Savoy and Dauphiné Driving Tour: The Ancient Trans-Rhodanian Principalities

In the early Middle Ages, if you traveled from Paris to Rome, once you crossed the Rhône River at Lyon, you were no longer in France, but in French-speaking principalities that were component parts of the Holy Roman Empire. After 1349, the first of these you’d encounter on crossing the river, the Dauphiné, was propertyContinue reading “Savoy and Dauphiné Driving Tour: The Ancient Trans-Rhodanian Principalities”

Dukes and Abbeys in the Midi: A Circular Drive around the Centre of France

Driving tours in France often include visits to the country’s periphery, the seacoast, the Alps, the Pyrenees. This long circular drive I did in the summer of 2000, to allow me to dig in to some regional archives for my dissertation about the Lorraine-Guise family, instead took me deep into France’s interior. Aside from exploringContinue reading “Dukes and Abbeys in the Midi: A Circular Drive around the Centre of France”

Leinster Dukes and Princes: An Irish Driving Tour

In September 2014, I attended a wedding of a dear friend in the south-east corner of Ireland, near Kilkenny. The wedding was hosted in a gorgeous country house called Borris. I knew nothing about this house with an odd-sounding name, but in the evening before the wedding, after the rehearsal dinner, I chatted with theContinue reading “Leinster Dukes and Princes: An Irish Driving Tour”

Double Duchess—William & Mary Choir Tour, Summer 1993

What technique do you use to get a duchess to offer you tea and biscuits? In this travel account, this will be revealed as we follow the Choir of the College of William & Mary in its European tour of May and June 1993 as part of the celebration of the College’s tercentenary. I willContinue reading “Double Duchess—William & Mary Choir Tour, Summer 1993”

Best Ever Scottish Ducal Drive

Have you ever wanted to just jump in your car, head north, and visits six castles held by Scottish nobles? I’m sure you have. That’s what I did nearly twenty years ago, when I took a break while awaiting the viva for my PhD, spotted a rare sunny spell in the UK, and seized theContinue reading “Best Ever Scottish Ducal Drive”