printing press in Westminster,
1478 - Edward falls out with his brother George, Duke of Clarence, who is then murdered in the Tower, supposedly
in a butt of malmsey wine.
1483 - Death of Edward.
|King Edward V ( 1483 ) |
1483 - On the death of Edward, the crown passes
to his 12 year old son, Edward V
1483 - Edward is declared illegitimate and deposed in favour of his uncle Richard Duke
1483 - Edward and his younger brother Richard of York are imprisoned in the Tower of London. After a few
months the princes are never seen again and are believed to have been murdered.
|King Richard III ( 1483 - 1485 ) |
1483 - Richard III declares himself King after
confining and possibly ordering the murder of his two nephews, Edward V and Richard Duke of York, in the Tower of London
- The Duke of Buckingham is appointed Constable and Great Chamberlain of England
1483 - In October Richard crushes a rebellion
led by his former supporter, the Duke of Buckingham. Buckingham is captured, tried, and put to death.
1483 - At the cathedral
of Rheims, Henry Tudor swears a solemn oath to marry Elizabeth of York in the presence of the Lancastrian Court in exile.
- Richard establishes his military headquarters behind the battlements of Nottingham Castle.
1484 - Death of Richard’s
only son and heir, Edward, aged 9 years.
1484 - A Papal Bull is issued against witchcraft.
1484 - Parliamentary statutes
are written down in English for the first time and printed.
1485 - Death of Richard’s wife, Queen Anne.
Henry Tudor, Earl of Richmond, lands at Milford Haven in West Wales in early August and gathers support as the Lancastrian
claimant to the Yorkist-held throne.
1485 - Richard is defeated and killed by Henry Tudor’s army at Bosworth Field.
The Wars of the Roses come to an end.
|King Henry VII ( 1485 - 1509 ) |
1485 - Henry becomes King after defeating Richard
III of York at the Battle of Bosworth Field. The Wars of the Roses are ended.
1486 - Henry marries Elizabeth of York, thereby
uniting the houses of York and Lancaster.
1487 - Henry crushes a revolt by the Earl of Lincoln on behalf of Lambert Simnel,
a claimant to the throne, at Stoke.
1491 - Henry invades France but at the Treaty of Etaples agrees to withdraw English
forces in return for a large sum of money
1492 - Perkin Warbeck an impersonator who claims he is Richard the younger of
the Princes in the Tower attempts to overthrow Henry, but is defeated and put to death in 1499.
1492 - Christopher Columbus
crosses Atlantic and lands in San Salvador, Cuba and Haiti which he calls the 'West Indies' in the belief that he has sailed
around the World to India.
1497 - John Cabot sails west from Bristol on the Matthew and discovers New-found-land. He believed
it was Asia and claimed it for England.
1499 - Perkin Warbeck is hanged in the Tower of London. The Earl of Warwick is
1501 - Catherine of Aragon, daughter of King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella of Spain, marries Prince Arthur,
Henry’s eldest son.
1502 - Prince Arthur dies, and Prince Henry (the future Henry VIII) becomes heir to the throne,
later marrying Arthur’s widow, Catherine of Aragon.
1503 - Margaret, Henry's daughter marries James IV of Scotland.
The marriage gives James' descendants a claim to the English throne.
1503 - Death of Elizabeth of York, Henry’s
1509 - Henry VII dies at Richmond Palace, at the age of 52.
|King Henry VIII ( 1509 - 1547 ) |
1509 - Henry accedes to the throne on the death
of his father, Henry VII.
1509 - Henry marries Catherine of Aragon, daughter of the Spanish King and Queen, and widow of
his elder brother, Arthur
1511 - Henry joins the Holy League against the French. All men under the age of 40 are required
to practise archery.
1513 - The English defeat the Scots at the Battle of Flodden Field. James IV of Scotland is killed.
- Thomas Wolsey, Archbishop of York, becomes Chancellor and Cardinal.
1516 - Catherine gives birth to Princess Mary (later
1517 - Martin Luther publishes his 95 theses against the abuses of the Roman Catholic Church.
1518 - The Pope
and the Kings of England, France, and Spain pledge peace in Europe
1520 - Henry holds peace talks with Francis I of France
at the Field of the Cloth of Gold, but fails to get support against Charles V of the Holy Roman Empire.
1525 - Hampton
Court Palace is completed. William Tyndale publishes The New Testament in English.
1526 - Cardinal Wolsey re-establishes
the Council of the North
1527 - Henry seeks permission from the Pope to divorce Catherine of Aragon but is refused.
- Cardinal Wolsey is accused of high treason for failing to get the Pope's consent for the divorce, but dies before he can
be brought to trial.
1529 - Sir Thomas More becomes Chancellor. Henry starts to cut ties with the Church of Rome.
- The appearance in the sky of Halley's comet causes widespread panic and talk of holy retribution
1532 - Sir Thomas More
resigns from the Chancellorship over the erosion of Papal authority.
1533 - Thomas Cranmer is appointed Archbishop of Canterbury
and annuls Henry’s 24-year marriage to Catherine of Aragon.
1533 - Henry marries Anne Boleyn.
1533 - Princess
Elizabeth (later Elizabeth I) is born.
1533 - Pope Clement VII excommunicates Henry
1534 - The Act of Supremacy is passed,
establishing Henry as head of the Church of England.
1535 - Sir Thomas More is executed after refusing to recognize Henry
as Supreme Head of the Church of England.
1535 - Thomas Cromwell is made Vicar-General and starts plans to seize the Church's
1535 - First complete English translation of the Bible by Miles Coverdale
1536 - Anne Boleyn is executed and
Henry marries Jane Seymour
1536 - The Act of Union between Wales and England.
1536 - Thomas Cromwell begins the dissolution
of the monasteries under the 'Reformation'. .
1536 - Great northern rising, known as the Pilgrimage of Grace against the
dissolution of monasteries.
1537 - Jane Seymour dies giving birth to Edward (later Edward VI).
1539 - Parliament passes
the Act for the 'Dissolution of the Greater Monasteries'. The abbots of Colchester, Glastonbury and Reading are executed for
1540 - The last of the monasteries to be dissolved is Waltham Abbey.
1540 - Henry marries Anne of Cleves
in January but the marriage is annulled in July
1540 - Execution of Thomas Cromwell on a charge of treason.
1540 - Henry
marries Catherine Howard.
1541 - Beginning of the Reformation in Scotland under John Knox.
