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Trusted Historians?
August 13, 2012
3:19 pm
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Olga
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I have only read his book The Boleyns, which actually wasn’t very good. I recommend you not waste money on the hardcover and wait for the paperback.
But Loades is supposed to be a good historian, I’m going to try his Six Wives book at some point.

August 13, 2012
7:09 pm
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Sharon
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Denney’s book on Anne Boleyn was terrible. A great deal of historical fiction was thrown in. I haven’t read David Loades, yet.
My favorite historian is Eric Ives. John Guy. David Starkey. John Scholfield.

August 13, 2012
7:17 pm
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Louise
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There were two things about Denny’s book which particularly made me wince. She said George and the other men were charged with sodomy. I have no idea where that came from. She also reversed the order of George and Anne’s trials, presumably for dramatic effect. I admire Anne greatly but I also admire Catherine and the bias against Catherine made even me cringe.
Olga, I’ve read Derek Wilson’s book on Thomas’ Wriothesley, Cranmer and Cromwell. I can’t remember what it’s called but it’s very thorough.

August 13, 2012
11:55 pm
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Olga
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Oh I think it’s In the Lion’s Court Louise. It’s out of print, I’ll give it a try soon.

I think Denny banging on about Henry having syphilis also annoyed me. That always annoys me when I hear it, and the blame is usually pointed at Mary. If Mary gave Henry syphillis then Henry’s five wives would have had it and both Mary’s husbands. It’s such a ridiculous theory.

August 14, 2012
1:53 am
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Gill
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Olga said

Oh I think it’s In the Lion’s Court Louise. It’s out of print, I’ll give it a try soon.

I think Denny banging on about Henry having syphilis also annoyed me. That always annoys me when I hear it, and the blame is usually pointed at Mary. If Mary gave Henry syphillis then Henry’s five wives would have had it and both Mary’s husbands. It’s such a ridiculous theory.

I think it’s far more likely he had diabetes. From my experience of working with uncontrolled diabetics it’s all there – violent mood swings, ulcers that won’t heal, etc.

August 14, 2012
1:56 am
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Gill
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Louise said

There were two things about Denny’s book which particularly made me wince. She said George and the other men were charged with sodomy. I have no idea where that came from. She also reversed the order of George and Anne’s trials, presumably for dramatic effect. I admire Anne greatly but I also admire Catherine and the bias against Catherine made even me cringe.
.

I haven’t got to the trial yet but her anti-Catherine bias has struck me very forcibly too. She doesn’t have a good word to say about her. I’m a huge supporter of Anne but I don’t think it’s necessary to badmouth COA the way Denny does.

August 22, 2012
3:10 pm
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Claire
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I’ve just spotted this thread and thank you so much for the kind words about me.

Historians I respect are John Guy, Julia Fox, Eric Ives, Leanda de Lisle, Simon Schama, David Starkey, Suzannah Lipscomb, Linda Porter, John Schofield, Maria Dowling, Diarmaid MacCulloch… there are more but I can’t think of the others right now!

I used to love David Loades but I’ve been put off because of his recent books. His work on Mary I is brilliant but his recent books on the Boleyns and his Tudors for Dummies have lots of mistakes in them. He left a weird comment on this site criticising Elizabeth Norton for mistakes on her covers and yet his book on the Boleyns has a glaring mistake on its flap and in its blurb, so I went off him a little because of that. We all make mistakes though, none of us are immune, I’m certainly not.

Debunking the myths about Anne Boleyn

August 23, 2012
3:56 pm
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Olga
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Loades upset me after I read the Boleyns Claire, I’ve been complaining to Louise about him Smile I did get his book on Mary I though, I’m glad you liked it. I have a little Mary pile happening. Now you’ve added more books to my wish list.

Gill I just saw your post. I’m still recovering from reading Denny LOL. I found her attitude towards Katherine pretty shocking, also the problem is with that books I’m not sure exactly how much of it is rubbish. I’m all for putting a positive light on Anne but it doesn’t need to be done at the expense of Katherine.
Meanwhile I noticed Norton doing it with regards to Anne in her book on Jane Seymour. Honestly the whole thing was peppered with “well if Jane did that it was no worse than what Anne did” Honestly I was ready to either poke her in the eye or grab a fork for myself by the end of that one.

