The Tudors : Books

The Tudors : Books


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From 1450 to 1487 the whole political fabric of England was shaken by a series of military conflicts between the rival Plantagenet houses of York and Lancaster now known as the Wars of the Roses. Spanning the reigns of five kings - only two of whom died at home - these wars were packed with political and military drama. This struggle for the crown of England was dominated by such towering personalities as Queen Margaret of Anjou, wife of Lancastrian King Henry VI; the blue-blooded Beauforts and Henry Tudor; Yorkist Kings Edward IV and Richard III; and the Neville clan led by Warwick the Kingmaker. This new updated edition of Peter Bramley's beautifully illustrated book focuses on the rich legacy of physical remains associated with these wars, which have survived for over 500 years in the form of castles, battlefields, houses, church brasses and tombs. A veritable treasure trove of information, this unusual guidebook provides details of the events and people linked with each historical site, together with background on the wars' causes, main events and the personalities involved. The guide is arranged by region and covers the whole of England and Wales - for the wars were not a geographic contest between Yorkshire and Lancashire but involved peers, gentry and retainers from all over the country. There are plenty of sites to visit in the south - for example Tewkesbury in Gloucestershire, site of the key battle in 1471 where Edward IV destroyed the Lancastrians, and Long Melford in Suffolk where the church contains fabulous stained glass of local participants in the wars. A Companion & Guide to The Wars of the Roses will appeal to those who find that visiting a historical site brings life and colour to the period.

The Wars of the Roses didn't end at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485. Despite the death of Richard III and Henry VII's victory, it continued underground into the following century with plots, pretenders and subterfuge by the ousted white rose faction. In a brand new interpretation of this turning point in history, well known historian Desmond Seward reviews the story of the Tudors' seizure of the throne and shows that for many years they were far from secure. He challenges the way we look at the reigns of Henry VII and Henry VIII, explaining why there were so many Yorkist pretenders and conspiracies, and why the new dynasty had such difficulty establishing itself. King Richard's nephews, the Earl of Warwick and the little known de la Pole brothers, all had the support of dangerous enemies overseas, while England was split when the lowly Perkin Warbeck skilfully impersonated one of the princes in the tower in order to claim the right to the throne. Warwick's surviving sister Margaret also became the desperate focus of hopes that the White Rose would be reborn. The book also offers a new perspective on why Henry VIII, constantly threatened by treachery, real or imagined, and desperate to secure his power with a male heir, became a tyrant.

'Gloriana', 'Faerie Queene', 'Queen Bess' are just some of the names given to Elizabeth I, the daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn. But the name for which she is perhaps best remembered and which best explains why Elizabeth was the last of the Tudor monarchs, was the 'Virgin Queen'. But how appropriate is that image? Were Elizabeth's suitors and favourites really just innocent intrigues? Or were they much more than that? Was Elizabeth really a woman driven by her passions, who had affairs with several men, including Thomas Seymour, while he was still the husband of her guardian Catherine Parr, and Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester - a man adjudged to have been the great love of her life? And, are the rumours of Elizabeth's illegitimate children true? Was the 'Virgin Queen' image a carefully thought out piece of Tudor propaganda? Historian Philippa Jones, author of the acclaimed "The Other Tudors", challenges the many myths and truths surrounding Elizabeth's life and reveals the passionate woman behind the powerful and fearless 'Virgin Queen'.

This entertaining and fact-packed guide provides all the information youll need to travel back in time to Elizabethan London a booming city of courtiers, cutthroats, merchants, beggars, lawyers, dramatists, apprentices and adventurers. Find out the best way to the capital and where to stay. Saunter over London Bridge, with its hundreds of shops and houses. Glimpse Her Majesty at Whitehall, Europes largest palace.Watch the finest plays and players at the Rose Theatre, and marvel at the bustle of business in the Royal Exchange. Go down to Greenwich to stand on the deck of the Golden Hind, the ship that Sir Francis Drake sailed around the world. This intriguingly addictive guide provides all you need to know to sight see, shop and meet the famous in the capital of a nation stirring to greatness.

