Henry County police admitted that the mobile phone video didn’t convey “the level of resistance by Mr. Marrow while officers were arresting him, and the struggle officers encountered while trying to get control of the situation while Mr. Marrow was fighting with those officers.”The department claimed that the officers’ behavior was “within departmental policy.”However, Rose, on the other hand, violated the department’s rules on maltreatment and unnecessary force, according to Henry County Police. A Georgia officer was fired for choking ex-NFL player Desmond Marrow during an arrest in December.Officials announced the decision on Thursday, May 10 after an investigation conducted by internal affairs concluded that officer David Rose’s use of force was unnecessary, CBS reported.The in-car camera footage of the officer showed him saying he choked Marrow and that he purposely planned to leave the incident out of the report according to Henry County Police Chief Mark Amerman.The County’s District Attorney’s Office told USA TODAY that the obstruction of a law enforcement officer charge was dismissed against Marrow and the judge dropped the other felony charge of terrorist threats. The misdemeanor charges which includes reckless and aggressive driving remains under review.“We have reviewed the police reports, witness statements, 911 calls, audio and videos, as well as interviewed witnesses, and determined there is insufficient evidence to present any felony charges to a grand jury,” District Attorney Darius Pattillo said in a statement.Marrow posted the video of the incident from his phone on social media and the video instantly went viral. The former player is heard yelling,”I can’t breathe.”
Evonne Goolagong (left) and Peaches Bartkowicz at Wimbledon in 1970. Daily Express/Getty Images By Carl Bialik When Peaches Bartkowicz and Chris Evert put their left hands above their right hands to grip their tennis racquets, they were girls in grade school unknowingly defying tennis orthodoxy to hit backhands the way that felt most comfortable. Today, more than half a century later, a little girl who hit backhands without using both hands would be the one defying tennis orthodoxy. One-handed backhands have almost completely disappeared from women’s tennis. And that’s thanks in part to the success that Bartkowicz and Evert had with their two-handed backhands. More: Apple Podcasts | ESPN App | RSS | Embed The two-handed backhand’s dominance has continued: Its users have won 35 of the last 36 women’s major titles. Every woman in the top 10 and 48 of the top 50 use it. It’s also become the dominant backhand in men’s tennis, though with accomplished one-handed holdouts such as Roger Federer, Stan Wawrinka and Dominic Thiem. (Tennis-nerd note: Every player occasionally hits backhands with one hand, especially in defensive positions, either to slice the ball or when forced to take a hand off the racquet to reach the ball. What we’re talking about are how players hit the backhand when they have time to get to the ball and drive it offensively.)Bartkowicz and Evert hit their backhands with two hands because they felt just one didn’t give them enough strength. The two-hander took over pro tennis for similar reasons. Using their off hand on backhands lets players hit with additional power, which gives the ball more speed and spin, especially in concert with the latest racquet and string technology. The one-hander’s advantages — better feel for the ball, more equipped for wide reaches and low bounces, smoother transition to one-handed backhand volleys at net — count less in a game played rarely on low-bouncing, volley-friendly grass and usually contested behind the baseline.The two-handed backhand is especially valuable when returning serves, as the extra support helps to absorb and redirect powerful, high-bouncing shots. Tennis analyst Jeff Sackmann has shown that in men’s pro tennis, players with two-handed backhands get the return in play more often, and win the point more often when they do. Data collected through Sackmann’s crowdsourced Match Charting Project for the women’s game shows the same general trends: Players with two-handed backhands have more success returning serves than do players with one-handed backhands. It’s hard to reach firm conclusions because there are simply so few women hitting one-handed backhands.The dearth of top women using one-handed backhands may be the most compelling data point demonstrating the two-handed backhand’s dominance: If it weren’t the best option, more women would be hitting backhands with one hand. Tennis, like all sports, has its share of domineering coaches, but it is also primarily an