Myths abound about the medieval period, and some of them seem logical enough…yet they turn out to be untrue. One such is that spiral/newel staircases were built to be advantageous to those who use their right hand. So, as the majority of the human race is right-handed, this seemed a good, sensible idea. Yes?… Continue reading Did medieval spiral staircases swing to the left or right….?
The old myth about Richard striking his heel against Bow Bridge on his way to Bosworth, and then his head on the same place when being carried ignominiously back to Leicester after the battle, is very well known indeed. As is the supposed prediction of this sequence of events by an old woman in the… Continue reading The demolition of the medieval Bow Bridge, Leicester, that Richard would have crossed….
Serial killer? Murdered his nephews? Infamous? Had no children? Oh, well, this New Zealand article does go on to say that the actual Richard had a much better reputation than the Bard saw fit to bestow upon him. But if the illustration above is supposed to be Richard….it’s more like his grandfather! Or Jeremy Corbyn… Continue reading The Bard’s Richard, as played by Richard’s grandfather. . .!
Well, we are accustomed to incorrect reports about historic events, such as Richard III’s remains being tossed into the River Soar, and Henry “Tudor” being both “the Lancastrian heir” and “Earl of Richmond”. And that Richard III “poisoned” his queen, Anne Neville. Tradition abounds with these things, but today I came upon one I hadn’t… Continue reading Did Anne of Bohemia die of leprosy…?
Today in 1564, Christopher Marlowe (right) was baptised in Canterbury. One of the plays for which he is most famous is Edward II (left), traditionally dated a year before his own 1593 death. In it, he fuels the myth of Edward meeting his end by a red-hot poker. This is cited by Starkey in… Continue reading Playwrights and persistent historical myths