Hello, Harlot!

Royalharlotfront_cover
By Susan/Miranda

While this week does seem to be the endless Independence Day weekend (you know, the Second-Third-Fourth-Fifth-and-Sixth of July: that holiday), it also marks the release of my second historical novel, Royal Harlot Royal Harlot follows the life and career of Barbara Villiers Palmer, Countess of Castlemaine, Duchess of Cleveland (1641-1709), and the most famous/infamous mistress of English King Charles II (1630-85.)  In a way, it’s appropriate to mention Barbara and independence together, for Barbara is certainly one of the most independent women in history. 

Born to a noble family, she took her first lover at 15, married at 18, and became Charles’s lover the following year.  Following his Restoration to the throne, she was the unofficial queen of his bawdy, fun-loving court for nearly a decade, amassing enormous power and wealth along the way. She was feared for her political influence, acclaimed for her beauty, audacity, and wit, and damned from pulpits for her legendary amorality. Despite her long attachment to Charles, neither of them could stay faithful to the other, andCrop_charles_w_orb
like him, Barbara had scores of lovers, from rope-dancers to actors to high-born lords.  She was a lousy wife, but an excellent friend and mother, devoted to her six illegitimate children (all of whom survived to adulthood, a rare achievement indeed.) After their own fashion, I think Charles did love her dearly, and she him: their version of a love story, a friendship, an alliance.  They really were two of a kind.  But Barbara did what she pleased, with whomever pleased her, and she didn’t give a fig for what anyone else thought.

To judge from contemporary diaries, it seems that at least half the men in 17th century London were fantasizing about her at any given time.  And from the way she and Charles took over my writing-life for nearly a year, I’d have to say her power to fascinate is still strong after three hundred years.

Barbfaithorne As delighted as Barbara would be today to see her story in so many bookstores, I’m sure she would be horrified by her cropped, faceless portrait on the cover. I’ve mentioned here before that while my publisher wanted to use a real portrait of her, they felt that her much-vaunted beauty wouldn’t hold much appeal to modern readers.  Tastes change.  What was hot in 1660 ain’t necessarily so now, and today Barbara’s much-praised “languid eyes” look more drugged than seductive.

Yet Barbara understood the power of image in a thoroughly modern way.  She knew her power lay in her extraordinary beauty, and she knew, too, that the more people who could see her and therefore appreciate that beauty, the more power in turn she’d have as a public figure. 

Early in her relationship with Charles, she sat for artist Sir Peter Lely.  He adored her beauty, and paintedBarbarawhite_dress004_2
her repeatedly, becoming so bewitched by her that other sitters complained he’d given them Barbara’s eyes.  In addition to seeing his portraits of Barbara hung in Palace, Sir Peter also commissioned and sold inexpensive prints of the portraits.  Soon Barbara’s face became as ubiquitous as Paris Hilton’s is to us, with prints hanging in taverns and barracks all over England, as well as in the parlors of people who wished to be fashionable. 

But Barbara’s portraits weren’t simply pretty pictures.  Seventeenth-century portraits often showed their
sitters in allegorical poses, as goddesses or Biblical figures, and Barbara, knowing how Charles delighted in clever jests, took care to have Sir Peter pack her portraits with all sorts of hidden meanings.  For her first major portrait in 1661, she posed as the repentant prostitute and saint Mary Magdalene, in the wilderness with her long hair unbound (and a revealing, silver silk-satin dressing gown clasped with jewel brooches, but what else does one wear, really, for repenting in the wilderness?) 

Barbara, of course, was neither saintly nor penitent, which her contemporaries would have understood at once.  Yet they also would have understood the other, more subtle, implications of the painting –– that if Barbara were the Magdalene, then Charles, as the leader of the English Protestant Church, could also be likened to Jesus Christ –– that seem unsettlingly irreligious today.

Barbmadonna_2
But Barbara went further.  In 1665, she had Sir Peter paint her without jewels, in the modest blue and red robes of the Virgin Mary. In her arms is the baby Charles Fitzroy, later Duke of Cleveland, her first illegitimate son with the king.  She is also visibly pregnant. As lovely a painting as this is, it managed to be simultaneously blasphemous and yet flattering to Charles (who liked it very much), while also presenting Barbara and her son as part of the Stuart royal dynasty.  Charles was increasingly sensitive to the fact that his wife had yet to give him a much-needed heir, and he was reassured by this visible proof of his own potent virility.  At the same time, the picture was a calculated jab at Charles’s Catholic queen. Catherine of Braganza, showing Barbara as the fertile (very fertile) Protestant Madonna, and a more suitable consort to an English king. 

The 1667 portrait on the cover of Royal Harlot is another calculated allegory, designed to make everyone talk.  This time Barbara appropriates the queen’s own patron saint, posing as St. Catherine of Alexandria with the saint’s palm-front and the wheel of her martyrdom.  Her hand on the suggestive (!!) sword’s hilt represented her readiness to fight for her place at the king’s side, even to the point ofBettercoverbarb usurping the queen.  Wearing decidedly unsaintly jewels (gifts from the king, natch), her voluptuous uncorseted body flaunts her obvious attractions (and the fact that she is again pregnant) in the face of the sallow little queen. 

Barbara’s sly half-smile has a certain “what, can’t you take a joke?” feel to it that somehow makes the picture even more wicked.   Did Charles see the joke, too, or had Barbara finally gone too far?  Ah, you’ll have to read Royal Harlot, and find out for yourself…

Read the prologue for Royal Harlot, and learn how Barbara and Charles first meet.

“Bad Boys” have always been a favorite kind of hero, but “Bad Girl” heroines are relatively few –– especially bad girls like Barbara who are unapologetically bad by choice, not circumstance.  Do you have a favorite fictional (or historical) bad girl?  I’ll give away a copy of Royal Harlot on Sunday night to one of the readers who post to this blog.

Most of these paintings of Barbara come from the wonderful book Painted Ladies: Women at the Court of Charles II by Catherine MacLeod and Julia Marciari Alexander.

205 thoughts on “Hello, Harlot!”

  1. Susan/Miranda, I sort of understand your publisher not putting Barbara’s entire face on the cover for fear her “beauty” wouldn’t translate well in the 21st Century. While I don’t think she’s pretty by today’s standards, her powerful charisma and sexual allure leap out at you from her portraits. She looks confident and self-possessed, and that in itself can be a strong attraction for the opposite sex.
    New Subject: “LILinda,” your name was drawn as the winner of Patricia Rice’s MYSTIC GUARDIAN! Please contact Pat or me privately with your mailing address and your preference for how you want your book signed. You can reach us at readers2@patricia rice.com or sholmes@holmesedit.com
    Susan/Miranda, please forgive the temporary highjacking. Now, back to Bad Barbara . . .

    Reply
  2. Susan/Miranda, I sort of understand your publisher not putting Barbara’s entire face on the cover for fear her “beauty” wouldn’t translate well in the 21st Century. While I don’t think she’s pretty by today’s standards, her powerful charisma and sexual allure leap out at you from her portraits. She looks confident and self-possessed, and that in itself can be a strong attraction for the opposite sex.
    New Subject: “LILinda,” your name was drawn as the winner of Patricia Rice’s MYSTIC GUARDIAN! Please contact Pat or me privately with your mailing address and your preference for how you want your book signed. You can reach us at readers2@patricia rice.com or sholmes@holmesedit.com
    Susan/Miranda, please forgive the temporary highjacking. Now, back to Bad Barbara . . .

    Reply
  3. Susan/Miranda, I sort of understand your publisher not putting Barbara’s entire face on the cover for fear her “beauty” wouldn’t translate well in the 21st Century. While I don’t think she’s pretty by today’s standards, her powerful charisma and sexual allure leap out at you from her portraits. She looks confident and self-possessed, and that in itself can be a strong attraction for the opposite sex.
    New Subject: “LILinda,” your name was drawn as the winner of Patricia Rice’s MYSTIC GUARDIAN! Please contact Pat or me privately with your mailing address and your preference for how you want your book signed. You can reach us at readers2@patricia rice.com or sholmes@holmesedit.com
    Susan/Miranda, please forgive the temporary highjacking. Now, back to Bad Barbara . . .

    Reply
  4. Susan/Miranda, I sort of understand your publisher not putting Barbara’s entire face on the cover for fear her “beauty” wouldn’t translate well in the 21st Century. While I don’t think she’s pretty by today’s standards, her powerful charisma and sexual allure leap out at you from her portraits. She looks confident and self-possessed, and that in itself can be a strong attraction for the opposite sex.
    New Subject: “LILinda,” your name was drawn as the winner of Patricia Rice’s MYSTIC GUARDIAN! Please contact Pat or me privately with your mailing address and your preference for how you want your book signed. You can reach us at readers2@patricia rice.com or sholmes@holmesedit.com
    Susan/Miranda, please forgive the temporary highjacking. Now, back to Bad Barbara . . .

    Reply
  5. Susan/Miranda, I sort of understand your publisher not putting Barbara’s entire face on the cover for fear her “beauty” wouldn’t translate well in the 21st Century. While I don’t think she’s pretty by today’s standards, her powerful charisma and sexual allure leap out at you from her portraits. She looks confident and self-possessed, and that in itself can be a strong attraction for the opposite sex.
    New Subject: “LILinda,” your name was drawn as the winner of Patricia Rice’s MYSTIC GUARDIAN! Please contact Pat or me privately with your mailing address and your preference for how you want your book signed. You can reach us at readers2@patricia rice.com or sholmes@holmesedit.com
    Susan/Miranda, please forgive the temporary highjacking. Now, back to Bad Barbara . . .

    Reply
  6. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  7. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  8. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  9. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  10. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  11. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  12. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  13. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  14. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  15. I adore Barbara Castlemaine. Even though she was so scheming and cunning, I can’t help but become enthralled each time I come across a mention of her–be it fiction, non-fiction or film.

    Reply
  16. I love bad girl heroines – there are far too few of them! My favourite is probably Hariette Wilson, who offered her former lovers the option of paying her lots of money to stay out of her memoirs 🙂 She was fascinating, although sadly, her life did not end well..

