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Queens of the Conquest

Alison Weir (Author)

A Daily Telegraph Book of the Year

The story of England’s medieval queens is vivid and stirring, packed with tragedy, high drama and even comedy. It is a chronicle of love, murder, war and betrayal, filled with passion, intrigue and sorrow, peopled by a cast of heroines, villains, stateswomen and lovers. In the first volume of this epic new series, Alison Weir strips away centuries of romantic mythology and prejudice to reveal the lives of England’s queens in the century after the Norman Conquest.

Beginning with Matilda of Flanders, who supported William the Conqueror in his invasion of England in 1066, and culminating in the turbulent life of the Empress Maud, who claimed to be queen of England in her own right and fought a bitter war to that end, the five Norman queens emerge as hugely influential figures and fascinating characters.

Much more than a series of individual biographies, Queens of the Conquest is a seamless tale of interconnected lives and a rich portrait of English history in a time of flux. In Alison Weir’s hands these five extraordinary women reclaim their rightful roles at the centre of English history.

The Lost Tudor Princess

Alison Weir (Author)

Royal Tudor blood ran in her veins. Some thought Margaret Douglas, Countess of Lennox, should be queen of England.

She ranked high at the court of her uncle, Henry VIII, and was lady of honour to five of his wives. Beautiful and tempestuous, she created scandal - twice - by falling in love with unsuitable men.

Throughout her life her dynastic ties to two crowns proved hazardous. A born political intriguer, she was imprisoned in the Tower of London three times, once under sentence of death. Her husband and son were brutally murdered, she warred with two queens, and proved instrumental in securing the Stuart succession to the throne of England for her grandson.

Alison Weir brings Margaret Douglas's captivating character out of the shadows for the first time.

The Six Wives Of Henry VIII

Alison Weir (Author)

One of the most powerful monarchs in British history, Henry VIII ruled England in unprecedented splendour. In this remarkable composite biography, Alison Weir brings Henry's six wives vividly to life, revealing each as a distinct and compelling personality in her own right.

Drawing upon the rich fund of documentary material from the Tudor period, The Six Wives of Henry VIII shows us a court where personal needs frequently influenced public events and where a life of gorgeously ritualised pleasure was shot through with ambition, treason and violence.

Mary Queen of Scots

Alison Weir (Author)

On the night of 10 February 1567 an explosion devastated the Edinburgh residence of Henry Stewart, Lord Darnley, second husband of Mary, Queen of Scots. The noise was heard as far away as Holyrood Palace, where Queen Mary was attending a wedding masque. Those arriving at the scene of devastation found, in the garden, the naked corpses of Darnley and his valet. Neither had died in the explosion, but both bodies bore marks of strangulation. It was clear that they had been murdered and the house destroyed in an attempt to obliterate the evidence. Darnley was not a popular king-consort, but he was regarded by many as having a valid claim to the English throne. For this reason Elizabeth I had opposed his family's longstanding wish to marry him to Mary Stuart, who herself claimed to be the rightful queen of England. Alison Weir's investigation of Darnley's murder is set against one of the most dramatic periods in British history. Her conclusions will shed a brilliant new light on the actions and motives of the conspirators and, in particular, the extent of Mary's own involvement.

Britain's Royal Families

Alison Weir (Author)

'George III is alleged to have married secretly, on 17th April, 1759, a Quakeress called Hannah Lightfoot, daughter of a Wapping shoemaker, who is said to have borne him three children. Documents relating to the alleged marriage, bearing the Prince's signature, were impounded and examined in 1866 by the Attorney General. Learned opinion at the time leaned to the view that these documents were genuine. They were then placed in the Royal Archives at Windsor; in 1910, permission was refused a would-be author who asked to see them. If George III did make such a marriage when he was Prince of Wales, before the passing of the Royal Marriages Act in 1772, then his subsequent marriage to Queen Charlotte was bigamous, and every monarch of Britain since has been a usurper, the rightful heirs of George III being his children by Hannah Lightfoot, if they ever existed.' From Britain's Royal Families

Britain's Royal Families is a unique reference book. It provides, for the first time in one volume, complete genealogical details of all members of the royal houses of England, Scotland and Great Britain - from 800AD to the present. Here is the vital biographical information relating not only to each monarch, but also to every member of their immediate family, from parents to grandchildren. Drawing on countless authorities, both ancient and modern, Alison Weir explores the royal family tree in unprecedented depth and provides a comprehensive guide to the heritage of today's royal family.

