Skip to main content
Read page text



One hundred years ago this month, a battle began that would go on to epitomise some of the worst aspects of the First World War. The third battle of Ypres, better known as Passchendaele, became infamous for the muddy conditions, the savaged landscape and the huge amount of blood that was shed for modest territorial gains. Yet the battle could have ended very di erently. In this month’s cover feature, beginning on page 20, Nick Lloyd argues that thanks to bold leadership and a change of tactics, Britain came close to shattering the German defences in the autumn of 1917.

Another controversial momentwe are revisiting this month is a medieval massacre committed in the French town of Limoges in 1370. The man blamed for the atrocity was the English heir apparent, the Black Prince. The incident has cast a long shadow over the prince’s reputation, but was he in fact innocent of the crime? Turn to page 44 to nd out what historian Michael Jones has to say on the matter.

Liberation is another theme that runs through this issue. On page 50 Yasmin Khan rev i s it s the dramatic end of the British Raj and the turbulent births of the new countries of India and Pakistan. Meanwhile, on page 62, Brian Lewis explains how the 1967 Sexual O ences Act – which partially decriminalised homosexual relations – ts into the long battle for gay rights in Britain. Both of these features accompany major BBC seasons across TV and radio and I hope they will complement your viewing and listening enjoyment.

Rob Attar Editor BSME Editor of the Year 2015, Special Interest Brand


N O T T/ F R A N M O N K S

I/ W E L C O M E PA G E – J E N


– G E T T Y/ D R E A M S T


Brian Lewis Fi y years ago, sex between men became legal in Britain. But was the 1967 Sexual O ences Act all it’s cracked up to be? A close investigation of the historical record reveals a more complex, ambiguous story. P Brian explores the campaign for gay rights on page 62

Nick Lloyd The battle of Passchendaele is central to Britain’s memory of the First World War. When researching this iconic campaign I was interested to see whether it conformed to the popular memory of mud, blood and futility. P Nick offers a fresh interpretation of the battle of Passchendaele on page 20

Yasmin Khan A small group of men decided to partition the Indian subcontinent in 1947 and more than a million people died as a consequence. The repercussions continue today in ongoing con ict between India and Pakistan. P Yasmin describes the key moments that define India’s partition on page 50

*Subscribers to BBC History Magazine receive FREE UK P&P on this collector’s edition. Prices including postage are: £11.49 for all other UK residents, £12.99 for Europe and £13.49 for Rest of World. All orders subject to availability. Please allow up to 21 days for delivery **Calls from landlines will cost up to 9p per minute. Call charges from mobile phones will cost between 3p and 55p per minute but are included in free call packages. Lines are open 8am–6pm weekdays and 9am–1pm Saturday for orders only

MAGAZINE The website of BBC History Magazine

History Extra podcast Download episodes for free from iTunes and other providers, or via our website: podcasts

Our digital editions BBC History Magazine is available for the Kindle, Kindle Fire, iPad/iPhone, Google Play and Zinio. Find us in your app store or visit the website:

Facebook and Twitter

World Histories Check out the new bimonthly global history magazine, produced by the BBC History Magazine team. You can order issue 5 at worldhistories or call us on 03330 162 115**

Collector’s Edition: The Story of the Holy Land Read our guide to the cradle of three major religions. Buy it for £9.99 – subscribers get free UK P+P*. Order at buysubscriptions. com/special-editions/ the-story-of-the-holyland or call us on 03330 162 115**

CONTACT US P H O N E Subscriptions & back issues 03330 162 115 Editorial 0117 314 7377 EMAIL Subscriptions & back issues Editorial POST Subscriptions & back issues BBC History Magazine, PO Box 279, Sittingbourne, Kent ME9 8DF Basic annual subscription rates: UK: £40, Eire/Europe: £67, ROW: £69 Editorial BBC History Magazine, Immediate Media Company Bristol Limited, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN

In the US/Canada you can contact us at: PO

Box 37495, Boone, IA 50037,, Toll-free 800-342-3592


My Bookmarks

Skip to main content