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The Man Behind the Tudors (Hardback)

Thomas Howard, 2nd Duke of Norfolk

British History P&S History Social History Tudors & Stuarts Royal History

By Kirsten Claiden-Yardley
Imprint: Pen & Sword History
Pages: 168
Illustrations: 32
ISBN: 9781526745538
Published: 30th January 2020


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Thomas Howard, 2nd duke of Norfolk, lived a remarkable life spanning eighty years and the reigns of six kings. Amongst his descendants are his granddaughters, Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard, and his great-granddaughter, Elizabeth I. The foundations of this dramatic and influential dynasty rest on Thomas’ shoulders, and it was his career that placed the Howard family in a prominent position in English society and at the Tudor royal court.

Thomas was born into a fairly ordinary gentry family, albeit distantly related to the Mowbray dukes of Norfolk. During the course of the fifteenth century, he and his father would rise through the political and social ranks as a result of their loyal service to Edward IV and Richard III. In a tragic turn of events, all their hard work was undone at the Battle of Bosworth and his father was killed fighting for King Richard. Imprisoned for treason and stripped of his lands and titles, Thomas had to start from the beginning to gain the trust of a new king. He spent the next thirty-five years devoting his administrative, military and diplomatic skills to the Tudors whilst rebuilding his family fortunes and ensuring that his numerous children were well-placed to prosper.

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About Kirsten Claiden-Yardley

Kirsten Claiden-Yardley studied Modern History as an undergraduate at Merton College, Oxford, before completing a part-time Masters course in English Local History at Kellogg College, Oxford. She later returning to Merton College to complete a PhD on noble identity and commemoration in the Tudor period, as part of the collaborative project titled "Representing Re-Formation". In between times, she has worked in publishing and as Assistant Church Buildings Officer for the Diocese of Oxford. She was also engaged as a production researcher on the television adaption of Wolf Hall and as a historical adviser on a number of fiction and non-fiction publications. She is the co-founder of a heritage consultancy partnership specialising in ecclesiastical projects, and mother to a lively two-year-old.

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