23 August, 2008

Blogs, Descendants, Accuracy and Abbeys

My blog buddy Anerje (Piers Gaveston's greatest fan, other than me...;) has started a new blog on Piers. Yay! Her first posts detail her search for the nineteenth-century monument commemorating Piers' death at Blacklow Hill, Warwickshire, on 19 June 1312 - a hideously moralistic, Victorian affair which calls Piers the "minion of a hateful king." *Rolls eyes*. The monument is hidden in a wood and is somewhat defaced by graffitti, not to mention very difficult to find. Here's Anerje's pic of the inscription - more photos on her blog. (The date of Piers' death given on the monument is wrong.)

A warm, albeit rather belated (oops!) welcome to cyberspace for Fuzzy History, an excellent, very readable site for all fans of historical fiction.

Fans of Richard III (who was Edward II's great-great-great-grandson, via two of Edward III's sons, John of Gaunt and Edmund of Langley), will be delighted to hear that Vulpes Libris is dedicating a week of posts to him. Yesterday marked the 523rd anniversary of Richard's death on the battlefield of Bosworth. It's fascinating to see that he attracts so much interest, and so many passionate defenders and detractors, more than half a millennium after his death.

And here's an interesting if somewhat random fact, inspired by the fact that, for some odd reason, I'm on a bit of a Tudor kick at the moment (for which I blame Jonathan Rhys Meyers): all six of Henry VIII's wives were descended from Edward I, and three of them (Catherine of Aragon, Jane Seymour and Katherine Parr) were descended from Edward II, Catherine and Katherine through John of Gaunt and Jane through Lionel of Antwerp. Catherine of Aragon was Edward's four greats granddaughter, Katherine Parr his six greats granddaughter, and Jane Seymour his seven greats granddaughter. Anne Boleyn and Catherine Howard were descended both from Edward II's sister Elizabeth, countess of Hereford, and his half-brother Thomas of Brotherton, earl of Norfolk, while Anne of Cleves was the seven greats granddaughter of his sister Margaret, duchess of Brabant.

A great article about historical (in)accuracy in Braveheart appeared in The Guardian recently (thanks to Carla Nayland for sending me the link). And for some more entertaining analyses of historical films, click on the 'Reel History' link on the right of the Braveheart article.

At the end of next month I'm off to North Yorkshire to explore historical sites, including the amazing Rievaulx Abbey and Fountains Abbey, two Cistercian houses founded in 1132. Can't wait!

Pics of Rievaulx here, here, here and also here.

Pics of Fountains here, here, here and, surprise surprise, here.

And finally, for no particular reason, except that it's about a mile from where I was born and I have lots of happy memories of visiting it as a child, here are some pics of Furness Abbey, also Cistercian, founded in 1124 by Stephen of Blois (king of England 1135 to 1154): here, here, and here.

10 comments:

Susan Higginbotham said...

Take pictures, please!

Nice to hear that Piers has a blog now, and a very good blog at that!

Alianore said...

Lots of pics of places in Yorkshire to follow in October!

Lady D. said...

Thanks for the mention and all the other info. You are a most wonderful fount of information ;-)

Alianore said...

Thanks, Lady D! *Attempts gracious curtsey in acknowledgement, and falls over* :-)

Anerje said...

Thanks for the mention Alianore! And the encouragement. I shall do my best for Piers, but will never be able to live up to the excellance of your blog.

Really appreciate the links in this post - ROTFL at the Bravehert review - ' Braveheart still serves up a great big steaming haggis of lies.'

Alianore said...

Thanks for the compliment, Anerje! I'm really looking forward to reading more on your blog.

Gabriele C. said...

Those abbeys look cool. I want to see them myself. Argh, where's that lottery win when you need one (esp. considering that some idiots uses theirs on Ferraris, parties and girls with loose morals and end up poor as before).

Alianore said...

If I win the lottery, I'll take all of us on a fantastic trip round as many historical sites as we can manage! (I'm not going to let the fact that I don't play the lottery spoil this little fantasy. ;)

Carla said...

By not playing the lottery you don't waste money on tickets and can spend it on your travel instead - a much more reliable method :-)
Have a lovely time in Yorkshire.

Alianore said...

Thanks, Carla! We're going in late Sept - hope the weather isn't too bad, but maybe I'm being hopelessly optimistic. ;)