The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s Canadian Itinerary for Fall 2016

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in Ottawa for Canada Day in 2011

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in Ottawa for Canada Day in 2011

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s itinerary for their fall 2016 visit to Canada was announced today. They will tour British Columbia and the Yukon from September 24 until October 1. Here is the itinerary:

  • September 24: Victoria
  • September 25: Vancouver
  • September 26: Bella Bella and Great Bear Rainforest, B.C.
  • September 27: Kelowna, B.C. and then to Whitehorse, the capital of the Yukon
  • September 28: Whitehorse and Carcross, Yukon
  • September 29: Victoria
  • September 30: Haida Gwaii, B.C.
  • October 1: Victoria

I discussed the possibility of Prince George and Princess Charlotte accompanying their parents on the tour for CBC News Toronto this evening. Here’s the interview (around 26 minutes into the hour). The interview also appeared on The National.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

The Weekend Bookshelf: Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville, The Luminaries and How to Be a Victorian

Royal History: Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville: A True Romance by Amy Licence When King Edward IV of England announced to his council in 1464 that he had secretly married Elizabeth Woodville, his advisers responded “she was not, all things considered, a suitable wife for him, nor a woman of the kind who ought to belong to such a prince.” Elizabeth was not the wealthy foreign princess expected to become queen but the widow of a knight as well as the mother of two young sons. The unlikely royal romance has become part of popular culture, inspiring Philippa Gregory’s novel, The White Queen and a TV series of the same name.

Licence, author of Anne Neville: Richard III’s Tragic Queen and Elizabeth of York: The Forgotten Tudor Queen examines the marriage of Edward and Elizabeth and the culture of their court. The book stands out for its careful examination of the reputations of the King and Queen. Edward IV’s younger brother, Richard III, claimed the throne on the grounds that Edward and Elizabeth’s children were illegitimate. Edward’s reputation as a womanizer and Elizabeth’s image as a schemer suited Richard’s purposes and continue to appear in popular biographies and historical fiction to the present day. Licence examines Edward and Elizabeth within the context of their times, attempting to separate the surviving evidence from Edward IV’s reign from later speculation about the characters of the controversial King and Queen. ***

History: How To Be a Victorian: A Dawn to Dusk Guide to Victorian Life by Ruth Goodman Histories of the Victorian era often focus on the lives of the wealthy and powerful. Goodman is interested in the daily routines of ordinary people in nineteenth century England from the city clerks (whose offices were only heated to 10 degrees in the winter, if at all, necessitating heavier business suits than those worn today) to the farm labourers (who ate better meals in the north where potatoes and oatmeal were widely available than in the south where bread was the staple food). The book is structured as a day in the life for the average Victorian, from stepping out of bed onto a tiny homemade rug made from woven rags to washing dishes by gaslight after the evening meal.

Goodman is uniquely placed to explain daily life in the nineteenth century as she starred in the the BBC historical documentary series, Victorian Farm. Goodman combines diaries, letters and advertisements from the Victorian era with her own experiences doing laundry with a hand cranked washing machine, keeping clean with a pitcher and basin, going to the seaside in a voluminous nineteenth century bathing suit and wearing a corset for months at a time. How To Be a Victorian is a treasure trove of fascinating details about an era that still influences the structure of daily life today. ****

 Historical Fiction: The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton In Catton’s novel (winner of the Man Booker prize and Governor General’s Literary Award), a series of unexplained events occur near the New Zealand goldfields in 1866. An enormous fortune appears in the cabin of an intoxicated hermit, one of the wealthiest prospectors disappears and a “camp follower” appears to have attempted suicide. Newcomer Walter Moody stumbles upon a meeting of twelve men at a local hotel determined to get the bottom of these mysteries and he becomes involved in the investigation. The Luminaries includes the classic structure and plot elements of nineteenth century novels. Chapters have headings like “In which Harald Nilssen reneges on a contract; the holy book; Cowell Devlin is confounded; and George Shepard forms a plan.” Characters hold seances, struggle with opium addiction, attempt to hide family secrets and seek their fortunes. Over the course of eight hundred pages, details emerge connecting the characters one another – and the wider mystery – in unexpected ways within a broader astrological framework. The perfect book for a long train journey. ****

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

“Richard III: Monstrous or Misunderstood?” begins October 4, 2016

The earliest surviving portrait of King Richard III

The earliest surviving portrait of King Richard III

My eight week evening course about the life and legacy of King Richard III is open for enrollment at the University of Toronto, School of Continuing Studies. All are welcome. Click here for more information and to register.

The discovery in 2012 of the remains of Richard III underneath a parking lot in Leicester revived a centuries-old debate. Is he one of history’s greatest villains or the victim of Tudor propaganda? We will look at the bloody upheaval of the Wars of the Roses, including the famous disappearance of his nephews, the young Princes in the Tower. Was Richard the scheming villain of Shakespeare’s play or the misunderstood king who is the hero of modern novels by writers like Josephine Tey and Philippa Gregory? Join us to study a fascinating example of what may happen to leaders’ reputations once they’re dead.

