Crown of Blood
The Deadly Inheritance of Lady Jane Grey
In 1553, 17-year-old Lady Jane Grey was proclaimed Queen of England to prevent the accession of Henry VIII’s Catholic daughter Mary. Thirteen days later she was imprisoned in the Tower, and in February 1554 she was beheaded. This narrative history draws on previously overlooked sources to create a vivid and engaging portrait of an intelligent, charismatic and deeply religious girl caught up in the power politics of her age, whose courage shone through her final, harrowing ordeal.
The Trials of the King of Hampshire
Madness, Secrecy and Betrayal in Georgian England
Every family has its skeletons, but in 1823 the aristocratic Wallops were about to have theirs laid bare to the world. This compulsively written, meticulously researched biography tells the dramatic story of the Third Earl of Portsmouth. Wealthy and well-connected, a friend of Byron and Jane Austen, he was widely considered a harmless eccentric until – amid accusations of blackmail, abduction and sodomy – his own family set out to have him declared insane in a trial that scandalized the nation.
The History of England, Volume IV
The fourth volume of Peter Ackroyd’s epic History of England begins in 1688 with a revolution and ends in 1815 with a victory. Against a vivid backdrop of coffee houses and playhouses, it charts the creation of those pillars of modern Britain, the Bank of England and the Stock Exchange, the rise of newspapers, the birth of the novel, and the technological developments that transformed England from a land of green fields to one of iron and coal.
A Gentleman's Guide to Duelling
Vincentio Saviolo's 'Of Honour and Honourable Quarrels'
Annotated woodcuts of historical duels and methodical swordplay illustrate this classic guide to resolving a gentlemen’s disagreement in Elizabethan England. Honour, pride and shame were at the heart of most duels, and Italian fencing master Vincentio Saviolo’s prose, which has been subtly updated for the modern reader, suggests ways for both challenger and defender to navigate the labyrinth of etiquette without resort to the rapier, his favoured weapon of combat.
How to Be a Tudor
A Dawn-to-Dusk Guide to Tudor Life
Historians trawl through documentary records to reveal how people lived in the past, but few actually experience it first-hand. Ruth Goodman, presenter of the BBC TV series Tudor Monastery Farm, has done just that, eating, sleeping, working, dressing and dancing like a Tudor. Drawing on these adventures with characteristic wit and humour, she describes a day in the life of an ordinary person, from dawn to dusk, during one of the most vibrant periods of English history.
Henry VIII, Thomas Cromwell and the Pilgrimage of Grace
Autumn 1536: Henry VIII has broken with Rome and is eyeing the wealth of the monasteries. In the north of England, 30,000 men loyal to the Catholic Church take arms against him in the uprising known as the Pilgrimage of Grace. Using the rebels' own testimony, this narrative history examines their motives and beliefs, charts the course of the ill-fated insurrection, and describes the rhetoric, rewards and retribution employed by Henry's minister Thomas Cromwell to thwart them.
An Illustrated Introduction to the Stuarts
Arranged chronologically from the accession of James I in 1603 to the death of Queen Anne in 1714, this book describes an era of unprecedented change and turmoil. The Stuart century saw wars of religion, the Civil War and the plague, but also the flourishing of art, literature, philosophy and science.
The Ecology of Enclosure
The Effect of Enclosure on Society, Farming and the Environment in South Cambridgeshire, 1798–1850
South Cambridgeshire has some of the richest arable land in England and has been cultivated for millennia. By 1800, industrialization and massive population growth had resulted in an enormous increase in the demand for food, which in turn led to enclosure. This book presents a study of social and agricultural life in South Cambridgeshire before enclosure, then describes the process of enclosure and its effects on society, farming and the environment in the region between 1798 and 1850.
News and Rumour in Jacobean England
Information, Court Politics and Diplomacy, 1618–25
David Coast's study examines how political news was concealed, manipulated and distorted in late Jacobean England, and how the flow of information to and from the king was managed by his Secretaries of State and diplomats.
The Private Lives of the Tudors
Uncovering the Secrets of Britain's Greatest Dynasty
The six wives of Henry VIII and the virginity of Elizabeth I are the stuff of popular history, but the lives of the Tudor monarchs away from the public eye are little known. Drawing on contemporary correspondence and eyewitness accounts, this book takes us into their kitchens, bathrooms and bedrooms to reveal, through what they ate, what they wore, how they worshipped, whom they loved and how they gave birth, the intimate moments of their daily lives.
