The Maldon Embroidery

The first thing to notice about this is that is an embroidery not a tapestry, although the “Bayeux Tapestry” is also an embroidery ie hand-stitched. It was constructed to mark the millennium of the 991 Battle of Maldon, at which Vikings, possibly under Olaf Tryggvason, defeated and killed the Saxon Earldorman Brythnoth. It is displayed… Continue reading The Maldon Embroidery

Not what you expect with a water bill!

I also received this from Anglia Water about the “Rutland Sea Dragon”, an ichtyosaur found near Rutland Water. It featured in episode four of Digging for Britain, the latest series of which was shown over two weeks in January. As ever, Alice Roberts was the main presenter, alongside Dr. Onyeka Nubia and Dr. Cat Jarman.… Continue reading Not what you expect with a water bill!

Clearing up a French genealogical mystery (2)

Just over six years ago, we published an article about the claimants to the French throne. They divide into three lines: BOURBONS: Charles X’s male line, comprising the entire legitimate male line of Louis XIV with one proviso, became extinct in 1883.       The exceptions are the Spanish Borbons, with their habit of… Continue reading Clearing up a French genealogical mystery (2)

The Three Estates – and a useful comparison

In June 1483, as we all know, the Three Estates of England met, declared the throne vacant due to the illegitimacy of Edward IV’s offspring. They also decided that the Duke of Clarence‘s children were barred by his attainder, thereby offering the Crown to the Duke of Gloucester. The usually hostile Gairdner, as we know,… Continue reading The Three Estates – and a useful comparison

Found in Devon …

We often feature very old coins unearthed. This one was found by metal detecting in a field somewhere in Devon and dates from Henry III‘s reign. It was part of a special consignment of pennies, minted by William of Gloucester with African gold. It features the Great Pavement of Westminster Abbey, which he updated, and… Continue reading Found in Devon …

Just a hypothesis, but …

We know that John of Gaunt and Henry IV claimed their ancestor, Edmund Crouchback Earl of Lancaster, to have been born before Edward I, however we have sources showing this propaganda to be specious. We know Henry III and Eleanor of Provence, to have had five children: Edward, Margaret, Beatrice, Edmund and Katherine. Sources such… Continue reading Just a hypothesis, but …

Marc Morris on mediaeval television programmes and films …

… programmes and films about the Middle Ages, not actually made during them – which would require an even greater advance that the Viking discovery of America before Columbus … Here he discusses: The Game of Thrones (2013), Robin Hood, Prince of Thieves (1991), Ironclad (2013), The Last Kingdom (2015), Vikings (2013), Braveheart (1995)

In case you haven’t noticed …

… we like our anniversaries here at Murrey and Blue. Having received this book about anniversaries as a birthday present, I found a substantial amount of unfamiliar information and several new cases, but there were two noticeable lacunae: (14th June on the 1381 Peasants’ Revolt): “Sudbury‘s skull survives, in St. Gregory’s Church in Norwich …”… Continue reading In case you haven’t noticed …

The Great British Dig – History in Your Garden (2)

Hugh Dennis and his small team of archaeologists are back on Channel Four and this time they have gone back a full two thousand years and beyond. The series starts in Falkirk with a fort and a piece of the Antonine Wall, apparently buried under several gardens and a bowls club. After some digging, the… Continue reading The Great British Dig – History in Your Garden (2)