Registration information is available here from the University of Toronto, School of Continuing Studies.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

CBC News Interview: Will Prince George and Princess Charlotte come to Canada? The pressures of taking the royal children on a trip

The Duchess of Cambridge and Prince George arrive in Sydney. Photo credit: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

The Duchess of Cambridge and Prince George arrive in Sydney. Photo credit: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

While I was on vacation this past week, CBC news published my interview about royal children and royal tours. Since the article was posted on Sunday, there have been reports that William and Kate, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will bring their two children Prince George and Princess Charlotte on their official tour of Canada next month. My interview discusses the history of royal children on Commonwealth tours and the impact of the presence of royal children on popular attitudes toward the monarchy.

Click here to read: Will Prince George and Princess Charlotte come to Canada? The pressures of taking the royal children on a trip

My book on royal parenting, Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting will be published by Dundurn Press in 2017. 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Yahoo News Interview: Prince George wants Prince George and Royal Family to visit

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their son, Prince George at Kensington Palace in 2014

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their son, Prince George at Kensington Palace in 2014

I discussed the upcoming royal tour of Canada with Yahoo News. The city of Prince George, British Columbia is eager to welcome the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their son, Prince George. In the interview, I discuss how the interests of the royal couple may be incorporated into the fall 2016 tour. When William and Kate visited Prince Edward Island during their 2011 tour, there was speculation that the Duchess’s love of the novel Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery shaped the itinerary.

Click here to read “Prince George wants Prince George and Royal Family to visit”

Click here to read my 2011 Globe and Mail column “The Royal Consort’s Royal Request” about the Duchess of Cambridge and Anne of Green Gables 

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

CBC The National Interview: William and Kate to Visit Canada

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in Canada in 2011

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge in Canada in 2011

William and Kate, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be touring Canada for the second time as married couple in the fall of 2016. The 2016 tour will include British Columbia and the Yukon, a province and territory that were not part of the royal couple’s 2011 visit. The royal couple’s two children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte may accompany them to Canada.

I discussed the impact of royal children and royal tours on popular support for the monarchy with Ellen Mauro on The National.

Click here to watch the interview on CBC The National

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

National Post Interview: Canadians aren’t keen on the idea of King Charles — but ditching the monarchy would prove no easy task

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall

I was interviewed by Ashley Csanady at the National Post about the royal succession and Canadian attitudes toward the monarchy and the Prince of Wales. In the article, I discuss royal attitudes toward abdication, how Prince Charles’s reputation has evolved over time and historical instances of monarchs being succeeded by their grandchildren.

Click here to read Canadians aren’t keen on the idea of King Charles — but ditching the monarchy would prove no easy task in the National Post

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

My review of Tatiana Romanov, Daughter of the Last Tsar in Canadian Slavonic Papers

I have reviewed Tatiana Romanov, Daughter of the Last Tsar: Diaries and Letters, 1913–1918, translated and edited by Helen Azar  for Canadian Slavonic Papers.

Grand Duchess Tatiana, the second of the four daughters of Czar Nicholas II of Russia and Empress Alexandra, was murdered alongside her family in 1918, at the age of twenty-one. The remains of the Imperial family were excavated in the 1990s and are now buried in the Peter and Paul fortress in St. Petersburg. Tatiana Romanov, Daughter of the Last Tsar captures the experiences and achievements of the young grand duchess during one of the most tumultuous periods in Russia’s history.

Click here to read the full review in the Canadian Slavonic Papers

Click here to purchase Tatiana Romanov, Daughter of the Last Tsar: Diaries and Letters, 1913–1918

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

Queenship and Revolution in Early Modern Europe review in the Royal Studies Journal

My book, Queenship and Revolution in Early Modern Europe: Henrietta Maria and Marie Antoinette, has received an excellent review in the Royal Studies Journal.  Queenship and Revolution in Early Modern Europe received the Royal Studies Journal 2016 prize for best book on the history of monarchy earlier this year. Here is an excerpt from the review:

“In an eminently readable and accessible book, Harris, through the use of a variety of printed and manuscript sources, paints a detailed picture of two queens. Though separated by a century, they faced similar struggles and both lost much in those battles. Comparative work can be difficult, but Harris’ work makes for a compelling and informative read. She shows the reader, through their comparison with one another, more about who each of these women were as living, breathing people, and she aptly demonstrates how the role of the consort subtly changed in the century from Henrietta Maria to Marie Antoinette.”

Click here to read the full review in the Royal Studies Journal

Click here to purchase Queenship and Revolution in Early Modern Europe: Henrietta Maria and Marie Antoinette

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather

New Canadian Encyclopedia Article: Prince Harry

Prince Harry at the Invictus Games in London, 2014

Prince Harry at the Invictus Games in London, 2014

My latest article in the Canadian Encyclopedia is a profile of Prince Harry.

His Royal Highness (HRH) Prince Henry Charles Albert David of Wales, known by his nickname Prince Harry, is fifth in line to the throne of Canada, the United Kingdom and 14 other Commonwealth realms (born 15 September 1984 in London, United Kingdom). Prince Harry is a grandson of Her Majesty (HM) The Queen (Elizabeth II); the younger son of the heir to the throne, HRH The Prince of Wales (Prince Charles) and the late Diana, Princess of Wales; and younger brother of HRH The Duke of Cambridge (Prince William). Prince Harry is the founder of the Invictus Games, a series of athletic competitions for wounded, injured and sick armed forces personnel from around the world. The third Invictus Games will be held in Toronto in September 2017.

Click here to read my full article about Prince Harry in the Canadian Encyclopedia

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmailby feather