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    Description

    This magnificent biography of Henry VIII is set against the cultural, social and political background of his court - the most spectacular court ever seen in England - and the splendour of his many sumptuous palaces. An entertaining narrative packed with colourful description and a wealth of anecdotal evidence but also a comprehensive analytical study of the development of both monarch and court during a crucial period in English history. As well as challenging some recent theories, it offers controversial new conclusions based on contemporary evidence that has until now been overlooked. This is a triumph of historical writing which will appeal equally to the general listener and the serious historian.

    ©2001 Alison Weir (P)2017 Audible, Ltd

    Ce que les auditeurs disent de Henry VIII: King and Court

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    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour kwdayboise (Kim Day)
    • kwdayboise (Kim Day)
    • 24/05/2017

    A concise focus with tremendous detail

    Prolific historian/novelist Alison Weir has placed most of her focus on the Tudors in her writing. Henry VIII and his wives have received her particular attention. This book is slightly off from the more salacious spotlight on the marriages. They receive mention but are not the book's core. This book revolves around the court of Henry VIII: the costs, the entourages and hangers-on, the internecine fights for the king's attention, and, yes, the wives.

    Henry VIII is frequently given a negative perspective by historians and in popular culture. Some of that is earned. He was known for furious outbursts with nearly every courtier was often influenced by those who did not have his best interests at heart. Weir does nothing to dispel that reputation, but she does want the reader to see a more three-dimensional figure. Henry VIII was also a genius who, despite delegating the operation of the kingdom so that he could hunt and dance, was still thoroughly aware of what was happening in his kingdom. He was firm in countermanding decisions by ministers like Thomas Cromwell, corresponded with people both inside and outside England, and read widely. Despite his temper he was also sensitive enough to be known to cry over some events and deaths.

    Perhaps what marked his reign as much as anything, however, was his willingness to spend money. He inherited a fortune from his thrifty father as well as regular income from tax collections. Weir does in-depth tallies, with conversions to current figures (such as 40 shillings equaling 600 pounds in today's currency), on the costs of the meals, the pageants, the jousts, the clothing, the castles, and feeding an entourage of hundreds of ranked individuals along with as many of their servants as they could sneak in. Even costs for flowers to Anne Boleyn are included along with her expenditures on shoes.

    Weir is enough of a dramatic writer that the figures never overtake the narrative and there is plenty of time spent on the intrigues and oddities of court, such as the power held by Henry's "Groom of the Stool" who was to keep Henry company while he sat on the toilet and hand him a flannel cloth so his majesty (Henry was the first to use the term) could cleanse his backside. It was one of the most powerful positions in the kingdom.

    The somewhat narrow topic allows Weir to be concise while still covering a reign of over 35 years. From his coronation as a handsome 6' 2" youth of 18 to his painful and bloated death in his mid-50s there are dozens of stories small and large that she manages to cover through the narrative.

    21 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      3 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      3 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour John Murphy
    • John Murphy
    • 12/12/2019

    Good book, but a slow starter

    To Alison Weir's credit this is an incredibly detailed and researched book about Henry VIII, what I missed about the title was "and His Court." The author spends at least the first third of the book carefully detailing Henry VIII's court, what they ate and drank, how the court was structured, the various castles Henry owned, etc. etc . etc. It is fascinating reading if you are into minutiae, which I am not. I kept asking myself, "when is the author going to get to an actual biography of Henry VIII?" She does eventually, but the first third of the book is painful to get through, at least it was for me.

    I suspected that Henry VIII was a douche, and, while the author is perhaps gentler on him than she should be, this book proves that Henry VIII, was in fact, a douche, megalomaniac who thought he knew more than anyone and everyone. Here is the story of Catherine of Aragorn, first wife, and then ex-wife of Henry. Here is the story of the ambitious Anne Boleyn and how her ambition eventually destroyed her (not to mention decapitated). Here is the story of Thomas Cromwell, who first destroys Anne Boleyn, and then in turn is destroyed himself. Never is the expression truer than in this book that "whom God would destroy he first makes mad with power."