1542 - Catherine Howard is
executed for treason.
1542 - James V of Scotland dies and is succeeded by his 6 day old daughter Mary Queen of Scots.
- Henry marries the twice-widowed Catherine Parr, his sixth and last wife.
1543 - Treaty of Greenwich proposes marriage
between Henry's son Edward and Mary Queen of Scots. However it is repudiated by the Scots 6 months later who want an alliance
1545 - Henry's flagship The Mary Rose sinks in the Solent
1546 - Henry becomes increasingly ill
with what is now believed to be syphilis and cirrhosis.
1547 - Death of Henry at the age of 55, survived by Catherine Parr
|King Edward VI ( 1547 - 1553 ) |
1547 - Edward VI accedes to the throne at the
age of nine after the death of his father, Henry VIII.
1547 - Edward Seymour, Earl of Hertford, uncle of Edward VI, is
invested as Duke of Somerset and Protector of England.
1547 - The English army defeats the Scots at Pinkie Cleugh as part
of an attempt to force a marriage between Edward VI and Mary Queen of Scots.
1548 - The French send over 6,000 troops to
prevent the English from gaining control of the Scottish Borders.
1549 - The First Act of Uniformity is passed, making
the Roman Catholic mass illegal. The clergy are ordered to remove icons and statues of the saints, and whitewash over wall
1549 - The First Book of Common Prayer is introduced, which changes the Church service from Latin to English.
- The Duke of Somerset is deposed as Protector of England, and is replaced by John Dudley, Earl of Warwick, who creates himself
Duke of Northumberland.
1552 - The Duke of Somerset is executed
1552 - Archbishop Cranmer publishes the Second book
of Common Prayer.
1553 - The Duke of Northumberland persuades Edward to nominate his daughter-in-law Lady Jane Grey as
his heir, in an attempt to secure the Protestant succession.
1553 - Edward VI dies of tuberculosis at Greenwich Palace.
|Queen Mary I ( 1553 - 1558 ) |
1553 - Lady Jane Grey is proclaimed Queen by her
father-in-law The Duke of Northumberland. After nine days, Mary arrives in London, Lady Jane Grey is arrested, and Mary is
1554 - After Mary declares her intention to marry Philip of Spain, Sir Thomas Wyatt leads a revolt to depose
1554 - Wyatt’s rebellion is crushed. Sir Thomas Wyatt, Lady Jane Grey, and her husband are executed.
- Mary's half-sister Princess Elizabeth is sent to the Tower of London on suspicion of involvement in Wyatt's rebellion
- Mary marries Philip of Spain heir to the Spanish throne.
1554 - Four months after Mary's accession, Parliament meets
to re-establish Catholicism in England
1554 - The persecution of Protestants begins, the heresy laws are revived, and England
is reconciled to Papal authority.
1555 - Protestant bishops are burned at the stake for heresy.
1555 - Princess Elizabeth
(later Elizabeth I) is released from the Tower of London
1556 - Cardinal Reginald Pole is appointed Archbishop of Canterbury.
- Thomas Cranmer, former Archbishop of Canterbury, is burned at the stake for heresy.
1556 - Philip becomes King Philip
II of Spain; he leaves England, never to return
1557 - Philip II persuades Mary to declare war on France as an ally of
1558 - Port of Calais, the last English possession in France, is captured by the French.
1558 - Mary dies at
St.James’s Palace, London.
|Elizabeth I ( 1558 - 1603 ) |
1558 - Elizabeth becomes Queen on the death of
her half-sister, Mary.
1559 - Elizabeth is crowned Queen of England at Westminster Abbey in January.
1559 - Mary Queen
of Scots in Paris declares herself Queen of France, Scotland and England when her husband Francis becomes King of France.
He dies a year later and Mary returns to Scotland.
1559 - Acts of Supremacy and Uniformity restore the Protestant Church
in England and make Elizabeth Head of the Church of England.
1559 - The Revised Prayer Book of Elizabeth I is issued. It
is less extreme than its predecessors
1560 - Elizabeth founds Westminster School
1562 - Hawkins and Drake make first
slave-trading voyage to America.
1562 - Elizabeth gives aid to the Protestant Huguenots in the French Wars of Religion.
English troops occupy Dieppe and Le Havre.
1563 - John Foxe’s The Book of Martyrs, the story of religious
persecution, is published in England.
1563 - -1564 17,000 die of the Plague in London which is believed to have been brought
back by troops returning from Le Havre.
1564 - Peace made between England and France at Troyes.
1565 - Sir Walter Raleigh
brings potatoes and tobacco from the New World
1566 - Elizabeth forbids Parliament to discuss her marriage prospects.
- Mary Queen of Scots, flees to England from Scotland and is imprisoned by Elizabeth.
1569 - Elizabeth I approves Sunday
1570 - Pope Pius V excommunicates Queen Elizabeth from the Catholic Church.
1577 - - 1580 Francis Drake sails
around the world in the Golden Hind.
1579 - Francis, Duke of Alencon, secretly comes to England to try and marry
1581 - Francis Drake knighted by Queen Elizabeth on the deck of The Golden Hind.
1584 - Sir Walter
Raleigh founds the first American colony and names it Virginia after Elizabeth the Virgin Queen
1584 - Oakham School founded
by Archdeacon Robert Johnson
1585 - William Shakespeare leaves Stratford for London to become an aspiring playwright
- Babington Catholic plot to assassinate Elizabeth I
1586 - Mary Queen of Scots, who had fled from Scotland to England,
is implicated in the Babington plot and is sent to trial.
1587 - Mary, Queen of Scots, is executed at Fotheringhay Castle
on charges of treason.
1587 - Drake attacks the Spanish fleet in Cadiz.
1587 - Raleigh's second expedition to New World
lands in North Carolina. Drake destroys the Spanish fleet at Cadiz.
1588 - Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, and a favourite
of Elizabeth, dies.
1588 - A Spanish Armada of 130 ships sailing against England is defeated by bad weather and the English
fleet under Admiral Drake and John Hawkins using fireships. Many were wrecked trying to return by sailing round the north
of the British Isles. The English dominance of the sea leaves the way open for English trade and colonisation of America and
1588 - Earl of Essex leads an expedition to Ireland.
1589 - John Harrington invents the first flushing water
closet at his house at Kelston, Bath. He calls it 'Ajax' a pun on the Elizabethan slang word 'Jakes' for a privy. Elizabeth
I orders a Harrington WC to be installed at Richmond Palace.
