Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Question from Mindy - Comparing Eleanor of Aquitaine and Elizabeth I

I have always been interested in the Plantagent time frame as was as Tudor. Eleanor of Aquataine and Henry II are fascinating.
Eleanor was also a woman ahead of her time and I was wondering if anyone has ever done a thesis or letter or book comparing Eleanor to Anne or Elizabeth.

3 comments:

PhD Historian said...

I share Mindy's interest in Eleanor of Aquitaine, and I agree that a comparison might be fascinating. I'm not aware that any comparison has been done, but my first thought is that it would be extremely difficult to do. Far, far less evidence survives to document Eleanor of Aquitaine than does to document Elizabeth. We have a large quantity of letters and other documents penned by Elizabeth herself, for example, and almost nothing written by Eleanor. Most studies of Eleanor describe events happening around her rather than the woman as an individual. So while I would certainly like to see such a study, I'm just not sure that one is really feasible.

kb said...

In terms of an academic comparison there is also the issue of the different time frames. It's one thing to compare two people living in the same general time frame and location - say Mary Queen of Scots and Elizabeth, or Elizabeth and Catherine de Medici. But to compare Eleanor of Aquitaine to Elizabeth would require comparing how queenship was viewed across a wide time span, with different religious, social, gender, legal, and political standards.

And this on top of the archival challenges phd historian outlines.

Mindy said...

Yes,, all that you both say is very very true.