    Reply
  17. I love bad girl heroines – there are far too few of them! My favourite is probably Hariette Wilson, who offered her former lovers the option of paying her lots of money to stay out of her memoirs 🙂 She was fascinating, although sadly, her life did not end well..

    Reply
  18. I love bad girl heroines – there are far too few of them! My favourite is probably Hariette Wilson, who offered her former lovers the option of paying her lots of money to stay out of her memoirs 🙂 She was fascinating, although sadly, her life did not end well..

    Reply
  19. I love bad girl heroines – there are far too few of them! My favourite is probably Hariette Wilson, who offered her former lovers the option of paying her lots of money to stay out of her memoirs 🙂 She was fascinating, although sadly, her life did not end well..

    Reply
  20. I love bad girl heroines – there are far too few of them! My favourite is probably Hariette Wilson, who offered her former lovers the option of paying her lots of money to stay out of her memoirs 🙂 She was fascinating, although sadly, her life did not end well..

    Reply
  21. Mata Hari – exotic and a free spirited seductress, later a more dangerous one involved with intrigue, though that lead to her unfortunate end.

    Reply
  22. Mata Hari – exotic and a free spirited seductress, later a more dangerous one involved with intrigue, though that lead to her unfortunate end.

    Reply
  23. Mata Hari – exotic and a free spirited seductress, later a more dangerous one involved with intrigue, though that lead to her unfortunate end.

    Reply
  24. Mata Hari – exotic and a free spirited seductress, later a more dangerous one involved with intrigue, though that lead to her unfortunate end.

    Reply
  25. Mata Hari – exotic and a free spirited seductress, later a more dangerous one involved with intrigue, though that lead to her unfortunate end.

    Reply
  26. I haven’t been able to find Royal Harlot locally, but I am hoping to have better luck when I go to a larger city over the weekend. I am even more eager to read it after your blog, Susan/Miranda.
    I am not sure how accurate the “history” surrounding her is, but Aspasia of Miletus is my favorite “bad girl” character. She earned high praise for her intelligence and rhetorical skills. Some accounts even credit her with authoring Pericles’s famous funeral oration. Plutarch lauds “her rare political wisdom.” She was attacked for her immorality and for her influence over Pericles and his decisions. Plutarch also says that Pericles kissed her daily when he left and when he returned. Isn’t that a lovely detail?

    Reply
  27. I haven’t been able to find Royal Harlot locally, but I am hoping to have better luck when I go to a larger city over the weekend. I am even more eager to read it after your blog, Susan/Miranda.
    I am not sure how accurate the “history” surrounding her is, but Aspasia of Miletus is my favorite “bad girl” character. She earned high praise for her intelligence and rhetorical skills. Some accounts even credit her with authoring Pericles’s famous funeral oration. Plutarch lauds “her rare political wisdom.” She was attacked for her immorality and for her influence over Pericles and his decisions. Plutarch also says that Pericles kissed her daily when he left and when he returned. Isn’t that a lovely detail?

    Reply
  28. I haven’t been able to find Royal Harlot locally, but I am hoping to have better luck when I go to a larger city over the weekend. I am even more eager to read it after your blog, Susan/Miranda.
    I am not sure how accurate the “history” surrounding her is, but Aspasia of Miletus is my favorite “bad girl” character. She earned high praise for her intelligence and rhetorical skills. Some accounts even credit her with authoring Pericles’s famous funeral oration. Plutarch lauds “her rare political wisdom.” She was attacked for her immorality and for her influence over Pericles and his decisions. Plutarch also says that Pericles kissed her daily when he left and when he returned. Isn’t that a lovely detail?

    Reply
  29. I haven’t been able to find Royal Harlot locally, but I am hoping to have better luck when I go to a larger city over the weekend. I am even more eager to read it after your blog, Susan/Miranda.
    I am not sure how accurate the “history” surrounding her is, but Aspasia of Miletus is my favorite “bad girl” character. She earned high praise for her intelligence and rhetorical skills. Some accounts even credit her with authoring Pericles’s famous funeral oration. Plutarch lauds “her rare political wisdom.” She was attacked for her immorality and for her influence over Pericles and his decisions. Plutarch also says that Pericles kissed her daily when he left and when he returned. Isn’t that a lovely detail?

    Reply
  30. I haven’t been able to find Royal Harlot locally, but I am hoping to have better luck when I go to a larger city over the weekend. I am even more eager to read it after your blog, Susan/Miranda.
    I am not sure how accurate the “history” surrounding her is, but Aspasia of Miletus is my favorite “bad girl” character. She earned high praise for her intelligence and rhetorical skills. Some accounts even credit her with authoring Pericles’s famous funeral oration. Plutarch lauds “her rare political wisdom.” She was attacked for her immorality and for her influence over Pericles and his decisions. Plutarch also says that Pericles kissed her daily when he left and when he returned. Isn’t that a lovely detail?

    Reply
  31. Susan/Miranda, I loved your book on Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, and I’ve just ordered your book on Barbara Castlemaine, another favorite. I particularly loved Helen McCrory’s performance in the Charles II mini-series with Rufus Sewell, although I suspect they cut it down for US audiences. I only wished you lived closer so that you could come talk to the NY chapter!

    Reply
  32. Susan/Miranda, I loved your book on Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, and I’ve just ordered your book on Barbara Castlemaine, another favorite. I particularly loved Helen McCrory’s performance in the Charles II mini-series with Rufus Sewell, although I suspect they cut it down for US audiences. I only wished you lived closer so that you could come talk to the NY chapter!

    Reply
  33. Susan/Miranda, I loved your book on Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, and I’ve just ordered your book on Barbara Castlemaine, another favorite. I particularly loved Helen McCrory’s performance in the Charles II mini-series with Rufus Sewell, although I suspect they cut it down for US audiences. I only wished you lived closer so that you could come talk to the NY chapter!

    Reply
  34. Susan/Miranda, I loved your book on Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, and I’ve just ordered your book on Barbara Castlemaine, another favorite. I particularly loved Helen McCrory’s performance in the Charles II mini-series with Rufus Sewell, although I suspect they cut it down for US audiences. I only wished you lived closer so that you could come talk to the NY chapter!

    Reply
  35. Susan/Miranda, I loved your book on Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, and I’ve just ordered your book on Barbara Castlemaine, another favorite. I particularly loved Helen McCrory’s performance in the Charles II mini-series with Rufus Sewell, although I suspect they cut it down for US audiences. I only wished you lived closer so that you could come talk to the NY chapter!

    Reply
  36. My copy of Harlot arrived on my desk last night. I was up until 4 am, reading. What glorious prose, Wench Susan/Miranda. I was swept away. Magnificent!

    Reply
  37. My copy of Harlot arrived on my desk last night. I was up until 4 am, reading. What glorious prose, Wench Susan/Miranda. I was swept away. Magnificent!

    Reply
  38. My copy of Harlot arrived on my desk last night. I was up until 4 am, reading. What glorious prose, Wench Susan/Miranda. I was swept away. Magnificent!

    Reply
  39. My copy of Harlot arrived on my desk last night. I was up until 4 am, reading. What glorious prose, Wench Susan/Miranda. I was swept away. Magnificent!

    Reply
  40. My copy of Harlot arrived on my desk last night. I was up until 4 am, reading. What glorious prose, Wench Susan/Miranda. I was swept away. Magnificent!

    Reply
  41. I’m looking forward to the book – one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.
    I can remember back in graduate school when the Restoration period was more real to me than the 20th century. One day when I was on the subway I saw a girl who looked as if she had stepped out of a Lely painting – short neck, rounded chin, protuberant eyes, and definitely voluptuous. It wasn’t a style quite to contemporary tastes (those were the days of Twiggy), but it was a surprise to see that it really existed.
    As for bad girls outside the Restoration period, my fictional favorite has to be Becky Sharp. In history, how about Eleanor of Acquitaine?

    Reply
  42. I’m looking forward to the book – one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.
    I can remember back in graduate school when the Restoration period was more real to me than the 20th century. One day when I was on the subway I saw a girl who looked as if she had stepped out of a Lely painting – short neck, rounded chin, protuberant eyes, and definitely voluptuous. It wasn’t a style quite to contemporary tastes (those were the days of Twiggy), but it was a surprise to see that it really existed.
    As for bad girls outside the Restoration period, my fictional favorite has to be Becky Sharp. In history, how about Eleanor of Acquitaine?

    Reply
  43. I’m looking forward to the book – one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.
    I can remember back in graduate school when the Restoration period was more real to me than the 20th century. One day when I was on the subway I saw a girl who looked as if she had stepped out of a Lely painting – short neck, rounded chin, protuberant eyes, and definitely voluptuous. It wasn’t a style quite to contemporary tastes (those were the days of Twiggy), but it was a surprise to see that it really existed.
    As for bad girls outside the Restoration period, my fictional favorite has to be Becky Sharp. In history, how about Eleanor of Acquitaine?

    Reply
  44. I’m looking forward to the book – one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.
    I can remember back in graduate school when the Restoration period was more real to me than the 20th century. One day when I was on the subway I saw a girl who looked as if she had stepped out of a Lely painting – short neck, rounded chin, protuberant eyes, and definitely voluptuous. It wasn’t a style quite to contemporary tastes (those were the days of Twiggy), but it was a surprise to see that it really existed.
    As for bad girls outside the Restoration period, my fictional favorite has to be Becky Sharp. In history, how about Eleanor of Acquitaine?

    Reply
  45. I’m looking forward to the book – one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.
    I can remember back in graduate school when the Restoration period was more real to me than the 20th century. One day when I was on the subway I saw a girl who looked as if she had stepped out of a Lely painting – short neck, rounded chin, protuberant eyes, and definitely voluptuous. It wasn’t a style quite to contemporary tastes (those were the days of Twiggy), but it was a surprise to see that it really existed.
    As for bad girls outside the Restoration period, my fictional favorite has to be Becky Sharp. In history, how about Eleanor of Acquitaine?