1590 - Shakespeare writes Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Night's
1593 - 15,000 Londoners die of the Plague. All theatres are closed for one year. Playwright Christopher Marlow
1595 - Sir Walter Raleigh makes his first expedition to the South American continent. He explores 300 miles
of the Orinoco searching for El Dorado.
1599 - Earl of Tyrone leads a rebellion against the English in Ireland.
- The Globe Theatre is opened in London.
1600 - East India Company founded
1601 - Earl of Essex is executed for leading
a revolt against Elizabeth.
1601 - Poor Law is passed introducing a poor relief rate on property owners.
1601 - First
performance of Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
1603 - Elizabeth I dies at Richmond Palace, Surrey.
|King James I ( 1603 - 1625 ) |
1603 - James VI of Scotland becomes King James
I of England, Scotland, and Ireland after the death of Elizabeth I uniting the thrones of Scotland and England.
The Millenary Petition is presented to James I. It expresses Puritan desires for reforms to the Church of England.
- Plot against James to set his cousin Arabella Stuart on the throne. Sir Walter Raleigh is implicated and imprisoned.
- The Somerset House Peace Conference results in peace between England and Spain.
1604 - The Hampton Court Conference fails
to settle the doctrinal differences between the Anglican Church and its Puritan critics.
1604 - James proclaims that smoking
is harmful to the lungs and imposes a tax on tobacco
1605 - Guy Fawkes and other Catholic dissidents attempt to blow up
King and Parliament in The Gunpowder Plot. They are betrayed and arrested.
1606 - The Gunpowder plotters are executed.
120 colonists sail for America.
1607 - The Earls of Tyrone and Tyrconnel end their rebellion against English rule of Ireland
and flee to Europe; Ulster is colonized by Protestant settlers from Scotland and England.
1607 - The English Parliament
rejects Union with Scotland.
1607 - Common citizenship of English and Scottish persons is granted to those born after the
accession of James VI of Scotland to the English throne.
1607 - Jamestown found in America by the Virginia company
- Scottish and English Protestants are encouraged to settle in Ulster
1609 - Shakespeare completes the Sonnets.
1611 - The King James Authorized
Version of the Bible is published.
1611 - Dissolution of the first Parliament of James I.
1611 - Arabella Stuart secretly
marries William Seymour. When James finds out Seymour is imprisoned but escapes with Arabella. They are captured on the way
to France and imprisoned in the Tower of London. Arabella starves herself to death there in 1615.
1612 - Henry, Prince
of Wales, dies of typhoid. His younger brother, Charles, becomes heir to the throne.
1612 - Heretics are burned at the
stake for the last time in England.
1613 - James' daughter Elizabeth marries Frederick V, Elector of Palatine. Their descendants
in House of Hanover will eventually inherit the British Throne.
1613 - The Globe Theatre in London burns during a performance
of Henry VIII
1614 - Second Parliament of James I meets.
1614 - Scottish mathematician John Napier publishes his theory
of logarithms simplifying calculations for navigators.
1615 - George Villiers becomes James’s favourite.
- Playwright William Shakespeare dies.
1616 - Raleigh is released from prison to lead an
expedition to Guiana in search of El Dorado
1617 - George Villiers becomes the Earl of Buckingham.
1618 - Raleigh fails
in his expedition and on his return is executed for alleged treason at Westminster.
1620 - The Pilgrim Fathers set sail
for America in the Mayflower. They land at Cape Cod and found New Plymouth.
1625 - Death of James I, aged 58.
|King Charles I ( 1625 - 1649 ) |
1625 - Charles I succeeds his father, James I.
- Parliament attempts to impeach the Duke of Buckingham and is dissolved by Charles.
1627 - England goes to war with France,
but at La Rochelle the Duke of Buckingham fails to relieve the besieged Huguenots.
1628 - The Petition of Right a declaration
of the “rights and liberties of the subject" is presented to the King, who agrees to it under protest.
1628 - Physician
William Harvey demonstrates the circulation of blood in the body
1629 - Charles dissolves Parliament and rules by himself
1630 - The colony of Massachusetts is founded in America
1633 - Work begins on Buckingham Palace in London
- Charles tries to force new prayer book on Scots, who resist by signing the National Covenant.
1639 - Act of Toleration
in England established religious toleration
1640 - Charles summons the Short Parliament, which he dissolves three weeks
later when it refuses to grant him money.
1640 - Long Parliament summoned, which lasts until 1660. It can only be dissolved
by its members.
1641 - Abolition of the Star Chamber and Court of High Commission.
1642 - Charles fails in his attempt
to arrest five MPs.
1642 - Outbreak of Civil War. Charles raises his standard at Nottingham. The Royalists win a tactical
victory the Parliamentary army at the Battle of Edgehill but the outcome is inconclusive.
1643 - Royalists defeat Parliamentary
army at Chalgrove Field, and take Bristol. Battle of Newbury is indecisive.
1644 - York is besieged by Parliamentary army
until relieved by Prince Rupert. Royalists defeated at Marston Moor.
1644 - Oliver Cromwell and the Puritans enforce and
Act of Parliament banning Christmas Day celebrations
1645 - Parliament creates New Model Army, which defeats the Royalist
army at Naseby on 16 June.
1646 - Charles surrenders to the Scots, who hand him over to Parliament.
1646 - Negotiations
take place between King and Parliament. King conspires with Scots to invade England on his behalf.
1647 - Charles escapes
to the Isle of Wight but is captured. He is tried by Parliament and found guilty of high treason.
1648 - A Scots army
supporting Charles is defeated at Preston.
1649 - Charles I is executed. There follows 11 years of rule by Parliament as
the Commonwealth under Cromwell.
|King Charles II ( 1660 - 1685 ) |
1658 - Death of Oliver Cromwell. He is succeeded
by his son Richard Cromwell
1659 - Richard Cromwell is forced to resign. The Rump Parliament is restored.
1660 - Charles
II returns to England from Holland and is restored to the throne.
1662 - Act of Uniformity compels Puritans to accept the
doctrines of the Church of England or leave the church.
1662 - Royal Society for the improvement of science founded
- England seizes the Dutch settlement of New Amsterdam, changing its name to New York.
1665 - Outbreak of the Second Anglo-Dutch
1665 - The Great Plague strikes London and over 60,000 die.
