A well written and highly readable account of 20 Medieval queens, usually passed over in the history books, but who have their own fascinating stories to tell. The book flows very well especially when you consider the amount of subject matter and you won’t feel bogged down in detail as each queen gets about 20 pages. A fascinating insight in to the all to often overlooked women who supported the Kings of England.
England's medieval queens were elemental in shaping the history of the nation. In an age where all politics were family politics, dynastic marriages placed English queens at the very centre of power - the king's bed. From Matilda of Flanders, the Conqueror's queen, to Elizabeth of York, the first Tudor consort, England's queens fashioned the nature of monarchy and influenced the direction of the state. Occupying a unique position in the mercurial, often violent world of medieval state-craft, English queens had to negotiate a role that combined tremendous influence with terrifying vulnerability.
Lisa Hilton's meticulously researched new book explores the lives of the twenty women who were crowned queen between 1066 and 1503, reconsidering the fictions surrounding well-known figures like Eleanor of Aquitaine and illuminating the lives of forgotten figures such as Adeliza of Louvain. War, adultery, witchcraft, child abuse, murder - and occassionally even love - formed English queenship, but so too did patronage, learning and fashion. Lisa Hilton considers the evolution of the queenly office alongside intimate portraits of the individual women, dispelling the myth that medieval brides were no more than diplomatic pawns.
"a highly readable book.. it has a good story to tell" Michael Prestwich, BBC HISTORY MAGAZINE
Critic's Choice: "a procession of Mathildas, Isabelles, Elizabeths and Eleanors who were, as Hilton shows, more than mere corollaries of their husbands" Lucy Moore, DAILY MAIL
"Reading this stimulating pageant of a book.. one frequently shudders at the fate of women in bygone ages" Antonia Fraser, MAIL ON SUNDAY
"a fascinating read" CHOICE
"as Hilton displays so effectively through the depth of her research, no two queens were the same.. a fascinating read" Mary Fitzgerald, NEW STATESMAN
"why should the men get all the credit? Hilton redresses the imbalance in this absorbing study of 20 queens" TATLER
Publication date: 06/08/2009
Publisher: Orion Publishing Co
|Publication date:||6th August 2009|
|Publisher:||Orion Publishing Co|
|Genres:||Biography / Autobiography, eBook Favourites, History,|
Lisa Hilton is the critically acclaimed author of 'Athenais: The Real Queen of France' and 'Mistress Peachum's Pleasure'. She was educated at Oxford University, and presently lives in Central London.More About Lisa Hilton