The Rest Is History

The Rest Is History

Goalhanger Podcasts

The world’s most popular history podcast, with Tom Holland and Dominic Sandbrook. Join The Rest Is History Club ( for ad-free listening to the full archive, weekly bonus episodes, live streamed shows and access to an exclusive chatroom community. Here are some of our favourite episodes to get you started: WATERGATE/NIXON ALEXANDER THE GREAT HARDCORE HISTORY'S DAN CARLIN PUTIN & RUSSIA

Categories: Education

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"Good God I am shot! I shall die!" The colourful kaleidoscope of British elections from 1265 to their early 20th century incarnation, has seen some of the most critical, shocking, and downright farcical moments of western democracy. None more so than during the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, when, following the dawn of party politics in the 1690’s, violence and “treating” - a means of enticing voters with raucous, drunken, glutenous street parties - as tools of political persuasion, rose to the fore. Few episodes encapsulate this more admirably than the election of 1698, which saw Whig candidates driving down their Tory opponents with hordes of hired horsemen, cudgelling them as they went. In 1705 - a year that saw party politics truly take shape and the early shoots of the culture wars - the Tories had their revenge, marching on the Whigs of Coventry armed with halberd's…the madness continued into the Victorian era, despite the expanding franchise and a widespread sense of Gladstonian rectitude. In 1865, for example, a good humoured ruckus between a cheerful liberal and a keen conservative resulted in a fatal shot to the mouth. The murderer was partially pardoned on the basis that he had been suffering from “election fever”…these are but a few incidents in the colourful kaleidoscope of election madness. Join Dominic and Tom as they discuss in titillating detail the highlights of history’s greatest, bawdiest and most bombastic pre-20th century elections. From murder, duelling MPs, hooliganism, and Hogarthian street carnivals, to cat throwing, pub invasions, mass kidnappings and charging grenadiers. Are there echoes of these episodes in the election antics of today?  EXCLUSIVE NordVPN Deal ➼ Try it risk-free now with a 30-day money-back guarantee! *The Rest Is History LIVE in 2024* Tom and Dominic are back onstage this summer, at Hampton Court Palace in London! Buy your tickets here: Twitter: @TheRestHistory @holland_tom @dcsandbrook Producer: Theo Young-Smith Assistant Producer: Tabby Syrett Executive Producers: Jack Davenport + Tony Pastor Learn more about your ad choices. Visit

Previous episodes

  • 496 - 463. Mad Elections (Part 1) 
    Sun, 23 Jun 2024
  • 495 - 462. St George: Dragon-Slayer 
    Wed, 19 Jun 2024
  • 494 - 461. Dragons 
    Sun, 16 Jun 2024
  • 493 - Rubicon: The Triumph and Tragedy of the Roman Republic (Extract) 
    Thu, 13 Jun 2024
  • 492 - 460. The Empress of the Apocalypse 
    Wed, 12 Jun 2024
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