1666 - The Great Fire of London rages for four days
and three nights. Two thirds of central London is destroyed and 65,000 are left homeless.
1667 - The Earl of Clarendon
is replaced by a five-man Cabal.
1667 - Paradise Lost by John Milton published
1667 - A Dutch fleet sails up
the River Medway captures the English flagship The Royal Charles and sinks three other great ships
1670 - Secret
Treaty of Dover, by which Charles agrees to declare himself a Catholic and restore Catholicism in England in return for secret
subsidies from Louis XIV of France.
1670 - Hudson Bay Company founded in North America
1671 - Thomas Blood caught stealing
the Crown Jewels
1672 - Outbreak of the Third Dutch War.
1673 - Test Act keeps Roman Catholics out of political office.
- Death of John Milton
1674 - Peace made with the Dutch
1675 - Royal Observatory founded at Greenwich
1677 - John
Bunyan publishes The Pilgrims Progress.
1678 - The Popish Plot is fabricated by Titus Oates. He alleges a Catholic
plot to murder the King and restore Catholicism. The Government over-reacts, and many Catholic subjects are persecuted.
- Exclusion Bill attempts to exclude James, Charles’s Catholic brother, from the succession.
1679 - Habeas Corpus
act passed which forbids imprisonment without trial
1682 - Pennsylvania founded in America by William Penn
1685 - Charles
is received into the Roman Catholic Church on his deathbed.
|King James II ( 1685 - 1688 ) |
1685 - James succeeds his brother, Charles II.
- Rebellion of the Earl of Argyll in Scotland designed to place the Duke of Monmouth, Charles II's illegitimate son, on the
throne is crushed and Argyll is executed.
1685 - The Duke of Monmouth rebels against James, but is defeated at the Battle
of Sedgemoor in Somerset.
1685 - Edict of Nantes allowing freedom of religion to Huguenot Protestants is revoked in France,
resulting in thousands of Huguenot craft workers and traders settling in England.
1686 - Following their defeat at Sedgemoor,
Monmouth and many of the rebels are hanged or transported by the 'The Bloody Assizes' under Judge Jeffreys.
1686 - James
takes first measures to restore Catholicism in England, and sets up a standing army of 13,000 troops at Hounslow to overawe
1686 - Edmund Halley draws the first meteorological map showing weather systems
1687 - Issac Newton publishes
Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy
1688 - James, believing his Divine Right as King, issues the Declaration
of Indulgence to suspend all laws against Catholics and Non-Conformists and repeal the 1673 Test Act. He seeks to promote
his Catholic supporters in Parliament and purge Tories and Anglican clergy .
1688 - James’ wife, Mary of Modena,
gives birth to a son and Catholic heir. His daughters Mary, married to Dutch Stadtholder William of Orange, and Anne by his
first wife Anne Hyde are Protestant.
1688 - Following discontent over James attempts to control politics and religion,
seven leading statesmen invite William of Orange, son-in-law of James, to England to restore English liberties.
The 'Glorious Revolution'. William of Orange lands at Torbay with an army of 20,000 and advances on London. Many Protestant
officers in James' army including Churchill, Duke of Marlborough, and James' own daughter Anne defect to support William and
his wife Mary.
1688 - James abdicates and flees to exile in France.
|King William III and Queen Mary II ( 1689 - 1702 ) |
1689 - William and Mary become joint King and
1689 - Parliament draws up the Declaration of Right detailing the unconstitutional acts of James II.
Bill of Rights is passed by Parliament. It stipulates that no Catholic can succeed to the throne, and also limits the powers
of the Royal prerogative. The King of Queen cannot withhold laws passed by Parliament or levy taxes without Parliamentary
1689 - Jacobite Highlanders rise in support of James and are victorious at Killiekrankie but are defeated a few
months later at Dunkeld.
1689 - Catholic forces loyal to James II land in Ireland from France and lay siege to Londonderry.
- William defeats James and French troops at the Battle of the Boyne in Ireland. Scottish Jacobites defeated at Haughs of
1690 - Anglo-Dutch naval force is defeated by the French at Beachy Head.
1691 - The Treaty of Limerick allows
Catholics in Ireland to exercise their religion freely, but severe penal laws soon follow.
1691 - William offers the Scottish
Highlanders a pardon for the Jacobite uprising if they sign allegiance him
1692 - Glencoe Massacre. MacDonalds are killed
by Campbells for not signing the oath of allegiance
1694 - Bank of England founded by William Paterson
1694 - Death
of Mary. William now rules alone.
1697 - Peace of Ryswick ends the war with France.
1697 - First Civil List Act passed
- The Act of Settlement establishes Hanoverian and Protestant succession to the throne.
1701 - James II dies in exile in
France. French king recognizes James II’s son James Edward (The Old Pretender) as “James III”.
William forms grand alliance between England, Holland, and Austria to prevent the union of the French and Spanish crowns.
- William dies after a riding accident. Stuarts in exile toast 'the gentleman in black velvet' in the belief that his horse
stumbled on a mole hill.
|Queen Anne ( 1702 - 1714 ) |
1702 - Anne succeeds her brother-in-law, William
1702 - England declares war on France in the War of the Spanish Succession
1704 - English, Bavarian, and Austrian
troops under Marlborough defeat the French at the Battle of Blenheim and save Austria from invasion.
1704 - British capture
Gibraltar from Spain.
1706 - Marlborough defeats the French at the Battle of Ramillies, and expels the French from the
1707 - The Act of Union unites the kingdoms of England and Scotland and transfers the seat of Scottish government
1708 - Marlborough defeats the French at the Battle of Oudenarde. .
1708 - Anne vetoes a parliamentary bill
to reorganize the Scottish militia, the last time a bill is vetoed by the sovereign.
1708 - James Edward Stuart, 'The Old
Pretender', arrives in Scotland in an unsuccessful attempt to gain the throne.
1709 - Marlborough defeats the French at
the Battle of Malplaquet.
1710 - The Whig government falls and a Tory ministry is formed.
1710 - St Paul's Cathedral,
London, completed by Sir Christopher Wren
1711 - First race meeting held at Ascot
1713 - The Treaty of Utrecht is signed
by Britain and France, bringing to an end the War of the Spanish Succession.
1714 - Queen Anne dies at Kensington Palace.
|King George I ( 1714 - 1727 ) |
1714 - George I, the first Hanoverian King, succeeds
his distant cousin, Anne.
