Long before Shakira unleashed her inner carnivore, there was Queen Isabella of France, the original “She-Wolf.” The daughter and wife of two megalomaniacal monarchs, Isabella was deemed little more than a political pawn. But Isabella was hardly some languishing princess in a tower, and when eventually the boys played themselves into a corner, she became the “Queen that Conquered England.”
Shoved down the aisle at age 12, Isabella was barely old enough to wed by medieval norms! But seriously, that was the least of her problems. For starters, husband Edward II, King of England, had already found true love. And #2, said true love, boyfriend Piers Gaveston, wasn’t keen to share. Awkwardly side-lined, Isabella didn’t catch a break until Piers lost his head…literally. But alas, there was another royal favorite just dying to take his place.
If Isabella thought that jerk Piers was bad, she was in for a nasty surprise. Edward’s new bestie, Hugh Despenser, was basically that whiney dude from Paradise Lost. What’s his name again? Oh yeah, SATAN! Isabella had no option but to flee. She wasn’t gone long; and when came home, she’d brought some friends with her!
At age 31 Isabella hijacked the throne. For four years she governed as regent with her lover, Roger Mortimer. But as the saying goes, “Absolute power corrupts absolutely,” and ultimately Isabella was toppled in a coup.
But, who was Isabella really-angelically patient wife, revolutionary queen, or homicidal seductress? Listen, and decide for yourself.
The History Bitch
Podcaster, tea aficionado, Anglophile, 'Game of Thrones' enthusiast.