With this "impeccable" (BBC History) chronicle, acclaimed popular historian Ruth Goodman reveals a Renaissance Britain particularly rank with troublemakers. From snooty needlers who took aim with a cutting "thee," to lowbrow drunkards with revolting table manners, Goodman's "gleeful and illuminating" (Booklist, starred review) portrait of offenses most foul draws upon advice manuals, court cases, and sermons. Wicked readers will delight in learning why quoting Shakespeare was poor form, and why curses hurled at women were almost always about sex (no surprise there). "Accessible, fun, and historically accurate" (Publishers Weekly, starred review), How to Behave Badly is a celebration of one of history's naughtiest periods, when derision was an art form.
"Oh, how I wish Ruth Goodman could be my tutor. But settling in for one of her history lessons is better than second best." -- Alicia Becker, New York Times Book Review
Superb.... A perceptive, suspenseful account. --The New York Times Book ReviewDunn demythologizes Elizabeth and Mary. In humanizing their dynamic and shifting relationship, Dunn describes it as fueled by both rivalry and their natural solidarity as women in an overwhelmingly masculine world. --Boston Herald The political and religious conflicts between Queen Elizabeth I and the doomed Mary, Queen of Scots, have for centuries captured our imagination and inspired memorable dramas played out on stage, screen, and in opera. But few books have brought to life more vividly the exquisite texture of two women's rivalry, spurred on by the ambitions and machinations of the forceful men who surrounded them. The drama has terrific resonance even now as women continue to struggle in their bid for executive power. Against the backdrop of sixteenth-century England, Scotland, and France, Dunn paints portraits of a pair of protagonists whose formidable strengths were placed in relentless opposition. Protestant Elizabeth, the bastard daughter of Anne Boleyn, whose legitimacy had to be vouchsafed by legal means, glowed with executive ability and a visionary energy as bright as her red hair. Mary, the Catholic successor whom England's rivals wished to see on the throne, was charming, feminine, and deeply persuasive. That two such women, queens in their own right, should have been contemporaries and neighbours sets in motion a joint biography of rare spark and page-turning power.
Offensive language, insolent behavior,slights, brawls, and scandals come alive inRuth Goodman’s uproarious history.
The eminent British historian John Guy has unearthed a wealth of evidence that upends the popular notion of Mary Queen of Scots as a femme fatale and establishes her as the intellectual and political equal of Elizabeth I.
Guy draws on sources as varied as the secret communiques of English spies and Mary's own letters (many hitherto unstudied) to depict her world and her actions with stunning immediacy. Here is a myth-shattering reappraisal of her multifaceted character and prodigious political skill. Guy dispels the persistent popular image of Mary as a romantic leading lady, achieving her ends through feminine wiles, driven by love to murder, undone by passion and poor judgment. Through his pioneering research, we come to see her as an emotionally intricate woman and an adroit diplomat, maneuvering ingeniously among a dizzying array of powerful factions -- the French, the English, duplicitous Scottish nobles, and religious zealots -- who sought to control or dethrone her. Guy's investigation of Mary's storied downfall throws sharp new light on questions that have baffled historians for centuries, and offers convincing new evidence that she was framed for the murder for which she was beheaded.
Queen of Scots, the first full-scale biography of Mary in more than thirty years, offers a singularly novel, nuanced, and dramatic portrait of one of history's greatest women.
The New York Times bestselling history of the legendary six wives of Henry VIII--from the acclaimed author of Marie Antoinette.Under Antonia Fraser's intent scrutiny, Catherine of Aragon emerges as a scholar-queen who steadfastly refused to grant a divorce to her royal husband; Anne Boleyn is absolved of everything but a sharp tongue and an inability to produce a male heir; and Catherine Parr is revealed as a religious reformer with the good sense to tack with the treacherous winds of the Tudor court. And we gain fresh understanding of Jane Seymour's circumspect wisdom, the touching dignity of Anna of Cleves, and the youthful naivete that led to Katherine Howard's fatal indiscretions. The Wives of Henry VIII interweaves passion and power, personality and politics, into a superb work of history.
Charles I waged civil wars that cost one in ten Englishmen their lives. But in 1649 Parliament was hard put to find a lawyer with the skill and daring to prosecute a king who claimed to be above the law. In the end, they chose the radical lawyer John Cooke, whose Puritan conscience, political vision, and love of civil liberties gave him the courage to bring the king to trial. As a result, Charles I was beheaded, but eleven years later Cooke himself was arrested, tried, and executed at the hands of Charles II.
Geoffrey Robertson, a renowned human rights lawyer, provides a vivid new reading of the tumultuous Civil War years, exposing long-hidden truths: that the king was guilty, that his execution was necessary to establish the sovereignty of Parliament, that the regicide trials were rigged and their victims should be seen as national heroes. Cooke's trial of Charles I, the first trial of a head of state for waging war on his own people, became a forerunner of the trials of Augusto Pinochet, Slobodan Milosevic, and Saddam Hussein. The Tyrannicide Brief is a superb work of history that casts a revelatory light on some of the most important issues of our time.
An intimate portrait of history's most fascinating monarch. Christopher Hibbert's Elizabeth I is a revelation--a genius and world leader, presiding over one of Europe's most glittering ages, singing, riding to the hunt, composing verse, summoning armadas, dealing coldly with traitors. A well-rounded and well-written study . . . an excellent introduction to a remarkable woman.--The Observer. Four-color insert.