- A fascinating portrait of the tragic Winter Queen, Elizabeth of Bohemia. Elizabeth (1596-1662), sister of Charles I, became Queen of Bohemia for one winter before being defeated in battle and fleeing into exile
- The first biography of William, 1st Earl of Craven, a wealthy and generous supporter of Elizabeth who risked his life and spent a fortune in her cause
- A thoroughly researched and very readable account of Lord Craven’s dramatic life
- A tale of plots, intrigue, battles, court cases, family quarrels and architecture
Elizabeth of Bohemia, known to some as the Winter Queen and to others as the Queen of Hearts, was one of those rare figures whose personality still fascinates us across the centuries. The daughter of James I, she combined charm and humour with courage in the face of adversity after she and her husband were driven from the throne of Bohemia. Of the many men who championed her cause, Lord Craven was the most faithful. Brave, wealthy, and supremely generous, this latter-day knight errant threw everything he could into his efforts to recapture the Palatinate for his heroine, risking his life and spending enormous sums in financing a military campaign. After all schemes had come to naught he came to live at Elizabeth’s threadbare court in the Hague, supporting her financially and befriending her talented but unruly family while giving discreet help to the royalists in the Civil War. His estates, confiscated by the Commonwealth, were returned at the Restoration, and he busied himself in planning fine houses for Elizabeth’s use on her return to England in 1661. Sadly she died the following year, but Ashdown House in Berkshire still remains as a poignant memorial to Craven’s single-minded devotion.
Knight Errant: Lord Craven and the Court of the Winter Queen is a compelling and exhaustively researched account of the public and private travails of the exiled queen and her faithful admirer.
Robin Haig was born in 1959. Educated at Winchester College and St Andrews University, he graduated with an MA in Modern and Medieval History in 1982. He is the author of A History of Theatres and Performers in Herefordshire (2002) and in 2009 was commissioned to write a series of short histories of Cambridge colleges for Cambridge 800, a book published to commemorate the 800th anniversary of the foundation of Cambridge University. He lives in Herefordshire, where in roughly equal measures he combines writing with growing cider apples.
Dimensions: 234 x 156 mm
Extent: 224 pages
Illustrations: 28 colour illustrations