September 6, 2012
12:47 pm
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Louise
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I do think where bias is concerned that a lot of the anti-Anne brigade got their information and their opinions from Weir. Her six wives book, Henry book and The Lady in the Tower are extremely anti-Anne. She clearly doesn’t have any respect for any of the Boleyns, including Anne, whatever she may say in interviews. The anti-Anne bias in TLITT was unpleasantly insiduous, as was her anti-George, Thomas and Elizabeth Boleyn bias.
The problem is that she was so determined to show them in a bad light that she manufactured evidence and deliberately misinterpreted sources in order to make her point. The whole section on Lady Rochford was disgraceful, as was her attact on Julia Fox. That’s why I have no respect for the woman. As an example, she is the only ‘historian’ who I have ever come across who believes that Wyatt’s poem ‘Around the Throne the Thunder Rolls’ was suggesting he believed Anne and the men to be guilty.
I started by writing my comments on the book, but ran out of space. I then got so angry with it that I threw it in the bin. Unfortunately the cow got her own back on me. It was resting on the top and the next time I opened the bin the bloody thing fell out and landed straight on my big toe!

“There once was a writer named Weir,
Whose history reduced you to tears.
The mistakes in her prose,
That got right up your nose,
Meant her rivals had nothing to fear.”

September 6, 2012
5:08 pm
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DuchessofBrittany
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I could not agree more, Louise. For someone who claims to respect Anne, Weir has made a career of out disparaging her name (and her family’s name) in her books. I get some people do not like Anne, but why the need to fabricate and hyperbole every comment? I also get that Anne was not always the most pleasant person to be around, but that does not make her a total b…h. Weir cannot contextualize anything. She simply repeats pieces of information until some people accept them as fact. When in actuality, her books are poor attempts at historical scholarship. TLITT angered be beyond belief. Most people on the forum know where I stand with this book.

I once trusted David Loades, espcially after reading his wonderful bio on Mary I. But, lately, I’ve read horrible reviews of his books. It seems he’s sunk into the Tudormania, and is publishing third rate work. I get there’s a market for mass publication of all things Tudor, but at least do the period justice. Loades is a respected lecturer. He should know better.

For me, the historians I consistently trust are (off the top of my head) Ives, Starkey, Schama, Lipscomb, Worsley, Guy, de Lisle, Hutchinson. I am sure there are more.

"By daily proof you shall find me to be to you both loving and kind" Anne Boleyn

September 8, 2012
9:41 am
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Olga
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You can thank Amberley Publishing for Loades last book Duchess. The amount of Tudor books their authors are producing is ridiculous, most of them are very, very short. The Jane Seymour biography is less than 200 pages and Starkey’s brief chapter in his Six Wives is still more informative than that whole biography.
Don’t get me started on Loades, I am still furious with him.
Louise you are almost talking me into reading that book. Why on earth does she attack Julia Fox? Julia’s book on Jane is excellent, should she be shunned for casting aside 500 year old malicious gossip to try to get to the heart of things? Ugh. I am not enjoying Weir this year, she’s back on Frances Brandon as well.

September 8, 2012
10:09 am
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Louise
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Olga, you have to read TLITT. Seeing is believing, or not as the case may be. She is scathing about Julia Fox’s book, even though Fox’s research is maticulate. She dismisses everything Fox says and insists that Lady Rochford was the instigator of the incest allegation by producing evidence that never actually existed. She quotes Jane’s mythical scaffold speech as fact. It really is shocking.

September 8, 2012
10:36 am
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Olga
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Arrgh Yell It’s so infuriating. How could she write that drivel in 2009? It’s not like her travesty of a six wives that was written 20 years ago, there’s no excuse for it.
The problem is some people don’t want to believe things. You give them a 400 page book of facts and they keep banging on about what they think because it sounds better, and I firmly put Weir in that category. She was going on in the author notes of her new fiction novel that Frances Brandon must have been a monster because some recent graduate has written a new paper on it and is working on a biography. So of course it must be true, because someone else said so.
You have no idea how many people I have seen online completely dismissing Julia Fox’s book, because they think Jane has to be a villain. Not for any good reason, of course.
Argh Yell again

September 8, 2012
2:01 pm
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Boleyn
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Louise said

Olga, you have to read TLITT. Seeing is believing, or not as the case may be. She is scathing about Julia Fox’s book, even though Fox’s research is maticulate. She dismisses everything Fox says and insists that Lady Rochford was the instigator of the incest allegation by producing evidence that never actually existed. She quotes Jane’s mythical scaffold speech as fact. It really is shocking.