Did William Shakespeare ever meet Queen Elizabeth I? There is no evidence of such a meeting, yet for three centuries writers and artists have been provoked and inspired to imagine it. Shakespeare and Elizabeth is the first book to explore the rich history of invented encounters between the poet and the Queen, and examines how and why the mythology of these two charismatic and enduring cultural icons has been intertwined in British and American culture. Helen Hackett follows the history of meetings between Shakespeare and Elizabeth through historical novels, plays, paintings, and films, ranging from well-known works such as Sir Walter Scott's Kenilworth and the film Shakespeare in Love to lesser known but equally fascinating examples. Raising intriguing questions about the boundaries separating scholarship and fiction, Hackett looks at biographers and critics who continue to delve into links between the queen and the poet. In the Shakespeare authorship controversy there have even been claims that Shakespeare was Elizabeth's secret son or lover, or that Elizabeth herself was the genius Shakespeare. Hackett uncovers the reasons behind the lasting appeal of their combined reputations, and she locates this interest in their enigmatic sexual identities, as well as in the ways they represent political tensions and national aspirations.

In this major new double biography, Anka Muhlstein examines the turbulent relationship between Elizabeth I of England and Mary, Queen of Scots. At this time, quite uniquely, both the thrones of the British Isles were occupied by women, which for the first time brought the issue of royal consorts to the fore. The story of these two queens is one of the most fascinating in British history.

In this book, maritime expert Angus Konstam explores the fledging Tudor Navy, tracing its history from its origins as a merchant fleet under Henry VII through to its emergence as a powerful force under Henry VIII. Examining the operational use of Henry VIII's warships the author analyses the battle of the Solent in 1545, in which Henry's fleet took on a French fleet of 200 ships - much larger than the Spanish Armada decades later. Despite the well-documented loss of his flagship, the Mary Rose, Henry's smaller force succeeded in preventing a French victory. Although many people will have heard of the mighty Mary Rose, this book will tell the story of more than just the tragic sinking of Henry's flagship, describing how one of history's most dynamic kings grew the navy from the five warships that were his father's legacy to 53 deadly gunships at the forefront of his empire-building strategy. Through contemporary illustrations and intricate artwork, the author traces the changing face of warship design during the Renaissance as Henry paved the way for English dominance of the sea.

Elizabeth I stands in the English imagination for one of the formative phases of English history. Her reign saw England transformed, at her command, from a Catholic to a Protestant country, with incalculable consequences for the history of Europe and of the world - starting with the attempted invasion by the Spanish Armada, beaten off by the Queen's legendary naval captains. Of the five monarchs who trod the political stage of sixteenth-century England, Elizabeth was the most accomplished and versatile performer. And it is ultimately this which accounts for her enduring fascination. Richard Rex highlights the vivid and contrary personality of a Queen who could both baffle and bedazzle her subjects, her courtiers, and her rivals: at one moment flirting outrageously with a favourite or courting some foreign prince, and at another vowing perpetual virginity; at one time agonising over the execution of her cousin, Mary Queen of Scots, then ordering the slaughter of hundreds of poor men after a half-cock rebellion. Too many biographies of Elizabeth merely perpetuate the flattery she enjoyed from her courtiers, as if her dramatic repertoire was limited to the role of 'Gloriana'. This biography also reflects more critical voices, such as those of the Irish, the Catholics and those who lived on the wrong side of the emerging North/South divide. To them she showed a different face.

"Queen Elizabeth's Wooden Teeth" focuses on the erroneous facts that continue to distort the annals of world history. To counter all those fabricated facts you have learnt through the years, here is a guide to the truth behind the myths, including: Sir Walter Raleigh did not bring the potato nor tobacco back from the New World; Abraham Lincoln did not write the Gettysburg Address on the back of an envelope; King Ethelred the Unready was not unprepared; St George was not English; and of course Queen Elizabeth did not have wooden teeth! Written with wit and fascinating insight, and covering numerous subjects from royalty to religion, saints to statesmen, inventors to explorers, "Queen Elizabeth's Wooden Teeth" is guaranteed to astonish and inform, amuse and entertain.


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