Fit to Rule: How Royal Illness Changed History

Mon Apr 8, 9-10pm, BBC2

Despite the depictions of healthy, thrusting British monarchs throughout history, it’s well known that our hereditary throne-sitters have been troubled by maladies of body and mind. Lucy Worsley, chief curator at Historic Royal Palaces, examines how our kings and queens have been privately affected by these afflictions – and their impact on the world around them.

This first of three parts offers a fresh perspective on the Tudors and Stuarts, and Worsley is an authoritative guide who peppers her presentation with some gloriously crude moments. After four minutes, she’s already holding Henry VIII’s ‘pissport’ for scrutiny and discussing his weak sperm. You can almost hear the giggles of a GCSE History class.

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