"...we should pass over all biographies of 'the good and the great,' while we search carefully the slight records of wretches who died in prison, in Bedlam, or upon the gallows."
~Edgar Allan Poe

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Newspaper Clipping of the Day

So, you assumed the epic conflict between Elizabeth Tudor and Mary Stuart ended after the two queens went to their graves?


The "Illustrated Police News" told all in their January 23, 1897 issue:

Two great historical rivals--Queen Elizabeth and Mary Queen of Scots--have lately reappeared in Paris, and Queen Elizabeth has been unfolding the story of her wrongs before a well-known police commissary.

It seems, says a correspondent to the Daily Graphic, that two Parisiennes--one a young and attractive widow, and another a single lady of riper years--went lately to a well-known medium living in one of the rich quarters of Paris. The wizard was unable to tell them much about their future--it would have been well for the elderly lady if she could have done so--but her revelations about their past were truly startling.

"You," she sail to the fair widow, "were once the hapless Queen of Scotland, and you "--she turned sternly to the alarmed spinster--"you are none other than the cruel Elizabeth of England."

Both ladies departed deeply impressed, and that same evening Mary Stuart borrowed a considerable sum from Elizabeth of England as damages due for imprisonment, ill-treatment, and beheading in another age and another body. This was not, however, the end. Mary Stuart next ran off with Elizabeth's nephew, in whom she professed to recognise the soul of Bothwell. Him she married, much to the distress of England's Queen, who objected strongly to receiving Mary Stuart into the bosom of her family, though the discovering of Bothwell's soul made matters historically correct.

The unfortunate Elizabeth was then exploited by both husband and wife, who claimed frequent sums of money on the ground of the ancient historic wrong. She could in no sense call her soul her own, and finally she appealed to the police. The result is that Mary, Bothwell and the medium have all disappeared, and the police much want to find them.

I have no love for any of the Tudors, including the Virgin Queen (there, I said it,) so this tale of Elizabeth's comeuppance--however belated--rather delighted me.  As the saying goes, Karma is a bitch.


  1. This is one of the weirdest of your tales, simply from the fact that everyone involved seemed to have been so credulous. I imagine the police detective in this case looking like David Suchet as Poirot, simply staring in disbelief at the story being told him.

    And as for the Tudors... What about poor Edward VI?

    1. Edward was indeed a sad case, but from what I've read of his brief life, I think he might have grown up to be the worst of the bunch. He gives me the impression of being a sanctimonious little prig.


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