By the Sword Divided

By the Sword Divided is a British television series produced by the BBC between 1983 and 1985.

By the Sword Divided
GenreHistorical drama
Created byJohn Hawkesworth
Directed byHenry Herbert, Brian Farnham, Diarmuid Lawrence
StarringJulian Glover
Sharon Maughan
Jeremy Clyde
Country of originUnited Kingdom
Original language(s)English
No. of series2
No. of episodes20
Production company(s)BBC
Original networkBBC1
Original release16 October 1983 
10 March 1985

The series, created by John Hawkesworth, was a historical drama set during the mid-17th century, dealing with the impact of the English Civil War on the fictional Lacey family, made up of both Royalist and Parliamentarian supporters.

It follows the family as it is torn apart by the conflicting and changing loyalties of the war, as families were during that time, and the defeat of the Royalist forces at the end of the First English Civil War. Series two covers the second and third civil wars and the eventual Restoration of the Monarchy. The last episodes see the surviving members of the family (from both sides of the divide) witness the arrival of King Charles II on a visit to the ancestral Lacey home.



Series 1

# Title Directed by Written by Original airdate
1"Gather ye Rosebuds"Henry HerbertJeremy Paul16 October 1983 (1983-10-16)
2"This War Without an Enemy"Henry HerbertJohn Hawkesworth23 October 1983 (1983-10-23)
3"The Sound of Drums"Henry HerbertAlfred Shaughnessy30 October 1983 (1983-10-30)
4"A Silver Moon"Henry HerbertJeremy Paul6 November 1983 (1983-11-06)
5"The Edge of the Sword"Henry HerbertAlexander Baron13 November 1983 (1983-11-13)
6"Outrageous Fortune"Brian FarnhamAlfred Shaughnessy20 November 1983 (1983-11-20)
7"A Sea of Dangers"Brian FarnhamJohn Hawkesworth27 November 1983 (1983-11-27)
8"Ring of Fire"Brian FarnhamJohn Hawkesworth4 December 1983 (1983-12-04)
9"Ashes to Ashes"Brian FarnhamJeremy Paul11 December 1983 (1983-12-11)
10"Not Peace, But a Sword"Brian FarnhamAlexander Baron18 December 1983 (1983-12-18)

Series 2

# Title Directed by Written by Original airdate
11"Conflicts"Brian FarnhamJeremy Paul6 January 1985 (1985-01-06)
12"Cruel Necessity"Brian FarnhamJohn Hawkesworth13 January 1985 (1985-01-13)
13"Cromwell at Arnescote"Brian FarnhamCarey Harrison20 January 1985 (1985-01-20)
14"Witch Hunt"Brian FarnhamAlexander Baron27 January 1985 (1985-01-27)
15"Escape"Brian FarnhamJeremy Paul3 February 1985 (1985-02-03)
16"Fateful Days"Michael CustanceAlexander Baron10 February 1985 (1985-02-10)
17"Forlorn Hope"Michael CustanceAlexander Baron17 February 1985 (1985-02-17)
18"The Mailed Fist"Michael CustanceAlexander Baron24 February 1985 (1985-02-24)
19"Retribution"Diarmuid LawrenceJeremy Paul3 March 1985 (1985-03-03)
20"Restoration"Diarmuid LawrenceJohn Hawkesworth10 March 1985 (1985-03-10)

Film locations

The filming for the programme took place at Fermyn Woods Hall, Rockingham Castle and Lilford Hall in Northamptonshire.[1]

DVD release

By the Sword Divided is available on DVD in the UK, distributed by Acorn Media UK.


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