Dr Lauren Mackay, B.Mus, M.Hist, PhD, is an historian of Early Modern Europe. Originally from Sydney, Australia, Lauren studied violin at the prestigious Sydney Conservatorium of Music, Sydney, developing an interest in various musical periods. But history has always been a passion, and from a young age, Lauren studied Ancient civilisations, in particular Egypt and Greece, before turning her eye to Early Modern Europe. Her focus of study now goes beyond familiar historical figures and events to lesser known individuals, as well as beliefs, customs, and diplomacy of the 16th Century. Lauren's areas of research encompass medieval and early modern politics, renaissance and reformation, diplomacy, humanism, as well as early modern literature and culture. Lauren completed her bachelor's degree at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music/University of Sydney, Australia.
She received her Master of History from the University of New England, and her PhD from the University of Newcastle, Australia in 2018. Her PhD thesis investigated the life and career of Thomas Boleyn, father of Henry VIII's second wife, Anne Boleyn. Lauren's debut book, Inside the Tudor Court: Henry VIII and his Wives through the Eyes of the Spanish Ambassador is the first biography of Imperial Ambassador, Eustace Chapuys. Her second book: Among the Wolves of Court: The Untold Story of Thomas and George Boleyn, the first scholarly biography of the Boleyn men, is based on her doctoral research and published by Bloomsbury Publishing in September 2018. Her third book, The Wolf Hall Companion, is an historical companion to Hilary Mantel's critically acclaimed Wolf Hall trilogy
Lauren's research frequently takes her to different countries around the world, including Turkey, Austria, Italy, Slovenia, France, and Belgium, and she has studied countless manuscripts in the archives of the United Kingdom and Europe, including the Haus-, Hof- und Staatsarchiv in Vienna, the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana and L’Archivio Segreto Vaticano, Rome, the Archives générales du Royaume, Brussels, The Archives Nationales, Paris, the National Archives, Kew, the Bodleian library, Oxford, and the British Library, London. In the last few years, Lauren's research has taken her beyond England to the wider realms of Early Modern Europe, in particular the Hapsburg Charles V, Francis I of France, and the Ottoman Suleiman the Magnificent.
Lauren gives talks regularly around the UK for venues including Hampton Court, the Tower of London, Sudeley Castle, Hever Castle, Windsor Castle, Leeds Castle, The National Archives, Kew, The Portrait Gallery, London, and the 2018 BBC History weekends. Lauren is a regular contributor to BBC History Magazine and All About History Magazine. In 2020 she appeared in the three part television documentary, "Henry VIII and the King's men" (Smithsonian Channel UK)