Behind the Throne: A Domestic History of the British Royal Household

Basic. Oct. 2018. 416p. illus. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780465094028. $32; ebk. ISBN 9780465094035. HIST
OrangeReviewStarWhen Elizabeth I (1533–1603) went on progress to her various palaces and courtiers' estates, those whom she visited were expected to bear most of the cost, from lodgings for her royal highness to kitchens and accommodations for all of her household and court. One particular three-day visit to a Sir Thomas Egerton reportedly cost him over £2,000 at the time. In her latest work, Tinniswood (The Long Weekend) explores the inner workings of the well-oiled machine that is the household, servants, and monarchy of Britain. Using personal stories of courtiers and hired help from the period, Tinniswood brings history to life through the eyes of those who lived it. Stand-alone chapters for each royal build upon the successive history from Queen Elizabeth I to Queen Elizabeth II. Insightfully covered topics range from the architecture of palaces to explorations of the varying personalities who wore the British crown in this intelligently written chronicle that will appeal to history buffs and laymen alike.
VERDICT Tinniswood has crafted a masterpiece of history that reads like a novel; a true delight.
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