Packed with dramatic true stories from one of European history’s most romantic and turbulent eras, this epic narrative chronicles the five vividly rendered queens of the Plantagenet kings who ruled England between 1299 and 1399. “A thorough and illuminating survey of the Plantagenet dynasty.”—Publishers Weekly
The Age of Chivalry describes a period of medieval history dominated by the social, religious, and moral code of knighthood that prized noble deeds, military greatness, and the game of courtly love between aristocratic men and women. It was also a period of high drama in English history, which included the toppling of two kings, the Hundred Years War, the Black Death, and the Peasants’ Revolt. Feudalism was breaking down, resulting in social and political turmoil.
Against this dramatic milieu, Alison Weir describes the lives and reigns of five queen consorts: Marguerite of France was seventeen when she became the second wife of sixty-year-old King Edward I. Isabella of France, later known as “the She-Wolf,” dethroned her husband, Edward II, and ruled England with her lover. In contrast, Philippa of Hainault was a popular queen to the deposed king’s son Edward III. Anne of Bohemia was queen to Richard II, but she died young and childless. Isabella of Valois became Richard’s second wife when she was only six years old, but was caught up in events when he was violently overthrown.
This was a turbulent and brutal age, despite its chivalric color and ethos, and it stands as a vivid backdrop to the extraordinary stories of these queens’ lives.
About the Author
Alison Weir is the New York Times bestselling author of numerous historical biographies, including Queens of the Crusades, Queens of the Conquest, The Lost Tudor Princess, Elizabeth of York, Mary Boleyn, The Lady in the Tower, Mistress of the Monarchy, Henry VIII, Eleanor of Aquitaine, The Life of Elizabeth I, and The Six Wives of Henry VIII. She is also the author of historical novels including The Last White Rose and the Six Tudor Queens series about the wives of Henry VIII. She lives in Surrey, England, with her husband.
Praise for Queens of the Crusades: England’s Medieval Queens, Book Two
“This meticulous group biography . . . brushes away long-standing legends. . . . [Alison] Weir skillfully documents the political, religious, and cultural issues of medieval England and France.”—Publishers Weekly
“Aimed at the general reader, this rich and robust account will appeal to readers interested in medieval England and some of its most fascinating royal women, whose stories are often left out of the history books.”—Booklist
“Queens of the Crusades [is Weir’s] latest in an impressive canon of more than two dozen historical biographies and novels. . . . [A] brilliant, compelling and meticulously detailed revelation . . . In its abundant detail about real lives lived amid the broad political strokes of medieval kings, Queens of the Crusades captures a rich sensory impression of how five brilliant yet fallible women managed their subject societies in a precarious and dangerously changeable world.”—Bookreporter
“The latest massively detailed British royal history/biography from the prolific historian and novelist . . . In this hefty follow-up to Queens of the Conquest, Weir focuses on the period from 1154 to 1291, offering a meticulous tapestry that will appeal most to students of that and other medieval eras. . . . As in previous books, the exceedingly knowledgeable author’s prodigious research is impressive. . . . Another treat for Weir fans.”—Kirkus Reviews
“The author writes clear and entertainingly of the rich history of the Plantagenet queens of England and for an audience unfamiliar with the subject. . . . At appropriate places, Weir gives needed background to explain the lives of these legendary women.”—New York Journal of Books