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Book Review. Treasury of Royal Scandals is a national bestseller book written by Michael Farquhar

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Introduction

´╗┐Six Scandalous Themes A Treasury of Royal Scandals is a national bestseller book written by Michael Farquhar that describes ?The Shocking True Stories of History?s Wickedest, Weirdest, Most Wanton Kings, Queens, Tsars, Popes, and Emperors.? This book is a random collection of different royal families and individuals who despite their many differences, have some similarities. However, they are often dark and negative similarities. No matter what person, family, or civilization someone is talking about historically, six themes seem to always come up, are discussed, and are debated. These themes include religious intolerance, disregard for the common public, dysfunctional personal lives, extreme pursuit of dynasty, a sense of superiority, and inequality towards women. These themes have influenced the outcomes of history from past to present - and may continue to in the future. It is within these themes that the similarities between the people and families mentioned within this book can be found. Religious freedom may be something that many people in the United States take for granted today, but people who lived during Pope Gregory IX?s rule were more familiar with religious intolerance. Pope Gregory IX had made his uncle?s persecution of heretics an official function of the church when he established the Inquisition in 1232. During his rule, Catholics were encouraged to ?squeal? on other people?s acts of heresy, children testified against their parents, and mothers testified against their children. ...read more.

Middle

A good example of this is Napoleon, who chose to divorce his first wife in order to marry someone else who could possibly give him an heir, and who was constantly fighting with his brother (Joseph). Childless, Napoleon named his nephew heir to the throne, which outraged Joseph. Joseph had assumed that he would be heir to the throne and believed that he had the right to the throne as the eldest member of the family. This assumption outraged Napoleon in return, and the quarrel between the two brothers continued. Over time, Napoleon?s strive for power caused other arguments among his siblings, and in the end only three brothers (out of seven siblings) played active roles in his empires. It could probably be said that many of the rulers throughout history had their mind on everything, but what was best for their people. Therefore, it is only natural that Austrian Empress Maria Theresa constantly had her mind on creating a dynasty. Maria was an especially curious monarch, who created the Chastity Commission - a special department of the police charged with suppressing vice. It was said that Maria even played a part in the commission, disguising herself and roaming Vienna in search of her unfaithful husband. When she was not busy ?storming the bedrooms of her people,? she concentrated on marrying off her children to the families that would help strengthen her position. ...read more.

Conclusion

Henry?s disregard for women?s rights was legendary, as he married and divorced frequently in his conquest to have a son, who would become the heir to the throne. For example, Henry declared himself Supreme Head of the Church in England in order to officially divorce his first wife, Catherine of Aragon, by declaring their marriage unlawful. As a result, Catherine was never given a fair trial, and her only daughter (Mary) was declared illegitimate. Religious intolerance, disregard for the common public, dysfunctional personal lives, extreme pursuit of dynasty, a sense of superiority, and inequality towards women have all influenced history. However, although there have been many rulers involved in scandals, those rulers have also done great things. At the times of some of these scandals, the accepted ?practice? was different, but civilization has progressed to an entirely different level. Even though history may repeat itself some time or another (and has in many cases), it is some of these scandals that have brought us to where we are today. For example, it was Henry VIII?s second wife Anne Boleyn who bore Queen Elizabeth (?The Virgin Queen?), all as a result of Henry VIII?s desire for a son and divorcing his first wife. So, encourage others to bring up, discuss, and debate these topics, which have helped shape history, good and bad, to the point it has reached today. ...read more.

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