Location: The Tudors Wiki Discussion Forum

Discussion: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst EuropeReported This is a featured thread

Showing 1 - 19 of 19  |  Show  posts at a time
Anne'sCurls
Anne'sCurls
Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 5 2010, 3:32 PM EDT | Post edited: Sep 5 2010, 3:32 PM EDT
Went to Barnes and Noble and brought this book titled "Mad Kings & Queens: Histories Most Famous Raving Royals" by Alison Rattle and Allison Vale. It was on the bargain shelf so I got it. It was not a waste of money, but I do have some gripes about who they included in this book. Many of these people you probably won't know unless you are into history. First on the list was Isabella of France aka "The She-Wolf"; now this chick was a b1tch and a half but I am not sure if I am comfortable calling her crazy. She didn't really lose it until after her son imprisoned her. All the things she did prior seem cruel and ambitous, but that does not equal crazy. Another question mark inductee was Vlad III of Walachia/Romania better known as Vlad the Impaler. Again a cruel, blood thirsty tyrant but I do not think he fits the description of insane even by the standards of this book. There are definitely some truly crazy royals mentioned in this bookk:

Charles VI of France
Isabel of Portugal
Juana of Castille
Erik XIV of Sweden
and others. But there were TOO many included who had no reason to be there. The first one that I wondered about was Henry VIII, he was on the cover and there are still some who wonder if homeboy went crazy as he got older. I hate the SOB so at first it didn't bother me that he was in there. But all they mention about his craziness is his 6 Wives. Yes having 6 Wives is strange, but that does not mean he was crazy. I was going to look past his inclusion as just needing a big name celebrity included and so far the English weren't getting much of a mention and that could raise some eyebrows. But the the writers went buck wild and just started pulling names out of a hat:

Do you find this valuable?    
Keyword tags: None
Anne'sCurls
Anne'sCurls
1. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 5 2010, 3:33 PM EDT | Post edited: Sep 5 2010, 3:33 PM EDT
cont'd....

Christina of Sweeden-her momma was crazy but Christina's only crime seems to be not fitting to conventional standards of femininity and wanting to become a Catholic.
Louis XIV of France (the Sun King)-according to the Allison's he was crazy because he was a manwhore.
Charles II of Spain-more deformed than crazy. He does come from a crazy family but he didn't really do anything out of the ordinary until he was on his deathbed.
Frederick the Great of Prussia-He was a cheapskate and a bad daddy. How exactly does that make you crazy?
Catherine the Great-OK SERIOUSLY! All they can mention is that she liked to have sex, which in the Russian court wasn't that big of a deal unless you got pregnant! She also is accussed of killing her husband(most people believe she probably did) but again makes you ambitious not insane.
Marie Antoinette-This is just a travesty of the worst proportions! The poor woman has gone down in history as a Paris Hilton of the 18th Century, now she is labled as crazy when she was far from it!
Ivan VI of Russia-Started out as an infant Tsar who was disposed by the Empress Elizabeth and lived inseclusion all his life. He lived a pathetic and miserable existence and was physicaly, emotionally, and intellectually stunted, but he was not insane!
If you include Henry VIII that is eight monarchs including on this crazy list who weren't the least crazy! Mental illness, deformity, depression, and/or unconventional behavior do not make you crazy my dear Allison's.
Do you find this valuable?    
AJBates
AJBates
2. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 5 2010, 5:47 PM EDT | Post edited: Sep 5 2010, 5:47 PM EDT
Wow how can you call any of those people insane?

I agree with you on Marie Antoinette, first a victim of bad publicity most of it false and now apparently insane? Where's that evidence? Because for some reason her husband wouldn't touch her for 7 years? I always hated people saying she said "Let them eat cake" because a different Queen (Can't remember her name at the moment) said that 100 years before Marie Antoinette was even born.

And with Louis XIV if being a manwhore is the same as crazy why isn't Charles II or Francais on there.
Do you find this valuable?    
Boleynpatentpending
Boleynpatentpending
3. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 6 2010, 5:07 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 6 2010, 5:07 AM EDT

I think Vlad Drakula was mad. There's a point where sadistic, cruel behavior is so extreme as to point to a psychotic mind.


