Articles by Kath Bates

Dr Kathryn Bates is a graduate of archaeology and history. She has excavated across the world as an archaeologist, and tutored medieval history at Leicester University. She joined the administrative team at Oxford Open Learning twelve years ago. Alongside her distance learning work, Dr Bates is a bestselling novelist, and an itinerant creative writing tutor for primary school children.

Viking Fire

The Vikings

The Old Norse phrase fara i viking (“to go on expedition”) meant piracy and robbery. However, even though Vikings may have begun as pirates, they soon realised that the resources and minerals available in Britain and across much of Europe were worthy of a more organised attack strategy.

Grigori Rasputin

The Mad Monk Rasputin

Rasputin’s association with the Russian Royal family grew to the extent that he began to undermine the dynasty’s credibility by the press.

The Houses of Parliament today

The First Representative Parliament

It was the rebel Baron Simon de Montfort… that innovated parliamentary representation.

The Interior of Mars

InSight: A Mission inside Mars

InSight will be the first spacecraft to concentrate on investigating what goes on beneath the surface of Mars.

Space Race

Is the Space Race back on?

Rather than government bodies such as NASA, it is the billionaires of America who have their hands on the controls for the next race.

Stan Lee

Stan Lee

Stan Lee’s superhero creations were legion…

The First Voyage of Captain Cook

Captain Cook

In 1772, Cook was promoted to full Captain and was given command of two ships, the Resolution and Adventure, to look for the Southern Continent. His explorations continued until he was 50 years old, when his interest in the lives of native populations caused his downfall…

Swords are Drawn

Battle of Edgehill: English Civil War Begins

King Charles was in conflict with his Parliament because he believed in the Divine Right of Kings; that the monarch should be able to rule however he liked.

The Mary Rose: The Tudor knowledge raised with a Shipwreck

The Mary Rose is a time capsule of Tudor life. Historian David Starkey referred to it as, “Britain’s Pompeii.”

The First Blood Transfusion

This was a radical procedure at a time (1818) when the majority of medical professionals still tried to cure most complaints by draining blood from a patient rather than replacing it.

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