This is an exciting collection of essays on the rule of Charles I at a time of fundamental importance to English history. It combines the work of historians with academics from literary studies to provide an interdisciplinary examination of the culture and political life of the decade. The chapters focus on issues in politics, religion, the monarchy and culture, as well as literature and art history. Essays examine everything from the King’s correspondence to the role of consort queens at court and opposition to the King in libel, satire and on the stage. Many historians assert that it was Charles's inept and dangerous policy of ‘personal rule’ which was responsible for putting the country on the road to civil war. This book will be invaluable for students and lecturers seeking to better understand the causes of the conflict.