The Order of St John

This post shines a light on the fascinating Order of St John – the Knights Hospitaller – which feature prominently in Tom’s memoir. Around half way through Slave to Fortune, Tom has his first encounter with Sir Edward Hamilton. As first meetings go, Read More …

Algiers

When Tom finds out that his kidnappers are taking him to Algiers, he fears the worst. For Christians of Tom’s day, Algiers had a terrible reputation connected to its role in the enslavement of Europeans (and others). But as Tom Read More …

Charles Gonzaga, Duke of Mantua etc

Charles Gonzaga (1580 –1637) was a fascinating character with an array of aristocratic titles. Born in Paris, he was the son of Louis Gonzaga, Duke of Nevers, and Henriette of Cleves. He features indirectly in Tom’s memoir as the target Read More …

Grand Master Antoine de Paule

Fra’ (Brother) Antoine de Paule (c. 1551 – 1636) was a knight from the Provence ‘langue’ – one of the seven loosely national groups that together made up the Order of St John of Jerusalem (the Knights Hospitaller). De Paule entered Read More …

Cardinal Richelieu

Armand Jean du Plessis, Cardinal-Duke of Richelieu and of Fronsac (1585 –1642) , was a French clergyman and statesman. He was consecrated as a bishop in 1607 and was appointed Foreign Secretary in 1616. Richelieu rose to the heights of Read More …