This book examines the role of royal families in European diplomacy before the outbreak of the First World War. It argues against the prevailing orthodoxy that has sought to marginalize the role of monarchs, and shows that monarchs remained significant political actors in pre-1914 Europe. Much attention is paid to relations among royal courts, notably those of Britain, Prussia-Germany and Russia (led by Edward VII, Wilhelm II and Nicholas II), but the book also contains case studies that probe the extent of royal diplomatic influence in a wider context.