individual and individualistic sport. Players command their own games and choose the shots and tactics that will win the most. That makes tennis a sport that breeds innovation, whether it’s among pros at a Slam or among two young girls who chose the backhand that best suited them. And if the one-handed backhand ever makes a comeback in women’s tennis, it might begin with a girl defying orthodoxy and taking one hand off the racquet.Emma Morgenstern contributed research.This is part of our new podcast series “Ahead Of Their Time,” profiling players and managers in various sports who were underappreciated in their era. In the latest installment in our documentary podcast series Ahead Of Their Time, we look at Bartkowicz and Evert, the innovators who brought the two-handed backhand to women’s tennis in a major way. Evert’s story is well-known: She rode her backhand, accuracy and focus to 18 Grand Slam singles titles. Bartkowicz’s is more obscure: After an extraordinary juniors career, she never reached a Grand Slam semifinal as a pro and played her last Slam soon after turning 22. But Bartkowicz’s backhand was ahead of her time. When she was just 12, a photo of her swinging with two hands at the Southern Girls Tennis Tournament appeared in the Louisville Courier-Journal. The caption began with the all-caps “TWO HANDS!” and called the shot a “baseball backhand.” When she won the 1965 U.S. Open girls title, The New York Times commended her “tremendous marksmanship” with that shot. By the time she closed out her junior career without a loss at the 1967 U.S. Open, the Philadelphia Inquirer called her “the foremost exponent of the two-handed backhand in women’s competition.”Evert is nearly six years younger than Bartkowicz and was unknown when Bartkowicz’s baseball backhand became famous. But Evert soon surpassed her older rival. She played her first Grand Slam at the 1971 U.S. Open — just two months after Bartkowicz played her last major at Wimbledon — and made the semifinals at age 16. In 1974, Evert won her first two Grand Slam titles, and the first two on record by a woman who hits a two-handed backhand. (A few notable men used two-handed backhands in the 1930s and 1940s, but the shot had mostly fallen back out of favor among men, too, when Bartkowicz and Evert were starting out.) By the time Evert won her last major, in 1986, her signature shot was tightening its grip in the sport, thanks also to its use by men’s champions Jimmy Connors and Bjorn Borg. And two years after Evert’s retirement, Monica Seles won three of four majors while using two hands on both backhands and forehands.By 2014, when The Economist tracked the decline of one-handed backhands in the pro game, just one woman with a one-handed backhand had won a major since 2008: Francesca Schiavone, at the 2010 French Open. Embed Code
Late-game drama built up in the bottom of the fifth inning Saturday afternoon at Buckeye Field, as Ohio State shortstop Alicia Herron came to the plate with two outs, the bases loaded and a run needed to extend the game, which Illinois led, 8-0, in the bottom of the fifth inning. But it was short-lived as Herron’s pop-up to center field was caught over the shoulder by sprinting Illinois second baseman Danielle Zymkowitz. The 8-0 score stood and OSU ended the game with three runners left on base. The run-rule victory gave Illinois the first win of the two-game series over the weekend and dropped the Buckeyes to 10-22 overall, 2-3 in the Big Ten. The Fighting Illini improved to 17-14, 4-1 in the Big Ten. “A lot of their runs came off of walks and home runs,” OSU pitcher Karisa Medrano said. “I wasn’t attacking the batters like I normally do.” Medrano gave up five earned runs in 2 2/3 innings Saturday afternoon on three hits. All five runs given up by Medrano came off the bat of Illinois left fielder Jessica Davis, who had a two-run home run in the first inning, followed by a three-run home run in her next at bat in the third inning. Davis was walked on four pitches in her third and final plate appearance. The Buckeyes couldn’t do any damage offensively either, as Illinois sophomore pitcher Pepper Gay gave up just two hits in the five-inning shutout. OSU freshman Melissa Rennie accounted for one those two hits, and said moving on is the only thing to do after a tough loss. “We’ve got to come out attacking like they do,” Rennie said. “Nothing you can do. Just got to get over it and move on.” Illinois completed the sweep of the Buckeyes with a 13-4 victory Sunday at Buckeye Field. The Buckeyes return to action for a series against Indiana at 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. Wednesday in Bloomington, Ind.
