In writing Stephen and Matilda: Cousins of Anarchy, I was keen to apply the same narrow-eyed pursuit of solid facts that I hope comes across in my books on the Wars of the Roses. More than being about battles and, well, anarchy, I wanted to discover the real personalities behind the stories, the people who… Continue reading The Death of Robert, Earl of Gloucester
Although Richard was found in Leicester five years ago, exactly where he was buried, and Henry I is close to being identified in Reading, Kingfinding is not always successful. As this blog shows, the 1965 excavation of the Faversham Abbey site to find King Stephen was unsuccessful. It seems that his bones really were moved… Continue reading The elusive last Norman
One of the most fascinating (and bloody) periods of English history is The Anarchy, when Empress Matilda, daughter of Henry I (he who might well be found sometime soon in the ruins of Reading Abbey) fought her cousin Stephen of Blois (thought to be in Faversham Abbey) for the English throne. Battles raged across the… Continue reading Empress Matilda-Should She Be Listed as an English Monarch?
Although they are regarded as loose ends, the last Anglo-Saxon and last Norman kings of England are both Richard’s ancestors, via Edward III’s marriage. This document demonstrates Phillippa of Hainault’s descent from Harold II, via Kiev and Hungary, and Stephen, via the Low Countries. There seems to be little news from Faversham Abbey, where Stephen… Continue reading More of Richard’s ancestors
Quest for the Norman Kings Finding a present day mitochondrial DNA match for either Henry I, buried in Reading Abbey in 1135, or Stephen, buried with his family in Kent’s Faversham Abbey in 1154, is going to be very difficult. However, one factor is often overlooked: Stephen is the son of Henry I’s sister so… Continue reading Quest for the Norman Kings