Georgian England

The Georgian era spans the years from 1714 to 1837, covering the reigns of George I, II, III and IV, as well as that of William IV. 

It was an era of great social, political and cultural changes. It includes the start of the Industrial Revolution, the emergence of Romanticism in art and literature, and the expansion and dominance of the British Empire through exploration and war.

Stories from Georgian England

Georgian People

  • The Duchess of Brunswick

    Read about Augusta Dowager Duchess of Brunswick who moved to Ranger’s house in 1807 and her fascinating story of royals, scandal and lavish entertainments during the Regency era. 

  • Dido Belle

    Dido Elizabeth Belle was raised as part of an aristocratic family in Georgian Britain. She was the daughter of a formerly enslaved woman named Maria Bell and a Royal Naval officer, Sir John Lindsay. 

  • Black people in late 18th-century Britain

    We take a look at the lives of black people – including soldiers, servants and independent citizens – who lived under the shadow of slavery in 18th-century Britain.

  • Ottobah Cugoano

    Ottobah Cugoano was an anti-slavery campaigner and one of the first formerly enslaved people to write and publish a text in the English language. 

  • Lady Hester Stanhope

    For a brief period the independent and charismatic Hester Stanhope was at the heart of British politics, living with her uncle, William Pitt the Younger, at Walmer Castle.

  • Henrietta Howard

    Read about Marble Hill’s Henrietta Howard, who overcame personal adversity to become an extraordinary figure in Georgian court society and a member of a dynamic circle of writers, poets and politicians.

  • Emma Hamilton, Artist’s Muse

    Discover how George Romney’s portraits of Emma Hamilton, including The Spinstress, propelled its subject to fame.

  • Black Prisoners at Portchester Castle

    The extraordinary story of a group of over 2,500 prisoners of war who were brought to Portchester Castle in 1796 from the island of St Lucia.

  • Romantic Female Friendship

    In the 18th century, among fashionable women, a cult of same-sex ‘romantic friendship’ was accepted, even if to some contemporary observers it appeared ‘queer’.

  • Fanny Burney

    Fanny Burney, later known as Madame D’Arblay, is famous for her novels and for her diaries, which record her life within fashionable literary circles and at the royal court.

  • Admiral Hosier’s Ghost

    How the death of Admiral Francis Hosier and the devastation of his fleet became the subject of a scathing musical attack on the government of the day.

  • Beau Brummel

    Beau Brummell set the standards for the Regency style known as dandyism, which relied on fine-quality cloth, precise cutting and understated elegance.

  • John Nash

    The architect John Nash designed a significant portion of Regency London. He is commemorated with a blue plaque at 66 Bloomsbury Square, the end unit of a six-house terrace which he designed himself.

  • Robert Clive

    Robert Clive, later Baron Clive of Plassey, played an early part in the establishment of British imperial control of India. Read about Clive and the London statue of him that was erected in 1912. 



    Kenwood is home to three distinct collections of small, portable Georgian treasures that reveal the skills of 18th-century artists and craftspeople.

  • Pictures of Innocence

    Discover how, from the mid 18th century, new ideas about innocence, morality and family were reflected in the art of the Georgian age.


    We explore the life and work of the great 18th-century portrait painter, Joshua Reynolds through his 17 paintings in the collection at Kenwood. 

  • Chiswick House Collection Highlights

    Explore a selection of Lord Burlington’s original collection as well as complementary paintings, family portraits and views of the house and garden.

Places to Visit

Explore some of our sites with Georgian history.

Search all our Georgian sites
  • Kenwood

    This outstanding house beside Hampstead Heath was remodelled by Robert Adam between 1764 and 1779. He transformed the original brick building into a majestic villa for the great judge, Lord Mansfield.

  • Marble Hill

    Marble Hill is the last complete survivor of the elegant villas and gardens which bordered the Thames between Richmond and Hampton Court in the 18th century.

  • Apsley House

    Apsley House, home of the first Duke of Wellington and his descendants, stands right in the heart of London at Hyde Park Corner.

  • Ranger's House

    Ranger's House is an elegant Georgian villa built in 1723, the official residence of the 'Ranger of Greenwich Park'. From 1815 this post was held by Princess Sophia Matilda, niece of George III.

  • Chiswick House and Gardens

    Chiswick House is a glorious example of 18th-century British architecture. The 3rd Earl of Burlington, who designed this elegant villa, drew inspiration from his Grand Tours of Italy.

  • Belsay, Castle and Gardens

    With so much to see and do, a trip to Belsay is one of the best value family days out in north-east England. Explore the medieval castle, the Grecian inspired Hall and acres of impressive gardens.

  • Iron Bridge

    The world’s first iron bridge was erected over the River Severn here in 1779 by Abraham Darby III. Costing over £6000, the bridge was cast in his Coalbrookdale foundry, using 378 tons of iron.

  • Wellington Arch

    Set in the heart of royal London, Wellington Arch was built as an original entrance to Buckingham Palace, later becoming a victory arch proclaiming Wellington's defeat of Napoleon.

  • Derwentcote Steel Furnace

    Built in the 1720s, Derwentcote is the earliest and most complete steel-making furnace in Britain. It produced high-grade steel for springs and cutting tools.

  • Berwick Barracks and Main Guard

    Berwick Barracks was built in the early 18th century to the design of the distinguished architect Nicholas Hawksmoor, the Barracks was among the first in England to be purpose built.

  • Goodshaw Chapel

    English Heritage's only Nonconformist place of worship, this atmospheric Baptist chapel displays a complete set of box-pews, galleries and pulpit dating from c. 1742 to 1809.



More about Georgian England

  • Georgians: Parks and Gardens

    The growing fashion for scenery in the Georgian period, accompanied by theories on nature, led to more naturalistic landscape designs that were an early expression of Romanticism.

  • Georgians: Power and Politics

    Until the very end of the Georgian period, power belonged almost exclusively to those who owned substantial land or wealth.

  • Georgians: Architecture

    The classic Georgian building is the Classical country house. But this is also the period that saw the first steps towards a coherent approach to town planning.

  • Georgians: War

    For much of the Georgian period Britain was at war – usually with France. Many of these conflicts were played out on a world stage, to defend or expand the burgeoning British Empire.

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