Catherine De Medici

Catherine De Medici

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Catherine de Medici was half French, half Italian. Orphaned in infancy, she was the sole legitimate heiress to the Medici family fortune. Married at fourteen to the future Henri II of France, she was constantly humiliated by his influential mistress Diane de Poitiers. When her husband died as a result of a duelling accident in Paris - Leonie Frieda's magnificient, throat-grabbing opening chapter - Catherine was made queen regent during the short reign of her eldest son (married to Mary Queen of Scots and, like many of her children, he died young). When her second son became king she was the power behind the throne. Leonie Frieda has returned to original sources and re-read the thousands of letters left by Catherine. There has not been a biography in English of Catherine for many years and she believes that the time has come to show her as one of the most influential women in sixteenth-century more

Product details

  • CD-Audio
  • 126 x 138 x 24mm | 458.14g
  • Orion Publishing Co
  • Orion (an Imprint of The Orion Publishing Group Ltd )
  • London, United Kingdom
  • Abridged
  • Abridged edition
  • 0752869493
  • 9780752869490
  • 1,737,550

About Leonie Frieda

Swedish by birth, but educated in Britain, Leonie Frieda speaks five languages and is a member of the Institute of Linguists. Her long interest in Catherine de Medici has taken her to archives in Paris, Florence, Rome and Madrid, as well as the chateaux of the Loire. She lives in London with her daughter Elisabeth and son Jake. Daughter of actors Raymond Massey and Adrienne Allen, Anna Massey is a respected actress of film, television and stage. She.made her own film debut in John Ford's Gideon's Day (1958). In the controversial Peeping Tom (1960) she was one of the few female cast members was not murdered, though she was the second victim in Hitchcock's Frenzy. Maturing into a versatile character actress in her 40s, she played Mrs. Danvers in the 1981 remake of Rebecca and Betsy in the 1985 remake of Anna Karenina. On television she won BAFTA and RTS Best Actress awards as the heroine of Anita Brookner's Hotel du Lac. She starred most recently on television as maiden aunt Miss Stanbury in He Knew He Was more

Review quote

'Leonie Frieda tells and enthralling story that includes incest, vicious religious wars, assassination, poison, the occult and, in Catherine's own words, 'passion, hatred and vengeance'. Leonie Frieda has returned to original sources and reread the thousands of letters left by Catherine, and she has reinvested this protean figure with humanity. The first biography of Catherine in decades, it reveals her to be one of the most influential women ever to wear a crown.' Options XIII 'Leonie Frieda has lots of colourful contemporary material to work with, and wins some sympathy for Catherine by detailing her deprived childhood and patronage of art.' BBC HISTORY MAGAZINEshow more