View previous topic | View next topic


Page 1 of 2
Goto page 1, 2  Next

1338940.  Wed Dec 18, 2019 10:39 am Reply with quote

Dix wrote:

(no points for guessing what I read...)

I thought I'd posted that earlier, I know I typed a post. Must have forgotten to submit.......

1338942.  Wed Dec 18, 2019 12:01 pm Reply with quote

It was either Brian Boru or Idi Amin, but I think the latter settled for styling himself "King of Scotland".

Alexander Howard
1338996.  Thu Dec 19, 2019 9:50 am Reply with quote

Indeed - Brian Boru, who never saw Scotland, but was named in the Book of Armagh as "Emperor of the Scots" because "Scots" meant "Irishmen" or "Gaels". In Anglo-Saxon texts of King Alfred's time, "Scotland" means Ireland.

1339000.  Thu Dec 19, 2019 10:58 am Reply with quote

The Scoti or Gaels started to migrated to Scotland sometime around the year 500, but were largely confined to Dalriada, or Argyll as we now call it.

According to legend, Alba - Scotland as we now know it, more or less - was founded when Kenneth MacAlpine, King of Dalriada conquered the Picts in around 850. Modern historians tend to think that this is a myth and that the union of the two tribes was actually half a century later.

But yes, the Latin Scotia referred to Ireland (possibly including Argyll) until sometime around the Norman Conquest. The name Ireland wasn't commonly used until the Normans went there in 1169, since there had been half a dozen kingdoms on the island and there had been no real need for a name to encompass all of them. The Latin name for Ireland was of course Hibernia.

1339357.  Sun Dec 22, 2019 1:46 pm Reply with quote

Royal rating: Princess Ariane of the Netherlands' name starts with an A because the King wanted to complete a triple A (Amalia, Alexia, Ariane).

1340328.  Wed Jan 08, 2020 8:09 pm Reply with quote

Cnut, King of the Norwegians (and some of the Swedes), is best remembered these days as that idiot who thought his crown could hold back the sea. But the original story, which dates back to the 12th century, is completely the opposite: Cnut's soggy adventure was an effort to show his humility and piety.

This article on the BBC wrote:
When his orders were ignored, he pronounced: "Let all the world know that the power of kings is empty and worthless and there is no King worthy of the name save Him by whose will heaven and earth and sea obey eternal laws," (Historia Anglorum, ed D E Greenway).


"Everyone always gets it wrong. The latest debate is a nice example of how legend becomes distorted when it is told and retold," says Prof Keynes. "Every now and then someone points out that the reference is wrong, but commentators continue to do it and historians such as myself wince."

"The story is intended to illustrate his piety - a prominent feature in his kingship," he says. "He knows his power is nothing besides that of God."

"The subtext is that he knows what is going to happen - he is demonstrating what he knows already."

1340333.  Thu Jan 09, 2020 4:16 am Reply with quote

According to a book I just read, the story is apocryphal at best.

1340357.  Thu Jan 09, 2020 10:26 am Reply with quote

Oh for sure. But we've screwed up the apocryphy.

Alexander Howard
1341304.  Sun Jan 26, 2020 3:03 pm Reply with quote

Burial places: British Kings now are buried within St George's Chapel in Windsor. King George IV had the chapel refurbished and in the process the coffins of two of his predecessors, Henry VIII and Charles I. King Henry's body still had some red whiskers on the chin, and King Charles was not all in one piece, naturally. Gilray did a satirical cartoon of the event where King Charles's skeleton gives a warning to an unpopular monarch:

In Winchester Cathedral there are several caskets containing the bones of Anglo-Saxon kings, each labelled with his name. However the labels do not match the contents: Oliver Cromwell's men tipped all the skeletons out and hurled the bones up to smash the superstitious images in the stained glass windows. Later the bones were hurriedly gathered up and put back in the caskets, but all mixed up.[/url]

1341309.  Sun Jan 26, 2020 4:26 pm Reply with quote

Four of the royal graves in (the old) Winchester Cathedral were for Danish royalty: Cnut himself, his son Harthacnut, Cnut's wife Emma, and Cnut's sister's son, earl Beorn.

