The Shortest History of the Crown (Paperback)Stephen Bates (author)
Emphasising the continuity and tradition of the British monarchy over the centuries, Bates' delightfully accessible history of the Crown also provides lively pen portraits of our most memorable sovereigns.
Amidst the turbulence and invasions, upheaval and dissent that characterise British history, one thing has remained remarkably stable. Although there are other monarchies, Britain’s Crown stands out due to the continuity of its traditions, and its ability to adapt.
There’s a reason why schoolchildren still learn about the Kings and Queens: it’s their power struggles and subtle compromises that have shaped the nation we inhabit today. When members of the Royal family go on ‘walkabouts’, they do so because monarchs stretching back to King Alfred understood the need to be seen by their subjects, and the dire consequences of remaining aloof (or abroad). When they give interviews, or accept taxes, they do so as part of a long series of engagements with other, almost-equally powerful operators: Church, Parliament, the nobility.
In this sprightly commentary on the Crown’s 1,800-year-long story, Stephen Bates provides a dazzling insight into Royal custom and ritual, whilst depicting the individuals behind the myth with compassion and wit. And as our ageing Queen prepares to pass the baton, he asks us all to consider: could we ever do without the Crown?
Publisher: Old Street Publishing
Number of pages: 288
Dimensions: 198 x 129 mm
'There have been scores of books about the monarchy but few, if any, as fearless and perceptive as this is... Bates tells it like it is, covering every aspect with rare humour and intelligence. I couldn’t recommend it more highly.' - Literary Review on Royalty, Inc.
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