September 1, 2023
3 color photos, 2 color illus., 8 b&w photos, 3 b&w illus.
9.00 Inches (US)
6.00 Inches (US)
$32.95 USD
v2.1 Reference

Crown, Cloak, and Dagger

The British Monarchy and Secret Intelligence from Victoria to Elizabeth II

Surprising revelations about the active role of the monarch in British intelligence

The British Royal Family and the intelligence community are two of the most mysterious and mythologized actors of the British State. Crown, Cloak, and Dagger offers a new history of how the two have been inextricably linked from the reign of Queen Victoria to the present.

Richard J. Aldrich and Rory Cormac unveil a wealth of archival detail that changes our understanding of the role of the monarch in politics, intelligence, and international relations. Successive queens and kings have all played an active role in steering British intelligence, sometimes against the wishes of prime ministers. Even today, the monarch receives "copy No. 1" of every intelligence report. Attempted assassinations and kidnappings, the abdication crisis, world wars and the Cold War, and the death of Princess Diana are just some of the topics covered in the book.

Fascinating and fast-paced, Crown, Cloak, and Dagger demonstrates that the British monarch continues to be far more than a figurehead. This book will inform as well as entertain anyone with an interest in history, espionage, and the royals.

About the Authors

Richard J. Aldrich is a professor in the Department of Politics and International Studies at Warwick University and author of GCHQ: The Uncensored Story of Britain's Most Secret Intelligence Agency.

Rory Cormac is a professor in the School of Politics and International Relations at the University of Nottingham and author of How to Stage a Coup and 10 Other Lessons from the World of Secret Statecraft.


"The riveting Crown, Cloak, and Dagger details the complicated relationship between the royals and the intelligence services. It contributes to the growing field of intelligence history and to our understanding of the ways in which the acquisition of information allowed British monarchs to provide informed advice, or challenges, to prime ministers." — Mary Kathryn Barbier, professor of history, Mississippi State University, vice president, North American Society for Intelligence History,

"Two historians at the top of their game bring clarity to two of the most misunderstood components of British life. In so doing, Aldrich and Cormac cast the rise and fall of the British Empire in a new light, as well as the history of the twentieth century. Gripping stuff!" — Andrew L. M. Hammond, historian and curator, International Spy Museum and SpyCast

"Aldrich and Cormac's relentlessly entertaining survey offers plenty of intriguing details about how the Crown and the secret services have interacted under different monarchs. Sometimes sobering and sometimes shocking, this deeply researched history is a page-turner for royal watchers, national security practitioners, and fans of espionage fiction alike. Truly splendid." — David Priess, former CIA officer, author of The President's Book of Secrets

"This is the book that all scholars of intelligence and royal watchers have been waiting for. A must read. Richard Aldrich and Rory Cormac have done an incredible job of opening the veil on this most secretive area of the British state." — Calder Walton, assistant director, Applied History Project and Intelligence Project, Belfer Center, Harvard Kennedy School, author of Spies: The Epic Intelligence War Between East and West,

9781647123710 : crown-cloak-and-dagger-aldrich-cormac
September 1, 2023
$32.95 USD

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