This link will take you to the book where I found the details, but not to the right page. It's page 103, and you have to brush up on your Danish before you go there :-)

1341550.  Wed Jan 29, 2020 1:20 pm Reply with quote

Dix wrote:
Cnut's wife Emma

I... what

1341571.  Wed Jan 29, 2020 5:50 pm Reply with quote

Yes, really!

Cnut's father was called Sveinn, usually referred to as Sweyn Forkbeard in English. Since there are no photos of him, we don't know quite how remarkable a beard he wore.

The name of Cnut's mother is unknown. Sveinn is known to have been married to a Polish woman. Polish sources call her Świętosława, although this name is a much later invention derived from doubtful Old English sources. Norse sources have Cnut's mother as Gunhild, but it is not clear whether the two women are one and the same, or whether Sveinn perhaps had more than one wife.

Cnut married twice. His first wife was called Ælfgifu and was probably from Northampton. Cnut seems to have dumped her while she was pregnant for their second child, and taken up with the more prosaicly named Emma, who was the widow of Æþelræd (Ethelred the Unready).

Emma was French, and in pre-Norman Britain you couldn't have a queen with a French name so she was given an "official" Old English name. Oddly, Cnut decided that her Old English name should be, of all the female names available, Ælfgifu.

Cnut is rather a difficult word to type. But based on the preceding two paragraphs, he sounds as if he may have been a bit of a, well, what it's much easier to type ...

1341575.  Wed Jan 29, 2020 6:16 pm Reply with quote

Thanks for that, Suze. It saves me from translating my source and double-checking the English forms of the names.
It's a proper scholary inventory of all the Danish royal grave monuments, so I wouldn't expect to find basic mistakes in there.
(And it's got a preface by Her Royal Danish Majesty.)

I don't think Cnut was alone in being a bit of a .... well, yes.
The Viking noble family connections were usually somewhat complicated. It doesn't help that the written sources are few, often not contemporary and in at least some cases somewhat skewed towards flattering whichever side was paying the scholar's salary.
1349967.  Sat Jun 06, 2020 10:32 am Reply with quote


In Winchester Cathedral there are several caskets containing the bones of Anglo-Saxon kings, each labelled with his name. However the labels do not match the contents: Oliver Cromwell's men tipped all the skeletons out and hurled the bones up to smash the superstitious images in the stained glass windows. Later the bones were hurriedly gathered up and put back in the caskets, but all mixed up.[/url]

William II has his own separate and substantial tomb in the very same cathedral. However, his actual bones are believed to lie in those aforementioned caskets.
1375794.  Sat Feb 27, 2021 12:18 pm Reply with quote

Q. What was King Henry VIII's surname?

A. Tudor?


Before his victory at Bosworth King Henry VII was usually known as Henry of Richmond. When staking his claim to the throne he would have downplayed the lineage of his grandfather Owen Tudor - which is why Richard III and the pretender Perkin Warbeck did the opposite, calling him 'Harry Tydder'. As kings have no need for surnames, 'Tudor' would have been largely absent once he and his successors were on the throne

Although the Welsh celebrated Henry VII's Welsh ancestry it was only late in Elizabeth I's reign that the English began to share this interest. This was with an eye to the accession of King James VI of Scotland as King James I of England. There was now an incentive to trumpet the fact that Henry VII's ancestors helped to create a monarchy that embraced the British Isles.

It wasn't really until the publication of David Hume's History of England Under the House of Tudor (1759) that the name Tudor truly cemented itself in the public consciousness.

Source: BBC History magazine, March 2021 edition.


Page 1 of 2
Goto page 1, 2  Next

All times are GMT - 5 Hours

Display posts from previous:   

Search Search Forums

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group