"The courtiers of Elizabeth," writes a French Ambassador, ''were vieing one with another as to who should use the most flattery." It has been stated that some of the "loyal and chivalrous gentlemen of the Court" assured the Queen that the " lustre of her beauty dazzled them like that of the sun, and they could not behold it with the fixed eye." Birch relates that in old age she permitted courtiers to speak to her of her "excellent beauty." Her conduct to the ladies of the Court redounded little to her credit as a woman. It was the Queen's custom to strike the maids of honour ; she gave Anne Scudamore a blow on the head which nearly proved fatal. Other ladies received similar treatment. In old age the Queen's temper became most violent, and she swore dreadful oaths for little provocation. During the latter years of Elizabeth's reign Lord Essex and Raleigh wore the cause of several Court scandals, for no young lady of propriety could safely remain at Court. The levity of Essex's conduct, and his freedom with the maids of honour, was often a source of trouble to those ladies. On one occasion he made an avowal of his passion to the beautiful Elizabeth Brydges, which excited the Queen's jealousy and passion beyond all bounds. She treated the unoffending lady in the harshest manner, and even inflicted blows upon her person.
Friday, November 21, 2008
Question from djd - Accuracy of description of Elizabeth's personality, etc.
I came across a full text of something called Historical portraits of the Tudor Dynasty and Reformation Period. It is obviously a very old book. The writer seemed to have an obvious bias and dislike for Elizabeth, as seen in the pasted text below. My question to all of you, who know a lot more about QEI than me, is simply "Was she really like this?" I don't form opinions from one source, and most books I read paint Liz in much more positive light. Thanks