1714 - A new Parliament is elected with a strong Whig majority led by Robert Walpole.
- The Jacobite rising begins in Scotland intending to place the ‘Old Pretender” James Edward Stuart, heir to James
II on the throne. The rebellion is defeated at Sheriffmuir.
1716 - The Septennial Act allows for General Elections to be
1717 - Townshend is dismissed from the government by George, causing Walpole to resign
1719 - Daniel Defoe publishes
1720 - South Sea Bubble bursts, leaving many investors ruined.
1721 - Sir Robert Walpole returns
to government as First Lord of the Treasury where he remains in office until 1742. He is effectively the first Prime Minister.
- Death of the Duke of Marlborough.
1726 - First circulating library in Britain opens in Edinburgh, Scotland.
Jonathan Swift publishes Gulliver’s Travels.
1727 - Death of the scientist, Isaac Newton.
1727 - George
I dies in Hanover, aged 67.
|King George II ( 1727 - 1760 ) |
1727 - George II succeeds his father, George I.
- Charles Wesley founds the Methodists at Lincoln College Oxford.
1732 - A royal charter is granted for the founding of
Georgia in America.
1732 - Lord Frederick North born
1734 - Jethro Tull publishes essays on improving farming including
the use of the seed drill.
1737 - Death of George’s wife, Queen Caroline.
1738 - John and Charles Wesley start
the Methodist movement in Britain.
1739 - Dick Turpin, highwayman, hanged at York
1739 - Britain goes to war with Spain
over Captain Jenkins’ ear, claimed to have been cut off in a skirmish at sea.
1740 - -1748 The War of Austrian Succession
breaks out in Europe.
1742 - Walpole resigns as Prime Minister.
1743 - George leads troops into battle at Dettingen
1745 - Charles Edward Stuart, 'Bonnie Prince Charlie', lands in Scotland and raises his flag for the restoration
of the Stuarts. 2,000 Jacobites enter Edinburgh. Scottish victory at Prestonpans. Charles and his Jacobite army march South
into England and reach Derby before turning back.
1746 - Scots defeated at the Battle of Culloden. Duke of Cumberland,
the King's 2nd son, ruthlessly represses the rebels and Scottish traditions.
1748 - Treaty of Aix-la-Chapelle ends the
war of Austrian Succession
1751 - Death of Frederick, Prince of Wales. His son, George, becomes heir to the throne.
- Britain adopts the Georgian Calendar. 1st January replaces 25 March as the first day of the year.
1757 - Britain declares
war against France. Start of the Seven Years’ War.
1757 - Robert Clive wins the Battle of Plassey and secures the
Indian province of Bengal for Britain.
1757 - William Pitt becomes Prime Minister
1759 - Wolfe captures Quebec from
the French and establishes British supremacy in Canada.
1759 - First botanical gardens laid out at Kew
1760 - George
|King George III ( 1760 - 1820 ) |
1760 - George III becomes king on the death of
his grandfather, George II.
1762 - The Earl of Bute is appointed Prime Minister. Bute proves so unpopular that he needs
to have a bodyguard.
1763 - Peace of Paris ends the Seven Years’ War.
1765 - Stamp Act raises taxes in American
1766 - William Pitt the Elder becomes prime minister
1768 - Richard Arkwright invents the spinning frame
- Captain James Cook’s first voyage to explore the Pacific.
1770 - Lord North becomes Prime Minister.
1770 - James
Cook lands in Botany Bay, South East Australia.
1771 - Encyclopaedia Britannica is first published.
1772 - John Harrisons
H4 clock allows navigators to accurately measure longitude enabling long distance sea travel
1772 - Warren Hastings is
appointed Governor General of India.
1773 - The world’s first cast-iron bridge is constructed over the River Severn
1773 - Boston Tea Party. American colonists protest against British taxes.
1775 - American War of
Independence begins when colonists fight British troops at Lexington.
1775 - James Watt develops the steam engine.
- On 4 July, the American Congress passes the Declaration of Independence.
1780 - Anti Catholic Gordon riots in London
- Americans supported by the French fleet defeat British at Battle of Yorktown.
1782 - Ireland obtains a short-lived parliament.
- On 3 Sept, The Treaty of Paris ends the American War of Independence. Britain recognizes American independence.
- -1801 William Pitt the Younger serves as Prime Minister.
1783 - Robert (Robbie) Burns publishes his first book of poetry
- George suffers his first attack of porphyria.
1788 - Colony of New South Wales established in Australia
1789 - Outbreak
of the French Revolution. Storming of the Bastille.
1791 - Publication of James Boswell’s Life of Johnson and Thomas
Paine’s Rights of Man.
1793 - King Louis XVI of France executed by guillotine
1793 - - 1802 War between Britain
1798 - Nelson destroys French fleet at the Battle of the Nile
1798 - Wordsworth publishes Lyrical Ballads
- Income Tax introduced
1800 - Act of Union with Ireland unites Parliaments of England and Ireland.
1803 - Beginning
of Napoleonic Wars. Napoleon assembles a fleet for the invasion of England.
1805 - Nelson defeats French and Spanish fleets
off Trafalgar, but is killed during the battle. Napoleon defeats the Russians at Austerlitz.
1807 - Slave Trade Act. William
Wilberforce is successful in his campaign to abolish slave trade in the British Empire.
1808 - -1814 Peninsular War to
drive the French out of Spain.
1809 - British defeat the French at the Battle of Corunna
1810 - Final illness of George
III leads to his son becoming Regent in 1811.
1812 - Prime Minister Spencer Perceval is assassinated in the House of Commons
by a disgruntled bankrupt
1812 - War of 1812 between the British and Americans. Several naval engagements. American forces
stopped from invading Canada.
1813 - Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice is published.
1813 - Monopoly of
the East India company is abolished
1814 - Napoleon defeated at Laon and Toulouse. He abdicates but returns from Elba.
- The defeat of Napoleon Bonaparte at Waterloo marks the end the Napoleonic Wars.
1815 - Corn Laws passed by Parliament
to protect British agriculture from cheap imports
1818 - The King’s wife, Queen Charlotte, dies.
1818 - Publication
of Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein
1819 - Peterloo Massacre in Manchester, of political reform campaigners.
Death of King George Ill, aged 81 years
|King George IV ( 1820 - 1830 ) |
1820 - George IV accedes to the throne, having
spent the last nine years as Prince Regent for his blind and deranged father.
