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Bess of Hardwick: Myths & Realities-bookcover

By: Terry Kilburn

Bess of Hardwick: Myths & Realities

Pages: 176 Ratings:
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Unravel the complexities of Bess of Hardwick, a figure shrouded in myths and misconceptions since the 17th century. Bess of Hardwick: Myths and Realities takes an unconventional approach to biography, meticulously separating fact from fiction through rigorous research and probing questions.


Did Bess really meet her first husband in London when in service to Lady Zouche?


Was her second husband compelled to relocate north because she missed her Derbyshire roots?


Was she born in 1527 and what about the mysterious lead coffin said to house her body for three months post-mortem?


Does the famed ‘Eglantine Table’ in Hardwick Hall truly commemorate three marriages?


Explore these questions and more, including the compelling enigma of Bess’s granddaughter, Arbella Stuart, and her claim to Elizabeth I’s throne. Was Bess a unique dynastic powerhouse, or was she simply a woman of her time?


Ideal for both newcomers and those already acquainted with Bess’s story, this illuminating book also contains an Appendix that suggests Hardwick Hall may harbour an unidentified portrait of Sir Thomas More.

Terry Kilburn is a graduate of Birmingham University, where he was mentored by the late professors E. W. Ives and R. J. Knecht. From Birmingham, he moved to Leicester University’s renowned Department of English Local History, gaining an M.A. Terry is also an Associate Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. He has published a popular biography of the Victorian mechanical engineer, Sir Joseph Whitworth, and a number of articles in various academic journals. However, his main passion has always been with Early Modern English and European history, especially that of sixteenth-century England.

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