Cover image for Royal mistresses
Royal mistresses
Carlton, Charles, 1941-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
London ; New York : Routledge, 1990.
Physical Description:
viii, 198 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DA308 .C37 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



An innovative look at the illicit sexual relations amongst members of the British royalty investigating the relationship between sex and power.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Carlton, who teaches history at North Carolina State University, eschews titillation in this sober, scholarly tour of Britain's royal bedrooms going back to that nation's early centuries. Anne Boleyn's conquest of Henry VIII, he reminds us, produced the Reformation and the great Queen Elizabeth. Mistresses, in the author's lexicon, include gay companions as well, among them those of Edward II (1307-1327) and of the 16th century's James I, ``England's most promiscuously homosexual king.'' In our own more tolerant age, Prince Charles's premarital relationships created interest but not scandal, and the bachelor escapades of brother ``Randy Andy'' amused rather than alarmed the Crown's subjects. If royals throughout history have been favored with a pick of sexual partners, unquestionably, as the author wryly observes, ``power is the great aphrodisiac.'' Illustrated. (Aug.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Author of Royal Childhoods (Routledge, 1986) and other books on British royalty, Carlton surveys royal paramours heterosexual and homosexual from Anglo-Saxon times to Koo Stark, with consideration of their influence, if any, on broader events. He finds earlier favorites sometimes important in their own right (especially if male), and sometimes (especially if female) selected as part of the kings own political maneuvering. Early chapters are lively reading; most latter-day mistresses are of little importance, and Carlton is more circumspect about extant royals. Most libraries have a good many bawdy books about British royalty already. Those that want all time periods and both sexes in one compendium might consider this.-- Nancy C. Cridland, Indiana Univ. Libs., Bloomington (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.