It’s that time again! This is the fourth year that I’ve gone through all of the questions that came in to the Q&A blog the previous year and pulled together some general info on popular topics.
The number of questions that came in were roughly similar to 2010 (about 250, most posted but some answered directly by me), although posts really slowed down in the second half of the year. I’m guessing it was a combination of the end of “The Tudors” in the various countries it was still airing in, that a lot of people’s questions had already been asked, and that other Tudor history blogs have also started taking questions (which is great – the more the merrier!). Comments still come in on older posts too, which indicates to me that people are still interested in some of the topics that have already been covered.
General observations – people weren’t quite as morbid in 2011 and there weren’t as many questions about death, burials, bodies, etc. There were still a few questions that came along on those topics, but it seemed to be down from previous years.
The wives of Henry VIII and their families were still very popular. I think the Boleyns still had the most questions, but it wasn’t as much of a landslide as previous years and was more evenly spread out.
There were quite a few questions about specific people beyond the monarchs and the Six Wives. Questions on Edward VI, Mary I and Elizabeth I were overshadowed by their father, who I think got the most specific questions (both about him and what life was like in his reign). There were a few more about the earlier Tudors – Henry VII, Elizabeth of York and Margaret Beaufort in particular. I’m guessing this has to do with novels about the end of the Wars of the Roses that have come out recently.
The rest were a hodge-podge, including county history, primary sources, modern connections, PhD and higher education studies and book recommendations.
The biggest overall trend that I noticed were a lot of questions that started with “I’ve read that…” but often didn’t have a reference to a specific author or work. I’m kind of frustrated by that, although I understand that a lot of people read lots of books on the Tudors (or may have read it a long time ago) and don’t have the reference at hand. Still, it would be nice to know where some of these questions are coming from.
That’s it for this year! It will be interesting to see what 2012 brings. You can see last year’s round-up here (along with links to the two previous).