For the 95th consecutive year, The Game endures – as strong as it ever has. The Ohio State and Michigan football teams are prepping for their 109th meeting on Saturday at Ohio Stadium and the series, known to many simply as “The Game,” is far from stale. It’s a matter that’s as salient for first-year OSU coach Urban Meyer and players up and down his roster as it likely was for the renowned Buckeyes coaches and players of yesteryear. Recognized by the United States Congress as the greatest rivalry in sports, the OSU-UM rivalry dates back to 1897, and an air of hatred for “that team up north” still pervades the OSU football facilities. Letter “M’s” visible on campus signage were covered with red tape and the name of the state that borders Ohio to the north might as well have been a four-letter word for OSU players during Monday press conferences at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. Media availability began with Meyer, who, with a glint in his eyes, recounted his memories of The Game by rattling off names like Bo Schembechler, Woody Hayes, Pete Johnson and Archie Griffin. Meyer recalled the OSU’s 1987 win at Michigan Stadium. It was the final game for Meyer’s mentor, former OSU coach Earle Bruce, who was informed of his firing prior to the contest. “I can tell you (about) walking into coach Bruce’s office right here,” said Meyer, who was an assistant on Bruce’s staff at the time of the incident. “I saw a bunch of coaches with their arms on the table, with their face in their arms, and tears and the whole deal. I was like the last guy to walk in, and he said that coach Bruce will no longer be the coach after this game … Just an incredible moment in Ohio State history.” OSU went to Ann Arbor, Mich., the following Saturday where Bruce’s Buckeyes defeated UM, 23-20. Bruce was carried off the field on the shoulders of his players. To understand how deep The Game still permeates the sporting culture at OSU in modern times, look no further than athletic director Gene Smith’s Monday press conference at the Fawcett Center. Smith was made available to discuss the University of Maryland’s move to the Big Ten Conference, and Smith found himself fielding questions about OSU’s current bowl ban and whether he could or should have administered a self-imposed ban during the 2011 season. His focus? Beating Michigan. Smith said he wasn’t worried about hypotheticals. In the midst of the historic addition of Maryland to the Big Ten, Smith said his aim was to help the Buckeyes beat the Wolverines. “I’m worried about making sure that we position our football staff, our student-athletes – everything we can to have the opportunity to beat that team up north,” Smith said. “That’s my mission right now.” The teams have taken turns dominating the rivalry for years at a time. From 2004-2009, OSU won six consecutive times. The Buckeyes also won in 2010, but the game was later vacated due to NCAA violations for which OSU is also currently serving an NCAA-imposed postseason ban. Those penalties came as a result of the “Tattoo-Gate” scandal in which players received extra impermissible benefits in exchange for OSU football memorabilia. OSU’s dominance in the mid-2000s caused some to forget about the rivalry, said Buckeyes senior wide receiver Taylor Rice. “To be honest, people felt like the rivalry was dying down because it had been so many years since they beat us,” Rice said. Both teams come into this year’s game ranked nationally, making the game relevant to both sides and the rest of the country. OSU enters this year’s grand finale with an unblemished, 11-0 record, which is complimented by the Associated Press‘ No. 4 ranking. The Buckeyes are also playing for the sixth undefeated season in program history and the first since 2002. UM didn’t quite fulfill expectations this season – it began its 2012 campaign with a 41-14 loss to then-No. 1-ranked Alabama in its opening game, followed by later losses to Notre Dame, America’s current No. 1-ranked team, and Nebraska. The Wolverines have managed to claw their way to an 8-3 overall record and the No. 20 ranking in the AP poll – they still have a meaningful bowl game to play for. The Buckeyes are coming off a loss in Ann Arbor last year, too. While frustrating for OSU, the defeat, Rice said, was for the good of the rivalry. “Honestly, I think that reality check helped us,” Rice said. “It let people know that this is a rivalry and there’s nothing like it. This game alone will make or break your season.” Several OSU players, and scores of Buckeyes before them, have echoed that sentiment – The Game is all that counts. In 2012, OSU players likened the OSU-UM game to “their Super Bowl” and “their national championship.” The superlatives change, but the message is consistent – The Game is still The Game, and it’s as strong as it’s ever been. “This is what it all comes down to – playing Michigan,” Rice said. “Winning or losing. This is what determines the outcome of our season … It’s been a great season but this is what really counts. This is what our season comes down to. This is our Super Bowl.” This year’s installment of The Game will is scheduled for a noon start at Ohio Stadium.