Children Of England

Alison Weir (Author)

When Henry VIII died in 1547, he left three highly intelligent children to succeed him in turn, to be followed, if their lines failed, by the descendants of his sister, Mary Tudor.

Children of England begins at the point where Alison Wier's bestseller, The Six Wives of Henry VIII came to an end, and covers the period until Elizabeth succeeded to the throne in 1558. Her interest is in the characters and relationships with Henry's four heirs.

Making use of a huge variety of contemporary sources, she brings to life one of the most extraordinary periods of English history, when each of Henry's heirs was potentially the tool of powerful political or religious figures, and when the realm was seething with intrigue and turbulent change.

Lancaster And York

Alison Weir (Author)

The war between the houses of Lancaster and York for the throne of England was characterised by treachery, deceit and - at St Albans, Blore Hill and Towton, - some of the bloodiest and most dramatic battles on England's soil. Between 1455 and 1487 the royal coffers were bankrupted and the conflict resulted in the downfall of the houses of Lancaster and York and the emergence of the illustrious Tudor dynasty.

Alison Weir's lucid and gripping account focuses on the human side of history, on the people and personalities involved in the conflict. At the centre of the book stands Henry VI, the pious king whose mental instability led to political chaos, Richard Plantagenet, Duke of York and Henry's rival, and most important of all, Margaret of Anjou, Henry's wife who took up her arms in her husband's cause and battled for many years in a violent man's world.

The Princes In The Tower

Alison Weir (Author)

The story of the death, in sinister circumstances, of the boy-king Edward V and his younger brother Richard, Duke of York, is one of the most fascinating murder mysteries in English history. It is a tale with profound moral and social consequences, rich in drama, intrigue, treason, scandal and violence.

In this gripping book Alison Weir re-examines all the evidence - including that against the Princes' uncle, Richard III, whose body was recently discovered beneath a Leicester car park. She brilliantly reconstructs the whole chain of events leading to their murder and reveals how, why and by whose order they died.

Henry VIII

Alison Weir (Author)

'This magnificent biography of Henry VIII is set against the cultural, social and political background of his court - the most spectacular court ever seen in England - and the splendour of his many sumptuous palaces.

An entertaining narrative packed with colourful description and a wealth of anecdotal evidence, but a comprehensive analytical study of the development of both monarch and court during a crucial period in English history. As well as challenging some recent theories, it offers controversial new conclusions based on contemporary evidence that has until now been overlooked. This is a triumph of historical writing which will appeal equally to the general reader and the serious historian.

The Lady In The Tower

Alison Weir (Author)

On 2 May, 1536, in an act unprecedented in English history, Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII's second wife, was imprisoned in the Tower of London. On 15 May, she was tried and found guilty of high treason and executed just four days later. Mystery surrounds the circumstances leading up to her arrest - did Henry VIII instruct Thomas Cromwell to fabricate evidence to get rid of her so that he could marry Jane Seymour? Did Cromwell, for reasons of his own, construct a case against Anne and her faction, and then present compelling evidence before the King? Or was Anne, in fact, as guilty as charged?

Never before has there been a book devoted entirely to Anne Boleyn's fall; now in Alison Weir's richly researched and impressively detailed portrait, we have a compelling story of the last days of history's most charismatic, controversial and tragic heroines.

