Autumn dig at Chirk Castle promises to be exciting….

It seems that during the medieval period, no fewer than five holders of Chirk Castle were executed for treason. With that track record, I trust the National Trust intends to tread very carefully when it looks into the castle’s past and secrets this autumn. Richard, Duke of Gloucester, also held Chirk for a while, so… Continue reading Autumn dig at Chirk Castle promises to be exciting….

Joan of Arc and Les Soldats

    Today marks the 587th anniversary of the death of Joan of Arc, burned at the stake at Rouen, France.  As the flames engulfed her, she clutched a cross made of sticks to her bosom, fashioned by an ordinary English solder.  “Jesus!”  was her last word.  She was 19 years old.  In 1920, almost… Continue reading Joan of Arc and Les Soldats

The Swynford/ Beaufort case again

As we said five years ago, it is unclear whether John, Marquess of Somerset and Dorset, really was the son of John of Gaunt or of Sir Hugh Swynford. Furthermore, the common law answer to that question may be different to the genetic answer, as we revealed that Swynford could well have died after the… Continue reading The Swynford/ Beaufort case again

Is Dan Jones beginning to understand …

… what is really likely to have happened in the fifteenth century (as Harriss, Ashdown-Hill and Fields strongly suspect)? At this rate, he will soon learn the fact of the pre-contract and how canon law works.

SIR MATTHEW CRADDOCK 1468 – 1531

 Matthew Craddock was the son of Richard ap Gwilliam ap Evan ap Craddock Vreichfras and Jennet Horton of Candleston Castle in Glamorgan. His great grandfather, William Horton of Tregwynt in Pembrokeshire, married Joan de Canteloupe the heiress of Candleston. Jennet Horton was their granddaughter. I first came across Matthew Craddock while looking at anything that… Continue reading SIR MATTHEW CRADDOCK 1468 – 1531

Richard III and White Surrey….

Once again, while rooting around for information that might be of use in a book I intend to write about figures in the court of Richard II, I have found an interesting snippet. This time my thoughts are jolted with regard to the name of Richard III’s horse, White Surrey. I have never particularly liked… Continue reading Richard III and White Surrey….

“excepta dignitate regali” (again)

Henry IV added these words to Richard II’s legitimisation of his half-siblings in 1407, when he had four healthy sons and two daughters. So what was the Beaufort family situation in the year that their claim to the throne was disregarded? JOHN, MARQUIS OF DORSET AND SOMERSET was about 36, a married father of five.… Continue reading “excepta dignitate regali” (again)

“Cardinal Beaufort: A Study of Lancastrian Ascendancy and Decline” by G.L.Harriss

This 1988 volume reads very well and is an excellent summary of the life of the second (or first) son of John of Gaunt by his mistress Catherine de Roet. The language is very modern although the plain cover is a little reminiscent of many older books. There is relatively little material about Henry Beaufort’s… Continue reading “Cardinal Beaufort: A Study of Lancastrian Ascendancy and Decline” by G.L.Harriss