Jules' fantastic blog about Hugh Despenser the Younger and all things Edward II has a new address and a new look. Check it out! This is my favourite post of hers, about the practically unknown rescue by Hugh of Margaret, Lady Badlesmere (his wife Eleanor's first cousin) when she was attacked and besieged by a large group of miscreants in Hertfordshire in 1319. See! He wasn't all bad!
|Why can't you spell properly?|
|Just spotted this delightful and semi-illiterate comment on a blog post about the many historical inaccuracies in Braveheart. What a charming, polite person!|
Totally bonkers and extremely hard to follow comment seen on a history forum: "I don't think Eddy II was he was [sic] born in Wales that title was just hearsay. He came across this possibility when was 16. The proof as the hearsay does not stack up, it is not possible." Ummmm what? There is no doubt whatsoever that Edward II was born in Wales. In his own lifetime he was often known as Edward of Caernarfon. Caernarfon is in North Wales. QED. I don't understand the rest of the statement, even though it was written by a native speaker of English, so can't comment.
From a book review: "Isabella finds herself nothing more than a political pawn in a loveless marriage." You could say exactly the same thing about Edward II himself being a 'political pawn', no? I am so bored with this endless modern 'Royal women in the Middle Ages were mere pawns in marriage!' whine, as though royal men had any choice in who they married either (with the exception of Edward IV). Both Edward and Isabella were raised with the knowledge that they'd have to marry another royal person for reasons of foreign policy and political expediency (both of them were betrothed for the first time as little more than infants); they weren't twenty-first-century people dropped into the fourteenth century with the expectation of marrying for love; their marriage ended disastrously but for many years was pretty successful, and certainly wasn't 'loveless'.
I loved the following comment on a history forum. Yes yes yes! Let's face it, it can't have been easy, being the son and heir of a man like Longshanks.
From the sublime to the ridiculous:
|Stereotypes R Us!|
|Stereotypes R Us, part 2!|
I love this comment on Tumblr, from a poster who's very well-informed about Edward II and clearly reads my blog. Well said!
From a great comment on Tumblr to a truly awful one:
Firstly, Isabella was not a 'princess'. The daughters of kings were not called that until the sixteenth century. Isabella, like the daughters of other kings in her era, was addressed from birth as ma dame in French or domina in Latin, 'lady' or 'my lady'. Edward of Caernarfon likewise was monsire Edward or dominus Edwardus from birth, '(my) lord Edward'. As prince of Wales from February 1301, he was addressed as 'my lord Edward, prince of Wales' or sometimes just 'the prince' for short, but never - this is a key point - as 'Prince Edward'. The only princess in England in the Middle Ages was Joan of Kent (1328-1385), Edward II's niece, who married his grandson Edward of Woodstock, prince of Wales.
I'm uncomfortable with assertive declarations about the sexuality of people who lived 700 years ago, as in, assuming that Edward II was certainly 100% gay (which all too often leads to the notion that he couldn't possibly have been the father of his children*), or that Roger Mortimer was certainly straight or even 'unequivocally heterosexual'. There are plenty of people I personally know very well about whom I couldn't, and wouldn't wish to, declare that their sexuality is 'unequivocally' anything, and I find it ludicrous to make such statements about people nearly 700 years dead. It's presumptuous for one thing, and as Roger Mortimer wouldn't have thought of himself as heterosexual, let alone 'unequivocally' so, who are we to claim that he was?
* The history forum poster who made the comment above that 'Eddy II' might not have been born in Wales also made this assertion: "We all know he was gay. How come he was able to perform in the bedroom, he had four children. Edward, John, Eleanor and Joanna. I believe his wife had a lover called Roger Mortimer, Earl of March. Did he have some help in this direction?" And "Sorry there has been to much recorded about him being gay, not to mention what happen with his death. I have known quite a few gay men and I know enough to say the last thing they would is go with a women. Although gay men like to talk and be friends with women, that where it stops there."
'Their princess was stood to the side, while the king ruled with his loverboy'. Isabella was a queen consort, not regnant. It wasn't her place to rule England. And 'loverboy', oh please.
Yet again, we see the assumptions that Edward II and Isabella had only one child together, when in fact they had four, and that Isabella overthrew Edward when their only child was a toddler and they'd been married for about five minutes. And we see yet again the malign influence of Braveheart, which gives the impression that Isabella - pregnant by William Wallace, of course - will rebel against her husband and rule England shortly after her father-in-law dies. Edward and Isabella married in January 1308 and so had been married for nineteen years at the time of his forced abdication in January 1327, though admittedly they hadn't seen each other since March 1325. That's still over seventeen years of marriage, however - hardly a short time.