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OF THE

QUEENS OF ENGLAND,

FROM

THE NORMAN CONQUEST;

WITH

ANECDOTES OF THEIR COURTS,

NOW FIRST PUBLISHED FROM

OFFICIAL RECORDS AND OTHER AUTHENTIC DOCUMENTS,

PRIVATE AS WELL AS PUBLIC.

BY

AGNES STRICKLAND.

“ The treasures of antiquity laid up
In old historic rolls, I opened.”

BEAUMONT.

VOL. IX.

LONDON:

HENRY COLBURN, PUBLISHER,

GREAT MARLBOROUGH STREET.

DA 286 -572 uq

LONDON:
PRINTED BY THOMAS C. SAVILL,

CHANDOS STREET

Gohe

W. Mc 9-16-64 13-377163

TO

HER MOST EXCELLENT MAJESTY

Our Sovereign Lady Queen Victoria,

THE LIVES OF THE QUEENS OF ENGLAND

ARE BY GRACIOUS PERMISSION INSCRIBED,

WITH FEELINGS OF PROPOUND RESPECT AND LOYAL AFFECTION,

BY HER MAJESTY'S FAITHFUL SUBJECT

AND DRVOTED SERVANT,

AGNES STRICKLAND.

PREFACE.

SOME indulgence, it is hoped, will be accorded by the gentle readers of the “ Lives of the Queens of England,” for the tardy appearance of the present volume, when it is explained that the materials for the biography of the consort of James II. are chiefly derived from the unpublished letters, journals, and documents of the period. Many of these, and indeed the most important, are locked up in the Secret Archives of France ; papers that are guarded with such extreme jealousy from the curiosity of foreigners, that nothing less than the powerful influence of M. Guizot himself could have procured access to those collections. Through the kindness and liberality of that accomplished statesman-historian, every facility for research and transcription was granted during my residence in Paris, in the spring and summer of 1844. The result was fortu. nate beyond my most sanguine expectations, in the discovery of inedited letters, records, and documents, connected with the personal history of the beautiful and unfortunate princess whose memoir occupies the present volume of the “Lives of the Queens of England.” Not the least curious of those records is part of a MS. diary, kept, apparently, by one of the nuns of Chaillot, of the sayings and doings of the exiled queen during her occasional retreats to that

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