1820 - A radical plot to murder the Cabinet,
known as the Cato Street Conspiracy, fails.
1820 - Trial of Queen Caroline, in which George IV attempts to divorce her
for adultery. She has popular support and the divorce proceedings fail.
1821 - Queen Caroline is excluded from George's
1821 - Michael Faraday begins his experiments with electromagnetism
1822 - Charles Babbage proposes his
difference engine, a mechanical calculator and forerunner or future computers.
1823 - The Royal Academy of Music is established
1823 - The British Museum is extended and extensively rebuilt to house expanding collection.
1823 - Rugby
schoolboy William Web Ellis, while playing football, picks up the ball and runs with it inventing Rugby Football.
- The National Gallery is established in London.
1825 - Nash reconstructs Buckingham Palace.
1825 - Locomotion No.1,
built by George Stephenson, pulls the world's first passenger train for Stockton to Darlington.
1825 - Trade Unions are
1828 - Duke of Wellington becomes British Prime Minister.
1829 - The Metropolitan Police Force is set up by
1829 - The Catholic Relief Act is passed, permitting Catholics to become Members of Parliament.
George IV dies at Windsor, aged 67.
|King William IV ( 1830 - 1837 ) |
1830 - William IV succeeds his brother, George
IV, at the age of 64
1831 - The new London Bridge is opened over the River Thames.
1832 - The First Reform Act is passed,
extending votes and redistributing Parliamentary seats on a more equitable basis.
1832 - Cholera spreads from Sunderland
and runs rampant killing over 20,000 people.
1833 - Abolition of slavery throughout the British Empire following a campaign
by Quakers and William Wilberforce.
1833 - Factory Act passed prohibiting children aged less than nine from work in factories,
and reducing the working hours of women and older children.
1834 - Poor Law Act is passed, creating workhouses for the
1834 - The Tolpuddle Martyrs are transported to Australia for attempting to form a trade union.
1834 - Fire destroys
the Palace of Westminster.
1835 - The Municipal Reform Act is passed, requiring members of town councils to be elected
by ratepayers and councils to publish their financial accounts.
1836 - Births, marriages and deaths must be registered
1836 - Dickens publishes Oliver Twist, drawing attention to Britain’s poor
1836 - Charles Darwin
returns from a five year voyage on HMS Beagle researching natural history
1837 - William IV dies at Windsor Castle.
|Queen Victoria ( 1837 - 1901 ) |
1837 - Victoria succeeds her uncle, William IV
- Publication of People’s Charter. Start of Chartism.
1839 - First Afghan War. British Forces capture the fortress
of Ghazi in Afghanistan.
1839 - - 42 First Opium War. Britain gains Hong Kong.
1840 - Victoria marries Prince Albert
1840 - The Penny Post is introduced. First postage stamp is the Penny Black.
1840 - First colonist
settlement in New Zealand
1841 - Sir Robert Peel becomes Prime Minister
1842 - End of First Opium War. Britain gains
1843 - Launch of SS Great Britain the worlds first all metal ship.
1844 - Railway building mania starts.
5,000 miles of track are built in Britain by 1846
1845 - - 1849 Irish Potato Famine kills more than a million people.
Many emigrate to America.
1846 - Repeal of the Corn Laws
1848 - Major Chartist demonstration in London.
1848 - Pre-Raphaelite
1849 - Harrods store in London is opened
1851 - Great Exhibition takes place in Hyde Park. Its success
is largely due to Prince Albert.
1852 - Death of the Duke of Wellington
1853 - Vaccination against smallpox made compulsory.
- Victoria uses chloroform during the birth of Prince Leopold.
1854 - -1856 Crimean War fought by Britain and France against
1854 - Charge of the Light Brigade
1854 - 10,000 die of cholera from contaminated water in London.
- The Victoria Cross is instituted for military bravery.
1856 - David Livingstone discovers the Victoria Falls
- -1858 Indian Mutiny against British rule.
1858 - Isambard Kingdom Brunel launches The Great Eastern, the largest ship
in the world and the first with a double iron hull.
1858 - First trans-Atlantic telegraph service
1859 - Publication
of Charles Darwin’s The Origin of the Species.
1861 - Prince Albert dies of typhoid
1861 - - 65 Civil War
in America. Southern states unsuccessfully seek to involve Britain which has sufficient cotton from Egypt and India, but needs
the Union North's grain.
1863 - The world's first underground railway is opened in London
1863 - Edward, Prince of
Wales, marries Alexandra of Denmark
1863 - The Salvation Army is founded.
1863 - The Football Association is founded.
- Slavery is ended in America with Northern Union victory in the American Civil War
1867 - The Second Reform Bill doubles
the franchise vote to two million.
1867 - Canada becomes the first independent dominion in the Empire.
1867 - Karl Marx
publishes the first volume of Das Kapital
1868 - Gladstone becomes Prime Minister for the first time.
The Irish Church is disestablished.
1870 - First Education Act. Primary education becomes compulsory.
1870 - Death of
1871 - Trade Unions are legalized
1872 - Secret voting is introduced for elections.
1872 - Henry
Stanley finds David Livingstone who had been missing in Africa.
1874 - Disraeli becomes Prime Minister for the second time.
- Suez Canal shares purchased for Britain.
1875 - Thomas Moy demonstrates his Aerial Steamer the worlds first flying machine
at Crystal Palace, London
1876 - Victoria becomes Empress of India.
1876 - Scots Alexander Graham Bell demonstrates
1878 - Second Afghan War. British defend the Kyber Pass.
1878 - William Booths Christian movement adopts
the name The Salvation Army
1879 - Tay Bridge disaster
1879 - Zulu war, British troops massacred at Isandlwana and Rorkes
1880 - Gladstone succeeds Disraeli as Prime Minister
1880 - - 1881 First conflict with Boers in South Africa
- British occupy Egypt
1884 - Third Reform Act all adult males given the vote.
1884 - Greenwich Meridian and Mean Time
1886 - First Irish Home Rule Bill fails to pass House of Commons. Gladstone resigns as Prime Minister.
- Victoria celebrates her Golden Jubilee. She has ruled for 50 years.
1887 - Independent Labour Party is founded.
- Free schooling is introduced. 11 years later school attendance becomes compulsory for all children.
1893 - Second Irish
Home Rule Bill fails to pass the House of Lords.
1897 - Victoria celebrates her Diamond Jubilee.