    Reply
  46. I was just going to mention Eleanor of Acquitaine myself! Galloping bare-breasted off to the Crusades with her first king, Louis the Pious was it? And then there was poor Heloise, seduced at 15 by her tutor (why didn’t she have a tutess?) and writing adoring letters to him from her nunnery after the Dreadful Outcome. But my all-time favorite is fictional rather than historical: The Wife of Bath. Now there was a woman who knew how to enjoy life. Come to think of it, Chaucer abounds in frisky females; it kinda makes me wonder…

    Reply
  47. I was just going to mention Eleanor of Acquitaine myself! Galloping bare-breasted off to the Crusades with her first king, Louis the Pious was it? And then there was poor Heloise, seduced at 15 by her tutor (why didn’t she have a tutess?) and writing adoring letters to him from her nunnery after the Dreadful Outcome. But my all-time favorite is fictional rather than historical: The Wife of Bath. Now there was a woman who knew how to enjoy life. Come to think of it, Chaucer abounds in frisky females; it kinda makes me wonder…

    Reply
  48. I was just going to mention Eleanor of Acquitaine myself! Galloping bare-breasted off to the Crusades with her first king, Louis the Pious was it? And then there was poor Heloise, seduced at 15 by her tutor (why didn’t she have a tutess?) and writing adoring letters to him from her nunnery after the Dreadful Outcome. But my all-time favorite is fictional rather than historical: The Wife of Bath. Now there was a woman who knew how to enjoy life. Come to think of it, Chaucer abounds in frisky females; it kinda makes me wonder…

    Reply
  49. I was just going to mention Eleanor of Acquitaine myself! Galloping bare-breasted off to the Crusades with her first king, Louis the Pious was it? And then there was poor Heloise, seduced at 15 by her tutor (why didn’t she have a tutess?) and writing adoring letters to him from her nunnery after the Dreadful Outcome. But my all-time favorite is fictional rather than historical: The Wife of Bath. Now there was a woman who knew how to enjoy life. Come to think of it, Chaucer abounds in frisky females; it kinda makes me wonder…

    Reply
  50. I was just going to mention Eleanor of Acquitaine myself! Galloping bare-breasted off to the Crusades with her first king, Louis the Pious was it? And then there was poor Heloise, seduced at 15 by her tutor (why didn’t she have a tutess?) and writing adoring letters to him from her nunnery after the Dreadful Outcome. But my all-time favorite is fictional rather than historical: The Wife of Bath. Now there was a woman who knew how to enjoy life. Come to think of it, Chaucer abounds in frisky females; it kinda makes me wonder…

    Reply
  51. Becky Sharp, Harriet Wilson, Eleanor of Acquitaine, the Wife of Bath, Lady Caroline Lamb, Amber St. Claire, and Mata Hari — if that ain’t a bad girl convention, I don’t know what is. Imagine the time-travel talk-show. *g*
    Janga, I hope by now you’ve found ROYAL HARLOT in a store. Though publishers swear to release books on a certain date (Wench Pat has mentioned this earlier), they still seem to come out in dribbles and drabs, and without any logic. Very hard on readers and writers.
    Elizabeth, I haven’t seen the Rufus Sewell Charles II — was that a BBC series? There’s certainly enough material in that man’s love life to launch an entire mini-series. As for Amber — I remember finding that book in middle-school, in a dusty edition in the local library, and at the time, it was a very informative eye-opener. Though I haven’t gone back to read it again — I decided it was better to keep it with its golden glow in my memory, than to re-read it with older, pickier eyes.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  52. Becky Sharp, Harriet Wilson, Eleanor of Acquitaine, the Wife of Bath, Lady Caroline Lamb, Amber St. Claire, and Mata Hari — if that ain’t a bad girl convention, I don’t know what is. Imagine the time-travel talk-show. *g*
    Janga, I hope by now you’ve found ROYAL HARLOT in a store. Though publishers swear to release books on a certain date (Wench Pat has mentioned this earlier), they still seem to come out in dribbles and drabs, and without any logic. Very hard on readers and writers.
    Elizabeth, I haven’t seen the Rufus Sewell Charles II — was that a BBC series? There’s certainly enough material in that man’s love life to launch an entire mini-series. As for Amber — I remember finding that book in middle-school, in a dusty edition in the local library, and at the time, it was a very informative eye-opener. Though I haven’t gone back to read it again — I decided it was better to keep it with its golden glow in my memory, than to re-read it with older, pickier eyes.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  53. Becky Sharp, Harriet Wilson, Eleanor of Acquitaine, the Wife of Bath, Lady Caroline Lamb, Amber St. Claire, and Mata Hari — if that ain’t a bad girl convention, I don’t know what is. Imagine the time-travel talk-show. *g*
    Janga, I hope by now you’ve found ROYAL HARLOT in a store. Though publishers swear to release books on a certain date (Wench Pat has mentioned this earlier), they still seem to come out in dribbles and drabs, and without any logic. Very hard on readers and writers.
    Elizabeth, I haven’t seen the Rufus Sewell Charles II — was that a BBC series? There’s certainly enough material in that man’s love life to launch an entire mini-series. As for Amber — I remember finding that book in middle-school, in a dusty edition in the local library, and at the time, it was a very informative eye-opener. Though I haven’t gone back to read it again — I decided it was better to keep it with its golden glow in my memory, than to re-read it with older, pickier eyes.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  54. Becky Sharp, Harriet Wilson, Eleanor of Acquitaine, the Wife of Bath, Lady Caroline Lamb, Amber St. Claire, and Mata Hari — if that ain’t a bad girl convention, I don’t know what is. Imagine the time-travel talk-show. *g*
    Janga, I hope by now you’ve found ROYAL HARLOT in a store. Though publishers swear to release books on a certain date (Wench Pat has mentioned this earlier), they still seem to come out in dribbles and drabs, and without any logic. Very hard on readers and writers.
    Elizabeth, I haven’t seen the Rufus Sewell Charles II — was that a BBC series? There’s certainly enough material in that man’s love life to launch an entire mini-series. As for Amber — I remember finding that book in middle-school, in a dusty edition in the local library, and at the time, it was a very informative eye-opener. Though I haven’t gone back to read it again — I decided it was better to keep it with its golden glow in my memory, than to re-read it with older, pickier eyes.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  55. Becky Sharp, Harriet Wilson, Eleanor of Acquitaine, the Wife of Bath, Lady Caroline Lamb, Amber St. Claire, and Mata Hari — if that ain’t a bad girl convention, I don’t know what is. Imagine the time-travel talk-show. *g*
    Janga, I hope by now you’ve found ROYAL HARLOT in a store. Though publishers swear to release books on a certain date (Wench Pat has mentioned this earlier), they still seem to come out in dribbles and drabs, and without any logic. Very hard on readers and writers.
    Elizabeth, I haven’t seen the Rufus Sewell Charles II — was that a BBC series? There’s certainly enough material in that man’s love life to launch an entire mini-series. As for Amber — I remember finding that book in middle-school, in a dusty edition in the local library, and at the time, it was a very informative eye-opener. Though I haven’t gone back to read it again — I decided it was better to keep it with its golden glow in my memory, than to re-read it with older, pickier eyes.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  56. Jane O wrote: “one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.”
    It is indeed one of the nicer parts. Charles was a clever man himself, and he relished wit in his courtiers, whether male or female. Reading recounted conversations from that crowd is amazing — so many smart-mouthed people in one place! — though while some of the “wit” is so elevated, full of classical allusions that it’s hard to follow, there’s also other jests and pranks that seem pretty medieval (aka, infantile) now.
    Still, no matter how pretty a woman was, she had to be quick to hold Charles’s attention. I’ve always felt sorry for the poor queen — that would have been very tough company to be in if you didn’t speak English.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  57. Jane O wrote: “one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.”
    It is indeed one of the nicer parts. Charles was a clever man himself, and he relished wit in his courtiers, whether male or female. Reading recounted conversations from that crowd is amazing — so many smart-mouthed people in one place! — though while some of the “wit” is so elevated, full of classical allusions that it’s hard to follow, there’s also other jests and pranks that seem pretty medieval (aka, infantile) now.
    Still, no matter how pretty a woman was, she had to be quick to hold Charles’s attention. I’ve always felt sorry for the poor queen — that would have been very tough company to be in if you didn’t speak English.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  58. Jane O wrote: “one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.”
    It is indeed one of the nicer parts. Charles was a clever man himself, and he relished wit in his courtiers, whether male or female. Reading recounted conversations from that crowd is amazing — so many smart-mouthed people in one place! — though while some of the “wit” is so elevated, full of classical allusions that it’s hard to follow, there’s also other jests and pranks that seem pretty medieval (aka, infantile) now.
    Still, no matter how pretty a woman was, she had to be quick to hold Charles’s attention. I’ve always felt sorry for the poor queen — that would have been very tough company to be in if you didn’t speak English.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  59. Jane O wrote: “one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.”
    It is indeed one of the nicer parts. Charles was a clever man himself, and he relished wit in his courtiers, whether male or female. Reading recounted conversations from that crowd is amazing — so many smart-mouthed people in one place! — though while some of the “wit” is so elevated, full of classical allusions that it’s hard to follow, there’s also other jests and pranks that seem pretty medieval (aka, infantile) now.
    Still, no matter how pretty a woman was, she had to be quick to hold Charles’s attention. I’ve always felt sorry for the poor queen — that would have been very tough company to be in if you didn’t speak English.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  60. Jane O wrote: “one of the nice things about that period is that stupidity in women was not considered a virtue. Even, or maybe especially, by the king.”
    It is indeed one of the nicer parts. Charles was a clever man himself, and he relished wit in his courtiers, whether male or female. Reading recounted conversations from that crowd is amazing — so many smart-mouthed people in one place! — though while some of the “wit” is so elevated, full of classical allusions that it’s hard to follow, there’s also other jests and pranks that seem pretty medieval (aka, infantile) now.
    Still, no matter how pretty a woman was, she had to be quick to hold Charles’s attention. I’ve always felt sorry for the poor queen — that would have been very tough company to be in if you didn’t speak English.
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  61. Didn’t they all speak French? I always got the impression that French was the language of courts (and diplomacy) throughout the 17th and 18th century.

