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FRANCIS LANCELOTT, ESQ. Queens of England. Vol.1.

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FRANCIS LANCELOTT, ESQ.
Queens of England. Vol.1.
page 3



PEEFACE. THESE volumes contain the memorials of the Queens of England from the Norman Conquest to the death of Queen Adelaide, in 1849. The Memoirs are presented in chronologic order ; and pains have been taken to render them truthful and life-like portraitures. The sayings, doings, manners of the royal ladies under notice, so far as reliable authorities have preserved them, have been impartially and faithfully chronicled ; and those of their letters that were available, have been introduced. Also interwoven with these particulars are many details, anecdotes, and circumstances connected with the British court and the people, which, besides imparting sketchy outlines of the characters of numerous illustrious individuals, are calculated to afford glimpses of the state of society and manners such as are not generally to be found in the ordinary Histories of England. Great attention has been bestowed upon the verification of dates. When recourse has been had to modern biographers and historians, their errors and prejudices have not been adopted ; and whenever authentic information has been wanting, the lines between conjecture, traditional record, and undisputed fact have been carefully drawn. As these volumes comprise the Lives of thirty-eight Queens—lives which extend over a period of eight centuries, from the age of feudality, chivalry, and romance, to that of steam-boats, railways, and electric telegraphs ; it can scarcely be hoped that they are exempt from occasional error. Despite the utmost vigilance, a false date, a wrong name, may slip from the pen and escape observation ; even an important authority may occasionally he overlooked, or the author may be misled by the prejudice or false statement of the writer whom it is necessary for him to consult. However, it is hoped that, on examination, these errors, or omissions, will be found to be neither many nor important. Whatever they may be, they certainly are accidental, and not intentional. To render the work complete and accurate, no efforts have been spared ; and as the author has been unbiassed by party partiality, and, he believes, uninfluenced by religious, political, or other prejudices, he ventures to offer his labours, sensible as he is of their imperfections, to the indulgence of the press and the public. These Memoirs were undertaken upwards of twenty y ears ago, at the


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