29th September 2022 – Mortal Monarchs: 1000 Years of Royal Deaths by Suzie Edge
‘How the monarchs of England and Scotland met their deaths has been a wonderful mixture of violence, infections, overindulgence and occasional regicide. In Mortal Monarchs, medical historian Dr Suzie Edge examines 1,000 years of royal deaths to uncover the plots, accusations, rivalries, and ever-present threat of poison that the kings and queens of old faced.
From the “bloody” fascinating story behind Oliver Cromwell’s demise and the subsequent treatment of his corpse and whether the arrow William II caught in the chest was an accident or murder, to Henry IV’s remarkable skin condition and the red-hot poker up Edward II’s rear end, Mortal Monarchs captivates, grosses-out and informs.
In school many of us learned the dates they died and who followed them, but sadly never heard the varied – and oft-gruesome – way our monarchs met their maker. Featuring original medical research, this history forms a rich record not just of how these people died, but how we thought about and treated the human body, in life and in death.