    Reply
  62. Didn’t they all speak French? I always got the impression that French was the language of courts (and diplomacy) throughout the 17th and 18th century.

    Reply
  63. Didn’t they all speak French? I always got the impression that French was the language of courts (and diplomacy) throughout the 17th and 18th century.

    Reply
  64. Didn’t they all speak French? I always got the impression that French was the language of courts (and diplomacy) throughout the 17th and 18th century.

    Reply
  65. Didn’t they all speak French? I always got the impression that French was the language of courts (and diplomacy) throughout the 17th and 18th century.

    Reply
  66. What a great blog, Susan/Miranda! I love when you deconstruct the various portraits. My copy of HARLOT is at the top of my TBR pile, and I look forward to furthering my acquaintance with Bad Barb.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  67. What a great blog, Susan/Miranda! I love when you deconstruct the various portraits. My copy of HARLOT is at the top of my TBR pile, and I look forward to furthering my acquaintance with Bad Barb.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  68. What a great blog, Susan/Miranda! I love when you deconstruct the various portraits. My copy of HARLOT is at the top of my TBR pile, and I look forward to furthering my acquaintance with Bad Barb.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  69. What a great blog, Susan/Miranda! I love when you deconstruct the various portraits. My copy of HARLOT is at the top of my TBR pile, and I look forward to furthering my acquaintance with Bad Barb.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  70. What a great blog, Susan/Miranda! I love when you deconstruct the various portraits. My copy of HARLOT is at the top of my TBR pile, and I look forward to furthering my acquaintance with Bad Barb.
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  71. PS: I think my favorite bad girl would be Jane Digby. She was wildly romantic and serially monogamous (though she DID get around!), and she found true love with a Bedouin chieftain twenty years her junior, IIRC. Someone should make a movie about her!
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  72. PS: I think my favorite bad girl would be Jane Digby. She was wildly romantic and serially monogamous (though she DID get around!), and she found true love with a Bedouin chieftain twenty years her junior, IIRC. Someone should make a movie about her!
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  73. PS: I think my favorite bad girl would be Jane Digby. She was wildly romantic and serially monogamous (though she DID get around!), and she found true love with a Bedouin chieftain twenty years her junior, IIRC. Someone should make a movie about her!
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  74. PS: I think my favorite bad girl would be Jane Digby. She was wildly romantic and serially monogamous (though she DID get around!), and she found true love with a Bedouin chieftain twenty years her junior, IIRC. Someone should make a movie about her!
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  75. PS: I think my favorite bad girl would be Jane Digby. She was wildly romantic and serially monogamous (though she DID get around!), and she found true love with a Bedouin chieftain twenty years her junior, IIRC. Someone should make a movie about her!
    Mary Jo

    Reply
  76. Mary Jo, I love Jane Digby too. I always loved the fact that she was Pamela Digby Churchill Hayward Harriman’s ancestress! It seems serial monogamy ran in the family! I would love to see a movie or indeed someone take her on in fiction.

    Reply
  77. Mary Jo, I love Jane Digby too. I always loved the fact that she was Pamela Digby Churchill Hayward Harriman’s ancestress! It seems serial monogamy ran in the family! I would love to see a movie or indeed someone take her on in fiction.

    Reply
  78. Mary Jo, I love Jane Digby too. I always loved the fact that she was Pamela Digby Churchill Hayward Harriman’s ancestress! It seems serial monogamy ran in the family! I would love to see a movie or indeed someone take her on in fiction.

    Reply
  79. Mary Jo, I love Jane Digby too. I always loved the fact that she was Pamela Digby Churchill Hayward Harriman’s ancestress! It seems serial monogamy ran in the family! I would love to see a movie or indeed someone take her on in fiction.

    Reply
  80. Mary Jo, I love Jane Digby too. I always loved the fact that she was Pamela Digby Churchill Hayward Harriman’s ancestress! It seems serial monogamy ran in the family! I would love to see a movie or indeed someone take her on in fiction.

    Reply
  81. Susan, the Charles II was done by the BBC and shown on A&E here. It’s available on DVD and quite good, particularly Shirley Henderson who plays Catherine of Bragranaz complete with bat wing hairdo.

    Reply
  82. Susan, the Charles II was done by the BBC and shown on A&E here. It’s available on DVD and quite good, particularly Shirley Henderson who plays Catherine of Bragranaz complete with bat wing hairdo.

    Reply
  83. Susan, the Charles II was done by the BBC and shown on A&E here. It’s available on DVD and quite good, particularly Shirley Henderson who plays Catherine of Bragranaz complete with bat wing hairdo.

    Reply
  84. Susan, the Charles II was done by the BBC and shown on A&E here. It’s available on DVD and quite good, particularly Shirley Henderson who plays Catherine of Bragranaz complete with bat wing hairdo.

    Reply
  85. Susan, the Charles II was done by the BBC and shown on A&E here. It’s available on DVD and quite good, particularly Shirley Henderson who plays Catherine of Bragranaz complete with bat wing hairdo.

    Reply
  86. Cathy — I agree, I think she’s beautiful, too, but those folks in Marketing didn’t agree, so off with her (cover) head! *g*
    Kalen — I’m sorry, no RWA for me this year. (I think Jo is going to be our sole Wenchly representative.) Please tell your friends I’m sorry to disappoint them. 🙁
    Ingrid — You’re right, most of the nobility did speak French. Charles’s mother, Henrietta Marie, was in fact a French princess, his first cousin is the French king Louis X1V, his sister married Louis’s sister, and one of his last mistresses was a Frenchwoman, Louise de Kerouelle — so Charles’s ties to France were definitely there.
    But France was always Englands greatest rival and often enemy, so that the English courtiers stuck stubbornly to English at this point, as much from patriotism as anything else. Charles’s queen, Catherine of Braganza, was Porteguese, and no one at the English court spoke her language, or for that matter, wanted to.
    Thanks for the compliment, Mary Jo! Art history and story-telling do seem to go hand in hand…
    Elizabeth, I’ll have to look for that BBC dvd!
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  87. Cathy — I agree, I think she’s beautiful, too, but those folks in Marketing didn’t agree, so off with her (cover) head! *g*
    Kalen — I’m sorry, no RWA for me this year. (I think Jo is going to be our sole Wenchly representative.) Please tell your friends I’m sorry to disappoint them. 🙁
    Ingrid — You’re right, most of the nobility did speak French. Charles’s mother, Henrietta Marie, was in fact a French princess, his first cousin is the French king Louis X1V, his sister married Louis’s sister, and one of his last mistresses was a Frenchwoman, Louise de Kerouelle — so Charles’s ties to France were definitely there.
    But France was always Englands greatest rival and often enemy, so that the English courtiers stuck stubbornly to English at this point, as much from patriotism as anything else. Charles’s queen, Catherine of Braganza, was Porteguese, and no one at the English court spoke her language, or for that matter, wanted to.
    Thanks for the compliment, Mary Jo! Art history and story-telling do seem to go hand in hand…
    Elizabeth, I’ll have to look for that BBC dvd!
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  88. Cathy — I agree, I think she’s beautiful, too, but those folks in Marketing didn’t agree, so off with her (cover) head! *g*
    Kalen — I’m sorry, no RWA for me this year. (I think Jo is going to be our sole Wenchly representative.) Please tell your friends I’m sorry to disappoint them. 🙁
    Ingrid — You’re right, most of the nobility did speak French. Charles’s mother, Henrietta Marie, was in fact a French princess, his first cousin is the French king Louis X1V, his sister married Louis’s sister, and one of his last mistresses was a Frenchwoman, Louise de Kerouelle — so Charles’s ties to France were definitely there.
    But France was always Englands greatest rival and often enemy, so that the English courtiers stuck stubbornly to English at this point, as much from patriotism as anything else. Charles’s queen, Catherine of Braganza, was Porteguese, and no one at the English court spoke her language, or for that matter, wanted to.
    Thanks for the compliment, Mary Jo! Art history and story-telling do seem to go hand in hand…
    Elizabeth, I’ll have to look for that BBC dvd!
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  89. Cathy — I agree, I think she’s beautiful, too, but those folks in Marketing didn’t agree, so off with her (cover) head! *g*
    Kalen — I’m sorry, no RWA for me this year. (I think Jo is going to be our sole Wenchly representative.) Please tell your friends I’m sorry to disappoint them. 🙁
    Ingrid — You’re right, most of the nobility did speak French. Charles’s mother, Henrietta Marie, was in fact a French princess, his first cousin is the French king Louis X1V, his sister married Louis’s sister, and one of his last mistresses was a Frenchwoman, Louise de Kerouelle — so Charles’s ties to France were definitely there.
    But France was always Englands greatest rival and often enemy, so that the English courtiers stuck stubbornly to English at this point, as much from patriotism as anything else. Charles’s queen, Catherine of Braganza, was Porteguese, and no one at the English court spoke her language, or for that matter, wanted to.
    Thanks for the compliment, Mary Jo! Art history and story-telling do seem to go hand in hand…
    Elizabeth, I’ll have to look for that BBC dvd!
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  90. Cathy — I agree, I think she’s beautiful, too, but those folks in Marketing didn’t agree, so off with her (cover) head! *g*
    Kalen — I’m sorry, no RWA for me this year. (I think Jo is going to be our sole Wenchly representative.) Please tell your friends I’m sorry to disappoint them. 🙁
    Ingrid — You’re right, most of the nobility did speak French. Charles’s mother, Henrietta Marie, was in fact a French princess, his first cousin is the French king Louis X1V, his sister married Louis’s sister, and one of his last mistresses was a Frenchwoman, Louise de Kerouelle — so Charles’s ties to France were definitely there.
    But France was always Englands greatest rival and often enemy, so that the English courtiers stuck stubbornly to English at this point, as much from patriotism as anything else. Charles’s queen, Catherine of Braganza, was Porteguese, and no one at the English court spoke her language, or for that matter, wanted to.
    Thanks for the compliment, Mary Jo! Art history and story-telling do seem to go hand in hand…
    Elizabeth, I’ll have to look for that BBC dvd!
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  91. Bummer. 🙁
    We’ll have to do our best to lure you out to San Franciso next year . . .
    The Rufus Sewell Charles II flick was great. They did a good job showing how complicated his life was, with a wife and various mistresses running around.