Ohio State wrestling coach Tom Ryan addresses his team after the Buckeyes’ practice on Oct. 20. Credit: Jeff Helfrich | Lantern ReporterThe television outside of Tom Ryan’s office is often set to ESPN. Inevitably, he walks by a lot of College Football Playoff talk on the sports network. And every time he hears it, he can only think of one thing — a college wrestling playoff. This idea has been more than a thought in the mind of Ohio State’s wrestling coach. Ryan has pushed for a stand-alone, dual-meet championship tournament in the NCAA, among other things. He’s even a member of the Blue Ribbon Task Force committee, which is dedicated to developing a long-term plan for NCAA wrestling. The Blue Ribbon Task Force includes members such as North Carolina State Athletic Director Debbie Yow, NCAA executive vice president of regulatory affairs Oliver Luck and Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby. The task force was formed by the National Wrestling Coaches Association. “We’ve got some big dogs involved,” Ryan said. “And they all like the sport and they all see the value in wanting to move in this direction. And because they’re involved now, things can happen.”There is currently a proposal, unanimously approved by the committee, in the works that would change college wrestling to a one-semester sport that starts during December and would end about six weeks later than usual with a dual-meet tournament. The current individual championships would stay in March. The NCAA has yet to sign off on the proposal. Ryan’s reasoning for the change stems from the idea that dual meets are more fan-friendly than longer individual tournaments. He wants to attract more interest in his sport. “I think it’s spectator-friendly,” Ryan said. “An hour and a half, an hour and 45 minutes is way better than three days in a gym, or tournaments two days in a gym. I think it’s substantially more team-oriented. I think team sports are sports that our culture follows. I think it’s important for the sport of wrestling that we value the team aspect as much as the superstar aspect.”Ohio State has experience balancing individual success with team success. The Buckeyes won a team national championship in 2015 and their current roster is home to former individual national champions and an Olympic champion in heavyweight Kyle Snyder. Ryan said the proposed changes would place importance on more wrestlers in his program, due to the fact that dual-meet wins and losses would count more in preparation for a dual-meet tournament. “I think it would add more value to more people,” Ryan said. “Because, right now if you lose a dual meet, it doesn’t hurt your chance to win the national tournament. And because of that, you’re hesitant to put all your guys in when they may be banged up or not. So, because of that, it brings less value to your guys in the room.”Ryan said most of the opposition that the proposal faces involves the timing and scheduling of the hypothetical events. He said there also are differing viewpoints on how teams would be chosen for a dual-meet tournament and how many teams would be involved. The ability of wrestlers to maintain their peak performance for an entire season is also up for discussion. Redshirt senior Nathan Tomasello seemed to be all for the proposed changes. He placed value on the ability of dual meets to attract new, casual fans to the sport. “I think it’s important to make it more of a team sport and easier to follow,” Tomasello said. “If you don’t really know wrestling that well, it’s tough to follow how people get points at national tournaments.” Ryan said wrestling is one of the few collegiate sports that actually succeeds as a business model with ticket sales, and that gives the NCAA incentive to retool the sport and maximize profit. A dual meet at the Schottenstein Center between Ohio State and Penn State drew an attendance of 15,338 just last season. Ryan drew a comparison to Ohio State football fans tuning in to Saturday’s game between Penn State and Michigan because of a vested interest in the sport and the outcome of the game. That type of heightened interest is what he desires for the sport of wrestling. “We don’t have that in wrestling,” Ryan said. “And we need it. And until we get it, we’ll continue to be a sport that’s kind of status quo instead of one that’s thriving.”
