The Lives of the Kings and Queens of England
Edited by Antonia Fraser
Heraldic Consultant: J. P. Brooke-Little, Richmond Herald of Arms
Publisher: Alfred A. Knopf
The Lives of the Kings and Queens of England is the glorious pageant of almost one thousand years of England's history told through the lives and deeds (and misdeeds) of her sovereigns. Here, in a sweep of short, colorful, brilliantly telling episodes, are the stories of the many monarchs -- some merry, some darkly fascinating, some sinister or flamboyant or perverse -- who span ten centuries and ten great dynasties from the House of Normandy in 1066 to the House of Windsor today.
Antonia Fraser, whose superlative biographies of Mary Queen of Scots, of Cornwell, and of King James VI and I have established her as a leading interpreter of her country's history, introduces the book and herself chosen the eight writers, each with his special knowledge and love of his period, to narrate the rise and fall of the great families from whose ranks sprang England's Kings and Queens. The writers' brief is not just to recall for us the important events in the reigns of each man or woman who inherited or stole (and sometimes lost) the crown, but to capture on the page the extraordinarily rich diversity of their complex personalities . . . .
William the Conqueror, the soldier politician, who with his Norman knights won England by the arrow and by the sword, and transformed the country over twenty short years in ways whose effects are still being felt today . . . Richard the Lionheart, crusader and poet . . . John, the King whose name became so infamous that no English King has borne it since, nor ever will . . . the Yorkist and Lancastrian Kings, whose epic struggles in the Wars of the Roses have been immortalized in Shakespeare's History Plays but whose true features were fascinatingly different from those that invade our memories from the stage . . . the mighty Tudor, Henry VIII, a king of legendary prowess and passions who was to sire an heir both his equal and his opposite in gifts and temperament . . . Elizabeth I, the immortal Gloriana, England's Virgin Queen . . . the ill-fated Stuarts . . . the quarreling, eccentric, finally oh-so-English Hanoverians . . . Victoria, Queen Emperess, tragic widow whose descendants were to people every Royal House of Europe . . . and finally the Windsors, most famous monarch in the world today . . . .
Richly illustrated with a wealth of pictures in both full color and black-and-white . . . further enhanced with the spectacular heraldic devices that make up the coats-of-arms of the ruling families, this book is a sumptuous celebration of ten hundred years of Royalty.
Condition: Used. Hardcover. Dust cover. Pages are tanned and darkening from age. Previous owner's "Library Of" stamp is on the short title page. Dust covers are tanned from age. Dust covers show a bit of edge wear and tear and creasing.
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