Filed under Norman history

Normans in the North

Following on from my last, here’s a pretty horrific account of the Normans in England, this time from Madeleine Buntings wonderful book, The Plot: “The most devastating war of all was William the Conqueror’s suppression of the north.It was the winter of 1069, 3 years after the Norman invasion, and William’s earlier attempts to impose … Continue reading

Women and Wealth

I’ve just started on a wonderful book, The Wealth of Wives Women, Law and Economy in Late Medieval London. The title sounds a bit dry, but it is really fascinating as the author, Barbara A. Hanawalt has spent years trawling through the various London archives to piece together some idea of the role of women … Continue reading

The Better Invaders

“We were your Romans, you know. We might have been your Normans” This is from Tom Stoppard’s Play, Indian Ink,  a comment from a former memsahib to an Indian. It is an intriguing idea, not least because  I wonder how many people would know what she was talking about. Britain has been invaded twice: by the … Continue reading

England by Foot

One of many culture clashes noticed, and suffered by Carl Philip Moritz was the treatment of travellers. He was from Prussia, a pastor fond of walking, so when he announced his plans to go for an extended walk in England, he was repeatedly warned against it. On arrival at inns, he was often refused food … Continue reading

Plugging My Books

This is a blatant attempt to tweak a few book sales, as they are just sitting around at home getting on each others’ nerves. I have written 17 books, with another one that needs working on. Theyare mostly local history, but I never do just local – whatever Iwrite about, I always try to place it within a wider … Continue reading

Piracy and Trade of The English

Piracy and Trade of The English

The Portugese habit of enlisting foreigners to evict the infidels continued for many years, and raiding visits from the North European Crusaders became a regular occurence to the extent that some didn’t bother going any further than Portugal and Spain. As Rose Macaulay continues: “The sight of these large and odious armed men… sailing in fleets up … Continue reading

The English Abroad

The English Abroad

The denizens of these islands have long had an awkward relationship with mainland Europe, perhaps more so during the Crusades when they were often on the rampage away from home. This is from Rose Macaulay’s book ‘the Went to Portugal’,  after a suggestion from the Pope that they could break their journey in Portugal. This … Continue reading