Do you find this valuable?    
MsSquirrly
MsSquirrly
4. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 6 2010, 6:12 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 6 2010, 6:12 AM EDT
Looks like there is a reason that book was on the bargain shelf. Its a bit of a blanket statement to call 40 kings and queens Mad. I mean there's a big gap between being eccentric and being mentally deranged. I have seen Henry called Mad before...in fact there is a national geographic documentary on him with mad in the title. He certainly seemed to be afflicted with paranoia in his last years but perhaps being an absolute monarch or leader of any kind would make you like that? Do you find this valuable?    
Kittywake09
Kittywake09
5. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 6 2010, 8:45 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 6 2010, 8:45 AM EDT
To call Henry mad is insane !!!!!!! 1  out of 1 found this valuable. Do you?    
royalfalcon
royalfalcon
6. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 6 2010, 8:52 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 6 2010, 8:52 AM EDT
"To call Henry mad is insane !!!!!!! "
Haha - I certainly second that!!
1  out of 1 found this valuable. Do you?    
freya9
freya9
7. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 6 2010, 11:01 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 6 2010, 11:01 AM EDT
I bet the writers thought this was a brillant idea when they sold it to their publisher. Then they actually started writing it, realised there weren't that many mad royals and had to pad it out to get their money. 2  out of 2 found this valuable. Do you?    
Kittywake09
Kittywake09
8. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 6 2010, 11:34 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 6 2010, 11:34 AM EDT
Could not agree more freya9 1  out of 1 found this valuable. Do you?    
Anne'sCurls
Anne'sCurls
9. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 8 2010, 5:15 PM EDT | Post edited: Sep 8 2010, 5:15 PM EDT
I think Henry was borderline crazy, mostly just a jerk. And I could see a debate about Vlad, there is just something about him that makes me think he isnt crazy at all just sadistic. For example, Jeffrey Dahmer did some crazy things but he wasnt crazy. I just see a slight difference between Vlad and Elizabeth Bathory for example.
I am actually interested in the topic of mentally deranged royals, it started with Juana and then there was Philip's son whose name I forgot. So when I saw the book I thought "hey cool" but I should have went through the contents and seen who they added on the list. The book lost total credibility for me even with some of the loons on there.
Do you find this valuable?    
Boleynpatentpending
Boleynpatentpending
10. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 8 2010, 7:40 PM EDT | Post edited: Sep 8 2010, 7:40 PM EDT
"Looks like there is a reason that book was on the bargain shelf. Its a bit of a blanket statement to call 40 kings and queens Mad. I mean there's a big gap between being eccentric and being mentally deranged. I have seen Henry called Mad before...in fact there is a national geographic documentary on him with mad in the title. He certainly seemed to be afflicted with paranoia in his last years but perhaps being an absolute monarch or leader of any kind would make you like that? "
It seems that quite a few historians think Henry was mentally ill later in life. Even if mental illness is an inevitable result of being a monarch (which I don't think it is; Elizabeth wasn't mentally ill, and I've never heard Henry VII was, for example), it would still be mental illness. The Tudors took the position that he had intermittent psychotic episodes (hallucinations, delusions), the first being his hallucinations during the sweat epidemic. On the other hand, mentally or emotionally ill isn't the same as insane, which implies (at least in US law) that you aren't able to tell right from wrong.
Do you find this valuable?    
juliana-angela
juliana-angela
11. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 9 2010, 7:29 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 9 2010, 7:29 AM EDT
"Went to Barnes and Noble and brought this book titled "Mad Kings & Queens: Histories Most Famous Raving Royals" by Alison Rattle and Allison Vale. It was on the bargain shelf so I got it. It was not a waste of money, but I do have some gripes about who they included in this book. Many of these people you probably won't know unless you are into history. First on the list was Isabella of France aka "The She-Wolf"; now this chick was a b1tch and a half but I am not sure if I am comfortable calling her crazy. She didn't really lose it until after her son imprisoned her. All the things she did prior seem cruel and ambitous, but that does not equal crazy. Another question mark inductee was Vlad III of Walachia/Romania better known as Vlad the Impaler. Again a cruel, blood thirsty tyrant but I do not think he fits the description of insane even by the standards of this book. There are definitely some truly crazy royals mentioned in this bookk:

Charles VI of France
Isabel of Portugal
Juana of Castille
Erik XIV of Sweden

"
It is a myth that Isabella 'the She-Wolf' was either insane or even that she was imprisoned - she was held under house-arrest for a while but was then allowed back to visit her son's Court. She eventually retired to a nunnery, as ladies often did then, and died at the advanced age of 64, still in full possession of her mental faculties. Although she was tough and ruthless, she had had a lot to put up with before she and her lover deposed her husband Edward II.

