Over the past 2,000 years, nearly 80 women have sat on the royal throne of England, either as consort or reigning queen. Some of the country’s most formidable rulers have been female, including queen Elizabeth II, the only monarch in British history to reach this momentous milestone.
It has always been traditional with English / British royals that the heir apparent to the throne is always the eldest son of the monarch despite how many older sisters he may have, hence the reason the country has had so few queens.
However England / Britain has also seen eight queen regnants and these eight women have managed to notch up quite an impressive list of records between them. This book will help you learn the history of five of them with one enduring eighteen pregnancies, two having had the country’s longest ever reigns, one achieving the world record as the longest ever reigning queen, one who became the country’s oldest ever monarch and not one of them were heir apparent at the time of their birth.
Eleanor of Aquitaine was one of the most powerful and influential figures of the Middle Ages. Inheriting a vast estate at the age of 15 made her the most sought-after bride of her generation. She would eventually become the queen of France, the queen of England and lead a crusade to the Holy Land. She is also credited with establishing and preserving many of the courtly rituals of chivalry.
Queen Victoria was the last monarch of the Royal House of Hanover and was never born to be queen. Behind Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Victoria holds the record as England’s longest-reigning monarch. After enduring a strict childhood, she was determined to enjoy herself when she came to the throne in 1837 at the age of 18, recalling in one letter that “I have been dancing till four o’clock this morning”. She soon married her cousin, Prince Albert, to whom she was devoted; she remained black-clad after his early death. Their twenty one year marriage produced nine children, one of which became the future king Edward VII. She became Empress of India in 1876, and it was said that the sun never set on her empire.
Victoria died of a stroke in January 1901 at the age of eighty one having ruled for sixty three years.