Six Wives: The Queens of Henry VIII

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9780007133277: Six Wives: The Queens of Henry VIII

What makes a man marry six times? Was Henry VIII a voracious philanderer? On the contrary, says Dr David Starkey, the King was seeking happiness -- as well as hoping for a son. The first of his wives was Catherine of Aragon, the pious Catholic princess who suffered years of miscarriages and still births and yet failed to produce a male heir. As Henry VIII's interest shifted from her powerful Hapsburg relations and drifted towards France, so began his obsession with the pretty Lutheran Anne Boleyn. Jane Seymour's submissiveness was in contrast to Anne's vampish style -- and Henry married her on the day of Anne's execution. Jane died soon after giving birth to the longed-for son. There followed a farcical 'beauty contest' which ended in the short marriage of the now grossly overweight Henry to 'the mare of Flanders', Anne of Cleves. The final part of Six Wives contrasts the two Catherines -- Catherine Howard, the flirty child whose adulteries made a fool of the ageing King, and Catherine Parr, the shrewd, religiously radical bluestocking.

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About the Author:

David Starkey, Read by Patricia Hodge, Read by Patricia Hodge

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Intrigue. False piety. Self-serving legalism. Backstabbing (figurative). Beheadings (literal). David Starkey's history of Henry's wives (and their husband, children, allies, and enemies) chronicles their struggles for power and survival. The means to their ends, more often than not, were machination and connivance. Patricia Hodge relates this account in a knowing tone that seems to say, "Try as they might to put a decent face on things, we know better, don't we, my dear?" We are entertained. A minor criticism: Hodge's "foreign" accents, applied to the words of non-English characters, are cartoonish and an unnecessary distraction. Unnecessary because there's no dialogue here--no true conversation between characters-- and because all quotes are attributed. T.J.W. © AudioFile 2004, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine

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David Starkey
Published by HarperCollins
ISBN 10: 0007133278 ISBN 13: 9780007133277
New Quantity Available: 1
Revaluation Books
(Exeter, United Kingdom)

Book Description HarperCollins. Audio Cassette. Book Condition: Brand New. In Stock. Bookseller Inventory # zk0007133278

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