Monarchs: they’re just like us. They entertain their friends and eat and worry about money. Henry VIII tripped over his dogs. George II threw his son out of the house. James I had to cut back on the alcohol bills.
In Behind the Throne, historian Adrian Tinniswood uncovers the reality of five centuries of life at the English court, taking the reader on a remarkable journey from one Queen Elizabeth to another and exploring life as it was lived by clerks and courtiers and clowns and crowned heads: the power struggles and petty rivalries, the tension between duty and desire, the practicalities of cooking dinner for thousands and of ensuring the king always won when he played a game of tennis.
A masterful and witty social history of five centuries of royal life, Behind the Throne offers a grand tour of England’s grandest households.
Behind the Throne: A Domestic History of the British Royal Household takes a look at the workings of the royal household, above and below stairs. We begin with Queen Elizabeth I and end with the second Elizabeth 500 years later. I enjoyed the first parts of the book but as it also focusses heavily on the timeline and major events, which most will be familiar with, it can become rather repetitive. It became less and less about the workings of the households and more about the Kings and Queens involved. Despite this, you can certainly tell that a lot of research has gone into this and I cannot deny that the writing style is quite good.