"No historian's Queen Elizabeth was ever so perfectly a woman as the fictitious Elizabeth of Kenilworth, " wrote Thomas Hardy. Scott's magnificent novel recreates the drama and the strange mixture of assurance and profound unease of the age of Elizabeth through the story of Amy Robsart. A woman of great beauty and integrity, Amy is married to the Earl of Leicester, one of the queen's favorites, who must keep his marriage secret or else incur royal displeasure. Rich in character, melodrama, and romance, Kenilworth is rivaled only by the great Elizabethan dramas.
Walter Scott (1771-1832) was an extremely influential novelist, establishing the form of the historical novel and the short story. He wrote both dramas and novels, including The Antiquary and The Tale of Old Mortality. J. H. Alexander is currently Reader in English at the Unversity of Aberdeen and has published critical studies of Walter Scott's poetry. For the Edinburgh edition of the Waverley novels he has also edited The Bride of Lammermoor and A Legend of the Wars of Montrose.
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