An Elizabethan Assassin
Theodore Paleologus: Seducer, Spy and Killer
John Hall explores the myths and controversies surrounding Italian nobleman Theodore Paleologus, heir apparent to the throne of Byzantium, who in 1597 arrived in England to murder a traitorous compatriot, then remained in the pay of the Earl of Lincoln to sow misery among the English aristocracy until his death in 1636. The biography also scrutinizes Paleologus’s offspring, who fought one another in the English Civil War, and backs their father’s long-dismissed claim to the imperial throne.
England's Lost Colony
In the 1650s, a group of Cavaliers fled Cromwell’s England for the lush coast of Surinam. Here, they established a colony named after its founder, Sir Thomas Willoughby. This absorbing book explores the untold story of the colony’s rise and fall. The rich cast of characters includes Willoughby himself, the playwright Aphra Behn, the indigenous people and their rulers, and the planters and mercenaries who would turn this utopia into a hell of terror and slavery.
Censoring Queen Victoria
How Two Gentlemen Edited a Queen and Created an Icon
After Queen Victoria’s death, it was decided to publish her correspondence. Based on unprecedented access to royal archives, this work of historical detection profiles the men chosen to edit the letters: the depressive schoolmaster Arthur Benson, and Viscount Esher, a royal confidant obsessed with Eton schoolboys. It shows how their decisions shaped our perception of Victoria, and reveals aspects of the queen not intended for public scrutiny.
Life in the Georgian Court
When Queen Anne died in 1714, George, Elector of Hanover, acceded to the British throne. Organized in four main acts – Childhood, Marriage, Scandal and Death – rather than as a comprehensive history, this is a collection of true stories from the Georgian era. Romantic, tragic, eccentric and sometimes gory, the tales are engagingly told, revealing the real people beneath the wigs and pomp of the period, and complemented by a useful timeline and a section of black-and-white portraits.
Margaret of York
The Diabolical Duchess
Reared in a dangerous world, Margaret of York was one of history’s great survivors. This biography tells how, from her Burgundian exile, she sought to avenge the overthrow of the House of York by sending pretenders to contest the throne of Henry Tudor. Slightly off-mint.
Plague, War, and Hellfire
The year 1666 saw England struck by numerous catastrophes, including a devastating outbreak of plague, the Great Fire of London and an intensification of the second Anglo-Dutch War. This colourful account of the fateful year (and events leading up to it) is peopled by actors, courtiers, politicians and scientists, including Samuel Pepys, Robert Hooke and Nell Gwynn, and evokes a nation in the grip of great artistic, social and scientific change.
The Sultan and the Queen
The Untold Story of Elizabeth and Islam
Excommunicated in 1570, Queen Elizabeth I found the key markets of Catholic Europe closed to English merchants; instead, she reached out to the Shah of Iran, the King of Morocco and the Ottoman Sultan. This gripping history reveals how English merchants, sailors and diplomats plied their trade with the Muslim world, creating a fashion for the Orient in London that was reflected in the plays of Marlowe and Shakespeare. Off-mint and felt-tip mark on lower trimmed edge.
The Life and Works of Robert Baillie (1602–1662)
Politics, Religion and Record-Keeping in the British Civil Wars
The letters of the Glaswegian minister Robert Baillie (1620–1662) are a common source for the history of Scotland during the violent years 1637–1660. This first biography of Baillie establishes his significance as a polemicist, theologian and contemporary historian.
How Fat Was Henry VIII?
And Other Questions on Royal History
Beginning with a section of 'Royal Conundrums' such as the nature of Queen Victoria's relationship with John Brown and whether James II's baby son was a changeling, Raymond Lamont-Brown indulges our curiosity about all things royal with very thorough answers. Other sections include Pretenders and Usurpers; Murders, Plots and Assassinations; Palaces, Castles and Love Nests; and finally, Rumour and Scandal - wherein we learn which monarch topped the list for siring royal bastards.
The Seymours of Wolf Hall
A Tudor Family Story
Originating in France, the Seymour family accompanied William the Conqueror to England and served the crown for generations; but came to prominence in the Tudor era. Jane was Henry VIII's third queen and mother to Edward VI, and her brothers Edward and Thomas rose to high office, only to end their lives at the executioner's block. The two brothers are the main focus in Loades's study of the rise and fall of the family and their ancestral home at Wolfhall, Wiltshire. Slightly off-mint.
