New Reader’s Digest Canada Article: The Most Memorable Coronations in British History

My new article in Reader’s Digest Canada discusses the more than thousand year history of coronations in Britain, looking back from the televised coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953 to the precedent setting coronation of the Anglo-Saxon King Edgar the Peaceable in 973.

Click here to read “The Most Memorable Coronations in British History” in Reader’s Digest Canada

New Podcast Interview: Queen’s University Department of History Alumni Archives

I discussed my career as a historian, author and royal commentator as well as a variety of historical topics such as Magna Carta, Queen Henrietta Maria and the English Civil Wars, and the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton in 2011.

Click here to listen to Episode 22: Carolyn Harris of the Alumni Archives Podcast

My Winter 2023 Course at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies: Magna Carta and The Making of the Modern World

I will be teaching my course about the history and impact of Magna Carta, the charter imposed on King John of England by his barons in 1215, in January-February 2023 in-class at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies.

Click here for more information to register.

Course Description: The Magna Carta is¬†the landmark charter that placed limits on the power of the English king. Neither the king nor his rebel baron opponents necessarily expected its terms to be respected for long. But some of the Magna Carta’s principles – like the right to trial by peers and due process – have become basic to common law. The charter influenced the creation of Parliament and the concept of equality before the law. Later interpretations informed the American and French Revolutions, Canada’s Confederation and the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The 800th anniversary in 2015¬†was celebrated around the world, and a surviving copy of the Magna Carta was exhibited across Canada. Join Carolyn Harris, author of¬†Magna Carta and its Gifts to Canada, and discover the enduring impact of this document on the modern world.

Click here for more information and to register.

Magna Carta and the Making of the Modern World – My Winter 2020 Course at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies

In January-February, 2020, I will be teaching a course on Magna Carta and the Making of the Modern World at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies, just in time for the 805th anniversary of Magna Carta in June 2020. The course will take place on Wednesday afternoons from 2-4pm Click here for more information and to register:

ABOUT THIS COURSE

Magna Carta is the landmark charter that placed limits on the power of the English king. Neither the king nor his rebel baron opponents necessarily expected its terms to be respected for long. But some of Magna Carta’s principles – like the right to trial by peers and due process – have become basic to common law. The charter influenced the creation of Parliament and the concept of equality before the law. Later interpretations informed the American and French Revolutions, Canada’s Confederation and the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The 800th anniversary in 2015 was celebrated around the world, and a surviving copy of the Magna Carta was exhibited across Canada. Join Carolyn Harris, author of Magna Carta and its Gifts to Canada, and discover the enduring impact of this document on the modern world.

Click here for more information and to register:

Click here to purchase my book, Magna Carta and Its Gifts to Canada

Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting now available for purchase

My 3rd book, Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting, has been published by Dundurn Press in Canada. (The USA and UK release date is May 2).

Click here to purchase your copy of Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting

How royal parents dealt with raising their children over the past thousand years, from keeping Vikings at bay to fending off paparazzi.

William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, are setting trends for millions of parents around the world. The upbringing of their children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte, is the focus of intense popular scrutiny. Royalty have always raised their children in the public eye and attracted praise or criticism according to parenting standards of their day.

Royal parents have faced unique challenges and held unique privileges. In medieval times, raising an heir often meant raising a rival, and monarchs sometimes faced their grown children on the battlefield. Conversely, kings and queens who lost their thrones in wars or popular revolutions often found solace in time spent with their children. In modern times, royal duties and overseas tours have often separated young princes and princesses from their parents, a circumstance that is slowly changing with the current generation of royalty.

