14 Best Books About Queen Charlotte
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Netflix's new Bridgerton prequel, Queen Charlotte, is a fictionalized version of the early years of Queen Charlotte and King George III's marriage. If you watched the six episode show and hungered for more about about the royal couple, we have a reading list for you. From the biography that star India Amarteifio read to understand the Queen to a sweet children's book about how the royal really introduced Christmas trees to England, here are 14 books to read about Queen Charlotte:
A Royal Experiment: The Private Life of King George III
Queen Charlotte star India Amarteifio read Janice Hadlow's A Royal Experiment: Love and Duty, Madness and Betrayal―the Private Lives of King George III and Queen Charlotte after she was cast as Charlotte, tracing the marriage of King George III and Queen Charlotte. That book is out of stock, but Hadlow's book focusing in on George is still available.
Queen Charlotte: Before the Bridgertons came the love story that changed the ton...
If you want to dive further into the fictional world of Queen Charlotte, this companion novel by Julia Quinn and Shonda Rhimes is for you. "Queen Charlotte has been such a moving character to write and now having the opportunity to work with Julia to adapt this story into a book is such an exciting opportunity," Rhimes said. "I can’t wait for fans of this universe to read the story of a character that has resonated so deeply with our audience."
Enlightened Princesses: Caroline, Augusta, Charlotte, and the Shaping of the Modern World
In 2017, Yale University staged an exhibition on three German princesses—Caroline of Ansbach, Augusta of Saxe-Gotha, and Charlotte of Mecklenberg-Strelitz—who married into the British royal family. The exhibition was accompanied by this publication, co-published with Historic Royal Palaces. Per Yale, "This sumptuously illustrated book considers the ways these powerful, intelligent women left enduring marks on British culture through a wide range of activities."
Queens Consort, Cultural Transfer and European Politics, c.1500-1800
This essay collection focuses in on Queens Consort from Austria, Hanover, Portugal, Britain, more. It's on our list of books about Queen Charlotte because the chapter that focuses on her, "Marriage in a global context," is a fascinating read.
The Last King of America: The Misunderstood Reign of George III
Reading about Queen Charlotte means also reading about her husband, King George III. Andrew Roberts's biography is a nuanced portrait of the "mad king," using the papers of George III as a primary source. Our favorite thing we learned: George called Charlotte "queen of my heart."
The Real Queen Charlotte: Inside the Real Bridgerton Court
After Bridgerton initially premiered, there was a spike in interest in the real Queen Charlotte. Author Catherine Curzon aims to present the true story of Charlotte, and the court she reigned over.
The Queen and the First Christmas Tree: Queen Charlotte's Gift to England
One of the best moments in Queen Charlotte is when Charlotte comments on her Christmas tree—because the real Charlotte is the reason England now has a Christmas tree tradition. This adorable children's book tells the story of the "First Christmas Tree" at Windsor Castle in 1800.
African Europeans: An Untold History
OK, this one technically isn't about Queen Charlotte—there's debate amongst historians whether or not she had African heritage—but if the idea of a Black Queen Charlotte was intriguing to you, this dive into the history of African Europeans is well worth your time.
George III: Madness and Majesty (Penguin Monarchs)
The Penguin Monarchs series features concise biographies of British monarchs. To further understand Charlotte, again, one must read about George—and Jeremy Black's biography is not to be missed.
The Artistic Matronage of Queen Charlotte 1744-1818: How a Queen Promoted Both Art and Female Artists in English Society
Heidi Strobel, an art historian, dives into what she coins "The Artistic Matronage" (much better than "patronage") of Queen Charlotte during her lifetime. Per the publisher: Charlotte's "artistic support has been traditionally overshadowed by that of her husband, King George III. Although Charlotte and her husband jointly patronized artists during the first decade of their marriage, she eventually became a substantial patron in her own right, supporting both the fine and decorative arts."
Note: No book cover was available online. Pictured is a portrait of Charlotte and her eldest sons by Allan Ramsay.
Crown & Sceptre: A New History of the British Monarchy, from William the Conqueror to Elizabeth II
If you want to zoom out and put Queen Charlotte in greater context, you can't go wrong with Tracy Borman's history of the British monarchy, Crown & Sceptre. Particularly of interest for Charlotte fans would be Part 6, on the Hanoverians.
Lives of England's Reigning and Consort Queens
Queen Charlotte was the longest-reigning Queen Consort in history. In this overview of the lives of Queen Consorts in England, H. Eugene Lehman even addresses Allan Ramsay's portraits of Charlotte, and the rumors of Charlotte being related to Madragana Ben Aloandro, the mistress of Porturgal's King Afonso III.
The Good Queen Charlotte
Many books written about Charlotte nearer to her lifetime are available for free online, including Percy Fitzgerald's The Good Queen Charlotte. For a biography written in the 19th century, it is surprisingly readable.
Memoirs of Her Most Excellent Majesty Sophia-Charlotte Queen of Great Britain
Last but not least: Queen Charlotte penned her own memoirs. And yes, you can read them!
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