Richard III discussion

What If?

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message 1: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments There are so many 'what-if's in the story of Richard. Would the group care to explore some of them?

message 2: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
What if Richard had won the battle at Bosworth (so many what if's right there) and the Plantagenets continued to rule. No Tudors, no Philippa Gregory :)

Although, be warned her next three books are on The Wars of the Roses and the Plantagenets. Lord only knows what she'll do with the Woodvilles......

message 3: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments He came so close. Some of the historians I have read state that his purpose was to challenge Tudor to single combat. As if the cowardly Henry would have accepted that!

I have read no Gregory but I have seen some reviews on Amazon which are decidedly less than complimentary. Is she really as bad as they say?

message 4: by Barb (new)

Barb | 145 comments Misfit, I was thinking about your comment and I have to weigh in...

I have read three of Gregory's novels; The Other Boleyn Girl, The Boleyn Inheritance and The Virgin's Lover. I really enjoyed the two Boleyn books and I credit them with making me want to learn more about those crazy Tudors.

I have read the harsh reviews, I think some people are critical of Gregory's portrayal of women as less than flattering(?)I didn't agree...

I'm wondering what you dislike about her writing?

message 5: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
Hi Barb, I confess PG got me (and a lot of other people) started reading HF and I read and loved The Other Boleyn Girl and the two subsequent, plus The Boleyn Inheritance. That said, what I'm having issues with now is the way she's diddling with history in her books and then coming off touting herself as this great historian in interviews, etc. If you follow some of her blog interviews she's really quite full of herself.

Besides that the other issue I have is her obsession with weird sex, especially incest. It always seems to make in in to her books, let alone a comment she made about the father/daughter relationship in her forward to Seton's Devil Water. Matter of fact, the other forwards she wrote for Seton's novels were a bit snotty as well.

I don't know how I would react going back three years and reading those books again - I've had a couple of folks tell me I'd throw them against the wall, who knows? I do know I don't intend to try another unless 1) it's a subject I'm very interested in and 2) I see some good critical reviews first. The response to The Other Queen was underwhelming to say the least.

message 6: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments Now here's a what if. What if Edward had not married Elizabeth? Suppose he had married for dynastic reasons and had managed to stay off the sauce and keep his figure. Had he lived a normal life span, how different things would have been. Anne Nevil would have still died and so would have her son, but Richard would have re-married and maybe died in bed, happily. He really deserved some happiness in his life.

message 7: by Barb (new)

Barb | 145 comments Ikon,
That "what if" nips all the other "what ifs" in the bud!

message 8: by Pat (new)

Pat | 39 comments I understand and respect your reasoning Misfit, but I have to agree with Barb on this one. I don't have a problem with Gregory, it's one of her books that got me interested in HF as well. I don't care for the inclusion of incest either and her claims of historical accuracy has been disproved many times, so I just take her writing with a grain of salt. hmmm, I wonder where that saying came from?...sounds like something medieval.
Ikon, I need you to clarify something, why are Richard and Anne considered such an endearing love match? Wasn't Richard trying to arrange a marriage with his brothers daughter and his niece Elizabeth before Anne was even dead? I know...I need to read Penman's version.

message 9: by Ikonopeiston (last edited Jan 04, 2009 04:10PM) (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments There is some dispute about their relationship. Some maintain that Richard married her to get possession of her inheritance which was vast. She held a great deal of property from her father and from her mother (who had gone into sanctuary and was treated as though she had died.) Anne could not control that property herself and Richard as the first lord of the land, after Edward, was one of the few powerful enough to claim it for her. Their lives together were not long enough to provide much evidence of their relationship to one another. However, they had been childhood friends and Richard stayed with her although she was mostly barren when it would have been easy for him to nullify the marriage since they did not wait for the papal dispensation to permit them to marry even though they were cousins. Richard was apparently completely faithful to Anne while she lived, unlike his brother's behaviour toward Elizabeth Woodville. There is as much reason to think Richard and Anne loved one another as there is for any other couple of their times. The fact that he had her crowned at the same time as he was shows a certain devotion.

About the marriage to his niece, Elizabeth Plantagenet, after Anne died - that is another of the lies spread about him during his life. He went before Parliament and the people and forcefully denied the rumour - a most unusual act for a sitting King. It is possible Elizabeth had a crush on her uncle. There was a whisper about a letter Elizabeth wrote to someone whom I cannot remember at the moment. In it she supposedly expressed her feeling that Anne was taking a long time dying and called Richard her 'only delight and maker' hoping to wed him when he was free to marry again. No such letter has ever been found and it is generally considered to be so much tarradiddle. Elizabeth would have been of no use to Richard dynastically since she had been declared a bastard by Titulus regius just like her brothers. Had Richard legitimized her, she would have had a better claim to the crown than did he. Richard was far too fastidious and intelligent to consider such a marriage.

message 10: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments Barb wrote: "Ikon,
That "what if" nips all the other "what ifs" in the bud!"