Click here to purchase your copy of Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting

The Table of Contents for Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting

The Table of Contents of my forthcoming book, Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting is now available online:

Table of Contents

Introduction  Raising a Royal Child

1 ¬†¬†¬†¬†Edgar “the Peaceable” (c. 943-75) and Elfrida of Northampton (c. 945-1001)
2 ¬†¬†¬†¬†William “the Conqueror” (c. 1028-87) and Matilda of Flanders (c. 1031-83)

Genealogical chart depicting King Henry II of England and his children

3     Henry II (1133-89) and Eleanor of Aquitaine (c. 1124-1204)
4     Henry III (1207-72) and Eleanor of Provence (c. 1223-91)
5     Edward III (1312-77) and Philippa of Hainault (1314-69)
6     Richard III (1452-85) and Anne Neville (1456-85)

Charles I, Henrietta Maria and their two eldest children

7     Ferdinand II of Aragon (1452-1516) and Isabella I of Castile (1451-1504)
8     Henry VIII (1491-1547) and Catherine of Aragon (1485-1536)
9     Frederick V, Elector Palatine (1596-1632) and Elizabeth of England and Scotland (1596-1662)
10    Charles I (1600-49) and Henrietta Maria of France (1609-69)
11¬†¬†¬†¬†Peter I “the Great” of Russia (1672-1725) and Catherine I (1684-1727)
12    Anne (1665-1714) and George of Denmark (1653-1708)
13    George II (1683-1760) and Caroline of Ansbach (1683-1737)

Nicholas and Alexandra present their daughter, Olga to Queen Victoria

14    Louis XVI of France (1754-93) and Marie Antoinette of Austria (1755-93)
15    Victoria (1819-1901) and Albert of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha (1819-61)
16    Nicholas II of Russia (1868-1918) and Alexandra of Hesse-Darmstadt (1872-1918)
17    Juliana of the Netherlands (1909-2004) and Bernhard of Lippe-Biesterfeld (1911-2004)
18    Elizabeth II (1926-) and Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark (1921-)
19    Prince Charles (1948-) and Lady Diana Spencer (1961-97)  20    Prince William (1982-) and Catherine Middleton (1982-)

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte arrive in Canada

Epilogue    The Future of the Royal Nursery

Acknowledgements
Notes
Further Reading
Index

Click here to pre-order your copy of Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting

Advance Reader Reviews of Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting

Readers who received advance review copies of my forthcoming book, Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting are sharing their reviews on goodreads. Raising Royalty will be published by Dundurn Press in Canada in April 2017 and in the USA and UK in May 2017.

Here are excerpts from some of the reader reviews:

“Raising Royalty is a comprehensive study of how…Kings and Queens have raised their children. Twenty families with their widely varying parenting approaches from Anglo-Saxon times to the present are studied.
While the book is a thoroughly researched subject by a scholar, it is a joy to read. It provides a clear picture of how parenting in the rarefied atmosphere of castles and palaces has evolved and, perhaps more importantly, why. Boys were brought up to fight and rule, and girls for dynastic/political marriages. Princes and princesses had no choice one thousand years ago and, one also sympathizes, today their futures are still fixed in stone but with a little more leeway.
Carolyn Harris, the author, has done an excellent job of writing this book for general readership and it will open eyes with the detail and surprises.¬†Recommended for history buffs and royal watchers.” — Julie Ferguson

“I was expecting the book to be entirely be about English royalty, but was pleased to find that it covered enough of Europe to give it some diversity.
Filled with a lot of interesting facts and written in a way that held my attention.
Both well researched and written.” — MissyLynne

“I was expecting a list of “advice” and “lessons” and was pleasantly surprised.
Ms. Harris presents a HUGE amount of history in this book and her skill at writing in a way that keeps the reader engaged and interested is refreshing.
Anyone with any interest in royal families will love this book. It’s a great read. ” — Michelle Griswold

Click here to view all reader reviews for Raising Royalty on goodreads

Click here to pre-order your copy of Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting

Advance Praise for Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting

Advance Praise for my 3rd book, Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting, which will be published by Dundurn Press in April 2017:

“Today‚Äės parents think they have it tough, monitoring screen time and shuttling kids to soccer matches. Imagine being King William I, the Conqueror, who in 1079 had to fight his firstborn son on the battlefield; or Henry II, whose villainous son, John, is today best known as Robin Hood‚Äės arch enemy. Carolyn Harris‚Äės history of royal child rearing is a must read for anyone interested in the never-ending saga of royal families and a fascinating read.” (Mark Reid, Editor-in-Chief, Canada’s History Magazine)

