The imposition of ransom….

    My latest target for research is the English garrison/bastion of Brest, on the coast of Brittany, specifically the final years of the 14th century before it was handed back to the Bretons. My interest had been aroused when reading Ducal Brittany 1364-1399, by Michael Jones. In it I learned of the practice of… Continue reading The imposition of ransom….

The perils of obtaining books….

  Here at this link is the ultimate tease for this already whining, snivelling book-seeker who has been buying books all over recently and whose purse is becoming sadly threadbare. And whose house is running out of space for accommodating my endless lust for more books! This particular volume is expensive (natch, all the books I… Continue reading The perils of obtaining books….

Piracy, then and now

It has been brought to our attention that a website, probably based in Eastern Europe, has uploaded several hundred recently published history books and made them available without charge or password, ostensibly as an educational project. Whilst we won’t mention the site in question, to avoid encouraging them, here is a reminder of the typical… Continue reading Piracy, then and now

THE THREE HUNDRED YEARS WAR – PART 2: the just cause  

  Preface This is the second of three articles charting the course of continual Anglo-French conflict from the twelfth to the fifteenth centuries. In the first article, I wrote about the rise and fall of the Angevin Empire, culminating in the Treaty of Paris (1259). This article picks up my narrative after the death of… Continue reading THE THREE HUNDRED YEARS WAR – PART 2: the just cause  

Has one of the Kingmaker’s pirate ships been found in Newport….?

Last night I watched (on PBS America) a BBC2 Timewatch episode entitled The Mysteries of the Medieval Ship. It concerned the discovery, in June 2002, of a foundered/scuttled medieval vessel of some size, buried in the oozing mud of the Severn Sea – well, the oozing mud of the River Usk, at Newport, to be… Continue reading Has one of the Kingmaker’s pirate ships been found in Newport….?

A life on the 14th-century ocean waves….

It would seem that pirate queens existed long before the 17th/18th century, the Spanish Main and swash-buckling as we know it. There was a certain French noblewoman in the 14th century who took her revenge upon the French for executing her husband, and did all she could with her pirate fleet to help the England… Continue reading A life on the 14th-century ocean waves….