Welcome to the Historical Fiction Online forums: a friendly place to discuss, review and discover historical fiction.
If this is your first visit, please be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above.
You will have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed.
To start viewing posts, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

any historical personages you wish had fiction composed about them

For discussions of historical fiction. Threads that do not relate to historical fiction should be started in the Chat forum or elsewhere on the forum, depending on the topic.
User avatar
Diiarts
Scribbler
Posts: 28
Joined: August 2010
Location: I'm based in Hampshire (UK) but we also have a partner based in Kentucky, USA
Contact:

Post by Diiarts » Tue August 24th, 2010, 2:24 pm

I'd love to see something about the scientific, artistic and other innovators of mid-18th-century London - the period that gave rise to the Industrial Revolution and the Enlightenment, unjustly neglected by HF authors and in the teaching of history. Perhaps something revolving around the early years of the RSA, in the way that Neal Stephenson's books cover the early years of the Royal Society.
Last edited by Diiarts on Tue August 24th, 2010, 7:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: clarity
www.diiarts.com - books for people who love books

M.M. Bennetts

Post by M.M. Bennetts » Tue August 24th, 2010, 9:12 pm

I've been wondering for some time why in Britain we don't know anything--that is anything at all--about the kings' mistresses, specifically the Georges.

We know lots about Madame du Pompadour, Mme du Barry, etc. And they'd probably make for quite racy (and therefore sell well) novels.

But George I had a mistress. I don't even know her name. Same for George II. And I always wonder about the women in their lives when I'm in France, where they openly celebrate the mistress's influence on the king...whether at Fontainbleu or Versailles...

There was an exhaustive biography of Beaumarchais a few years ago, but badly written--that's a chap who'd be perfect for a novel...he was a spy, he had dealings with the Chevalier d'Eon, he went nearly bankrupt supporting the American Revolution although the Revolutionary fathers reneged on the massive debt they owed him, he was hounded by the Committee of Public Safety, but didn't end on the Guillotine, he wrote the filthiest letters to his mistress when she was incarcerated for debt--and he wrote the Marriage of Figaro.

Also, I would a think a novel about Mrs. Fitzherbert, the Prince Regent's morganatic wife, would be superb. She loved him, she married him, he was a brilliant cellist, but ultimately unfaithful to her as to everyone...

User avatar
boswellbaxter
Bibliomaniac
Posts: 3066
Joined: August 2008
Location: North Carolina
Contact:

Post by boswellbaxter » Tue August 24th, 2010, 9:28 pm

[quote=""M.M. Bennetts""]I

Also, I would a think a novel about Mrs. Fitzherbert, the Prince Regent's morganatic wife, would be superb. She loved him, she married him, he was a brilliant cellist, but ultimately unfaithful to her as to everyone...[/quote]

There are at least two novels about her that I know of, one by Jean Plaidy (Sweet Lass of Richmond Hill) and one by Diane Haeger (The Secret Wife of King George IV).
Susan Higginbotham
Coming in October: The Woodvilles


http://www.susanhigginbotham.com/
http://www.susanhigginbotham.com/blog/

M.M. Bennetts

Post by M.M. Bennetts » Tue August 24th, 2010, 9:49 pm

[quote=""boswellbaxter""]There are at least two novels about her that I know of, one by Jean Plaidy (Sweet Lass of Richmond Hill) and one by Diane Haeger (The Secret Wife of King George IV).[/quote]

I know there were a couple of biographies of her written in the last few years. But I suppose what I really want is a costume drama of her on the BBC...

User avatar
Berengaria
Avid Reader
Posts: 307
Joined: July 2010
Location: northern Vancouver Island, BC Canada

Post by Berengaria » Tue August 24th, 2010, 10:39 pm

But George I had a mistress. I don't even know her name. Same for George II. And I always wonder about the women in their lives when I'm in France, where they openly celebrate the mistress..
George had 2 mistresses at the same time, if I recall. One very tall and thin, was called the Maypole. The other, short and squat, was called the Elephant.
Image My 4 girls!


“No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. She will not want new fashions nor regret the loss of expensive diversions or variety of company if she can be amused with an author in her closet.” ~Lady Montagu

M.M. Bennetts

Post by M.M. Bennetts » Tue August 24th, 2010, 11:02 pm

[quote=""Berengaria""]George had 2 mistresses at the same time, if I recall. One very tall and thin, was called the Maypole. The other, short and squat, was called the Elephant.[/quote]

That's the book I want to read!

User avatar
Miss Moppet
Bibliophile
Posts: 1726
Joined: April 2009
Location: North London
Contact:

Post by Miss Moppet » Tue August 24th, 2010, 11:55 pm

[quote=""M.M. Bennetts""]I've been wondering for some time why in Britain we don't know anything--that is anything at all--about the kings' mistresses, specifically the Georges.

We know lots about Madame du Pompadour, Mme du Barry, etc. And they'd probably make for quite racy (and therefore sell well) novels.

But George I had a mistress. I don't even know her name. Same for George II. And I always wonder about the women in their lives when I'm in France, where they openly celebrate the mistress's influence on the king...whether at Fontainbleu or Versailles...[/quote]

The French mistresses were far more powerful and influential than their English counterparts. Mme de Pompadour owned or rented at least 15 properties in her lifetime; Henrietta Howard, mistress of George I (edited: that should read, George II), owned one, Marble Hill House, and she had a struggle to get it. There's a biography of her although I can't remember who wrote it.

To my knowledge there haven't been any recent novels about Pompadour or Du Barry, and I'm not really sure why, other than that the language barrier may discourage English-speaking authors from taking on the research. But there's not much in French either. I know Menie Gregoire wrote a novel about Pompadour but it seems to be out of print.

My Royal Mistress Challenge page (in my signature) lists novels about royal mistresses. I can recommend Daphne du Maurier's Mary Anne, about Mary Anne Clarke, mistress of the Duke of York.
Last edited by Miss Moppet on Wed August 25th, 2010, 2:09 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: sorting my kings out

User avatar
Ariadne
Bibliophile
Posts: 1151
Joined: August 2008
Location: At the foothills of Mt. Level

Post by Ariadne » Wed August 25th, 2010, 12:22 am

George I's mistress with the nickname "The Maypole" was Melusine von der Schulenburg, Duchess of Kendal. Yep, Melusine again.

Sophia von Kielmansegge, aka "The Elephant," has gotten some bad press; it was said at the time that she was his mistress as well as his half-sister (they shared a father, Ernst August of Hanover), but that seems to have been just a rumor started by those who resented her influence at court.

They both appear in one of Jean Plaidy's novels - probably The Princess of Celle, though it's been ages since I've read it.

User avatar
sweetpotatoboy
Bibliophile
Posts: 1641
Joined: August 2008
Location: London, UK

Post by sweetpotatoboy » Wed August 25th, 2010, 1:44 am

Ariadne beat me to it on the Plaidy books. Plenty on the Georges' mistresses in her Georgian series of books (surprisingly not yet included in the UK or US reissues of her novels.).

Tracy Borman has written a recent biography of George II's mistress Henrietta Howard.

Lucy Pick
Scribbler
Posts: 48
Joined: March 2010

Post by Lucy Pick » Sat August 28th, 2010, 7:40 pm

[quote=""princess garnet""]Thanks! I did read a biog about her written for YA when I was in grade school. I don't remember the title though.
Anne of Brittany does appear in Plaidy's Mary, Queen of France in the years prior to Princess Mary Tudor's arrival in France.[/quote]

I know this is an old post. but might that book be Twice Queen of Francee: Anne of Brittany by Mildred Butler?

Post Reply

Return to “General Discussion”