“Carolyn Harris has taken an innovative approach with this engaging new work, bringing together a millennia of royal parenting from Edgar ‚Äúthe Peaceable‚ÄĚ and Elfrida of Northampton right up to the present day with the children of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. Harris has deftly woven together the history of various rulers, evaluating their relationships with their children and bringing in wider trends in parenting in different eras. She notes both rivalry and tension between parents and children, as aptly illustrated by the Hanoverian monarchs of England, as well as evidence of affection and strong bonds between rulers and their offspring. Any reader with an interest in the history of monarchy or parenting itself will find this an absorbing read, both accessible and replete with interesting information. A real strength of this book is that it puts our present-day fascination with current and recent monarchs and their children in a long-term historical context.” (Dr. Elena (Ellie) Woodacre, Senior Lecturer in Early Modern European History Postgraduate Student Coordinator-Faculty of HSS University of Winchester, editor of The Royal Studies Journal)

“How to raise the kids? It is a question that has confounded parents for centuries. Imagine how parenting has been for royalty throughout the ages? Royal historian Carolyn Harris‚Äôs newest book focuses on this very topic. In Raising Royalty, Harris‚Äôs detailed research [explores] how royal parenting has evolved throughout the last thousand years. Harris focuses on twenty royal parents ‚Äď from Edgar the Peaceable and Elfrieda of Northampton to Prince William and Catherine Middleton. This book is delightfully readable, infused with the brilliance of pure scholarship.” (Marlene A. Eilers Koenig, author of Queen Victoria’s Descendants)

“Carolyn Harris‚Äôs encyclopedic knowledge infuses Raising Royalty with fascinating insights into the lives of Europe‚Äôs Royal Families. Moving through the centuries, Harris highlights unique and evolving family dynamics and traditions right up to our present day. An essential addition to any royal enthusiast‚Äôs collection, Raising Royalty provides a captivating look at the families occupying the centre of some of the world‚Äôs greatest monarchies.” (Nathan Tidridge, author of Canada’s Constitutional Monarchy)

Click here to pre-order your copy of Raising Royalty: 1000 Years of Royal Parenting

Upcoming Guest Lectures in 2016

Here is my schedule of guest lectures for October, November and December 2016. Click on the links for more information including times and ticket prices:

October 26, 2016, The Royal Commonwealth Society of Toronto Speaker Series: The Queen and Commonwealth, Arts and Letters Club, Toronto

November 2, 2016, Magna Carta and the Making of the Modern World, Aurora Cultural Centre, Aurora.

November 7, 2016, The Stateswoman: Perceptions of Female Leaders in 20th and 21st Centuries, Temple Emanu-el Lecture Series, Toronto

November 20, 2016, Victorian Christmas Traditions, Toronto’s 1st Post Office, Toronto¬†

December 1-19, 2016: 6 Lectures about Royalty and the Atlantic World Aboard the Azamara Quest during the Costa Rica, Panama Canal and ABCs cruise

 Click here to view a selection of lectures about my book, Magna Carta and Its Gifts to Canada: Democracy, Law, and Human Rights.

 

Review of Magna Carta and Its Gifts to Canada in the Saskatchewan Law Review

My book, Magna Carta and Its Gifts to Canada: Democracy, Law, and Human Rights has been reviewed by Steven Laroque at the Saskatchewan Law Review. Click here to read the review in the Saskatchewan Law Review, Volume 79, Number 2, 2016, p. 327-330.

Here’s an excerpt from the review:

Magna Carta and Its Gifts to Canada¬†contains many facts and stories within a small number of pages. Throughout the book, printed with a gloss finish, are pictures and artwork surrounding the places and historical events relevant to Magna Carta. These aid in bringing life and colour to many of these great historical moments. This book provides an easy read and brief introduction for those who are interested in the main historical developments relating to Magna Carta over the last eight hundred years.”

Click here to read the review in the Saskatchewan Law Review, Volume 79, Number 2, 2016, p. 327-330.

Click here to purchase Magna Carta and Its Gifts to Canada: Democracy, Law, and Human Rights