King George I
King George II
(Incapacitated by madness after 1811)
(Prince Regent from 1811 to 1820)
King William IV
Reigned Before the Hanoverians:
Reigned After the Hanoverians:
(House of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha)
List of British Royal Dynasties:
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Kings of Georgian Britain by Catherine Curzon. The lives of the four King Georges and the events that shaped their characters and reigns, from love affairs to family feuds.
Georgian Monarchy: Politics and Culture, 1714-1760 by Hannah Smith. This detailed study of the monarchy during the reigns of George I and George II argues that the kings were not just tolerated but popular.
The Courtiers: Splendor and Intrigue in the Georgian Court at Kensington Palace by Lucy Worsley. The publisher sent me a copy of this book to review, and I enjoyed it very much. It provides an amusing look at the colorful characters at Kensington Palace from 1714 to 1760, including rival royal mistresses, "court pet" Peter the Wild Boy, and trusted servant Mohammed True-to-the-King. The lives of these courtiers centered around irascible kings George I and George II, who engaged in sad yet farcical family feuds at a time of waning royal influence. Highly recommended.
Blood Royal: The Illustrious House of Hanover by Christopher Sinclair-Stevenson. An intimate portrait of the kings of the House of Hanover.
The Hanoverians: The History of a Dynasty by Jeremy Black. A detailed look at the long reign of this scandal-plagued family.
The Hanoverian Succession: Dynastic Politics and Monarchical Culture edited by Andreas Gestrich and Michael Schaich. History has been unkind to the Hanoverians, portraying them as petty-minded and boring monarchs. This collection looks and their influence and legacy within Britain, Hanover and beyond, challenging long-held assumptions and prejudices.
The Georgian Princesses by John Van Der Kiste. About princesses from the time of George I through George IV.
Art and Architecture
The First Georgians: Art and Monarchy, 1714-1760 by Rufus Bird and others. Georges I and II, Queen Caroline and Prince Frederick of Wales were all great patrons of the arts. Their collection includes sculptures, paintings, maps, crowns, books, and clocks. This catalog showcases 300 color photographs of the finest works.
Handel and the English Chapel Royal by Donald Burrows. Handel's Chapel Royal music was the result of a close but changing relationship with Britain's Hanoverian royal family.
George I by Ragnhild Hatton and Jeremy Black. An enigmatic figure whose character was concealed by anti-Hanoverian propaganda, George emerges in this biography as an impressive ruler who set out to bring culture to Britain. From the Yale English Monarchs series.
George I: The Lucky King by Tim Blanning. This short biography examines George's career as a German prince and British king. Disagreeable to many, he was also tough, determined, and effective.
The King, the Crook, and the Gambler: The True Story of the South Sea Bubble and the Greatest Financial Scandal in History by Malcolm Balen. About a financial intrigue that threatened to overturn two monarchies in the 1720s. The king in the title is George I. Previously published as The Secret History of the South Sea Bubble.
Sophie Dorothea by Ruth Jordan. Biography of George I's wife, who was accused of infidelity and imprisoned for 32 years.
The Captive Princess by Paul Morand. Another biography of Sophia Dorothea of Celle.
The Princess of Celle by Jean Plaidy. This novel about Sophia Dorothea is the first book in Plaidy's "Georgian Saga" series.
The Rebel Princess by Doris Leslie. Another novel about Sophia Dorothea.
The King's Mistress by Claudia Gold. Biography of Ehrengard Melusine von der Schulenburg, mistress -- and probable secret wife -- of King George I. Derided by the public as the scrawny "Maypole," she managed to wrest George from his beautiful wife, Sophia Dorothea of Celle, and bind him to her for almost 40 years.
George II: King and Elector by Andrew C. Thompson. Despite a long and eventful reign, Britain's George II is largely forgotten. This biography paints a detailed portrait of the monarch in his public and private lives.
Royal Discord: The Family of George II by Veronica Baker-Smith. King George II is almost forgotten, but his long reign firmly established the House of Hanover in Britain. His daughter Anne was the only English princess to rule a foreign country. This book seeks to restore George II and his family to a fitting place in the pageant of history.
King George II and Queen Caroline by John Van Der Kiste. Biography of the last king to lead British troups into battle, and his able wife.
