The Middle Ages and the movies….

  “….In The Middle Ages and the Movies eminent historian Robert Bartlett takes a fresh, cogent look at how our view of medieval history has been shaped by eight significant films of the twentieth century. The book ranges from the concoction of sex and nationalism in Mel Gibson’s Braveheart, to Fritz Lang’s silent masterpiece Siegfried, the art-house classic The Seventh Seal to… Continue reading The Middle Ages and the movies….

John Montagu, 3rd Earl of Salisbury (c 1350-1400)

John Montagu (or Montacute) was the son of Sir John Montagu, 1st Baron Montagu (d 1390) and Margaret de Monthermer. It follows that he descended from Joan of Acre, and through her, from King Edward I. He was also the nephew (and, as it proved, the heir) of William Montagu, 2nd Earl of Salisbury. There… Continue reading John Montagu, 3rd Earl of Salisbury (c 1350-1400)

Edward II’s nieces: The Clare Sisters

… and so to the dark green volume in Kathryn Warner‘s series about Edward II, his family, his associates and his era. This one details the lives of three sisters with seven husbands between them and a lot of interesting descendants, including Richard III (and siblings), his wife and his sisters-in-law. The eldest, Eleanor de… Continue reading Edward II’s nieces: The Clare Sisters

The Touchet/Audley Family in the Fifteenth Century.

James Touchet, Lord Audley, was born about 1398. He was not in the first rank of magnates but nevertheless had significant estates, notably Heighley Castle, near Madeley in Staffordshire, and the Red Castle (Hawkstone) in Shropshire, as well as two small Marcher lordships in Wales. His first marriage was to Margaret Roos, daughter of Lord Roos… Continue reading The Touchet/Audley Family in the Fifteenth Century.

A Bruce mystery

Here is a Daily Record article about a rather nice Scottish castle for sale, that was apparently built for Laurence Bruce, half-brother of Robert I … except that we can find no evidence that he ever existed. By both the same parents, Robert’s brothers were Thomas, Alexander, Neil (all executed in 1306-7) and Edward, the… Continue reading A Bruce mystery

Medieval Jewish Settlements in Oxford

Originally posted on Giaconda's Blog:
The Crypt at Oxford Castle – built on Anglo-Saxon foundations The first Jewish settlers arrived in Oxford not long after the Norman Conquest, around 1075AD residing in the commercial heart of the city at St Aldates which became known as Great Jewry Street, close to the original C8th oxen…

Renewing the wax covering Edward I’s body in Westminster Abbey…

While working my way through the Close Rolls of Richard II, I came upon the following intriguing  entry for 11 July 1377, not long after the boy-king’s accession:- “….To the treasurer and the chamberlains. Order of the king’s money to renew the wax about the body of King Edward I buried in the church of… Continue reading Renewing the wax covering Edward I’s body in Westminster Abbey…

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)

The Strange Reluctance to Accept Facts

Much of history is simply interpretation. You can interpret events, and facts, in various ways. Often there is no absolute truth and the interpretation depends on the standpoint of the historian. For example, a passionate Welsh nationalist is likely to see the events of 1282 in a rather different light to the interpretation of an… Continue reading The Strange Reluctance to Accept Facts