1897 - Marconi demonstrates
wireless transmission across the Bristol Channel
1899 - -1902 Boer War in South Africa. Siege of Mafeking
1900 - Labour
1901 - Queen Victoria dies, aged 81.
|King Edward VII ( 1901 - 1910 ) |
1901 - Edward VII becomes King on the death of
his mother, Queen Victoria.
1901 - Australia is granted dominion status.
1902 - Arthur Balfour becomes Prime Minister.
- First trans-Atlantic radio transmission
1902 - Edward VII institutes the Order of Merit.
1902 - Empire Day is celebrated
for the first time.
1902 - Rudyard Kipling’s Just So Stories published.
1903 - Wilbur and Orville Wright
of the US make the first manned and controlled aircraft flight.
1903 - The Women’s Social and Political Union, demanding
votes for women, is founded by Emmeline Pankhurst.
1904 - Britain and France sign the Entente Cordiale, settling outstanding
1904 - Sigmund Freud publishes Psychopathology of Everyday Life.
1904 - Peter Pan by J.
M. Barrie is published.
1905 - Motor buses are first used in London.
1906 - Construction of HMS Dreadnought
- Edward VII visits his cousin Tzar Nicholas II of Russia
1907 - Taxi-cabs are legally recognized in Britain for the first
1907 - Baden-Powell takes the first ever group of boy scouts on holiday to Brownsea island, Dorset.
1907 - Parliament
rejects Channel Tunnel scheme.
1907 - New Zealand is granted dominion status.
1908 - Production of Ford motor cars begins.
- Publication of The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame
1908 - The fourth Olympic Games are held in London.
- Herbert Henry Asquith becomes Prime Minister.
1908 - The Triple Entente is signed between Russia, France, and Britain.
- The Children’s Act establishes separate juvenile courts to try children.
1908 - Old Age Pensions established in
Britain for all over 70 years old with an income of less than ten shillings per week.
1909 - The People’s Budget
is introduced by Lloyd George
1909 - The Women’s Suffrage movement becomes more militant in their fight for votes
1909 - Introduction of Labour Exchanges
1909 - French airman, Louis Blériot, makes the first cross-Channel
flight from Calais to Dover.
1909 - First rugby match to be played Twickenham takes place.
1909 - First Boy Scout Rally
is held at Crystal Palace, London.
1910 - Constitutional Crisis is caused by the House of Commons’ attempt to curb
the power of the House of Lords.
1910 - Edward dies of pneumonia at Buckingham Palace.
|King George V ( 1910 - 1936 ) |
1910 - George V becomes King and Emperor of India
on the death of his father, Edward VII.
1911 - Parliament Act ensures the sovereignty of the House of Commons.
- National Insurance Act provides sickness and unemployment benefits.
1912 - The luxury passenger ship S.S. Titanic
sinks on her maiden voyage, drowning more than 1,500 people.
1913 - Suffragette Emily Wilding Davison throws herself under
the Kings horse at the Epsom Derby
1914 - Anglican Church in Wales is disestablished.
1914 - The heir to the Austro-Hungarian
empire is assassinated. Outbreak of World War I.
1914 - Battles of Mons, the Marne, and Ypres.
1915 - Second Battle
of Ypres. Allied Gallipoli expedition fails to remove Turkey from the war.
1916 - Battle of the Somme. Naval Battle of
Jutland between British and German fleets.
1916 - Easter Rising in Dublin in support of Irish independence.
1916 - David
Lloyd George replaces Asquith as Prime Minister.
1917 - Battle of Passchendale.
1917 - Russian Revolution. Czar Nicholas
II, his wife Alexandra (cousin of George V) and their royal family are shot in Ekaterinburg.
1918 - Kaiser Wilhelm II (cousin
of George V) abdicates as Germany faces defeat in World War I.
1918 - The end of World War I. Armistice signed on 11 November.
1918 - Reform Act gives votes to women over 30.
1918 - General Election produces landslide victory for Sinn Fein MPs
in Ireland, who refuse to take their seats in Westminster and form their own DalI parliament in Dublin.
1919 - Lady Astor
becomes the first woman MP to take her seat in the House of Commons
1919 - Third Afghan War. Afghanistan gains independence
1919 - A flu-pandemic (known as Spanish Flu) rages around the world killing over 50 million people.
- -1921 Ireland partitioned into the Free State and the province of Northern Ireland.
1920 - Marconi opens first radio
broadcasting station in Britain
1920 - A flu epidemic rages around the world killing more than 20 million people.
- First Labour government formed by Ramsay MacDonald.
1922 - The British Broadcasting Company starts radio transmissions
- Prince Albert (later George VI) marries Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon
1924 - Ramsay MacDonald becomes Prime Minister
General Strike fails to reverse wage cuts and imposition of longer hours.
1926 - John Logie Baird demonstrates world's
first television in London
1927 - British Broadcasting Corporation founded by Royal Charter
1928 - All women over the
age of 21 get the vote.
1928 - George V falls seriously ill with blood poisoning of the lung.
1928 - Alexander Fleming
1929 - Beginning of the Great Depression which lasted almost 10 years
1931 - The Statute of Westminster
recognizes independence of. the dominions.
1931 - Great Depression leads to the formation of a national government of all
three political parties under the leadership of Ramsay MacDonald.
1932 - George V makes the first annual Christmas broadcast
1935 - George V celebrates his Silver Jubilee.
1935 - Robert Watson-Watt demonstrates Radar
1935 - Stanley
Baldwin replaces Ramsay MacDonald asprime minister
1936 - George V dies at Sandringham.
|King Edward VIII ( 1936 ) |
1936 - Edward VIII succeeds his father, George
V, as King on 20 January.
1936 - Outbreak of the Spanish Civil War.
1936 - Germany, under Adolf Hitler, reoccupies the
demilitarized left bank of the Rhine.
1936 - Britain begins to rearm as political tension increases in Europe and the prospect
of military conflict in the region becomes more evident.
1936 - Fire destroys Crystal Palace, once the home of the Great
Exhibition in Hyde Park but now located in Sydenham, south London.
1936 - J.M. Keynes publishes his book General Theory
of Employment, Interest and Money an internationally influential study of modern economics.
1936 - Maiden voyage of
luxury ocean liner the Queen Mary takes place.
1936 - Jarrow crusade of unemployed marches to London
1936 - The BBC
inaugurates the world’s first television service at Alexandra Palace in London.
