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Crowns in Conflict


The years immediately before the First World War saw the last great flowering of European monarchy. Although sovereigns no longer ruled by divine right, their prestige and positions remained almost intact. The glittering centerpieces of national life, those crowned and anointed monarchs were still widely regarded as mystical, unassailable, divinely guided. And, with the majority of them being so closely related, they constituted a royal clan, an international freemasonry through which it was assumed the peace of Europe was being maintained.


World War I shattered all this. King took up arms against king; cousin was pitted against cousin. Twelve leading monarchs, ranging from the vainglorious Kaiser Wilhelm II to such lesser-known figures as the brigandly Nicholas of Montenegro, the 'outre' Foxy Ferdinand of Bulgaria and the tragic Emperor Karl of Austria-Hungary, were involved in the conflict. For, in the end, that celebrated kinship of the family of kings proved irrelevant. Against the upheavals of these years, monarchs were revealed as both powerless and impotent.


Here, Theo Aronson has assembled the entire cast of embattled monarchs. His is the story of eight momentous years viewed, as it were, from the monarchical standpoint; an account of the passing, not only of their particular world, but of the entire monarchic and dynastic order of the Continent. It describes the brilliant sunset and the dramatic break-up of the Europe of the Kings.


Reviews:


“Here, Theo Aronson has assembled the entire cast of embattled monarchs. His is the story of eight momentous years viewed, as it were, from the monarchical standpoint; an account of the passing, not only of their particular world, but of the entire monarchic and dynastic order of the Continent. It describes the brilliant sunset and the dramatic break-up of the Europe of the Kings.”

Marshall S Lion


“An interesting version of an oft-told tale. Rather than simply being a diplomatic or military history, Crowns in Conflict uniquely personalizes World War I. It also helps place monarchies in a historic context.”

Prairie Progressive


“In Crowns in Conflict: The Triumph and Tragedy of European Monarchy 1910-1918, Theo Aronson takes a distinct approach to the end of monarchical Europe. For one, he takes a broader view, looking at roughly a dozen major and minor monarchs who sat on Europe’s thrones in the second decade of the 20th century. The second, and most notable, is that the book is biographical in nature, not surprising given that Aronson, who died in 2003, wrote nearly two dozen royal biographies. His method produces a very readable examination of the topic. Rather than rehash the standard history of how the Central and Entente Powers careened into war, the book looks at the history of each monarch and what the kings and queens did through the course of the war.”

Blog Critics


“Crowns in Conflict: The Triumph and the Tragedy of European Monarchy, 1910-1918 is an interesting read and I recommend it.”

Amy’s Books


“In Crowns in Conflict: The Triumph and Tragedy of European Monarchy 1910-1918, Theo Aronson takes a distinct approach to the end of monarchical Europe. For one, he takes a broader view, looking at roughly a dozen major and minor monarchs who sat on Europe's thrones in the second decade of the 20th century. The second, and most notable, is that the book is biographical in nature, not surprising given that Aronson, who died in 2003, wrote nearly two dozen royal biographies. His method produces a very readable examination of the topic. I found it an interesting version of an oft-told tale. Rather than simply being a diplomatic or military history, Crowns in Conflict uniquely personalizes World War I. It also helps place monarchies in a historic context.”

Seattle PI


“A well written look at European monarchies. Five stars.”

Jessica Nipper - Reviewer


Buy Theo Aronson