The Kingmaker’s Anger

I’m working on a biography of Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick – the man best introduced as The Kingmaker. I have written on the Wars of the Roses, on Richard, Duke of York, and Richard III. Warwick has been a constant presence throughout. I spent some time in an earlier dispute over the throne of… Continue reading The Kingmaker’s Anger

“Historically accurate” movies as voted for in 2017….

Well, it’s interesting to see the top 33 “historically accurate” movies , as voted for in 2017 by IMDb readers. I confess to being disappointed that only three of the medieval period made it to the list (which is in number-of-votes order). Well, three if Elizabeth actually counts as medieval. This last of the Tudor… Continue reading “Historically accurate” movies as voted for in 2017….

Three lions on a shirt….English football and Richard the Lionheart….

“….He spent little time in England but one very famous king’s emblem is now on the lips of millions in the country he ruled but rarely visited. Football fans across the land are singing ‘Three Lions on a Shirt’ and it’s all thanks to Richard I….” Well, that’s about all for which England has to… Continue reading Three lions on a shirt….English football and Richard the Lionheart….

London’s Greatest Bridges (with Rob Bell)

The series began at London Bridge itself. From an engineering perspective, Bell explained that the wooden Claudian bridge was the first across the Thames , built on no fewer than twenty-nine artificial islands, making it very difficult to negotiate. It was replaced with a very similar stone unit by Henry II. The Haberdashers were very… Continue reading London’s Greatest Bridges (with Rob Bell)

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….!

LOUIS IX OF FRANCE–THE BONES SPEAK

It is not just King Richard III who has had numerous scientific tests done on his mortal remains. Tests have also recently taken place on the jawbone of Louis IX of France who died in 1270 while on Crusade in Tunisia. Louis is also known as ‘The Saint’ and was the husband of Margaret of… Continue reading LOUIS IX OF FRANCE–THE BONES SPEAK

The origins of the White Rose of York?

According to Caroline Halstead in Richard III As Duke Of Gloucester And King of England, the White Rose derives from Clifford Castle (near Hay-on-Wye). It therefore came to the York family as part of their inheritance from the Mortimers, who had themselves inherited Clifford Castle. But why is Clifford Castle associated with a white rose?… Continue reading The origins of the White Rose of York?

Eleanor of Aquitaine is to get the Starz treatment….!

Eleanor of Aquitaine needs to keep her head down, I fear – Starz is coming after her, aided and abetted by Alison Weir this time. See this link.  Has Philippa Gregory had the elbow? Whatever, we can batten down the hatches for another storm of misinformatiion! And one thing’s certain – it won’t be even… Continue reading Eleanor of Aquitaine is to get the Starz treatment….!

The bishop and the abbot, croziers at dawn….

Well, I’m shocked that such bribery, skulduggery and jostling for position should go on among the bishops and abbots of medieval England. Holy men shouldn’t behave like this! I’m afraid that when I read the following passages from this article, concerning events in the reign of Henry II, it conjured one of those old black-and-white… Continue reading The bishop and the abbot, croziers at dawn….

Ela of Salisbury, Sheriff, Abbess, and Ancestor of Kings

Ela of Salisbury has been called a ‘towering female figure of the 13th’ century by historian Linda  Elizabeth Mitchell. However, outside of some quarters in Wiltshire, she is not terribly well known. What is even less commented on than her accomplishments is her genealogy. She is a foremother to Richard III and Edward IV in… Continue reading Ela of Salisbury, Sheriff, Abbess, and Ancestor of Kings