Had the first-born son of Henry VII lived into adulthood, the crown would not have passed to his younger brother: Arthur Tudor, rather than Henry VIII, would have ruled and England’s subsequent history would have been quite different. This study of Arthur (1486–1502) describes the life of a prince royally matched to Catherine of Aragon, groomed and destined for the throne; and it shows how, when Arthur died, Henry inherited his brother’s wife, but not his careful preparation for kingship.
Henry VIII, James IV and the Battle for Renaissance Britain
The decisive battle at Flodden Field in 1513 marked the climax of the personal and political tension between England’s Henry VIII and his brother-in-law James IV of Scotland. This book traces the origins and escalation of their rivalry, with analysis of the political and military manoeuvres leading up to Flodden. It ends with an account of the battle itself, which saw the first artillery exchange on a British battlefield, and an assessment of James’s level of responsibility for Scotland’s defeat.
The King's Pearl
Henry VIII and His Daughter Mary
Against the traditional image of ‘Bloody Mary’ promoted by Protestant propaganda, and against the more recent portrayals of Mary Tudor as a pitiable and tragic figure, this study presents Mary as her father’s daughter, a strong-willed risk-taker. The book examines her life during the reign of Henry VIII and her complex and dramatic relationship with her father, and reveals England’s first queen regnant as a gambler who ‘staked everything – life, freedom, religion – in a bid for the throne, and won’.
A Brief History of Henry VIII
Reformer and Tyrant
Described by Derek Wilson as 'a magnificent piece of propaganda', Holbein's portrait of Henry VIII depicts a proud, belligerent and powerful monarch. Wilson argues that a realistic understanding of Henry requires 'the rejection of this forceful icon' and, drawing on a lifetime's work on this period, his study provides a fresh assessment of the king's character and his response to the bewildering changes of the Renaissance and Reformation era.
The King's Bed
Sex, Power and the Court of Charles II
Charles II was obsessed by women, and his conquests ranged across the classes, from the actress Nell Gwyn to the aristocrat Barbara Villiers. For the first time, this revealing book places the king’s compulsive philandering at the centre of an account of his reign. Taking us behind the scenes, it introduces a colourful cast of court favourites, politicians and a parade of mistresses fighting for influence over a king ruled – and ruined – by his passions.
Charles II and His Court
The court of Charles II was the most hedonistic in the history of England. This book charts the king's dalliances from his youthful exile in France, and profiles his mistresses: Barbara Villiers, Louise de Kérouaille and, everyone's favourite, Nell Gwyn. Filled with promiscuous beauties and poxed swaggerers, and packed with intrigue, espionage, illicit liaisons and fierce duels, it draws on a wealth of contemporary letters, diaries, satires and lampoons to bring this decadent world to life.
Sex, Money & Personal Character in Eighteenth-Century British Politics
How and why did the Anglo-American world become so obsessed with the private lives and public character of its political leaders? Marilyn Morris finds answers in 18th-century Britain, when a long tradition of court intrigue and gossip spread into a broader and more public political arena with the growth of political parties, extra-parliamentary political activities and a partisan print culture. Her study highlights the contradictions, self-deceptions and inconsistencies inherent in personalized politics.
Adultery, Heresy, Desire
‘A narrative that balances on the cusp of old and new, equally informed by both’, the story of Anne Boleyn – her courtship, marriage and eventual tragedy – is often told, yet remains something of a mystery. Amy Licence approaches Anne’s life from the long perspective of the ambitious Boleyn family; she examines how, as queen, Anne overreached contemporary ideas about both women and aristocrats, and how she developed the sophisticated tastes and expectations of Renaissance culture, patronage and queenship.
Censorship and Cultural Sensibility
The Regulation of Language in Tudor-Stuart England
Debora Shuger offers a new approach to the history of early modern English censorship. Attempting to recover the system of beliefs and values ‘that made the regulation of language, including state censorship, seem like a good idea’, the study deals with issues that remain relevant today: the rhetoric of ideological extremism, the use of defamation to ruin political opponents, and the grounding of law in theological ethics.
An Illustrated Introduction to the Regency
The Regency, which lasted from 1811 to 1820, was more than a political period – it was a style, a fashion, a state of mind. Illustrated in colour, this compact introduction charts the era’s extraordinary outpouring of creativity: the writing of Austen, Byron and Shelley, the paintings of Turner and Constable, the architecture of Nash and Soane, and the sartorial elegance of Beau Brummell.