    Reply
  92. Bummer. 🙁
    We’ll have to do our best to lure you out to San Franciso next year . . .
    The Rufus Sewell Charles II flick was great. They did a good job showing how complicated his life was, with a wife and various mistresses running around.

    Reply
  93. Bummer. 🙁
    We’ll have to do our best to lure you out to San Franciso next year . . .
    The Rufus Sewell Charles II flick was great. They did a good job showing how complicated his life was, with a wife and various mistresses running around.

    Reply
  94. Bummer. 🙁
    We’ll have to do our best to lure you out to San Franciso next year . . .
    The Rufus Sewell Charles II flick was great. They did a good job showing how complicated his life was, with a wife and various mistresses running around.

    Reply
  95. Bummer. 🙁
    We’ll have to do our best to lure you out to San Franciso next year . . .
    The Rufus Sewell Charles II flick was great. They did a good job showing how complicated his life was, with a wife and various mistresses running around.

    Reply
  96. One of my favorite Charles II stories is about Rochester’s mock epitaph (one of his non-obscene bit of verse):
    Here lies our sovereign lord the king,
    Whose word no man relies on.
    He never said a foolish thing
    and never did a wise one.
    To which Charles replied that was because his words were his own, but his actions were his ministers’.
    I have always suspected that Charles was the only actually intelligent king England ever had. But then I’ll forgive a lot to someone who can make me laugh. I fear the reverse of that is that I doubt the intelligence of anyone without a sense of humor.

    Reply
  97. One of my favorite Charles II stories is about Rochester’s mock epitaph (one of his non-obscene bit of verse):
    Here lies our sovereign lord the king,
    Whose word no man relies on.
    He never said a foolish thing
    and never did a wise one.
    To which Charles replied that was because his words were his own, but his actions were his ministers’.
    I have always suspected that Charles was the only actually intelligent king England ever had. But then I’ll forgive a lot to someone who can make me laugh. I fear the reverse of that is that I doubt the intelligence of anyone without a sense of humor.

    Reply
  98. One of my favorite Charles II stories is about Rochester’s mock epitaph (one of his non-obscene bit of verse):
    Here lies our sovereign lord the king,
    Whose word no man relies on.
    He never said a foolish thing
    and never did a wise one.
    To which Charles replied that was because his words were his own, but his actions were his ministers’.
    I have always suspected that Charles was the only actually intelligent king England ever had. But then I’ll forgive a lot to someone who can make me laugh. I fear the reverse of that is that I doubt the intelligence of anyone without a sense of humor.

    Reply
  99. One of my favorite Charles II stories is about Rochester’s mock epitaph (one of his non-obscene bit of verse):
    Here lies our sovereign lord the king,
    Whose word no man relies on.
    He never said a foolish thing
    and never did a wise one.
    To which Charles replied that was because his words were his own, but his actions were his ministers’.
    I have always suspected that Charles was the only actually intelligent king England ever had. But then I’ll forgive a lot to someone who can make me laugh. I fear the reverse of that is that I doubt the intelligence of anyone without a sense of humor.

    Reply
  100. One of my favorite Charles II stories is about Rochester’s mock epitaph (one of his non-obscene bit of verse):
    Here lies our sovereign lord the king,
    Whose word no man relies on.
    He never said a foolish thing
    and never did a wise one.
    To which Charles replied that was because his words were his own, but his actions were his ministers’.
    I have always suspected that Charles was the only actually intelligent king England ever had. But then I’ll forgive a lot to someone who can make me laugh. I fear the reverse of that is that I doubt the intelligence of anyone without a sense of humor.

    Reply
  101. Wonderful blog, Susan.
    Someone mentioned Mae West. She’s the same type as Barbara,isn’t she?
    So many “bad girls” seem merely wild, and even self-destructive, so it’s great to celebrate the sharp career-minded ones like Barbara, Harriet, and Mae. Sometimes having unconventional morals was the only wise career plan.
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  102. Wonderful blog, Susan.
    Someone mentioned Mae West. She’s the same type as Barbara,isn’t she?
    So many “bad girls” seem merely wild, and even self-destructive, so it’s great to celebrate the sharp career-minded ones like Barbara, Harriet, and Mae. Sometimes having unconventional morals was the only wise career plan.
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  103. Wonderful blog, Susan.
    Someone mentioned Mae West. She’s the same type as Barbara,isn’t she?
    So many “bad girls” seem merely wild, and even self-destructive, so it’s great to celebrate the sharp career-minded ones like Barbara, Harriet, and Mae. Sometimes having unconventional morals was the only wise career plan.
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  104. Wonderful blog, Susan.
    Someone mentioned Mae West. She’s the same type as Barbara,isn’t she?
    So many “bad girls” seem merely wild, and even self-destructive, so it’s great to celebrate the sharp career-minded ones like Barbara, Harriet, and Mae. Sometimes having unconventional morals was the only wise career plan.
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  105. Wonderful blog, Susan.
    Someone mentioned Mae West. She’s the same type as Barbara,isn’t she?
    So many “bad girls” seem merely wild, and even self-destructive, so it’s great to celebrate the sharp career-minded ones like Barbara, Harriet, and Mae. Sometimes having unconventional morals was the only wise career plan.
    Jo 🙂

    Reply
  106. I loved reading the blog about a smart, ambitious real woman of the past. I get tired of reading comments about how it’s not historically accurate for a woman to try to control her own destiny. Women aren’t always passive vessels, they just had to know how to make the most of the more limited avenues open to them. Barbara is clearly one of those characters who can reflect the viewer as much as herself, and the various ways she is portrayed in fact and fiction attests to that. I eagerly look forward to reading the book.

    Reply
  107. I loved reading the blog about a smart, ambitious real woman of the past. I get tired of reading comments about how it’s not historically accurate for a woman to try to control her own destiny. Women aren’t always passive vessels, they just had to know how to make the most of the more limited avenues open to them. Barbara is clearly one of those characters who can reflect the viewer as much as herself, and the various ways she is portrayed in fact and fiction attests to that. I eagerly look forward to reading the book.

    Reply
  108. I loved reading the blog about a smart, ambitious real woman of the past. I get tired of reading comments about how it’s not historically accurate for a woman to try to control her own destiny. Women aren’t always passive vessels, they just had to know how to make the most of the more limited avenues open to them. Barbara is clearly one of those characters who can reflect the viewer as much as herself, and the various ways she is portrayed in fact and fiction attests to that. I eagerly look forward to reading the book.

    Reply
  109. I loved reading the blog about a smart, ambitious real woman of the past. I get tired of reading comments about how it’s not historically accurate for a woman to try to control her own destiny. Women aren’t always passive vessels, they just had to know how to make the most of the more limited avenues open to them. Barbara is clearly one of those characters who can reflect the viewer as much as herself, and the various ways she is portrayed in fact and fiction attests to that. I eagerly look forward to reading the book.

    Reply
  110. I loved reading the blog about a smart, ambitious real woman of the past. I get tired of reading comments about how it’s not historically accurate for a woman to try to control her own destiny. Women aren’t always passive vessels, they just had to know how to make the most of the more limited avenues open to them. Barbara is clearly one of those characters who can reflect the viewer as much as herself, and the various ways she is portrayed in fact and fiction attests to that. I eagerly look forward to reading the book.

    Reply
  111. Favorite fictional Bad Girl: Cat Woman.
    Congratulations on birthing what looks to be a truly fascinating read!

    Reply
  112. Favorite fictional Bad Girl: Cat Woman.
    Congratulations on birthing what looks to be a truly fascinating read!

    Reply
  113. Favorite fictional Bad Girl: Cat Woman.
    Congratulations on birthing what looks to be a truly fascinating read!

    Reply
  114. Favorite fictional Bad Girl: Cat Woman.
    Congratulations on birthing what looks to be a truly fascinating read!

    Reply
  115. Favorite fictional Bad Girl: Cat Woman.
    Congratulations on birthing what looks to be a truly fascinating read!

