This page has information and links to information related to history. See Biographical Research for history of individual people. For specific time periods, places/areas, and/or topics see left-hand side for topics.

Elizabethan/Stuart History

William Shakespeare lived from 1564-1616. This section has links to sources that cover historical events or everyday life during that time. (Note: Shakespeare overlapped with Elizabeth I and James I of England.) Items here will be of interest to historians, literary scholars, and anyone else interested in the time period.

Web Links         Books      Library Catalog Terms        Research Resources

Web Links

Elizabethan England. Shakespeare Resource Center. 

Brief summary of the era, with annotated links to over ten English history pages.

Elizabethan Life. Britain Express. 

Short summaries of information on architecture, literature, and daily life in Elizabethan England. Links to other sources.

Life in Elizabethan England: A Compendium of Common Knowledge 1558-1603. Maggie Secara. 

Links to information on: Games, Food, Money, Religion, Language, Weddings, Masters & Servants, Occupations, The Peers, London, Fashion, Children, Household Management, Pastimes, Names, The Queen's Suitors, Education, Heraldry, Maps, and more.

The Elizabethan Costuming Page. Drea Leed. 

Includes: Intro to Elizabethan Costume; Elizabethan Costume Research; Elizabethan Underpinnings; Portraits & Pictures; Costume Patterns; Hats & Headwear; Colors & Fabrics; Dress Accessories; Detailing & Decoration; Dress of Other Lands; Sources for Costume & Supplies; Speake thy Minde; Beyond Costuming: The Elizabethan World.

Modern History Sourcebook: Queen Elizabeth I of England (b. 1533, r. 1558-1603) Selected Writing and Speeches

Primary source material: Response to a Parliamentary Delegation on Her Marriage 1559; On Religion 1559; Response to Erik of Sweden's Proposal 1560; Response to Parliamentary Delegation on Her Marriage, 1566; On Religion, 1583; Response to Ambassador of Poland; The Farewell Speech, 1601. Against the Spanish Armada, 1588.

Modern History Sourcebook: William Harrison (1534-1593): Description Of Elizabethan England, 1577 (from Holinshed's Chronicles)

Primary source commentary on Elizabethan England.

Tudor England. Britain Express. 

Somewhat informal presentation. Information on: Elizabethan Life, The Tudor Church, Elizabethan sites, Elizabethan Theatre, Court of Star Chamber, The 39 Articles of Religion, The Act of Supremacy, Acts of Attainder, The Book of Common Prayer.

Elizabethan England: Late Renaissance (1560-1600) Historical Essay. Culture 4.0. 

Most useful section is the brief lists of contemporary authors and musicians. There are links to Elizabethan England sites (not all of the links work) that range from containing very useful information to having very minimal content or interest.

Tudor History 

Web site with information on the Tudors. Growing number of links on life in Tudor times, Tudor architecture, etc.

Stuart England. Britain Express. 

Information on events and people.

James I of England. John Butler. 

Biography with bibliography.


The British Inheritance: A Treasury of Historic Documents. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999. DA 32.5 .B69 1999 REF. 

Color images of primary documents with commentary on their importance. Unfortunately, not all are translated into English or transcribed in full (some wording is too small to decipher), so not all of them can be read.

Cannon, John, ed. Oxford Companion to British History. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1997. DA 34 .O93 1997 REF . 

Definitions of terms, industries, wars, battles, descriptions of places, and biographies of people.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. London: Oxford University Press, 2004. 60+ vols. DA 28 .O95 2004 REF . 

The definitive biographical source for deceased British citizens from all time periods.

Emerson, Kathy Lynn. The Writer's Guide to Everyday Life in Renaissance England. Cincinnati, OH : Writer's Digest, 1996. DA320 .E48 1996 Morgan. 

Aimed at writers, this helpful book provides information about everyday topics. The writer can then have accurate details. These kind of details are also helpful to the historian.

Shakespeare's World and Work: An Encyclopedia for Students. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 2001. PR 2892 .S56 2001 REF. 

Encyclopedic information on life in the time of Shakespeare.

Tudor England: An Encyclopedia. New York: Garland, 2001. DA 315 .T753 REF . 

Definitions of terms, places, and biographies of people. Short bibliographies at the end of some entries. Back of book has lengthy bibliographies (a few of primary sources) on Tudor visual arts, education and science, literature, music, politics and government, religious history, social history, and economic history.

Wagner, John A. Historical Dictionary of the Elizabethan World: Britain, Ireland, Europe, and America. Phoenix, AZ: Oryx, 1999. DA 357 .W34 1999 REF . 

Basic descriptions of people, events, ideas, and terms of significance to the Elizabethan period.

Library Catalog Terms

These terms will work in any library catalog which uses Library of Congress Subject Headings.

Identify useful books in the library catalog (also check the Regional Catalog Prospector) by doing a (LC) Subject search for:

  • England Social Life And Customs 16th Century
  • Great Britain Social Life And Customs 16th Century
  • Great Britain History Elizabeth 1558 1603
  • Great Britain History James I 1603 1625
  • Great Britain History Tudors 1485 1603
  • Great Britain History Stuarts 1603 1714
  • England Civilization 16th Century
  • England Civilization 17th Century
  • Art, Renaissance -- England
  • Renaissance -- England
  • Anglican converts -- England -- History
  • Catholic converts -- England -- History
  • Reformation -- England

Identify primary sources (reprints, etc.) by adding "sources" to your search:

  • Great Britain History Elizabeth 1558 1603 sources
  • Great Britain History James I 1603 1625 sources
  • Great Britain History Tudors 1485 1603 sources
  • Great Britain History Stuarts 1603 1714 sources
  • Reformation -- England sources

Research Resources

Author Information

Content: Naomi Lederer


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