Did Richard II invent the en-suite….?

  Richard II is (always laughingly) described as having invented the handkerchief. That he was a ridiculous fop is always the implication. Yet we don’t think twice now about using handkerchiefs…the previous disgusting habit of wiping one’s nose on one’s sleeve is long-gone, thank goodness. Yet I’ve now learned another of Richard’s so-called peculiarities. When… Continue reading Did Richard II invent the en-suite….?

The Renaissance, wedding dresses….and Robert de Vere….

  Well, I wasn’t looking for observations on when the Renaissance commenced, rather was I trying to find information on the wedding of Robert de Vere, Duke of Ireland, Marquess of Dublin, and 9th Earl of Oxford KG. The wording of my Google search brought up a site in which I found the following: “….During… Continue reading The Renaissance, wedding dresses….and Robert de Vere….

Digging up our monarchs; no, not Richard III this time….!

I’m told that even now, if you purchase a plot of ground in which to put your loved ones to rest, the chances are they’ll only lie in peace for eighty years, at which time they are removed and new occupants move in. Well, for centuries our dead haven’t always been left to enjoy their… Continue reading Digging up our monarchs; no, not Richard III this time….!

The Old Palace of Sheen….

  I confess that I had never before seen a drawing, painting, engraving, whatever that depicted the Old Palace of Sheen as it was before Henry VII went to work on demolishing it and turning it into Richmond Palace. Sorry, but the present Richmond is a red-brick monstrosity in my opinion. I’m not saying the… Continue reading The Old Palace of Sheen….

Philippa de Coucy

One of Edward III’s many grandchildren, Philippa de Coucy (born before April 1367) was the daughter of the important French nobleman Enguerrand, Lord of Coucy, by Isabella, eldest daughter of King Edward and Queen Philippa. Isabella was pretty much the definition of a spoiled princess, and contrary to the usual stereotype, pretty much did as… Continue reading Philippa de Coucy

Um, Princess Anne Neville of Bohemia….?

Don’t have a drink in your hand as you read the following:- “ . . . Princess Anne Neville of Bohemia, who was looked to as the embodiment of virtue and modesty, rode side-saddle across Europe prior to her marriage to King Richard III in 1472. Their marriage lasted three years, as King Richard died… Continue reading Um, Princess Anne Neville of Bohemia….?

Oh where, Oh where, has Chaucer’s “Foul Oak” gone….?

    According to Project Gutenberg, on 6th September 1390 Geoffrey Chaucer was mugged at a place called the Foul Oak, but not the Baginton Oak. Rather was it on what we now call the Old Kent Road but was originally the Roman Watling Street, leading out of London, on the way to Canterbury and… Continue reading Oh where, Oh where, has Chaucer’s “Foul Oak” gone….?

How many wives did Sir Simon Burley have….?

Sir Simon Burley, childhood friend, tutor and magister of Richard II, was executed today, 5th May, in 1388. He was the son of a Herefordshire knight, was brought up with the Black Prince, and rose to be one of the most powerful men in the land when he ruled the king’s household. Richard adored and… Continue reading How many wives did Sir Simon Burley have….?

A book to avoid if you uphold the truth about Richard III….

When we buy a non-fiction book (in our case usually something to do with Richard III and the medieval period) we anticipate its arrival with some relish. This is how I felt when, after reading many praises for Peter Ackroyd’s History of England, I decided to buy Volume I online. It arrived this morning, and… Continue reading A book to avoid if you uphold the truth about Richard III….

Epiphany – medieval and now….

According to the Oxford Dictionary, the following two definitions refer to the use of the word epiphany:- The manifestation of Christ to the Gentiles as represented by the Magi (Matthew 2:1–12). Definition (1) A moment of sudden and great revelation/realisation. Definition (2) Epiphany has been a recognised feast of the Western Church since the 5th… Continue reading Epiphany – medieval and now….