    Reply
  116. Nina P — Many thanks for your praise of my prose *g* (Sorry I didn’t reply earlier, but AOL often juggles my Typepad replies out of order.)
    Jane O — Ah, I see you have a place in my Charles Fan-Club. I don’t know if it was his horrific early reign in exile that kept him aware of his own mortality and from taking himself too seriously (the fatal flaw of many rulers, kings, emporers, or presidents), but his appeal is definitely still there over the centuries.
    As for Rochester — I like him, too, poor self-destructive genius that he was. He was great buddies with Nell Gwyn (another quick-witted woman), the heroine of my current WIP, and the two of them (along with Charles) are kicking up quite a show on my keyboard this summer. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  117. Nina P — Many thanks for your praise of my prose *g* (Sorry I didn’t reply earlier, but AOL often juggles my Typepad replies out of order.)
    Jane O — Ah, I see you have a place in my Charles Fan-Club. I don’t know if it was his horrific early reign in exile that kept him aware of his own mortality and from taking himself too seriously (the fatal flaw of many rulers, kings, emporers, or presidents), but his appeal is definitely still there over the centuries.
    As for Rochester — I like him, too, poor self-destructive genius that he was. He was great buddies with Nell Gwyn (another quick-witted woman), the heroine of my current WIP, and the two of them (along with Charles) are kicking up quite a show on my keyboard this summer. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  118. Nina P — Many thanks for your praise of my prose *g* (Sorry I didn’t reply earlier, but AOL often juggles my Typepad replies out of order.)
    Jane O — Ah, I see you have a place in my Charles Fan-Club. I don’t know if it was his horrific early reign in exile that kept him aware of his own mortality and from taking himself too seriously (the fatal flaw of many rulers, kings, emporers, or presidents), but his appeal is definitely still there over the centuries.
    As for Rochester — I like him, too, poor self-destructive genius that he was. He was great buddies with Nell Gwyn (another quick-witted woman), the heroine of my current WIP, and the two of them (along with Charles) are kicking up quite a show on my keyboard this summer. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  119. Nina P — Many thanks for your praise of my prose *g* (Sorry I didn’t reply earlier, but AOL often juggles my Typepad replies out of order.)
    Jane O — Ah, I see you have a place in my Charles Fan-Club. I don’t know if it was his horrific early reign in exile that kept him aware of his own mortality and from taking himself too seriously (the fatal flaw of many rulers, kings, emporers, or presidents), but his appeal is definitely still there over the centuries.
    As for Rochester — I like him, too, poor self-destructive genius that he was. He was great buddies with Nell Gwyn (another quick-witted woman), the heroine of my current WIP, and the two of them (along with Charles) are kicking up quite a show on my keyboard this summer. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  120. Nina P — Many thanks for your praise of my prose *g* (Sorry I didn’t reply earlier, but AOL often juggles my Typepad replies out of order.)
    Jane O — Ah, I see you have a place in my Charles Fan-Club. I don’t know if it was his horrific early reign in exile that kept him aware of his own mortality and from taking himself too seriously (the fatal flaw of many rulers, kings, emporers, or presidents), but his appeal is definitely still there over the centuries.
    As for Rochester — I like him, too, poor self-destructive genius that he was. He was great buddies with Nell Gwyn (another quick-witted woman), the heroine of my current WIP, and the two of them (along with Charles) are kicking up quite a show on my keyboard this summer. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  121. The problem with so many fictional bad girls is that they come to a Bad End. Not so with Barbara. Becky Sharp is one of my favorites, too. Oh, and Cruella d’Evil.
    Thank you, Susan/Miranda for explaining the hidden meanings in the portraits. It does add to the enjoyment of these luscious paintings!
    Now I’m going to go back and read ROYAL HARLOT again!

    Reply
  122. The problem with so many fictional bad girls is that they come to a Bad End. Not so with Barbara. Becky Sharp is one of my favorites, too. Oh, and Cruella d’Evil.
    Thank you, Susan/Miranda for explaining the hidden meanings in the portraits. It does add to the enjoyment of these luscious paintings!
    Now I’m going to go back and read ROYAL HARLOT again!

    Reply
  123. The problem with so many fictional bad girls is that they come to a Bad End. Not so with Barbara. Becky Sharp is one of my favorites, too. Oh, and Cruella d’Evil.
    Thank you, Susan/Miranda for explaining the hidden meanings in the portraits. It does add to the enjoyment of these luscious paintings!
    Now I’m going to go back and read ROYAL HARLOT again!

    Reply
  124. The problem with so many fictional bad girls is that they come to a Bad End. Not so with Barbara. Becky Sharp is one of my favorites, too. Oh, and Cruella d’Evil.
    Thank you, Susan/Miranda for explaining the hidden meanings in the portraits. It does add to the enjoyment of these luscious paintings!
    Now I’m going to go back and read ROYAL HARLOT again!

    Reply
  125. The problem with so many fictional bad girls is that they come to a Bad End. Not so with Barbara. Becky Sharp is one of my favorites, too. Oh, and Cruella d’Evil.
    Thank you, Susan/Miranda for explaining the hidden meanings in the portraits. It does add to the enjoyment of these luscious paintings!
    Now I’m going to go back and read ROYAL HARLOT again!

    Reply
  126. I can’t think of a favorite bad girl heroine, unfortunately. I tended to like bad boys who were potentially reformable instead. Like Dain in Lord of Scoundrels. 🙂
    And I have to agree that Barbara’s eyes do look more stoned than seductive.

    Reply
  127. I can’t think of a favorite bad girl heroine, unfortunately. I tended to like bad boys who were potentially reformable instead. Like Dain in Lord of Scoundrels. 🙂
    And I have to agree that Barbara’s eyes do look more stoned than seductive.

    Reply
  128. I can’t think of a favorite bad girl heroine, unfortunately. I tended to like bad boys who were potentially reformable instead. Like Dain in Lord of Scoundrels. 🙂
    And I have to agree that Barbara’s eyes do look more stoned than seductive.

    Reply
  129. I can’t think of a favorite bad girl heroine, unfortunately. I tended to like bad boys who were potentially reformable instead. Like Dain in Lord of Scoundrels. 🙂
    And I have to agree that Barbara’s eyes do look more stoned than seductive.

    Reply
  130. I can’t think of a favorite bad girl heroine, unfortunately. I tended to like bad boys who were potentially reformable instead. Like Dain in Lord of Scoundrels. 🙂
    And I have to agree that Barbara’s eyes do look more stoned than seductive.

    Reply
  131. I’m afraid I agree with Melissa. Barbara’s eyes look a little toasted to me, but so do the King’s, if you look back at his picture.
    But I’m still looking forward to reading ROYAL HARLOT. Sounds like great fun.
    Interesting how most of the bad girls mentioned here are/were brunettes, isn’t it?

    Reply
  132. I’m afraid I agree with Melissa. Barbara’s eyes look a little toasted to me, but so do the King’s, if you look back at his picture.
    But I’m still looking forward to reading ROYAL HARLOT. Sounds like great fun.
    Interesting how most of the bad girls mentioned here are/were brunettes, isn’t it?

    Reply
  133. I’m afraid I agree with Melissa. Barbara’s eyes look a little toasted to me, but so do the King’s, if you look back at his picture.
    But I’m still looking forward to reading ROYAL HARLOT. Sounds like great fun.
    Interesting how most of the bad girls mentioned here are/were brunettes, isn’t it?

    Reply
  134. I’m afraid I agree with Melissa. Barbara’s eyes look a little toasted to me, but so do the King’s, if you look back at his picture.
    But I’m still looking forward to reading ROYAL HARLOT. Sounds like great fun.
    Interesting how most of the bad girls mentioned here are/were brunettes, isn’t it?

    Reply
  135. I’m afraid I agree with Melissa. Barbara’s eyes look a little toasted to me, but so do the King’s, if you look back at his picture.
    But I’m still looking forward to reading ROYAL HARLOT. Sounds like great fun.
    Interesting how most of the bad girls mentioned here are/were brunettes, isn’t it?

    Reply
  136. Jo, I LOVE Mae West. Definitely she and Barb would have had a LOT in common!
    Jane, Yes, let’s toss CatWoman into the mix, and Loretta’s Cruella deVille. Just because they’re drawn doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a place in the Bad Girl Hall of Fame.
    Just a Coming Attraction, too: Loretta is going to be interviewing me about ROYAL HARLOT later this month, and I promise you we’ll have LOTS more to discuss about this fascinating time period. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  137. Jo, I LOVE Mae West. Definitely she and Barb would have had a LOT in common!
    Jane, Yes, let’s toss CatWoman into the mix, and Loretta’s Cruella deVille. Just because they’re drawn doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a place in the Bad Girl Hall of Fame.
    Just a Coming Attraction, too: Loretta is going to be interviewing me about ROYAL HARLOT later this month, and I promise you we’ll have LOTS more to discuss about this fascinating time period. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  138. Jo, I LOVE Mae West. Definitely she and Barb would have had a LOT in common!
    Jane, Yes, let’s toss CatWoman into the mix, and Loretta’s Cruella deVille. Just because they’re drawn doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a place in the Bad Girl Hall of Fame.
    Just a Coming Attraction, too: Loretta is going to be interviewing me about ROYAL HARLOT later this month, and I promise you we’ll have LOTS more to discuss about this fascinating time period. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  139. Jo, I LOVE Mae West. Definitely she and Barb would have had a LOT in common!
    Jane, Yes, let’s toss CatWoman into the mix, and Loretta’s Cruella deVille. Just because they’re drawn doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a place in the Bad Girl Hall of Fame.
    Just a Coming Attraction, too: Loretta is going to be interviewing me about ROYAL HARLOT later this month, and I promise you we’ll have LOTS more to discuss about this fascinating time period. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  140. Jo, I LOVE Mae West. Definitely she and Barb would have had a LOT in common!
    Jane, Yes, let’s toss CatWoman into the mix, and Loretta’s Cruella deVille. Just because they’re drawn doesn’t mean they don’t deserve a place in the Bad Girl Hall of Fame.
    Just a Coming Attraction, too: Loretta is going to be interviewing me about ROYAL HARLOT later this month, and I promise you we’ll have LOTS more to discuss about this fascinating time period. *g*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  141. Here’s a shout out to my favorite Bad Girl, Mary Magdalene–although her “bad girlness” is probably more myth than truth. . .
    I love the idea of being a Historical Bad Girl. Especially since I have the jowls, double chin, long nose, straight eyebrows and–er–bountiful flesh of Bad Barb and all those other Historical Portrait types. (Don’t know about the druggy eyes though.)
    On the other hand, there’s probably no shaking one’s basic disposition. I probably would have been a Quaker or a Methodist in a bonnet–a dull but Loving Helpmeet to some Upright Clergyman– instead of a glamorous Bad Girl.
    Can’t wait to read the book, Susan/Miranda!

    Reply
  142. Here’s a shout out to my favorite Bad Girl, Mary Magdalene–although her “bad girlness” is probably more myth than truth. . .
    I love the idea of being a Historical Bad Girl. Especially since I have the jowls, double chin, long nose, straight eyebrows and–er–bountiful flesh of Bad Barb and all those other Historical Portrait types. (Don’t know about the druggy eyes though.)
    On the other hand, there’s probably no shaking one’s basic disposition. I probably would have been a Quaker or a Methodist in a bonnet–a dull but Loving Helpmeet to some Upright Clergyman– instead of a glamorous Bad Girl.
    Can’t wait to read the book, Susan/Miranda!