Katherine Swynford

Alison Weir (Author)

Katherine Swynford was first the mistress, and later the wife, of John of Gaunt, the Duke of Lancaster. Her charismatic lover was one of the most powerful princes of the fourteenth century and Katherine was renowned for her beauty and regarded as enigmatic, intriguing and even dangerous by some of her contemporaries.

In this impressive book, Alison Weir has triumphantly rescued Katherine from the footnotes of history, highlighting her key dynastic position within the English monarchy. She was the mother of the Beaufort, then the ancestress of the Yorkist kings, the Tudors, the Stuarts and every other sovereign since - a prodigious legacy that has shaped the history of Britain.

Isabella

Alison Weir (Author)

Described by Christopher Marlowe as the 'She-Wolf of France', Isabella was one of the most notorious femme fatales in history. According to popular legend, her angry ghost can be glimpsed among church ruins, clutching the beating heart of her murdered husband. But how did Isabella aquire this reputation?

Born in 1292 she married Edward II of England but was constantly humiliated by his relationships with male favourites and she lived adulterously with Roger Mortimer, 1st Earl of March. Had it not been for her unfaithfulness, history might have immortalised her as a liberator- the saviour who unshackled England from a weak and vicious monarch.

Dramatic and startling this first full-length biography of Isabella will change the way we think of her and her world forever.

Elizabeth, The Queen and The Lady Elizabeth

Alison Weir (Author)

A special bundle of one fiction and one non-fiction title from betselling historian Alison Weir, both centred around Elizabeth I:

The Lady Elizabeth:

England, 1536. Home to the greatest, most glittering court in English history. But beneath the dazzling façade lies treachery... Elizabeth Tudor is daughter to Henry VIII, the most powerful king England has ever known. She is destined to ascend the throne, and deferred to as the King`s heiress, but that all changes when her mother Anne Boleyn - Henry`s great passion and folly - is executed for treason. A pawn in the savage game of Tudor power politics, she is disinherited, declared a bastard, and left with only her quick wits to rely on for her very existence. But Elizabeth is determined to survive, to foil those who want to destroy her, or who are determined to use her as a puppet for their own lethal ambition, and to reclaim her birthright...

Elizabeth, the Queen:

This book begins as the young Elizabeth ascends the throne in the wake of her sister Mary's disastrous reign. Elizabeth is portrayed as both a woman and a queen, an extraordinary phenomenon in a patriarchal age. Alison Weir writes of Elizabeth's intriguing, long-standing affair with Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, of her dealings - sometimes comical, sometimes poignant - with her many suitors, of her rivalry with Mary, Queen of Scots, and of her bizarre relationship with the Earl of Essex, thirty years her junior.

Rich in detail, vivid and colourful, this book comes as close as we shall ever get to knowing what Elizabeth I was like as a person.

The Lady Elizabeth

Alison Weir (Author)

England, 1536. Home to the greatest, most glittering court in English history. But beneath the dazzling façade lies treachery . . .

Elizabeth Tudor is daughter to Henry VIII, the most powerful king England has ever known. She is destined to ascend the throne, and deferred to as the King's heiress, but that all changes when her mother Anne Boleyn - Henry`s great passion and folly - is executed for treason.

Elizabeth 's life alters in a heartbeat. A pawn in the savage game of Tudor power politics, she is disinherited, declared a bastard, and left with only her quick wits to rely on for her very existence. But Elizabeth is determined to survive, to foil those who want to destroy her, or who are determined to use her as a puppet for their own lethal ambition, and to reclaim her birthright . . .

Elizabeth, The Queen

Alison Weir (Author)

In her highly praised The Six Wives of Henry VIII and its sequel, Children of England, Alison Weir examined the private lives of the early Tudor kings and queens, and chronicled the childhood and youth of one of England's most successful monarchs, Elizabeth I.

