A Formative Childhood? A Comparison of the Reigns of Mary Stuart and Elizabeth Tudor

A well-written, well-researched, and generally balanced article that seems to get more and more fascinating every time I reread it, especially as I get to know the intriguing and much-misunderstood figures of Mary, Queen of Scots and Elizabeth I of England. 🙂

The Creation of Anne Boleyn

Above: queens, cousins, rivals. Mary Stuart, queen consort of France and queen regnant of Scotland (left) and Elizabeth Tudor, queen regnant of England (right). Above: queens, cousins, rivals. Mary Stuart, queen consort of France and queen regnant of Scotland (left) and Elizabeth Tudor, queen regnant of England (right).

Conor Byrne is a history student at the University of Exeter whose research interests include gender, cultural, and social history. His excellent blog focuses on historical issues but also touches upon contemporary political and social events. 

Being a queen regnant in sixteenth-century Europe was no easy task. Prevailing misogynistic notions questioned whether women, as the inferior sex, had the right to rule over their male superiors. John Knox, the vehement Scottish Protestant preacher, opined in his The first blast of the trumpet against the monstrous regiment of women, attacking the rule of female monarchs such as Mary Tudor and Mary of Guise and published in 1558, that female rule was contrary to Biblical law. He bitterly concluded: ‘For their [women’s] sight in ciulie regiment, is but blindnes:…

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