Monarchy (TV series)

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Monarchy (David Starkey) Title Card.png
Monarchy title card
Presented byDavid Starkey
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of episodes17
Running time48 minutes
Production company(s)Granada
Original networkChannel Four
Picture format576i (16:9 SDTV)
First shown in2004
Original release2007
External links

Monarchy is a Channel 4 British TV series, 2004-2006, by British academic David Starkey of Sandbach, Cheshire, charting the political and ideological history of the English monarchy from the Saxon period to modern times. The show also aired on PBS stations throughout the United States, courtesy of PBS-member station WNET. In Australia, all four seasons were broadcast on ABC1 from May 2005 onwards.


SeriesEpisodesOriginally aired
First airedLast aired
1618 October 2004 (2004-10-18)22 November 2004 (2004-11-22)
2512 September 2005 (2005-09-12)10 October 2005 (2005-10-10)
3513 November 2006 (2006-11-13)11 December 2006 (2006-12-11)
4126 December 2007 (2007-12-26)26 December 2007 (2007-12-26)

Series 1[edit]

Title Directed by Written by Original air date Reference
11"A Nation State"David WilsonDavid Starkey18 October 2004 (2004-10-18)TBA
After the withdrawal of the Roman Empire from Britain, the Anglo-Saxons become the next conquerors and eventually begin the creation of England.
22"Ængla Land"David WilsonDavid Starkey25 October 2004 (2004-10-25)TBA
The rise of the Anglo-Saxons, the wars against the Vikings and the victory over King Harold by the Norman Duke William the Conqueror at the Battle of Hastings.
33"Conquest"David HuttDavid Starkey1 November 2004 (2004-11-01)TBA
Following the Battle of Hastings and subsequent Norman Conquest. This covers a tumultuous time in English history, which saw murders and eventually, civil war. The story of all of the English monarchs of the House of Normandy.
44"Dynasty"Mary CranitchDavid Starkey8 November 2004 (2004-11-08)TBA
The reign of the Angevins Henry II of England, and his conflict with the Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Becket, the corrupted reign of King John and the long struggled reign of Henry III.
55"A United Kingdom"Lucy SwinglerDavid Starkey15 November 2004 (2004-11-15)TBA
The reigns of three Edwards: Edward I, and his attempt at a United Kingdom, how his son Edward II almost lost it all, but restored by Edward III, grandson of Edward I.
66"Death of a Dynasty"Lucy SwinglerDavid Starkey22 November 2004 (2004-11-22)TBA
Follows the reigns made famous by Shakespeare: Richard II, Henry IV, Henry V and Henry VI. A time of civil unrest and doubt in monarchy itself.

Series 2[edit]

Title Directed by Written by Original air date Reference
71"The Crown Imperial"Steven ClarkeDavid Starkey12 September 2005 (2005-09-12)TBA
The Wars of the Roses and the birth of the Tudors.
82"King and Emperor"David HuttDavid Starkey19 September 2005 (2005-09-19)TBA
The reign of Henry VIII, his divorces and resulting dissociation with Rome, which led to the Dissolution of the Monasteries.
93"The Shadow of the King"David HuttDavid Starkey26 September 2005 (2005-09-26)TBA
Following the death of Henry VIII and the Act of Succession of 1543, which allowed all three of his children to rule. Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I.
104"The Stuart Succession"James RuncieDavid Starkey3 October 2005 (2005-10-03)TBA
With the defeat of the Spanish Armada, the English royalty was at its zenith. Scotland and England became united under the Stuart King James I (VI of Scotland), but his son Charles I within a generation would throw the country into civil war.
115"Cromwell The King Killer"James RuncieDavid Starkey10 October 2005 (2005-10-10)TBA
1644, the English Civil War was at its height and monarchy - indisputable before the war - was under threat.

Series 3[edit]

Title Directed by Written by Original air date Reference
121"The Return of the King"David BarrieDavid Starkey13 November 2006 (2006-11-13)TBA
Starting in 1660 with the return from exile of King Charles II. By aligning his throne with Catholic France and Protestant Parliament, Charles's reign restored the authority of the English crown and laid the foundation of the world's first modern state.
132"The Glorious Revolution"James BurgeDavid Starkey20 November 2006 (2006-11-20)TBA
Looking at the "Bloodless Revolution" of 1688, the Parliament-devised plot to overthrow England's last Roman Catholic King, James II, and replace him with his Dutch Protestant son-in-law William of Orange.
143"Rule Britannia"Rachel BellDavid Starkey27 November 2006 (2006-11-27)TBA
In just 25 years after the Glorious Revolution of 1688, England was transformed from an insignificant minor state to become part of the greatest power in Europe: Great Britain.
154"Empire"Simon EversonDavid Starkey4 December 2006 (2006-12-04)TBA
In 1714, an obscure German Prince was crowned King George I of Great Britain, signalling the beginning of a new political era that saw the rise of the new role of Prime Minister, and established the pattern of political modernity we are familiar with today.
165"Survival"Jamie MuirDavid Starkey11 December 2006 (2006-12-11)TBA
When, in 1789, the Bastille prison in Paris was stormed and the French Revolution began, few in Britain - least of all King George III, who was recovering from one of his bouts of madness - thought that it would lead to a cataclysmic war with France.

Series 4[edit]

Title Directed by Written by Original air date Reference
171"The House of Windsor"James BurgeDavid Starkey26 December 2007 (2007-12-26)TBA
Death of Queen Victoria, to present day. Speculation on the path of King Charles III or King George VII.

External links[edit]

  • Monarchy at
  • 'I'd wake up and think: God, did I really say that?' by Lynn Barber Sunday 10 October 2004 in The Observer "With a new book and TV series to promote, TV history don David Starkey is finally mellowing. So much for the erstwhile rudest man in Britain..."
  • Starkey, David (2004). The Monarchy of England Volume 1: The Beginnings. Chatto and Windus. ISBN 0-7011-7678-4.