Elizabeth’s Bedfellows

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Elizabeth Tudor faced dangers all her life. She was frequently ill, had rival claimants to the throne, was afraid of assassination by English Catholics or foreign powers and suffered rumours of sexual intrigues, even of producing illegitimate children. Her ladies, the ‘bedfellows’ of the title, were constant companions, serving her but also protecting the queen’s reputation and being the last line of defence against a physical attack. They slept in her bedroom, even, at times, in her bed.

As well as describing these ladies and their duties, Whitelock gives a detailed survey of Elizabeth’s reign. The book is copiously researched, with the notes and bibliography occupying 82 pages. I would have liked more details of the ‘bedfellows’, but it was nevertheless an easy, fluent read. It does not, however, resolve the question of Elizabeth’s virginity. Unwise in paying attention to her favourites, she was adept at deflecting suggestions of dynastic marriages. A very useful book.

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Details

Publisher
,

Published
,

Genre

Period

Century

Alt title
The Queen's Bed

Price
(US) $28.00
(UK) £20.00

ISBN
(US) 9781408808801
(UK) 9780374239787

Format
Hardback

Pages
462 (UK), 480 (US)

Review

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