observations: Cold meatless Lent begins today, Ash Wedesday, after the glories of Carnevale on Monday and Tuesday.
What a mysterious person Jane Seymour is. We know nothing private about her, only the public facts of her life – beyond that is just guesswork. True of many historical figures of course, and particularly women, their lives recorded only at intervals.
She is still an enigma in this book, though Hilary Mantel succeeds in making her intriguing, with the suggestion of more than can be seen in the facts. We, the readers, know that the gift of the cloth came from Thomas Cromwell himself, and that he was rather taken with her (political needs aside) – but that is all just in the book, it’s not history. What history does show, is who, surprisingly, married Jane Seymour’s sister Elizabeth as her second husband….
Ages to wait before the 3rd book of this trilogy is published: but we look forward to seeing how Jane is dealt with. She does seem to have worked hard to reconcile her husband with his children from previous marriages, which would show a kind heart.
Links on the blog: Wolf Hall and Bring up the Bodies have both featured several times. The lovely Topaz in I Capture the Castle probably doesn’t often get compared with Jane Seymour, but she WAS a great stepmother.
The picture is Hans Holbein’s portrait of Jane – there are few images of her in existence. Holbein is a character in the novels.