The King's Only Champion

The King's Only Champion

England's Queens

England's Queens


Royal Heirs Who Didn't Take the Throne

Publication Date15th November 2023

Book FormatHardback





The fascinating hidden history of the British royal family's nearly men - those who had been destined for the throne, but never made it. Mantle explores the story behind these would-be-kings, showing how the question of succession has not always been a straightforward one.
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Through the centuries, succession to the English throne has largely been dictated by blood. Children were born to the role, their destinies entwined with that of the nation. They would be raised with the expectation that they would eventually take their place on the throne and rule the land. But not all those expected to wear the crown completed this journey.

Ashley Mantle explores the lives of several heirs apparent, from the Norman Conquest to the present day, who were destined to assume the throne of England but, for one reason or another, did not. You will meet such figures as Robert Curthose, eldest son of William the Conqueror, whose ineptitude saw him twice barred from the crown; Edward V, whose disappearance in 1483 still remains a mystery; Lady Jane Grey, the tragic Nine Days Queen; and Sophia, Electress of Hanover, who died months before her accession. Along the way we will explore the nature of rule to determine what was expected of an heir and how an heir was groomed in preparation for their ascent, as well as how the rules surrounding the succession have changed over the centuries.

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