So it does. But it makes for rainbows and strawberry-flavoured clouds and a happy ending for our hero. ;)

message 11: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
Pat & Barb, no problems on the PG issue and I am grateful also for her getting me into reading historicals and expanding the market :)

Interesting stuff about Anne and Richard, and let's not forget the time she ended up working in a kitchen as a maid (I think it was?), and Richard coming to rescue her.

message 12: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments That does not prove eternal love. I happen to think they were deeply in love but all aspects of such matters must be examined. There is no complete agreement about even the kitchen slavey incident. Did George attempt to hide her from Richard in this manner or did she (as Penman has it) run away from her brother-in-law and take refuge where she could find it? I, personally, think it unlikely that a noblewoman could have, all by herself, adequately imitated one of the serving class well enough to get by. Either Clarence did it or Anne had help in assuming such a disguise.

message 13: by Pat (new)

Pat | 39 comments Thanks for the explanation Ikon, just goes to show that I need to do more reading about Richard. Much of what I've read has been negative.
Misfit, I remember reading he found her in a tavern scrubbing out pans. The name of the place was "The Bush" I think....could they possibly know the name of the establishment or was it just added to make it sound more authentic.

message 14: by Barb (new)

Barb | 145 comments Misfit wrote: "Pat & Barb, no problems on the PG issue and I am grateful also for her getting me into reading historicals and expanding the market :)

I get your point about playing fast and loose with the historical facts. I wasn't able to read Plaidy's fiction on Anne Neville because she omitted Anne's first marriage.

I also thought that PG's introduction to Katherine by Seton came off as arrogant.

But I think that Pat said it well when she said she takes her with a grain of salt.

Richard and Elizabeth:
I don't remember if it was in SKP's Sunne in Splendor or Sandra Worth's The King's Daughter but someone suggested that Elizabeth Woodville was the mastermind behind the pairing of her daughter Elizabeth and Richard III.

message 15: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments I have run across that idea in several places. The reasoning seems to be that Woodville was determined to regain her lost influence by one means or another. This is also given as a reason she backed Henry Tudor; he had promised to marry Elizabeth.

message 16: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
You know, for a less than day old group, this place is hopping. Lord knows how I'll catch up after being at work all day tomorrow :)

Interesting comments about the kitchen incident, another one of those wouldn't you really like to know. I really need to read more about Richard, he is fascinating. I've got a ton of library holds coming ready, but only The King's Daughter is about Richard. I'm looking forward to that one, although I doubt it will top any list (except possibly my wall bangers one), but it's so rare that I read a book that Harriet has reviewed as well. That's always fun to compare :)

"But I think that Pat said it well when she said she takes her with a grain of salt."

Excellent point, until I sit in a conversation and hear someone going on and on about how she always gets her history spot on. As for her intros to Seton, you should read the one she wrote for Avalon. Talk about slamming the story line.

I'd like to read more about Woodiville. Rosemary Hawley Jarman wrote The King's Grey Mare and was reissued last year. I put in a purchase request at the library but no go so far.

message 17: by Barb (new)

Barb | 145 comments Misfit:
I just started The Court of Illusion by Jarman and so far I really like her style. The first few pages reminded me of how impressed I was with Diana Gabaldon in the very beginning of Outlander before anything had even happened.

You might just love The King's Daughter...
and I hate it when Harriet reads the stuff I like!!!!
The King's Daughter was very...historically acurate, with a complete lack of melodrama, it was very well done.

You are such a good library consumer! I have to admit my library card gets a lot of use but I do like the thrill of ownership as well.

message 18: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
"I have to admit my library card gets a lot of use but I do like the thrill of ownership as well."

Well, waiting for all those doctor/hospital bills to roll through (insurance doesn't pay for everything) is definitely encouraging me to use that library. Although I do fess up to ordering a few Roberta Gellis used books. LOL, the shipping is three times or more the sell price of the books.

Don't you hate it when Harriet reviews something you've read? That's when you can tell she's really off-base. BTW, she topped 18,000 reviews today and that doesn't count the ones she did before Amazon had recognized name accounts.

I'll have to look into the Jarman book you mentioned. When that pile eases up that is - it just grew again when I thought I was getting it under control.

message 19: by Pat (new)

Pat | 39 comments Alright, now I'm craving a book on Richard. I've committed myself to "The Far Pavilions" and at the rate I'm going, it will be another week before it's finished. Thanks everyone for the book lists. I come.

message 20: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
Penman Penman Penman Penman :)

message 21: by Pat (new)

Pat | 39 comments've convinced me and I already have the book.
How was your first day back at work, Misfit? I didn't think you were going back so soon. How is the weather in Seattle?...we had several more inches of snow here in Spokane last night and I am about to let out a blood-curdling scream!

message 22: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
Pat, first day at work OK and kinda of fun making everyone go get stuff for me. Fix me tea, get my yogurt bring this and that and everything from my upstairs office :)

I forgot you were in Spokane and I hear there's more coming soon. Our Spokane office was one of the buildings with the roof that collapsed although they got our name wrong, we're Evergreen Building Products not Supply.......