Memoirs of King George II by Horace Walpole. Despite the somewhat misleading title, these are the memoirs of English writer Horace Walpole, who lived during the reign of George II and wrote about political events of his time.
Queen Caroline: Cultural Politics at the Early Eighteenth-Century Court by Joanna Marschner. As the wife of King George II, Caroline of Ansbach made significant contributions to the arts and strengthened the royal family's connections to English society.
Enlightened Princesses: Caroline, Augusta, Charlotte, and the Shaping of the Modern World edited by Joanna Marschner, David Bindman, and Lisa L. Ford. An illustrated book about three German princesses who married into the British royal family: Caroline of Ansbach (wife of George II), Augusta of Saxe-Gotha (mother of George III), and Charlotte of Mecklenberg-Strelitz (wife of George III).
Queen in Waiting by Jean Plaidy. This novel about George II's wife, Caroline of Ansbach, is the second book in Plaidy's Georgian Saga.
Caroline, the Queen by Jean Plaidy. The third book in Plaidy's Georgian saga, also about Caroline of Ansbach.
Children of George II
The King That Never Was by Michael De-La-Noy. A biography of Frederick, Prince of Wales in the 18th century, who according to the author was unfairly despised by his parents, George II and Caroline.
The Princess's Garden: Royal Intrigue and the Untold Story of Kew by Vanessa Berridge. Princess Augusta of Saxe-Gotha arrived in England aged 16 to marry wild Prince Frederick, eldest son of King George II. Her lifelong association with Kew Gardens changed British gardening forever.
William Augustus, Duke of Cumberland: A Life by Rex Whitworth. A son of King George II, "Butcher Cumberland" was a general who defeated the Young Pretender, Bonnie Prince Charlie, at Culloden Moor.
Henrietta Howard: King's Mistress, Queen's Servant by Tracy Borman. Mistress of King George II, Henrietta Howard was also a victim of violence and adultery, a dedicated patron of the arts, and a passionate advocate for the rights of women.
Mistress of the Court by Laura Purcell. Novel about King George II's mistress Henrietta Howard, who started her career as his wife's lady-in-waiting.
George III and George IV
Royal Romances: Sex, Scandal, and Monarchy in Print, 1780-1821 by Kristin Flieger Samuelian. How the British royal family was represented in fiction, poetry, and the popular press in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, during the reigns of George III and George IV.
The Gentleman's Daughter: Women's Lives in Georgian England by Amanda Vickery.
Sex in Georgian England by A.D. Harvey. Using medical texts, trial records, pamphlets, autobiographies, novels, dress fashions, and more, this book reveals the 18th-century stereotype of female purity and passivity which was to be inherited by the Victorians.
Dominion: The History of England From the Battle of Waterloo to Victoria's Diamond Jubilee by Peter Ackroyd. Takes readers from the accession of the profligate George IV to 'Sailor King' William IV to the enormous innovation of Queen Victoria's reign. This is the fifth book in Ackroyd's History of England series; for the other books, click here.
Britain in the Hanoverian Age, 1714-1837: An Encyclopedia edited by Gerald Neman and Leslie Ellen Brown. Generously illustrated.
Sailor King: The Life of King William IV by Tom Pocock. William IV's lif e in the Royal Navy was fraught with rivalries, doomed love affairs, extravagance and rebelliousness. As king, he was not only loved but admired for setting an unstable monarchy.
William IV: A King at Sea by Roger Knight. Best known for his naval career and for living for 20 years with the actress Mrs. Jordan, William was a disaster in whatever field he found himself.
William IV, Mrs. Jordan and the Family They Made by Daniel A. Willis. King William IV reigned from 1830-1837 and came to the throne with a brood of illegitimate children from his 20-year affair with actress Dorothy Jordan. This book tells the story of their 900+ descendants, including politicians, actors, bankers, and maybe even a cad or two.
The Life and Times of William IV by Anne Somerset. Biography that reveals William's adherence to duty and his role in the conflicts of his time.
King William IV by Philip Ziegler. Biography.
The Duchess of Drury Lane by Freda Lightfoot. Novel about Dorothy Jordan, the 19th century comic actress who became the mistress of the Duke of Clarence, later King William IV.