King Edward VIIIby Philip Ziegler
When King Edward VIII acceded to the throne in January 1936,
With unrivalled access to secret Cabinet documents, the unpublished papers of Chamberlain, Baldwin, Churchill and other statesmen, and thousands of hitherto unread private letters, Philip Ziegler reveals the complex personality of the King, in a masterly biography which is unlikely to be surpassed.
When King Edward VIII acceded to the throne in January 1936, Stanley Baldwin hailed him as the best qualified of British monarchs. The British people needed no such reassurance. They knew him to be widely travelled, good-looking, eloquent and quick-witted; concerned about the problems of unemployment, poverty and homelessness that plagued his people. Only those closest to him suspected that this radiant image would not endure; only the best informed were not appalled when his reign ended so abruptly.
The entire life of Edward VIII is examined: his supposedly unhappy boyhood, his glamorous existence as Prince of Wales, his brief and inglorious reign with its sensational ending, his period as Governor of the Bahamas, and his long decline in semi-exile. Ziegler describes his relationships with George V and Queen Mary, George VI and Queen Elizabeth, Freda Dudley Ward, Adolf Hitler, Oswald Mosley and many others; and most of all, analyses the passion for Wallis Simpson which led to his abdication after only eleven months. The result is a frank and wholly convincing biography.
- HarperCollins Publishers
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