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The riveting story of two women whose divergent personalities and positions impacted the court of Edward III, one of medieval England's greatest kings.
There were two women in Edward III's life: Philippa of Hainault, his wife of forty years and bearer of twelve children, and his mistress, Alice Perrers, the twenty-year-old who took the king's fancy as his ageing wife grew sick. After Philippa's death Alice began to dominate court, amassing a fortune and persuading the elderly Edward to promote her friends and punish her enemies.
In The Queen and the Mistress, Gemma Hollman brings the story of these two women to life and contrasts the "perfect" medieval queen—the pious, unpolitical, steady Philippa—with the impertinent youth—the wily, charismatic, manipulative Alice. One died a royal, adored, while the full force of the English court united against Alice, wresting both money and power from her and leaving her with nothing but a mission to try to reclaim all that was lost.
Both women had wealth and power but used vitally different methods to dispense it. In The Queen and the Mistress, Hollman brings to the fore their differences and similarities in a unique look at women and power in the Middle Ages.
About the Author
Gemma Hollman has a Master’s degree in Medieval History from the University of York. She runs the Just History Posts blog and Twitter account and has written for the British Numismatic Journal. She is the author of Royal Witches: Witchcraft and the Nobility in Fifteenth Century England, also available from Pegasus Books, and lives Hertfordshire, England.
Praise for The Queen and the Mistress
"In The Queen and the Mistress, Gemma Hollman challenges much of the misinformation and misconceptions which have surrounded both women for centuries ... A triumph of historical research and interpretation."
— - Sharon Bennett Connolly, author of