Glitteringly detailed and engagingly written, the magisterial Elizabeth I brings to vivid life the golden age of sixteenth-century England and the uniquely fascinating monarch who presided over it. A woman of intellect and presence, Elizabeth was the object of extravagant adoration by her contemporaries. She firmly believed in the divine providence of her sovereignty and exercised supreme authority over the intrigue-laden Tudor court and Elizabethan England at large. Brilliant, mercurial, seductive, and maddening, an inspiration to artists and adventurers and the subject of vicious speculation over her choice not to marry, Elizabeth became the most powerful ruler of her time. Anne Somerset has immortalized her in this splendidly illuminating account.
BONUS MATERIAL: This ebook edition includes an excerpt from Anne Somerset's Queen Anne.
In this totally captivating, sympathetic biography, English writer Somerset quotes an abundance of primary sources to elucidate Queen Elizabeth I's often criticized actions. For example, she investigates the cunning ruler's ``sound enough reasons'' for attempting to have her hated royal cousin, Mary, Queen of Scots, murdered in an underhand fashion without the bother of an execution. Somerset ( Ladies-in-Waiting) argues that the execution of Elizabeth's mother, Anne Boleyn, when she was two and a half cast a dark shadow over the queen's entire life. A virgin monarch, thrilled by the power of her father, Henry VIII, Elizabeth (1533-1603) turned her sex to her advantage in a man's world. She ``flaunted her femininity'' with chivalrous male colleagues and used her marital availability as a chief asset in the conduct of foreign affairs. The success of her 45-year reign, writes Somerset, was very much a personal triumph aided by her magnetism and charm. A wry, convincing portrait of a complex character. Illustrated. BOMC alternate.