The Last Medieval Queens: English Queenship 1445-1503
The last medieval queens of England were Margaret of Anjou, Elizabeth Woodville, Anne Neville, and Elizabeth of York - four very different women whose lives and queenship were dominated by the Wars of the Roses. This book is not a traditional biography but a thematic study of the ideology and practice of queenship. It examines the motivations behind the choice of the first English-born queens, the multi-faceted rituals of coronation, childbirth, and funeral, the divided loyalties between family and king, and the significance of a position at the heart of the English power structure that could only be filled by a woman. It sheds new light on the queens' struggles to defend their children's rights to the throne, and argues that ideologically and politically a queen was integral to the proper exercise of mature kingship in this period.
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - LibraryThing
Being a Queen in the Middle Ages was about like being a Vice President in the nineteenth century: Your name was all over the place, but you didn't have any power at all. This book is about four very different women, the last four women to be Queen of England in the fifteenth century: Margaret of Anjou, Elizabeth Woodville, Anne Neville, and Elizabeth of York. All were, in one way or another, failures. Margaret, by her arrogant use of power, succeeded only in overthrowing her dynasty. Elizabeth Woodville, by the political opposition she stirred up, saw her sons set aside and then vanished. Anne Neville died without a living child, helping to doom her husband as well. And Elizabeth of York -- who after all that should surely have been queen in her own right -- ended up being sat on by Henry Tudor. This is not in fact a book about the failures of these four women. It is about how they became what they became, and what was expected of them, and how they fulfilled those expectations. But, in the process of examining those issues, it brings out the failures. Margaret failed because she had no ability to understand others' viewpoints. Anne's failure was entirely biological: She didn't have children easily. Elizabeth Woodville's was also partly biological -- she didn't have a son soon enough -- but also sprang from the politics of the period. It's harder to say just where Elizabeth of York went wrong, but it does seem clear that she didn't have the force or will to deal with her husband -- although she does seem, while she was alive, to have soothed the savage, almost Stalinist, disrespect for people that Henry Tudor showed in his early years and after her death. This isn't the easiest book to read. The writing is somewhat dense, and there are times when it skips around a little too much. But the topic is truly fascinating, and the research seems to be very good. It's worth the effort of reading.
Review: The Last Medieval Queens: English Queenship 1445-1503User Review - Nicole - Goodreads
Fantastic book about the four examples and queenship in general. Read full review
Margaret of Anjou: Queenship and Power in Late Medieval England
Helen E. Maurer
No preview available - 2003
The Last Medieval Queens: English Queenship 1445-1503
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The Last Medieval Queens: English Queenship 1445-1503.(Book
The Last Medieval Queens English Queenship 1445-1503 JL Laynesmith Oxford UP 35 [pounds sterling] 312pp ISBN 0199247374 JOANNA LAYNESMITH addresses.
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QUEENSHIP IN EARLY MODERN ENGLAND AND SCOTLAND
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