message 23: by Pat (last edited Jan 10, 2009 01:29PM) (new)

Pat | 39 comments Here's a what if...carried over from the 'who done the princes in' discussion. Why does Queen Elizabeth and the Dean of Westminster Abbey continue to refuse access to the 'princes of the towers' bone DNA? Maybe they already know the answer and don't dare let the information out. Could they have the facts in the form of family bibles, secret diaries and documents that are privy only to them? Is it possible that they(The Windsors') have absolutely no claim to the throne and by permitting the testing of DNA, proof of the true lineage would be revealed? I don't believe they would be overthrown, but the scandal would be overwhelming....and the possibility of law suits by ancestors of rightful heirs? Yikes! Ok...enough. (Barb and Ikon) you put this idea in my head.

message 24: by Barb (new)

Barb | 145 comments Ooooh, yes, yes...

message 25: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments It is certainly possible that the Windsors have documentary evidence of many crimes committed by the various houses which have held the English throne. However, I do doubt that they have proof that the hodge-podge of bones in that urn in the cathedral are those of the Princes. Given where they were found and the way they were treated after the discovery, I seriously doubt that any evidence, let alone proof, is possible without modern forensic examination. (Off course, they may have already had that done and sworn the examiners to secrecy.)

In any event, the descendants of the House of York pose no more danger to the Windsors than the descendants of the Romanoffs pose to Vladimir Putin. If my memory serves me properly, the usurping House of Tudor died out in the seventeenth century and was replaced by the Stuarts. England has suffered under a succession of dynasties and, alas, the sins of one do not always carry over to the next.

message 26: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
Ah, it was a good "what if" while it lasted. Besides, are there any Plantagenets left anyway?

message 27: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments Yes, have read that there are actually a fair number still kicking about. There is the current Duke of Gloucester (descended from Elizabeth of York) and the Duke of Rutland (descended from Richard's sister Anne who was Duchess of Exeter). There are a few others scattered around the continent even though Margaret had no children. I suspect there are some descended on the wrong side of the blanket as well. Everyone (except poor Richard and Anne) had lots of kids in those days and the habit seems to have stuck so there are almost certainly a slew of Plantagenets still walking amongst us.

message 28: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
Fascinating stuff Ivon. BTW, I think you, Pat, Barb and Laura are having way too much fun here. Glad we got this started.

message 29: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments I just remembered. Edward IV had a number of bastards whom he recognized and probably a bunch more he did not know about. I would be willing to bet that mob has passed along the royal blood with enthusiasm. Heh!

Yes, I am obviously delighted you started this group. I am afraid I am far too often present here and hope I do not seem to be trying to take over. My excuse is that I am currently filled to the top with Ricardian stuff and am hungry to share. :-)

message 30: by Misfit (last edited Jan 10, 2009 04:31PM) (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
Ikon, share away, this is fascinating stuff for me. I like to learn.

Ooops, edited. I'm writing a review with a character's name of Ivon and I mispelled Ikon. Many apologies :)

message 31: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments Not to worry.

This may amuse you. Due to a series of frightening events last year, it became necessary to implant a pacemaker in my body. I arranged to have the surgery done on Richard's birthday, October 2. As I told my surgeon, that way I would be exceedingly unlikely to forget the date.

Thank you for being so welcoming to my nattering away about things.

message 32: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
Ikonopeiston wrote: "Not to worry.

This may amuse you. Due to a series of frightening events last year, it became necessary to implant a pacemaker in my body. I arranged to have the surgery done on Richard's birthda..."

LOL, that's a keeper. Natter away, I'm having almost (but not quite) as much fun as you are :)

message 33: by Pat (new)

Pat | 39 comments I missed this one earlier..
Ikon, you absolutely must continue to help us out here. I, for one, would be totally lost without your knowledge and expertise. I have a tendency to look WAY outside the box and need to be pulled back in at times. I appreciate your input and information.

message 34: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments My goodness! You couldn't shut me up if you put me in a sack and sat on me. I love to scatter the little bits of knowledge I dredge up as widely as I can. You have no idea how much I am enjoying this group. At last, a place to natter about Richard as much as I wish! Whee!

Pat, my dear, keep that outside the box thinking going. It forces the rest of us to re-examine our settled ideas. You are a treasure.

message 35: by Barb (new)

Barb | 145 comments Hah! (I don't want to shut you up) but that might be fun to try!!!!

I too am SO enjoying chatting with all of you!

message 36: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments I am too. It is so nice to have a chat with people who do not stick in (expletive deleted) every third word. You are such a civilized group.

Try as you may, I will have my say!

message 37: by Misfit (new)

Misfit | 1139 comments Mod
Ikonopeiston wrote: "I am too. It is so nice to have a chat with people who do not stick in (expletive deleted) every third word. You are such a civilized group.

Try as you may, I will have my say!"

Well Ikon, you've got three votes going for you here to you're going to have to continue to speak up whenever it pleases you :)

message 38: by Ikonopeiston (new)

Ikonopeiston (Ikon) | 385 comments It is my pleasure.

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