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Historically accurate and vividly written, an excellent supplement to Pope-Hennessey's Queen Mary, this book by the author of many similar volumes (The Prince Consort, Queen Victoria, etc.) is an intimate study of the four sovereigns who ruled England from 1830 to 1936 and under whom she achieved her peak of power: William VI, Victoria, Edward VII and George V. With emphasis on personalities rather than politics, the author draws unbiased, affectionate and often diverting portraits of his four rulers: William IV, third son of George III, the red-faced ""Sailor King"", who lived for 20 years in domestic sin with an actress by whom he had ten children, who after ridiculous efforts married to provide an heir, a project in which he failed, and who by his very oddities brought a new glow to a tarnished crown; his niece Victoria, architect of Empire and ruler of England for 60 years, with her blind devotion to the Prince Consort, her commonsense, her quarrels with her ministers, her rigid morality and her inimitable letters, here widely quoted; Edward VII, her neglected son, who waited as Prince of Wales 45 years for the Throne, a lover of good living, travel and pretty women, suave of humor and endowed with political understanding; his second son, George V, inheritor of a crashing world, difficult, capable, humorous, who ruled for 25 years and achieved greatness. A good companion study to Gooch's Second Empire, this delightful account of a past century will appeal to devotees of accurate but informal biographical history, while students and teachers of 19th century English history will value it for its excellent arrangement and fine bibliography.

Publisher: Macmillan