This book is the first full-length biography of Joan of Navarre, a fascinating royal woman who became duchess of Brittany and queen consort of England through her two marriages in 1386 and 1403 respectively.
Joan was enmeshed in the turbulent politics of the later Middle Ages as her extensive family and marital connections meant she was related to most of the royal houses of Western Europe―as well as the key protagonists of the Hundred Years War. The large foreign entourage that Joan brought with her to England, and her family ties across the Channel, made her unpopular with her subjects and her loyalties suspect, provoking several purges of her household and culminating in a charge of treason on which she was detained for several years. Yet Joan returned to court in her later years and fought vociferously to the end to retain queenly rights, revenues, and position. Ultimately, this book highlights Joan’s political agency and tenacity, bringing her out of the historical shadows and into the foreground of high politics in fifteenth-century England and Europe.
Joan of Navarre is a useful resource for all students and scholars interested in queenship studies, women’s history, and European politics during the later Middle Ages.