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European Royalty Discussions > The Plantagenets/Houses of Lancaster & York

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message 1: by Sara W (new)

Sara W (sarawesq) | 2153 comments 1154-1485

Henry II, Richard I, John, Henry III, Edward I, Edward II, Edward III, Richard II, Henry IV, Henry V, Henry VI, Edward IV, Edward V, Richard III

message 2: by Sara W (new)

Sara W (sarawesq) | 2153 comments Richard III - did he kill the little princes in the tower? Jean Plaidy's books (granted, they are fiction, but they are well researched) seems to be sympathic to Richard and gives the reader the feeling that Henry VII took them out. I think there is some sort of Richard III society that takes his side as well.

On the other hand, Alison Weir's book, The Princes in the Tower, places the blame squarely on Richard III. I tend to believe that he did it, but I was wondering if there are other persuasive books out there on either side of this issue?

message 3: by Sera (new)

Sera Hmmm, good question. I don't know since I haven't read that far back. Was he known as Richard the Lionhearted?

message 4: by Sara W (new)

Sara W (sarawesq) | 2153 comments I think Richard I was Richard the Lionhearted (I'm racking my brain from the jean plaidy books I read - that's the only source I have about the early Plantagenets at this point!). Richard I was the one who went on crusades in the 1100s, and I think he was gay (or at least people thought he was). Richard III is the one vilified by Shakespeare (I think - I haven't read the play(s) involving him, so I might be mistaken). I think he's also the one portrayed as being hunchbacked or having a messed up shoulder or something like that. I recall reading something about Shakespeare vilifying Richard III because he wanted to portray Henry VII in a good light for Elizabeth I (his granddaughter) (I think that came from Alison Weir's book that I mentioned above). I don't really know very much about the Plantagenets because most of what I've read is from fiction books (besides the Alison Weir one).

message 5: by Sera (new)

Sera I was in a bookstore today and there was a book on Richard the Lionhearted. He was definitely the one who went on the Crusades. And, you are right again, about Richard III as the subject of Shakespeare's play(s).

message 6: by CmPete (last edited Feb 04, 2008 05:00PM) (new)

CmPete Tucker | 10 comments Richard the Lion Hearted (Richard I) of the Crusades was the second plantagent king (son of henry II and Eleanor of Aquitane) Richard III was the last plantagenet king - though by that time they had split into York and Lancaster.

For a fun read on Richard III try 'Daughter of Time" by Josephine Tey. Also "The Sunne In splendor" by Sharon Kay Penman. I go back and forth with Henry VII and Richard III. Henry was cold blooded enough and had the most to loose, but documents hint at Richard...

I love Eleanor - she was a woman of power in a time when women were chattels. There's a long list for her: Alison Weir (what would we do without her?) Jean Plaidy, Nora Lofts, SKPenman again (Time and Chance)

And Henry II is just too devious for words! Becket, Rosamund, and Alais. Talk about a disfunctional family!

For a retelling of tales outside of the time period, Susan Howatch is great. She did the story of Edward IV and family, but moved it into edwardian times. (Wheel of Fortune) WONDERFUL. She's also done Henry II, and Edward III. Sounds like an odd premise, but it really does work....

message 7: by Sara W (new)

Sara W (sarawesq) | 2153 comments Thanks for the list of authors and books, especially Susan Howatch. I've never heard of her, but those books sound cool. I'll have to add them to my (ever growing) to-read shelf.

I love Alison Weir (and Antonia Fraser and David Starkey)! I feel like I'm always recommending books by them. Their books are just so enjoyable and easy to read. It's like fiction.

I really like Eleanor as well. I've only read books about her by Jean Plaidy and Norah Lofts, but I would love to pick up a non-fiction one.

Has anyone read anything about Isabella, wife to Edward II (I'm thinking of the queen who had her husband/king killed so she could put her son on the throne - I may have the names wrong)? I think Alison Weir may have written a book about her (or one of those well-known historical authors). She seems, well, feisty to say the least!

message 8: by CmPete (new)

CmPete Tucker | 10 comments Alison Wier has Eleanor - a Life for good non fiction

Isabella and Edward are not too popular as subjects of historical fiction - I wonder why? There is certainly a lot of material to use! Perhaps it is because the truth needs no embroidery...or the subject matter is SO unsavory.

Found these volumes

Queen of Shadows Edith Felber
The Traitor's Wife - Susan Higgenbotham
Queen Isabella - Alison Wier

message 9: by [deleted user] (new)

I read A Rose for the Crown, about Richard III and a fictional mistress (although he did have illegitimate children whose mother is unknown). It was very good, and is by Anne Easter Smith.

Susanna - Censored by GoodReads (susannag) | 378 comments I read Queen Isabella, by Alison Weir, earlier this year.