Did Jane Rochford make a speech on the scaffold? Personally I would have thought she would just say “Pray for me and God save the King” being that she had lost her wits and reason prior to be executed and was able to recover it enough to face the axe. The last thing I would have thought she would want to do is go on and on about how she falsely accused her husband blah blah blah.. She would have known enough to know that no matter what she said or did now she was dead.
As for George and the charge of sodomy it’s proposrious, not only because it’s a lie because George was NOT homosexual or Bi sexual, but surely the charge of incest was enough to blacken his name anyway without the need to invent anymore lies.
By the way Louise the anal retard that said George Boleyn was a myth, is much chastened and apoligetic, he now says that he excepts that George Boleyn does exist, but argues that George wasn’t at court in 1533/36 and that he was executed in the same way as William Hastings. I.e dragged out of the Council Chamber and beheaded on a log of wood in the horse yard with no trial or mercy. What an idiot.

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

September 9, 2012
12:47 am
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DuchessofBrittany
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Olga said

You can thank Amberley Publishing for Loades last book Duchess. The amount of Tudor books their authors are producing is ridiculous, most of them are very, very short. The Jane Seymour biography is less than 200 pages and Starkey’s brief chapter in his Six Wives is still more informative than that whole biography.
Don’t get me started on Loades, I am still furious with him.
Louise you are almost talking me into reading that book. Why on earth does she attack Julia Fox? Julia’s book on Jane is excellent, should she be shunned for casting aside 500 year old malicious gossip to try to get to the heart of things? Ugh. I am not enjoying Weir this year, she’s back on Frances Brandon as well.

Doesn’t Elizabeth Norton publish her books with Amberley? I cannot remember off the top of my head. If so, I see a particular pattern and similarities between Loades and Norton’s books, or is it just me?

Weir does take serious issue with Fox’s work. I think she may feel threatened by better scholarship than hers, and does not know how to deal with it. I guess it serves Weir’s purposes better (and her anti-Boleyn stance) if Jane Boleyn is the evil villaness of fiction.

"By daily proof you shall find me to be to you both loving and kind" Anne Boleyn

September 9, 2012
1:01 am
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Olga
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Bo there was enough recorded to recreate her speech, which was brief and the usual sort, she did say she had offended the King. A lot of historical fiction authors like to use a false one where she claimed she wrongly accused her husband and Anne and for that she deserved to die.

Yes Duchess Amberley commissioned a whole load of books by Elizabeth Norton. They also published Loades last book. Being a bookseller I have a built-in cynicism for publishers, can’t be helped. I’m not clamouring to buy any of the others because I am quite sure they’d have nothing new in them and Amberley are just having fun with the new Tudor craze. The amount of books they have commissioned from her, on all six wives plus mistresses, then Margaret Beaufort is ridiculous. I can’t see any historian being able to churn out that many books in a short time period and have them be good quality. With that said I enjoyed her book on Anne of Cleves.

DuchessofBrittany said

Weir does take serious issue with Fox’s work. I think she may feel threatened by better scholarship than hers, and does not know how to deal with it. I guess it serves Weir’s purposes better (and her anti-Boleyn stance) if Jane Boleyn is the evil villaness of fiction.

Spot-on Duchess. And this is the sort of thing I don’t understand. Surely they’ve got some freedom writing fictional accounts of these characters, I don’t see why they need to back up their choices by claiming stuff is fact. How about ‘it’s my own creation because it suited the narrative”
Not “everyone else is wrong because it’s going to wreck my continuity so I’ll just try and perpetuate my myth” Yell

September 9, 2012
2:50 am
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Anyanka
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When that flaming Time Lord remembers me, I’m going back and making sure all those records are kept properly..So we actually know the truth.

It's always bunnies.

September 9, 2012
2:58 am
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Olga
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I think there’s a few fires you’ll need to put out too Anyanka Laugh

September 9, 2012
3:11 am
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Anyanka
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Not if they are fixed points in time..those can’t be altered.

It's always bunnies.

September 9, 2012
5:37 am
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Boleyn
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Olga said

I think there’s a few fires you’ll need to put out too Anyanka Laugh

I like to put a fire up Henry’s backside, the fat wife murdering slug..
Thanks for the J.B bit. I do feel sorry for her as she was just as used in this whole sorry affair as K.H was.
Both pawns in the Howard/Henry chess game..

Semper Fidelis, quod sum quod

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