Anne Somerset

Webster’s Muse

Arbella: England's Lost Queen

By Sarah Gristwood

Bantam Press 450pp £20 order from our bookshop

As Sarah Gristwood remarks in her preface, ‘History has an unamiable habit of losing the losers.’ This being so, Arbella Stuart usually features as little more than a footnote in studies of the Elizabethan and Jacobean courts. With hindsight it is easy to assume that she was always destined to be consigned to obscurity, but Gristwood reminds us that in her own day Arbella was believed to have a respectable chance of succeeding Elizabeth I as England’s Queen.

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