Interesting, but I don't buy her theory that Edward II "retired" to become a monk.

Definitely worth a read, though. I learned a lot about a period of English history I'm not very "up" on.

message 11: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 26 comments These books are also related to Edward II and Isabella...

Isabelle the Fair
Margaret Campbell Barnes (noticed a lot of her stuff has been republished lately, probably due to interest in the Tudors)

A Secret Chronicle
Jane Lane

Harlot Queen
Hilda Winifred Lewis (noticed a lot of her stuff has also been republished lately, probably due to interest in the Tudors)

Isabella, the She-Wolf
Maureen Peters

The Follies of the King
Jean Plaidy

message 12: by Jenna (new)

Jenna | 26 comments Also the play about Edward II called...Edward II (I think...). I think Jarman did a controversial film of it.

message 13: by Cat (new)

Cat | 7 comments Two good books on Richard III are:

Richard III - Charles Ross


Richard III: The Great Debate - Paul Murray Kendall

If anyone wants any other information on him I wrote a paper for my class about him and have lots of fun facts...

message 14: by Lauren (new)

Lauren | 13 comments I just finished SKP' Sunne in Splendour (Edward IV and Richard III). I have also read Sandra Worth's trilogy on Richard the III. I prefered Sunne in Splendour, hands down. I need to read Josephine Tey too.

I don't think Richard killed the Princes. I don't think he had a motive - more to lose than to gain by killing them. Also, I don't think Elizabeth Woodville would have come out of sanctuary and trusted him with her daughters if she believed that he killed her sons. I agree with the theory that Buckingham did it - he had the most to gain with a better claim to the throne than Henry Tudor.

message 15: by Mandy (new)

Mandy Moody | 544 comments I'm in the Henry-killed-the-princes camp.

I don't think anyone has mentioned
To Hold the Crown The Story of King Henry VII and Elizabeth of York by Jean Plaidy
But many of her books have been republished under new names with spiffy new covers, so maybe it has.
Anyway, I didn't love it, but it was fine.

To the Tower Born A Novel of the Lost Princes by Robin Maxwell was also pretty good.
I have The Sunne in Splendor on my nightstand, I'm dying to read it. But I have a few books in line ahead of it.

message 16: by Wanda (new)

Wanda (wanda514) Hello, all. My name is Wanda and I am new to the group. I have a lot of reading to do in order to be able to converse intelligently with all of you. I am so excited to be here. Just as an aside to the York/Lancaster title, I wanted to share a kind of funny with all of you. See, I live in York, PA and work in Lancaster, PA. Each year our opposing minor league baseball teams hold a War of the Roses tournaments. There is an old bridge between the two cities upon which an old War of the Roses summertime fair and tournament used to be held. I am not sure if this tournament is still held. Here in York, we have a White Rose Restaurant and in Lancaster there is a Red Rose Restaurant (which serves a Tuscan-style menu). I am not sure if there any other York/Lancaster cities side-by-side in the United States. But, when I saw your title, I just had to write. Now, back to reading for me.

message 17: by Sara W (new)

Sara W (sarawesq) | 2153 comments Welcome to the group Wanda! Ha ha, I love your story! I didn't know there was a York and Lancaster PA next to each other. The fair and tournament sounds like it was a lot of fun! Were you ever able to go to it?

message 18: by Susan (new)

Susan (boswellbaxter) | 96 comments I knew there were a York and a Lancaster in Pennsylvania, but I didn't realize they were side by side! Very interesting.

message 19: by Wanda (new)

Wanda (wanda514) Sara wrote: "Welcome to the group Wanda! Ha ha, I love your story! I didn't know there was a York and Lancaster PA next to each other. The fair and tournament sounds like it was a lot of fun! Were you ever ..."

Sara, I remember going once as a child. The cities of York and Lancaster are actually about 27 miles apart - they don't sit side by side. There are small (very small) towns in between. But, since each city is the county seat, they are considered to be next to each other; plus, I think it is a way to play up the York/Lancaster theme.

message 20: by Wanda (new)

Wanda (wanda514) Susan wrote: "I knew there were a York and a Lancaster in Pennsylvania, but I didn't realize they were side by side! Very interesting."

Hi, Susan. York and Lancaster do not actually sit side by side - just close enough as the bird flies. There are a few very small towns in between. But as each is the county seat, they are considered "rivals." Like I told Sara, I think it is a way to play up the York/Lancaster theme. The two towns are actually about 27 miles apart. The bridge upon which the tournament is/was held is an old one with lots of history to it, too. There is a book called Flames Across the Susquehanna detailing the history of this old bridge - it is quite interesting. Anyway, it is such a pleasure to meet all of you and to be a part of this group.

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