Well, blast it, I’ve gotten myself reinvolved with Elizabeth I (not writing about her, only reading an excellent biography by Alison Weir). I can’t resist her, even though the Tudor days are not my cup of tea, too brutish and woman-hating for this lily-livered coward. But I do love Elizabeth I, and as always, I am intrigued with the love story between her and Robert Dudley. What did they do, exactly? What didn’t they do? How must she have felt when she learned of his secret marriage to her red-headed cousin? What did she expect from him? As I age, I respect more and more the political line she grasped and held tight to, that she would not marry. A married queen, a pregnant queen, would lose much, for princesses and queens were ultimately brood mares and breeding or not, always inferior to the men in their lives. But still she loved. My favorite Elizabeth-Dudley duos are Glenda Jackson-Robert Hardy, Anne-Marie Duff-Tom Hardy (Hardy’s crooked front teeth-yum!) and Helen Mirren-Jeremy Irons. Kinda, sorta, but not really Cate Blanchett-Joseph Fiennes, just because Cate is so spectacular. The Mirren-Irons duo play the two in their older age, creaks, groans, a full and loaded and simmering history, and it’s quite touching, the simmer no longer at boil but not turned off, either, a low heat all the more sweet for its past betrayals and humanness.
Who’s your favorite love story?
King Charles II and anything in a chemise.
I love the tragic love story of Peter Abelard the monk and philosopher and Helosise. Their tumb in Paris at Pere-Lachaise is beautiful.
What about Mary Queen of Scots and Lord Bothwell? He was her hero and her ruination.
“Catherine” by Anya Seton. It is the love story between Catherine Swinford and John of Gaunt. It is VERY hard to put down.
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