Fanny Mendelssohn, the German pianist and composer For centuries, they have been the unsung talents of classical composing, overshadowed by men in their time and airbrushed from history ever since.Radio 3 is now seeking out “lost” female composers, commissioning orchestras and choirs to record their work so they can be played on the radio for the first time.The BBC station will launch a nationwide search by academics for little-known women in classical music, inviting people to identify music scores and manuscripts hidden away in their archives.Next year, a shortlist will be transcribed into legible sheet music, given to the BBC’s own orchestras and choirs to broadcast.The project was inspired by a concerted effort to play more music written by women on the station, as executives aimed to redress an overwhelming historic imbalance. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. We want to change the established canonEdwina Wolstencroft “This is an industry-wide problem. It is the historical issue for all kinds of women, who have been written out and ignored.“They might have been celebrated at their time, but when they died people lost interested in them.”Research published earlier this year indicated there may be around 6,000 little-known women composers whose works lie largely forgotten.Radio 3 has previously showcased works by Clara Schumann, Fanny Mendelssohn, Germaine Tailleferre, Barbara Strozzi, Ruth Crawford Seeger “There are a lot of works that haven’t been recorded. The score might be in a mess, there might be parts all over the place.“There’s a real job to do here researching where the best stuff is and managing to record it.“We can give listeners the chance to hear something they haven’t heard before, and in the end we’ll be giving them something better, more meaty to engage with and respond to.“They can discover things they hadn’t known, and I think our listeners like that.” But as they tried to compile playlists, they struggled to find enough music to fulfil their own mission.This weekend, the BBC will announce it is to work with the Art and Humanities Research Council to track down surviving works by female composers in an initiative it hopes will have a “long term effect on our musical landscape and the classical canon”.Edwina Wolstencroft, Radio 3 editor, said: “We want to change the established canon. We want to say women in history have always written music and are still writing it now.“We as the BBC have obviously got resources, we’re massive cultural patrons, we’ve got our own orchestras and choir. We thought what we need to do is join up and ask our own orchestras to make recordings for us. Alan Davey, controller of Radio 3 The BBC and AHRC will now ask academics to report to a special conference on January 25th, where a shortlist of composers will be chosen for recording.Alan Davey, controller of Radio 3, said the key to the project’s success would be when the new recordings were added to the mainstream classical radio playlist, rather than being viewed as a niche subject by virtue of them being written by women.“The key has to be that we’re playing good stuff that will be of interest,” he told the Telegraph. “It will be good stuff people will want to listen to, rather than ‘women’s music’ as it were.“Looking at diversity isn’t just about box ticking. If you allow and enable the good stuff to come out, you’ve got better art to present to the public and more interested and rounded view of whatever was happening at the time. Barbara Strozzi
Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. A minute’s silence has been held at New Scotland Yard and in the House of Commons in memory of the victims of the Westminster terror attack.The silence was held at 9.33am, because 48-year-old Pc Keith Palmer – who was killed in the attack – had the shoulder number 933.At New Scotland Yard, prayers of thanksgiving were offered for the memory of Pc Palmer.Speaker John Bercow said: “Colleagues, in respectful memory of those who lost their lives in yesterday’s attack and of all of the casualties, we shall now observe a minute’s silence.”