    Reply
  143. Here’s a shout out to my favorite Bad Girl, Mary Magdalene–although her “bad girlness” is probably more myth than truth. . .
    I love the idea of being a Historical Bad Girl. Especially since I have the jowls, double chin, long nose, straight eyebrows and–er–bountiful flesh of Bad Barb and all those other Historical Portrait types. (Don’t know about the druggy eyes though.)
    On the other hand, there’s probably no shaking one’s basic disposition. I probably would have been a Quaker or a Methodist in a bonnet–a dull but Loving Helpmeet to some Upright Clergyman– instead of a glamorous Bad Girl.
    Can’t wait to read the book, Susan/Miranda!

    Reply
  144. Here’s a shout out to my favorite Bad Girl, Mary Magdalene–although her “bad girlness” is probably more myth than truth. . .
    I love the idea of being a Historical Bad Girl. Especially since I have the jowls, double chin, long nose, straight eyebrows and–er–bountiful flesh of Bad Barb and all those other Historical Portrait types. (Don’t know about the druggy eyes though.)
    On the other hand, there’s probably no shaking one’s basic disposition. I probably would have been a Quaker or a Methodist in a bonnet–a dull but Loving Helpmeet to some Upright Clergyman– instead of a glamorous Bad Girl.
    Can’t wait to read the book, Susan/Miranda!

    Reply
  145. Here’s a shout out to my favorite Bad Girl, Mary Magdalene–although her “bad girlness” is probably more myth than truth. . .
    I love the idea of being a Historical Bad Girl. Especially since I have the jowls, double chin, long nose, straight eyebrows and–er–bountiful flesh of Bad Barb and all those other Historical Portrait types. (Don’t know about the druggy eyes though.)
    On the other hand, there’s probably no shaking one’s basic disposition. I probably would have been a Quaker or a Methodist in a bonnet–a dull but Loving Helpmeet to some Upright Clergyman– instead of a glamorous Bad Girl.
    Can’t wait to read the book, Susan/Miranda!

    Reply
  146. What an interesting time period you’ve chosen. I don’t know much about this period of English history. I look forward to reading this book!

    Reply
  147. What an interesting time period you’ve chosen. I don’t know much about this period of English history. I look forward to reading this book!

    Reply
  148. What an interesting time period you’ve chosen. I don’t know much about this period of English history. I look forward to reading this book!

    Reply
  149. What an interesting time period you’ve chosen. I don’t know much about this period of English history. I look forward to reading this book!

    Reply
  150. What an interesting time period you’ve chosen. I don’t know much about this period of English history. I look forward to reading this book!

    Reply
  151. Hey, good choice for the cover… Sure that 1660 beauty aren’t 2007 one ! I can hardly wait to get a copy to read it !!!!
    Love from JOELLE 😉

    Reply
  152. Hey, good choice for the cover… Sure that 1660 beauty aren’t 2007 one ! I can hardly wait to get a copy to read it !!!!
    Love from JOELLE 😉

    Reply
  153. Hey, good choice for the cover… Sure that 1660 beauty aren’t 2007 one ! I can hardly wait to get a copy to read it !!!!
    Love from JOELLE 😉

    Reply
  154. Hey, good choice for the cover… Sure that 1660 beauty aren’t 2007 one ! I can hardly wait to get a copy to read it !!!!
    Love from JOELLE 😉

    Reply
  155. Hey, good choice for the cover… Sure that 1660 beauty aren’t 2007 one ! I can hardly wait to get a copy to read it !!!!
    Love from JOELLE 😉

    Reply
  156. What a fabulous post and the book sounds *wonderful*–I remember first reading about Barbara Castlemaine when I wrote a paper on Nell Gwynne in 8th grade. I love ‘bad girl” heroines. I always thought Milady di Winter in “The THree Musketeers’ was much more interesting than Constance. And Barbara Childe is one of my favorite Georgette Heyer heroines.

    Reply
  157. What a fabulous post and the book sounds *wonderful*–I remember first reading about Barbara Castlemaine when I wrote a paper on Nell Gwynne in 8th grade. I love ‘bad girl” heroines. I always thought Milady di Winter in “The THree Musketeers’ was much more interesting than Constance. And Barbara Childe is one of my favorite Georgette Heyer heroines.

    Reply
  158. What a fabulous post and the book sounds *wonderful*–I remember first reading about Barbara Castlemaine when I wrote a paper on Nell Gwynne in 8th grade. I love ‘bad girl” heroines. I always thought Milady di Winter in “The THree Musketeers’ was much more interesting than Constance. And Barbara Childe is one of my favorite Georgette Heyer heroines.

    Reply
  159. What a fabulous post and the book sounds *wonderful*–I remember first reading about Barbara Castlemaine when I wrote a paper on Nell Gwynne in 8th grade. I love ‘bad girl” heroines. I always thought Milady di Winter in “The THree Musketeers’ was much more interesting than Constance. And Barbara Childe is one of my favorite Georgette Heyer heroines.

    Reply
  160. What a fabulous post and the book sounds *wonderful*–I remember first reading about Barbara Castlemaine when I wrote a paper on Nell Gwynne in 8th grade. I love ‘bad girl” heroines. I always thought Milady di Winter in “The THree Musketeers’ was much more interesting than Constance. And Barbara Childe is one of my favorite Georgette Heyer heroines.

    Reply
  161. I have to agree with Elizabeth K., Amber in FOREVER AMBER would be my favorite bad girl. She was the first bad girl I read at the age of 12 and now, 26+ years later she is still my favorite. I would love to get a hold of that book and reread it.

    Reply
  162. I have to agree with Elizabeth K., Amber in FOREVER AMBER would be my favorite bad girl. She was the first bad girl I read at the age of 12 and now, 26+ years later she is still my favorite. I would love to get a hold of that book and reread it.

    Reply
  163. I have to agree with Elizabeth K., Amber in FOREVER AMBER would be my favorite bad girl. She was the first bad girl I read at the age of 12 and now, 26+ years later she is still my favorite. I would love to get a hold of that book and reread it.

    Reply
  164. I have to agree with Elizabeth K., Amber in FOREVER AMBER would be my favorite bad girl. She was the first bad girl I read at the age of 12 and now, 26+ years later she is still my favorite. I would love to get a hold of that book and reread it.

    Reply
  165. I have to agree with Elizabeth K., Amber in FOREVER AMBER would be my favorite bad girl. She was the first bad girl I read at the age of 12 and now, 26+ years later she is still my favorite. I would love to get a hold of that book and reread it.

    Reply
  166. Kalen, San Francisco for RWA next year is a real possibility. My mother’s family is originally from Marin County (nobody famous, but back to the ’49ers)and I’d like to go back to look up old family history. The conference next summer may be my big excuse/rationlization. 🙂
    Bonnie, Part of the fun of writing about the Restoration is that it’s new to most readers. It can be a real challenge as a writer to find something fresh to write in a book set in the English Regency!
    Tracy, You beat me to Nell Gwyn with your 8th grade paper (though I wonder what your teacher thought of her as a “subject”!*g*) She’s the heroine of my next novel, due out next summer. Just like Barbara, she’s hard to resist…
    Bluecat, I STILL remember Amber, too, plus the movie version with Linda Darnell, which was all Hot Stuff for me to discover in middle school. There’s a new edition of the book out now, a big, elegant trade paperback that’s trying hard to make Amber upscale — but WE love her for the hussy she was.*G*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  167. Kalen, San Francisco for RWA next year is a real possibility. My mother’s family is originally from Marin County (nobody famous, but back to the ’49ers)and I’d like to go back to look up old family history. The conference next summer may be my big excuse/rationlization. 🙂
    Bonnie, Part of the fun of writing about the Restoration is that it’s new to most readers. It can be a real challenge as a writer to find something fresh to write in a book set in the English Regency!
    Tracy, You beat me to Nell Gwyn with your 8th grade paper (though I wonder what your teacher thought of her as a “subject”!*g*) She’s the heroine of my next novel, due out next summer. Just like Barbara, she’s hard to resist…
    Bluecat, I STILL remember Amber, too, plus the movie version with Linda Darnell, which was all Hot Stuff for me to discover in middle school. There’s a new edition of the book out now, a big, elegant trade paperback that’s trying hard to make Amber upscale — but WE love her for the hussy she was.*G*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  168. Kalen, San Francisco for RWA next year is a real possibility. My mother’s family is originally from Marin County (nobody famous, but back to the ’49ers)and I’d like to go back to look up old family history. The conference next summer may be my big excuse/rationlization. 🙂
    Bonnie, Part of the fun of writing about the Restoration is that it’s new to most readers. It can be a real challenge as a writer to find something fresh to write in a book set in the English Regency!
    Tracy, You beat me to Nell Gwyn with your 8th grade paper (though I wonder what your teacher thought of her as a “subject”!*g*) She’s the heroine of my next novel, due out next summer. Just like Barbara, she’s hard to resist…
    Bluecat, I STILL remember Amber, too, plus the movie version with Linda Darnell, which was all Hot Stuff for me to discover in middle school. There’s a new edition of the book out now, a big, elegant trade paperback that’s trying hard to make Amber upscale — but WE love her for the hussy she was.*G*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  169. Kalen, San Francisco for RWA next year is a real possibility. My mother’s family is originally from Marin County (nobody famous, but back to the ’49ers)and I’d like to go back to look up old family history. The conference next summer may be my big excuse/rationlization. 🙂
    Bonnie, Part of the fun of writing about the Restoration is that it’s new to most readers. It can be a real challenge as a writer to find something fresh to write in a book set in the English Regency!
    Tracy, You beat me to Nell Gwyn with your 8th grade paper (though I wonder what your teacher thought of her as a “subject”!*g*) She’s the heroine of my next novel, due out next summer. Just like Barbara, she’s hard to resist…
    Bluecat, I STILL remember Amber, too, plus the movie version with Linda Darnell, which was all Hot Stuff for me to discover in middle school. There’s a new edition of the book out now, a big, elegant trade paperback that’s trying hard to make Amber upscale — but WE love her for the hussy she was.*G*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  170. Kalen, San Francisco for RWA next year is a real possibility. My mother’s family is originally from Marin County (nobody famous, but back to the ’49ers)and I’d like to go back to look up old family history. The conference next summer may be my big excuse/rationlization. 🙂
    Bonnie, Part of the fun of writing about the Restoration is that it’s new to most readers. It can be a real challenge as a writer to find something fresh to write in a book set in the English Regency!
    Tracy, You beat me to Nell Gwyn with your 8th grade paper (though I wonder what your teacher thought of her as a “subject”!*g*) She’s the heroine of my next novel, due out next summer. Just like Barbara, she’s hard to resist…
    Bluecat, I STILL remember Amber, too, plus the movie version with Linda Darnell, which was all Hot Stuff for me to discover in middle school. There’s a new edition of the book out now, a big, elegant trade paperback that’s trying hard to make Amber upscale — but WE love her for the hussy she was.*G*
    Susan/Miranda