    By the way, if you want to know what happened to Henry's 6 wives it goes this way:

    1. Divorced
    2. Beheaded
    3. Died
    4. Divorced
    5. Beheaded
    6. Survived

    So...probably should not have been married to Henry VIII, just saying.

    The book is good once all the court minutiae is done.

    6 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Anonymous User
    • Anonymous User
    • 03/08/2019

    Fantastic!

    I loved this book! I have read/listened to many books on Tudor history - and especially those by Alison Weir, but this one stands out.

    If you feel you are already very familiar with the life of Henry and the story of his wives this is a must. It gives a detailed glimpse into the life of his court and his private life. It’s a fascinating journey through his castles, his world and the people who surrounded him.

    It’s one of those books that I wish would never end. And here it was brought to life by Phyllida Nash with her soothing voice and wonderful British accent.

    6 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
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      1 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Victoria Evrard
    • Victoria Evrard
    • 26/06/2017

    Great Book - Horrid Narration

    I have this book in paperback form and it's an excellent book. However, I think Phyllida Nash is a terrible narrator. She highs and lows her words. Usually, each sentence starts out high and strong but as the sentence goes on, her voice is so low, her words clipped, that I can't hear what she's saying even though my computer's volume is at 100% and iTunes volume is at 100%.

    This takes away all enjoyment from this wonderful book. I've noticed that the other books written by Alison Weir have a different narrator. I'm going to return this audiobook and will buy the others.

    Very disappointed!

    14 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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    • vicky
    • 04/09/2019

    Loved it

    Exactly what i was looking for. A lot of detailed Tuor court information read by an amazing narrator.

    2 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      2 out of 5 stars
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      2 out of 5 stars
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      2 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Michael P Smith
    • Michael P Smith
    • 31/08/2018

    Too much minutiae

    The level of detail that is spent on everything was very distracting. The author cautions you that the first 10 chapters will be spent laying out all of these details in order to set the stage. However, the details persisted much longer. I did not finish the book as it was too detailed, i.e. the types of fabrics the clothing was made out of and the types of lines used for bedding, etc. I was more interested in the actual life and events of Henry VIII. While they are part of the story they are buried in the minutiae.

    2 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      5 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Histoire
      5 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour H. Meeks
    • H. Meeks
    • 12/02/2018

    Great Book!

    I am not a huge fan of this author's fiction, but this is a GREAT book! I enjoyed the detail and the modern day equivalents given on money spent on clothes etc... The narration... I had a hard time understanding her at first, she's soft spoken and conbined with her accent it wasn't super captivating but it was ok. Great Book!

    2 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
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      5 out of 5 stars
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      3 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour MARK YERGER
    • MARK YERGER
    • 15/06/2020

    Casual overview of courtly life under Henry VIII

    The first 2/3 of this book give extraordinary detail of the structure, architecture and material elements of King Henry’s court. At about the halfway point I hoped those details would cede to more delving into the details and relationships to the key players. There is little in the way of analysis of Henry and Wolsey- and Cromwell- and Cranmer. Some interesting passages regarding the dynamic with the wives but very little depth and analysis you would hope for in a biography of this length.
    Don’t get me wrong, Weir is a fabulous writer and has researched her topics extensively, but personally I feel the minutia of dinnerware and real estate holdings at the expense of historical and political analysis.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      2 out of 5 stars
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      2 out of 5 stars
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      1 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour Kellee
    • Kellee
    • 18/09/2019

    Not what I anticipated

    Unfortunately it was as dry as reading a high school textbook. Did not enjoy as much as her other books.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile

    • Global
      4 out of 5 stars
    • Interprétation
      5 out of 5 stars
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      4 out of 5 stars
    Image de profile pour H.M. Seven
    • H.M. Seven
    • 20/08/2019

    Henry 8

    I enjoyed the narrative. their were times when I found the book boring at the beginning. I didn't see the point of having to be told how much money Henry spent or any of the other courtiers or the French king. I felt it went to far and to much. Henry himself is very interesting. I learned a few things about him that I didn't know. the more you get into the book the more interesting it gets.

    1 personne a trouvé cela utile