This book begins as the young Elizabeth ascends the throne in the wake of her sister Mary's disastrous reign. Elizabeth is portrayed as both a woman and a queen, an extraordinary phenomenon in a patriarchal age. Alison Weir writes of Elizabeth's intriguing, long-standing affair with Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, of her dealings - sometimes comical, sometimes poignant - with her many suitors, of her rivalry with Mary, Queen of Scots, and of her bizarre relationship with the Earl of Essex, thirty years her junior.

Rich in detail, vivid and colourful, this book comes as close as we shall ever get to knowing what Elizabeth I was like as a person.

Eleanor Of Aquitaine

Alison Weir (Author)

Eleanor, Duchess of Aquitaine was one of the leading personalities of the Middle Ages and also one of the most controversial. She was beautiful, intelligent and wilful, and in her lifetime there were rumours about her that were not without substance. She had been reared in a relaxed and licentious court where the arts of the troubadours flourished, and was even said to have presided over the fabled Courts of Love. Eleanor married in turn Louis VII of France and Henry II of England, and was the mother of Richard the Lionheart and King John. She lived to be 82, but it was only in old age that she triumphed over the adversities and tragedies of her earlier years and became virtual ruler of England.

Eleanor has exerted a fascination over writers and biographers for 800 years, but the prevailing myths and legends that attach to her name still tend to obscure the truth. By careful research, Alison Weir has produced a vivid biography with a fresh and provocative perspective on this extraordinary woman.

The Captive Queen

Alison Weir (Author)

It is the year 1152, and a beautiful woman rides through France, fleeing her crown, her two young daughters and a shattered marriage.

Her husband, Louis of France has been more monk than monarch, and certainly not a lover. Now Eleanor of Aquitaine has one sole purpose: to return to her duchy and marry the man she loves, Henry Plantagenet, destined for greatness as King of England. It will be a union founded on lust, renowned as one of the most vicious marriages in history, and it will go on to forge a great empire and a devilish brood.

This is a story of the making of nations, and of passionate conflicts: between Henry II and Thomas Becket; between Eleanor and Henry's formidable mother Matilda; between father and sons, as Henry's children take up arms against him - and finally between Henry and Eleanor herself.

Innocent Traitor

Alison Weir (Author)

Alison Weir, our pre-eminent popular historian, has now fulfilled a life's ambition to write historical fiction. She has chosen as her subject the bravest, most sympathetic and wronged heroine of Tudor England, Lady Jane Grey.

Lady Jane Grey was born into times of extreme danger. Child of a scheming father and a ruthless mother, for whom she was merely a pawn in a dynastic power game with the highest stakes, she lived a life in thrall to political machinations and lethal religious fervour.

Jane's astonishing and essentially tragic story was played out during one of the most momentous periods of English history. As a great-niece of Henry VIII, and the cousin of Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I, she grew up to realize that she could never throw off the chains of her destiny. Her honesty, intelligence and strength of character carry the reader through all the vicious twists of Tudor power politics, to her nine-day reign and its unbearably poignant conclusion.

Traitors of the Tower

Alison Weir (Author)

A short, sharp shot of royal revenge.

More than four hundred years ago, seven people - five of them women - were beheaded in the Tower of London. Three had been queens of England. The others were found guilty of treason. Why were such important people put to death?

Alison Weir's gripping book tells their stories: from the former friend betrayed by a man set on being king, to the young girl killed after just nine days on the throne. Alison Weir is a wonderful storyteller. Through her vivid writing, Alison Weir brings history alive.

Richard III and the Princes in the Tower

Alison Weir (Author)

Includes a new foreword by the author

The story of the death, in sinister circumstances, of the boy-king Edward V and his younger brother Richard, Duke of York, is one of the most fascinating murder mysteries in English history. It is a tale with profound moral and social consequences, rich in drama, intrigue, treason, scandal and violence.

In this gripping book Alison Weir re-examines all the evidence - including that against the Princes' uncle, Richard III, whose body was recently discovered beneath a Leicester car park. She brilliantly reconstructs the whole chain of events leading to their murder and reveals how, why and by whose order they died.

Previously published as The Princes in the Tower

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