    Reply
  171. Hope I’m not too late for a comment- my favorite “bad girl” is Jessica Rabbit. She’s not really bad; she’s only drawn that way. 😉

    Reply
  172. Hope I’m not too late for a comment- my favorite “bad girl” is Jessica Rabbit. She’s not really bad; she’s only drawn that way. 😉

    Reply
  173. Hope I’m not too late for a comment- my favorite “bad girl” is Jessica Rabbit. She’s not really bad; she’s only drawn that way. 😉

    Reply
  174. Hope I’m not too late for a comment- my favorite “bad girl” is Jessica Rabbit. She’s not really bad; she’s only drawn that way. 😉

    Reply
  175. Hope I’m not too late for a comment- my favorite “bad girl” is Jessica Rabbit. She’s not really bad; she’s only drawn that way. 😉

    Reply
  176. Ah, I would have liked to know that you were giving away “The Royal Harlot”. But at the moment, I keep my computer for what is absolutely necessary. I have it on for 5 minutes and it conks out: either freezing or having the screen go blank.
    I honestly can’t say that I enjoyed Sarah Churchill’s book in the true meaning of the word. It was heart-wrenching to experience the deaths of so many children both Sarah’s and especially Anne’s as well as all the others who were ravaged by diseases. While I was reading it, I remembered a play I saw on TV while I lived in Germany during the 1970s. I was trying to remember the plot. I think it concerned the Marshams and their view of Sarah’s hold on Anne. Thirty-odd years ago is a long time to try to remember a plot. I can’t remember if John Churchill was even in the play. Knowing myself, I’ve probably got the title written down somewhere. But it’s certainly amazing what people could do to obtain favors. I suppose in many quarters that is still the same. The true story of Anne and the Churchills sounds no different than that of many modern books or gossip magazines. How heart-breaking it must have been for Anne to go through all these pregnancies–I think it was 13 or so–and have not one of them survive to maturity.
    But I definitely found it interesting and well-written. I was just trying to figure out how it works with the females being allowed to carry on the title of duchess in their own right. Would their husbands then become dukes?
    Not being allowed into Blenheim Palace was one of the biggest disappointments of the coach trip I took with a group from Germany for a 3-week tour from London to Culloden Field. I can’t remember why we couldn’t go through Blenheim; perhaps because of some restoration project. That was, I think, in 1971 or 1972.
    We were also to see Balmoral Castle but one of the Royals was in residence so we hiked up a hill instead.
    I’m now waiting for Castlemaine’s book. I’ve got a hold on the book when it’s processed by the library.

    Reply
  177. Ah, I would have liked to know that you were giving away “The Royal Harlot”. But at the moment, I keep my computer for what is absolutely necessary. I have it on for 5 minutes and it conks out: either freezing or having the screen go blank.
    I honestly can’t say that I enjoyed Sarah Churchill’s book in the true meaning of the word. It was heart-wrenching to experience the deaths of so many children both Sarah’s and especially Anne’s as well as all the others who were ravaged by diseases. While I was reading it, I remembered a play I saw on TV while I lived in Germany during the 1970s. I was trying to remember the plot. I think it concerned the Marshams and their view of Sarah’s hold on Anne. Thirty-odd years ago is a long time to try to remember a plot. I can’t remember if John Churchill was even in the play. Knowing myself, I’ve probably got the title written down somewhere. But it’s certainly amazing what people could do to obtain favors. I suppose in many quarters that is still the same. The true story of Anne and the Churchills sounds no different than that of many modern books or gossip magazines. How heart-breaking it must have been for Anne to go through all these pregnancies–I think it was 13 or so–and have not one of them survive to maturity.
    But I definitely found it interesting and well-written. I was just trying to figure out how it works with the females being allowed to carry on the title of duchess in their own right. Would their husbands then become dukes?
    Not being allowed into Blenheim Palace was one of the biggest disappointments of the coach trip I took with a group from Germany for a 3-week tour from London to Culloden Field. I can’t remember why we couldn’t go through Blenheim; perhaps because of some restoration project. That was, I think, in 1971 or 1972.
    We were also to see Balmoral Castle but one of the Royals was in residence so we hiked up a hill instead.
    I’m now waiting for Castlemaine’s book. I’ve got a hold on the book when it’s processed by the library.

    Reply
  178. Ah, I would have liked to know that you were giving away “The Royal Harlot”. But at the moment, I keep my computer for what is absolutely necessary. I have it on for 5 minutes and it conks out: either freezing or having the screen go blank.
    I honestly can’t say that I enjoyed Sarah Churchill’s book in the true meaning of the word. It was heart-wrenching to experience the deaths of so many children both Sarah’s and especially Anne’s as well as all the others who were ravaged by diseases. While I was reading it, I remembered a play I saw on TV while I lived in Germany during the 1970s. I was trying to remember the plot. I think it concerned the Marshams and their view of Sarah’s hold on Anne. Thirty-odd years ago is a long time to try to remember a plot. I can’t remember if John Churchill was even in the play. Knowing myself, I’ve probably got the title written down somewhere. But it’s certainly amazing what people could do to obtain favors. I suppose in many quarters that is still the same. The true story of Anne and the Churchills sounds no different than that of many modern books or gossip magazines. How heart-breaking it must have been for Anne to go through all these pregnancies–I think it was 13 or so–and have not one of them survive to maturity.
    But I definitely found it interesting and well-written. I was just trying to figure out how it works with the females being allowed to carry on the title of duchess in their own right. Would their husbands then become dukes?
    Not being allowed into Blenheim Palace was one of the biggest disappointments of the coach trip I took with a group from Germany for a 3-week tour from London to Culloden Field. I can’t remember why we couldn’t go through Blenheim; perhaps because of some restoration project. That was, I think, in 1971 or 1972.
    We were also to see Balmoral Castle but one of the Royals was in residence so we hiked up a hill instead.
    I’m now waiting for Castlemaine’s book. I’ve got a hold on the book when it’s processed by the library.

    Reply
  179. Ah, I would have liked to know that you were giving away “The Royal Harlot”. But at the moment, I keep my computer for what is absolutely necessary. I have it on for 5 minutes and it conks out: either freezing or having the screen go blank.
    I honestly can’t say that I enjoyed Sarah Churchill’s book in the true meaning of the word. It was heart-wrenching to experience the deaths of so many children both Sarah’s and especially Anne’s as well as all the others who were ravaged by diseases. While I was reading it, I remembered a play I saw on TV while I lived in Germany during the 1970s. I was trying to remember the plot. I think it concerned the Marshams and their view of Sarah’s hold on Anne. Thirty-odd years ago is a long time to try to remember a plot. I can’t remember if John Churchill was even in the play. Knowing myself, I’ve probably got the title written down somewhere. But it’s certainly amazing what people could do to obtain favors. I suppose in many quarters that is still the same. The true story of Anne and the Churchills sounds no different than that of many modern books or gossip magazines. How heart-breaking it must have been for Anne to go through all these pregnancies–I think it was 13 or so–and have not one of them survive to maturity.
    But I definitely found it interesting and well-written. I was just trying to figure out how it works with the females being allowed to carry on the title of duchess in their own right. Would their husbands then become dukes?
    Not being allowed into Blenheim Palace was one of the biggest disappointments of the coach trip I took with a group from Germany for a 3-week tour from London to Culloden Field. I can’t remember why we couldn’t go through Blenheim; perhaps because of some restoration project. That was, I think, in 1971 or 1972.
    We were also to see Balmoral Castle but one of the Royals was in residence so we hiked up a hill instead.
    I’m now waiting for Castlemaine’s book. I’ve got a hold on the book when it’s processed by the library.

    Reply
  180. Ah, I would have liked to know that you were giving away “The Royal Harlot”. But at the moment, I keep my computer for what is absolutely necessary. I have it on for 5 minutes and it conks out: either freezing or having the screen go blank.
    I honestly can’t say that I enjoyed Sarah Churchill’s book in the true meaning of the word. It was heart-wrenching to experience the deaths of so many children both Sarah’s and especially Anne’s as well as all the others who were ravaged by diseases. While I was reading it, I remembered a play I saw on TV while I lived in Germany during the 1970s. I was trying to remember the plot. I think it concerned the Marshams and their view of Sarah’s hold on Anne. Thirty-odd years ago is a long time to try to remember a plot. I can’t remember if John Churchill was even in the play. Knowing myself, I’ve probably got the title written down somewhere. But it’s certainly amazing what people could do to obtain favors. I suppose in many quarters that is still the same. The true story of Anne and the Churchills sounds no different than that of many modern books or gossip magazines. How heart-breaking it must have been for Anne to go through all these pregnancies–I think it was 13 or so–and have not one of them survive to maturity.
    But I definitely found it interesting and well-written. I was just trying to figure out how it works with the females being allowed to carry on the title of duchess in their own right. Would their husbands then become dukes?
    Not being allowed into Blenheim Palace was one of the biggest disappointments of the coach trip I took with a group from Germany for a 3-week tour from London to Culloden Field. I can’t remember why we couldn’t go through Blenheim; perhaps because of some restoration project. That was, I think, in 1971 or 1972.
    We were also to see Balmoral Castle but one of the Royals was in residence so we hiked up a hill instead.
    I’m now waiting for Castlemaine’s book. I’ve got a hold on the book when it’s processed by the library.

    Reply

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