The public should ask the technician their age if they suspect them to be under 18. And when picking a barber’s or nail salon, she advises customers to look for stores with a regular payment system, where staff look happy and relaxed and have a good relationship with managers.The police hope members of the public will start raising the alarm by reporting it to 101 if they notice something suspicious. “There’s no harm in putting it through, and it all adds to intelligence,” she says. Jenny is a British national who lived in the UK legally and whose children were born and educated here. She initially came to police attention in 2014, when they found a teenage Vietnamese girl and suspected victim working with her at a different premises, but she wasn’t prosecuted until this year.”That’s indicative of the old system,” says Tucker. “The legislation in 2015 focused people’s minds and quite rightly pushed the agenda forward.” Even with the new legislation, it isn’t easy to prosecute human trafficking and forced labour. Tucker is pleased with the three convictions in the Bath case, but says there is more work to be done. The gang runs far wider and deeper than those two salons. Not only does it stretch across Scotland and the north east of England, it is also spans countries. “It’s huge. People are such an easy commodity to move around the country,” says Tucker. “The network goes across to Vietnam. And a lot of victims say they’ve come into the UK from France, so no doubt there are tentacles across Europe.”This is a pernicious, despicable crime designed to make money out of someone’s vulnerability. We need the public’s help.”The Prosecutors: Modern Day Slavery is available on BBC iPlayer She says the public should adopt a Think 25-style policy when making sure their manicure is ethical. If a nail bar worker looks like they are under-18, exploitation could be occurring.”Children should be in school until they are 16 and then there will be a period of training at college,” she says. “Certainly, they shouldn’t be working at a nail bar.” Is the price of your manicure too good to be true?Credit:Carlina Teteris/ Getty Images Contributor “If you’re in a barber’s and, when another customer arrives, a tired or disheveled barber comes downstairs to start working on them, there could be a problem,” says Tucker. “There are barber shops setting up now where people live above the shop and customers pay in cash. Owners are looking to exploit workers and make money.”While there is “no typical victim of slavery”, according to charity Unseen, gangs that run such outfits are known to have links with countries including Vietnam, Albania and Romania. The Vietnamese gangs are often associated with nail bars and cannabis farms. Funds from the drug trade are often laundered through the legitimate-seeming salons. The common theme, Tucker says, is how vulnerable victims are. “This was one of the most difficult cases I’ve worked on. But it was really rewarding to get the right result for people who are so indoctrinated and so vulnerable.” Tucker wants the public to help police identify victims of modern slaveryCredit:Jay Williams /Telegraph One of the difficulties in policing modern slavery is that, as with domestic abuse, victims are often emotionally – as well as financially – connected to their abusers. When Tucker removed the victims from Jenny’s care, they were upset and one burst into tears; all they had known in the UK was living and working with her. This form of Stockholm syndrome can be a barrier to prosecution, as victims are wary of sharing their stories, which are vital evidence. It was evident at first look that something wasn’t right with Bath’s Deluxe Nails. A stone’s throw from the historic Roman Baths, the salon was staffed by two young Vietnamese girls when Detective Inspector Charlotte Tucker entered on a February morning in 2016 with her colleagues from Avon and Somerset police. They were running a “day of action” in search of people who may have been the victim of modern slavery. The girls, who cannot be named for legal reasons, caught Tucker’s attention.They were doing two clients’ nails, under the supervision of an older, male member of staff. All the signs of modern slavery were there: they looked vulnerable, really tired and didn’t speak any English.”It was really obvious there was an issue,” says Tucker. “We had a stroke of luck as the proprietor wasn’t there when we arrived.” This gave them a small window in which to find out, through a translator, that at least one of the girls had arrived in the UK on the back of a lorry.Then salon manager Thu Huong Nguyen, known as Jenny, returned from dropping her 16-year-old daughter at school. She was polite and offered to help; but, thinking the police couldn’t understand, she turned to the girls and, in clipped Vietnamese, said, “Have you told them what I told them to tell you? Make sure you’re telling the police the right story.” “They don’t see themselves as victims and weren’t necessarily unhappy about how they were living,” says Tucker. “They were allowed to walk to the chemist and, on the way to work in Jenny’s car, they could have jumped out at traffic lights and run away.”But they couldn’t because they had nowhere to go. They relied on the organised crime group.” Jenny’s victims in fact ran away from foster care numerous times and back into the grip of their abusers. “They’re not locked