The Tudors

The Tudors

The Complete Story of England's Most Notorious Dynasty

Book - 2010
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For the first time in decades, here, in a single volume, is a fresh look at the fabled Tudor dynasty, comprising some of the most enigmatic figures ever to rule a country. Acclaimed historian G. J. Meyer reveals the flesh-and-bone reality in all its wild excess. In 1485, young Henry Tudor, whose claim to the throne was so weak as to be almost laughable, crossed the English Channel from France at the head of a ragtag little army and took the crown from the family that had ruled England for almost four hundred years. Half a century later his son, Henry VIII, desperate to rid himself of his first wife in order to marry a second, launched a reign of terror aimed at taking powers no previous monarch had even dreamed of possessing. In the process he plunged his kingdom into generations of division and disorder, creating a legacy of blood and betrayal that would blight the lives of his children and the destiny of his country. The boy king Edward VI, a fervent believer in reforming the English church, died before bringing to fruition his dream of a second English Reformation. Mary I, the disgraced daughter of Catherine of Aragon, tried and failed to reestablish the Catholic Church and produce an heir. And finally came Elizabeth I, who devoted her life to creating an image of herself as Gloriana the Virgin Queen but, behind that mask, sacrificed all chance of personal happiness in order to survive. "The Tudors" weaves together all the sinners and saints, the tragedies and triumphs, the high dreams and dark crimes, that reveal the Tudor era to be, in its enthralling, notorious truth, as momentous and as fascinating as the fictions audiences have come to love.
Publisher: New York : Delacorte Press, c2010
Edition: 1st ed. --
ISBN: 9780385340762
Branch Call Number: 942.05 MEY 4565 2


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Mar 11, 2018

This book was entertaining enough. But, having read a good bit of Tudor history, I have a lot of points of disagreement with this one. First, this author seems to be revisionist for the sake of being contrary, rather than actually citing evidence to support his arguments.

A good example is his portrayal of Elizabeth I in particular. Basically, he has a tendency to sneer at her for being focused on her own survival. He doesn't seem to have considered the context in which Elizabeth was living and ruling - frankly, that she managed to die at a pretty ripe old age - in bed - as queen was in itself an accomplishment worthy of note. That she survived to become Queen at all was pretty noteworthy.

Read it for entertainment value, but treat more or less as you would a Philippa Gregory novel in terms of actual historical value.

Jul 09, 2015

What an eye-opener about this dynasty. Not really glamorous like in the movies. I would love to see some movie director portray them as they really were.!!

LaBeteNoir Mar 01, 2012

Great overview for the non scholar about the Tudor dynasty. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. The rich get richer, the poor get poorer. All the Tudors were bloody not just Mary.

Narrative chronology is interspersed with great background chapters that help fix event in the context of the times,

Jan 19, 2011

It's an interesting read and the author's premise is well-thought-out and supported with notes and bibliography. His view on Elizabeth seems most at variance with the standard historical model and, while I'm not sure that I necessarily agree with his 'take', he supports his argument.

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