The Stuart Princess
Brand: Sutton Pub Ltd

The Stuart Princess

  • Publish Date: 1997-10-13
  • Binding: Paperback
  • Author: Alison Plowden

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Written by an established royal biographer, this is a fresh study of the lives of the six princesses of the House of Stuart who lived through the violent, social and political upheavals of the 17th century. One is the direct ancestress of the present British royal family, one was the mother of a king of England, and one died in prison at the age of 14. Another become Madame de France and two were English queens regent. Elizabeth, daughter of James VI and I, at the age of nine attracted the unwelcome attentions of the Gunpowder plotters, who planned to use her as their puppet queen. Later, she and her husband, Frederick, Count Palatine of the Rhine, were crowned King and Queen of Bohemia in the cathedral at Prague, but within a year - in what was to prove the opening engagement of the Thirty Years War - the Imperial Habsburg army drove them into ignominious flight. Known as the Winter Queen , Elizabeth bore 13 children - among them the famous Cavalier commander Rupert of the Rhine - while her youngest daughter become the mother of the future King George I. Her brother Charles I and his queen, Henrietta Maria, had three surviving daughters. Mary, the eldest, left England at an early age to be married to the Prince of Orange: her only child would one day be King William III. The second girl, Elizabeth, together with the little Duke of Gloucester, fell into the hands of the Parliamentary party early in the Civil War and they were the only members of the family able to say goodbye to their father on the eve of his execution. Henrietta Anne, or Minette, the youngest child, was smuggled out of England disguised as a boy and brought up as a Catholic at the French court. Pretty, clever and popular, she married the unpleasant brother of Louis XIV and was deeply involved in the secret negotiations leading to the Treaty of Dover, before her tragic death at the age of 26. Mary and Anne, the daughters of James II and his first wife, Anne Hyde, were prudently raised as Protestants by their uncle Charles. Mary shed bitter tears when first presented with her cousin and future husband, William of Orange, but soon fell deeply in love and together the couple ruled England after the Glorious Revolution of 1688. Anne, the last Stuart sovereign, married George of Denmark but, like her sister, failed to produce an heir, thus leaving the way open for the Winter Queen's German grandson.

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