Short Essay Questions Key
1. What is the author's intention in writing <i>Elizabeth the Great</i>? How does her intention affect the shape of the book?
The author's intention in writing <i>Elizabeth the Great</i> is to collect interesting facts about Elizabeth. This gives the book an irregular shape since some important events in the queen's life get just a brief mention while some minor events in the queen's life get major emphasis.
2. Although some historians have written that Queen Elizabeth was bald, the author of <i>Elizabeth the Great</i> does not think Elizabeth was bald. What are some of her reasons for thinking that the queen kept her natural hair throughout her life?
Although some historians have written that Queen Elizabeth I was bald, the author of <i>Elizabeth the Great</i> thinks that the queen kept her natural hair throughout her life for several reasons. First, the queen wore wigs, which was the custom in her era, and not necessarily an indication of baldness. In addition, Queen Elizabeth gave Philip Sidney a lock of hair when she was 39 years-old and this lock of graying red hair is preserved at Wilton. When Elizabeth was 63 years-old, the Bishop of St. David's offended her when he said that "time had sowed meal upon her hair" meaning her hair was growing white. He would not have said this about a wig. In addition, when the Earl of Essex burst into her bedchamber, he caught the 66-year-old queen with her natural hair down. These contemporary accounts of Queen Elizabeth's natural hair indicate she was not bald during her lifetime.
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