Heretic Queen


Heretic QueenElizabeth’s 1558 coronation procession was met with an extravagant outpouring of love. Only twenty-five years old, the young queen saw herself as her country’s Protestant saviour, aiming to provide the nation with new hope, prosperity, and independence from foreign influence that had plagued her sister Mary’s reign. Given the scars of the Reformation, Elizabeth would need all the powers of diplomacy and tact she could summon.

Extravagant, witty, and hot-tempered, Elizabeth was the ultimate tyrant. Yet at the outset, in religious matters, she was unfathomably tolerant for her day. ‘There is only one Christ, Jesus, one faith,’ Elizabeth once proclaimed. ‘All else is a dispute over trifles.’

Heretic Queen is the highly personal, untold story of how Queen Elizabeth I secured the future of England as a Protestant world power.


A searing account of the dark underside of the Elizabethan golden age. Susan Ronald has written a devastating and important reminder of the long, hard road from religious strife to accommodation.’ – Amanda Foreman, New York Times bestselling author of The World on Fire and The Duchess
‘A triumph in an  age when religion continues to be a matter of conflict.’ – Antonia Fraser, international bestselling author of Marie Antoinette: The Journey
‘Compulsive, engaging, and vivid… a long-overdue study of the religious settlement of Elizabeth I’s reign, packed with eyewitness detail.’ – Alison Weir, bestselling author of Mary Queen of Scots and the Murder of Lord Darnley and Mary Boleyn: The Mistress of Kings.