away or in chains, but are hidden in plain sight,” says Tucker. “It’s incumbent on everyone using those services to try and spot the signs of modern slavery.”Tucker hopes her investigation, and others, will raise awareness of the problem. She urges people who use cheap services such as nail bars or car washes to stop and think, do the staff look frightened, tired or vulnerable? Can they speak any English? How old do they appear to be? “Cheap nail bars are everywhere, they’ve popped up on every high street,” she says. “If you think you’re getting a bargain, are only allowed to pay in cash and the staff can’t speak English, it’s probably too good to be true. I personally wouldn’t be getting my nails done there.” So began a two-year investigation that involved six police forces. including the National Crime Agency; 14 potential victims; visits to more than 280 businesses; and 97 arrests. At the beginning of this year, Jenny, 49, and two others became the first people to be prosecuted in the UK for modern slavery involving children. The case was followed in The Prosecutors, a BBC documentary series.”She had a 15-year-old daughter whom she had taken to school after helping her photocopy something for a project,” says Tucker. “Yet, it turned out, she had these similar-aged teen girls working 60-hour weeks with her for very little or no recompense.” Passed into law in 2015, the Modern Slavery Act covers forced or compulsory labour, sexual exploitation, domestic servitude, organ harvesting and human trafficking. The exact number of victims of such crimes in the UK is unclear, but the Home Office estimates as many as 13,000 people could be affected. Separate research from Freedom United, which includes new forms of slavery such as child drug-runners, suggests this number could, in fact, be 136,000.Victims may be put to work in nail salons, car washes, clothing factories, cannabis farms or the cleaning industry. An emerging area of concern is also traditional Turkish barber shops, where the growing male grooming industry has led to exploitation. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
Professor David Starkey has said the best historians are older as you need to have loved and lost to understand the past.Speaking candidly about the death of his long-term partner for the first time, Prof Starkey told The Sunday Telegraph his loss has informed his understanding of historical figures.His new project is an exhibition on King Henry VIII as part of the renovations at Hever Castle in Kent, the former home of Anne Boleyn.“I think this exhibition shows what I have learned personally and professionally,” Prof Starkey, 73, said.Three years ago, Prof Starkey’s long term partner, James Brown died at the couple’s 18th Century manor house in Kent.Prof Starkey met Brown, a publisher and book designer, when he was lecturing at London School of Economics in the 1990s and the couple lived together for 21 years until Brown’s sudden death.“What I have done is used my own experience of mourning and of joy,” he said. “You take the dry facts of history and with memories in your own life, you realise how you should understand them.” Prof Starkey also acknowledges the importance of studying and adaptability, he said: “Historians live in two times, now and then. You have to inhabit what age you are working on.”He now admits that even his own early essays were not an extensive indication of history. He said: “When you begin as a historian you haven’t got an experience of life at all. You are just writing about past theories.”The new exhibition is housed in Hever Castle’s original Long Gallery, which has been underdone a £30,000 refurbishment for the purpose, excluding the acquisition of the eighteen portraits.It sees the original portraits hung in chronological order to depict the dynastic saga from the Wars of the Roses to the Reformation.Prof Starkey has recorded an audio guide to reflect how the gallery was intended for teaching young Prince Edward, who went on to be King Edward VI.Ending with a grand image of the Henry VIII, the gallery also holds portraits of the first two of Henry’s six wives, Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn.Prof Starkey hopes the exhibition will help shine a new light on Henry VIII’s treatment of his wives, calling him a romantic.“Henry displays unusual sensitivity towards women,” he added. “He is tender, caring and he was the first person to familiarise female succession. He takes women seriously. He gave them agency as they say.” Hever Castle, the childhood home of Anne BoleynCredit:Geoff Pugh He added that his experiences help him think in new ways, saying: “When you have loved a bit, lived a bit and lost a bit, you think deeper.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. He added: “Henry has a very unusual upbringing. His older brother Arthur was sent to English public school and hardly ever saw his own mother. Henry is brought up with his mother and sisters until he is 13.“He was worshiped, his whole life he has a need for women. Even when he didn’t have a queen, he kept women around.“We can see him as a murdering monster with many wives but he was different. This forces us to think about the complications of his character. On the one hand he really is quite monstrous but he did give women power like this for the first time.In his poetry, there is a line that says ‘I loved when I did marry’.“