A Brief History of the Tudor Age
Beginning with the victory of Henry Tudor in 1485 and ending with the death of Queen Elizabeth I in 1603, this is a vivid account of a contradictory age of great cultural achievement and terrible violence. Opulent life at court, voyages of discovery, scholarship and the flowering of English drama are juxtaposed with poverty, the narrow lives of peasants, harsh justice and war. First published as The Tudor Age.
Strangers to That Land
British Perceptions of Ireland from the Reformation to the Famine
In two parts, covering the periods 1540–1660 and 1660–1850, this volume presents first-hand descriptions of Ireland by English, Scottish and Welsh writers who visited the country, and provides notes on the authors and the historical context of their writings. Among the great range of writers represented are Edmund Campion (visiting in 1570), John Wesley (c.1750), Thomas de Quincey (c.1800), Thomas Carlyle (1849) and Queen Victoria (1870).
The History of England. Volume III
The 17th century was one of the most turbulent England had seen; at its centre stands the Civil War, the execution of Charles I and the despotic rule of Oliver Cromwell. This third volume of Peter Ackroyd's magisterial national history charts that era of revolution and religious conflict from the accession of James I to the exile of his grandson James II, and from the literary riches of Shakespeare and Milton to the often insecure lives of ordinary men and women. Slightly off-mint.
The King's Revenge
Charles II and the Greatest Manhunt in British History
After the beheading of his father Charles I in 1649, the 19-year-old Prince of Wales vowed to seek revenge and, from exile, instigated the biggest manhunt in British history. The search lasted over 30 years, with show trials and assassination squads scouring the country for the men who dared to sit in judgement of King Charles. Following the hunt in this fast-paced historical narrative, the authors tell an engrossing tale of intrigue, espionage, ambition and betrayal.
Power, Politics & County Government in Wales
This study of public administration at the county level in Wales during the ‘long’ 19th century couples a detailed examination of what happened in one county – Anglesey – with overviews of events in other parts of Wales. Griffith explores the social and cultural contexts of county government in Wales, and assesses the shifts in the character and efficacy of local government, initially under a landed magistracy and later under a democratically elected council.
The Savage Storm
Britain on the Brink in the Age of Napoleon
David Andress chronicles the 'remarkably dogged, occasionally despairing, but at last overwhelmingly successful British fight against the continental power embodied in the 'Grand Empire' of Napoleon Bonaparte'. He describes the military conflict itself, but also examines how it affected both high politics and the very active social resistance of the time. As well as the international contest of ideologies, the study considers the bitterly divided society within Britain, even as it prevailed over Napoleon.
Duke and King of Scots, 1633–1701
In this scholarly biography the Duke of Albany, later James VII and II, is 'discussed from birth to death as a prince of Scotland'. That Scottish perspective allows Mann to re-evaluate traditional views of the king as a Catholic extremist and absolutist who failed through incompetence; to reassess his personality and motives; and to give a full account of James as a member of the royal house of Scotland, as a commander, as king and, finally, as exile.
A Year in the Life of Stuart Britain
Among the momentous events described in the Stuart year are the Great Plague, the Great Fire of London, the Union of Scotland and England and the publication of Newton’s Principia; and the witnesses to this 17th-century Britain include Pepys, Evelyn, Defoe and John Bunyan.
A History of Britain
Book IV: The Stuarts, Cromwell and the Glorious Revolution
Part of a series first published in 1937 and used in schools for decades, this book tells the dramatic events that affected the British Isles during the 17th century as a chronological narrative in fast-paced prose – from the accession of James I to the reign of William and Mary and the treaty of Utrecht in 1713. Edited and updated by David Evans, former Head of History at Eton. No jacket.
Dublin Castle and the First Home Rule Crisis: The Political
Journal of Sir George Fottrell, 1884-1887
Presenting information supplied by administrators to politicians including George Fottrell, earls Spencer and Carnarvon, Sir Robert Hamilton and Gladstone, this collection of documents gives a 'worm's-eye-view' of Irish affairs. Camden Fifth Series. Vol.33
An Account of the Last Invasion of Britain
With revolutionary fervour and help from Irish republicans, the French mounted an invasion of Britain in February 1797. The troops landing at Fishguard in Pembrokeshire were designed to divert attention from a larger force attacking Ireland but this contingent failed to arrive leaving the intended assault on Bristol, via Wales, an isolated and forlorn effort. This history explains the circumstances of the invasion and how it was put down by a handful of local militia.