The gripping story of one of the most enigmatic and alluring figures in British history: a dangerous double agent and Irish rogue in King Charles II's court.
One morning in May 1671, a man disguised as a parson daringly attempted to seize the crown jewels from the Tower of London. Astonishingly, he managed to escape with the regalia and crown before being apprehended. And yet he was not executed for treason. Instead, the king granted him a generous income, and he became a familiar strutting figure in the royal court's glittering state apartments.
This man was Colonel Thomas Blood, a notorious turncoat and fugitive from justice. Nicknamed the "Father of All Treasons", he had been involved in an attempted coup d'état in Ireland as well as countless plots to assassinate Charles II. In an age when gossip and intrigue ruled the coffeehouses, the restored Stuart king decided Blood was more useful to him alive than dead. But while serving as his personal spy, Blood was conspiring with his enemies. At the same time, he hired himself out as a freelance agent for those seeking to further their political ambition.
In The Audacious Crimes of Colonel Blood, best-selling historian Robert Hutchinson paints a vivid portrait of a double agent bent on ambiguous political and personal motivation and provides an extraordinary account of the perils and conspiracies that abounded in Restoration England.
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