Although some of those mentioned in the book suffered from mental illness (Charles VI of France was schizophrenic and Isabella of Portugal and her granddaughter Juana of Castile were probably bi-polar), most of the others sound relatively normal - normal for rulers, anyway!
1  out of 1 found this valuable. Do you?    
Kittywake09
Kittywake09
12. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 10 2010, 7:40 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 10 2010, 7:40 AM EDT
Could not agree more juliana-angela. Is there no mention of poor Farmer George III - who historians have since concluded that the poor man had the blood disease porphyria ? Do you find this valuable?    
Anne'sCurls
Anne'sCurls
13. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 10 2010, 5:19 PM EDT | Post edited: Sep 10 2010, 5:19 PM EDT
@Juliana-angela, I shouldnt have used the word imprisoned, she was never put in prison just her son told her to stay in a house and have little contact with him, you are correct; totally mispoke.
To any of the English people still hanging around this thread, what is the "general" English perception of Isabella? Or is it generally too long ago to care?
Do you find this valuable?    
Anne'sCurls
Anne'sCurls
14. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 10 2010, 5:33 PM EDT | Post edited: Sep 10 2010, 5:33 PM EDT
Kittywake, yes they did mention George III. Let me put the list
1. Isabella of France(She Wolf)
2. Joan of Naples
3. Robert III of Scotland
4. Charles VI of France
5. Isabel of Portugal
6. Vlad the Impaler
7. Juanna of Castile
8. Henry VIII
9. Ivan The Terrible
10. Erik XIV of Sweden
11. Anne of Saxony
12. Rudolf II of Austria
13. Fyodor Iof Russia
14. Elizabeth Bathory
15. Mustafa I
16. Maria Eleonor of Brandenburg
17. Murad IV
18. Ibrahim I
19. Christina of Sweeden
20. Louis XIV
21. Charles II of Spain
22. Ivan V
23. Gian Gastone de'Medici
24. Peter the Great
25. Philip V of Spain
26. Frederick William I of Prussia
27. Anna I of Russia
28. Barbara of Portugal
29. Ferdinand VI of Spain
30. Catherine the Great
31. Maria I
32. George III
33. Ivan VI
34. Isabella of Bourbon-Parma
35. Christian VII
36. Marie Antoinette
37. Caroline of Brunswick
38. Ferdinand I
39. Charlotte of Belgium
40. Ludwig II of Bavaria
Do you find this valuable?    
juliana-angela
juliana-angela
15. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 11 2010, 6:15 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 11 2010, 6:15 AM EDT
Hm, there seem to be quite a few relatively sane people on that list, as well as some who probably were mentally ill and some who had learning difficulties. I wouldn't have thought that Peter the Great could be described as mad, let alone Catherine the Great - they were simply ruthless, like many Russian rulers.

Which Joan of Naples does the book specify - Joan I or Joan II? I don't think either of them was mad - they were both promiscuous and caused a lot of scandal, but that isn't a sign of insanity!.
1  out of 1 found this valuable. Do you?    
Anne'sCurls
Anne'sCurls
16. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 12 2010, 3:30 PM EDT | Post edited: Sep 12 2010, 3:30 PM EDT
Joan I of Naples Do you find this valuable?    
juliana-angela
juliana-angela
17. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 16 2010, 5:02 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 16 2010, 5:20 AM EDT
"Joan I of Naples"
She was tough and ruthless, and was eventually deposed and murdered, probably in revenge for arranging an assassination, but she wasn't mad.

Joan founded a brothel in Avignon, where the Pope and Cardinals then resided - this says quite a lot for her business sense with all those potential customers...

Having just checked my Amazon recommendations, there is apparently a new biography of Joan (aka Joanna) due out in November which argues that she was an enlightened and effective regnant queen until brought down by her rivals (even if she did have her husband knocked off...). She certainly doesn't sound mad, anyway.


Do you find this valuable?    
Lady_Kathryne
Lady_Kathryne
18. RE: Mad King's and Queens: The Insane Amongst Europe
Sep 17 2010, 11:58 AM EDT | Post edited: Sep 17 2010, 11:58 AM EDT
I feel sorry for the rulers who suffered from mental illness in thoose days. With the advent of modern medicine, mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder (which I suffer from) are perfectly managable with the right therapys.
How many suffered from depression and were labeled "crazy."
Do you find this valuable?