The Private Lives of the Tudors by Tracy Borman makes a great addition to any English history lover’s library, great for the Tudor enthusiast interested in the mundane details of daily life or the Tudor history novice looking for a broad overview of the dynasty.
Borman’s previous works include biographies of Queen Matilda, Henrietta Howard and Thomas Cromwell. Among her other publications is the illustrated gift shop book A Really Useful Guide to the Georgians (I only know of this book because I bought this in 2014 when I was at Hampton Court Palace for the day).
Although this book probably wouldn’t be my go-to for daily life details, because of its chronological layout, it is a detailed portrait of the Tudor monarchs and the details of their daily routines.
Included are lots of delicious descriptions of clothing, accessories, furniture, food, decor, medical treatments, traditions, holiday celebrations, purchases, gifts and much more. Some of the treatments for illnesses genuinely made me laugh out loud because of their absurdity. I also enjoyed the intimate details of Henry VII and Edward VI, the Tudor monarchs that usually don’t get much attention.
I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it to any history enthusiast.