1936 - On 10 December Edward signs
the Instrument of Abdication over his wish to marry Mrs Wallis Simpson. Witnessed by all his brothers, it is a simple declaration
of his intent to renounce the throne for himself and all his descendants. He is subsequently created Duke of Windsor.
|King George VI ( 1936 - 1952 ) |
1936 - George VI accedes to the throne upon the
abdication of his brother, Edward VIII
1936 - Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain signs agreement with Adolf Hitler at Munich
in an attempt to stop outbreak of war in Europe
1938 - Nazi Germany annexes Austria
1937 - Frank Whittle invents the
1939 - Germany invades Poland. Outbreak of World War II.
1940 - Retreating British troops evacuated from
beaches of Dunkirk as Germans advance.
1940 - Winston Churchill becomes Prime Minister.
1940 - Battle of Britain fought
in the skies over England between the RAF and German Luftwaffe.
1940 - German bombers blitz London, Coventry and other
1941 - Hitler invades the Soviet Union
1941 - America enters the War after Japanese air raid on US fleet
at Pearl Harbour.
1942 - Fall of Singapore to the Japanese
1942 - British victory at El Alamein.
1944 - D-Day landings
in Normandy as the Allies begin to push the German forces back across Europe.
1944 - Battle of Arnhem airborne landings
- The defeat of Germany marks the end of World War II in Europe.
1945 - Japan surrenders, after US drops atomic bombs on
1946 - Start of the 'Cold War'. Churchill speaks of the 'Iron Curtain' separating Western Europe from the Communist
1947 - India granted independence. Pakistan declared a separate nation.
1947 - Princess Elizabeth (later
Queen Elizabeth II) marries Philip Mountbatten
1948 - National Health Service establishes free medical treatment.
- Mahatma Gandhi is assassinated.
1949 - Berlin Airlift relieves the Soviet blockade of Berlin
1950 - -1953 Korean War
- Winston Churchill becomes British Prime Minister again.
1952 - George VI dies.
|Queen Elizabeth II ( 1952 - ) |
1952 - Elizabeth accedes to the throne on the
death of her father, George VI.
1952 - World's first jet airliner passenger service inaugurated by BOAC in Comet I aircraft
- Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay climb Mount Everest just before Coronation Day
1953 - Francis Crick and James Watson
unravel the mystery of DNA
1953 - - 1954 Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip embark on a 6 month world tour including Australia
and New Zealand
1955 - Winston Churchill resigns as Prime Minister and is succeeded by Anthony Eden.
1955 - Laws restricting
the burning of coal and establishing smokeless zones bring an end to London's notorious fogs
1956 - Anglo-French forces
invade Egypt after the nationalization of the Suez Canal.
1957 - Harold Macmillan becomes Prime Minister
1957 - The
Gold Coast becomes independent as Ghana, the first British colony in Africa to receive its independence.
1957 - Queen Elizabeth
addresses the United Nations and opens the 23rd Canadian Parliament
1959 - Oil is discovered in the North Sea.
- Queen Elizabeth tours Canada and the United States
1960 - Harold Macmillan becomes Prime Minister makes 'winds of change'
speech in South Africa.
1960 - Union of South Africa withdraws from the Commonwealth.
1963 - Alec Douglas-Hume replaces
Harold Macmillan as the Prime Minister.
1963 - The Beatles release their first LP.
1964 - Labour government of Harold
Wilson takes office
1966 - Aberfan disaster leaves 116 children dead
1969 - Prince Charles is invested as Prince of
1969 - Troubles break out in the North of Ireland
1970 - Edward Heath becomes Prime Minister.
1971 - Decimal
currency is introduced.
1973 - Britain joins the European Community.
1974 - Miners strike brings down Heath Government.
Harold Wilson returns as Prime Minister.
1976 - Concorde begins first supersonic trans-Atlantic flights
1977 - Celebration
of the Silver Jubilee of the Queens accession
1978 - The world's first test-tube baby is delivered in Oldham, Greater Manchester
- Margaret Thatcher succeeds James Callaghan, becoming Britain’s first woman Prime Minister.
1981 - Prince Charles
marries Lady Diana Spencer in St. Paul’s Cathedral.
1982 - Unemployment in Britain tops three million.
Britain goes to war with Argentina over control of the Falkland Islands
1984 - Miners strike again but is defeated by Thatcher.
1986 - Queen Elizabeth II celebrates 60th birthday.
1988 - PanAm flight 103 bombed and crashes on Lockerbie killing
1989 - Poll tax is introduced amid widespread protest.
1989 - Fall of the Berlin Wall. End of the 'Cold War'.
- Margaret Thatcher resigns as Prime Minister after 11 years and is succeeded by John Major.
1991 - The Allied forces liberate
Kuwait during the Gulf War.
1992 - Princess Anne and Mark Phillips divorce. Windsor castle suffers severe fire damage.
- European Parliament comes into force
1994 - Opening of the Channel Tunnel between England and France
1996 - Both the
Prince and Princess of Wales, and the Duke and Duchess of York divorce.
1997 - Tony Blair becomes Prime Minister and ends
18 years of Conservative government.
1997 - Hong Kong reverts to China after 155 years of British rule.
1997 - Diana
Princess of Wales dies in Paris car crash
1998 - Good Friday agreement in Northern Ireland
1998 - Scotland and Wales
vote for their own Assemblies
1999 - Edward, Earl of Wessex, marries Sophie Rhys-Jones.
2000 - Queen Mother celebrates
her 100th birthday.
2001 - Twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York destroyed by Islamic terrorists.
- present. Fourth Afghan War. British and Allied troops in Afghanistan.
2002 - Queen Elizabeth II marks Golden Jubilee
of 50 years of rule. Deaths of Queen Mother and Princess Margaret.
2003 - British and US forces invade Iraq and topple
2005 - Prince Charles marries his second wife Camilla Parker-Bowles and she is given the title Duchess of
2006 - Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her 80th birthday.
2007 - Tony Blair resigns as Prime Minister
- Queen Elizabeth II and her husband Prince Philip celebrate 60 years of marriage
2007 - Queen Elizabeth II becomes the
oldest ever reigning British monarch
2008 - World wide banking crisis. Government has to bail out two major British banks
- Parliamentary integrity damaged by expenses scandal
2010 - David Cameron becomes Prime Minister
2011 - Prince William
marries Catherine Middleton