Category: England

eadfrith: The Grandisson Psalter Folios 25r – …


The Grandisson Psalter

Folios 25r – 26v Add MS 21926




Isabella of Angoulême

Queen consort of England and Countess of Angoulême

Born c. 1186/c. 1188 – died 1246

Claim to fame: a feisty young queen who defied the English monarchy and rebelled against the French.

At the age of 12 or 14, Isabella became the second wife of 34 year old King John of England in 1200. Though young, she was already a renowned beauty with blonde hair and blue eyes. It was reported by his critics that John was so infatuated with her that he neglected his duties as king to stay in bed with her. She became the Countess of Angoulême in her own right in 1202. She had five children with John, including his heir Henry III. She oversaw the coronation of Henry after John’s death in 1216 but left her son and returned to France a year later although he was just nine years old.

In 1220 Isabella married Hugh X of Lusignan, Count of La Marche. Interestingly, she had been betrothed to his father prior to her marriage to John and Hugh X was engaged to her daughter, Joan, but decided he preferred Isabella who was still still a beautiful woman of around 30 years old. She married without the consent of Henry III’s council which lead to a stoush whereby her dower lands were confiscated and she threatened to prevent the marriage of her daughter to the King of Scots. Her son tried to have her excommunicated but eventually came to terms. She had a further nine children with Hugh.

Apparently disgruntled with her lower status as countess, she took great offence to being publicly snubbed by the French Queen Dowager, Blanche of Castile, whom she already hated due to her support of the French invasion of England in 1216. In retaliation, Isabella reportedly conspired with other disgruntled nobles to form an English-backed confederacy against the French King Louis IX. By 1244 the confederacy had failed but Isabella was implicated in an attempt to poison Louis. To avoid arrest she fled to Fontevraud Abbey where she died two years later.

The first image is of her effigy at Fontevraud Abbey. The second is her seal, presumably designed before she had fourteen children…

thecreativehistorian: Happy birthday to Edwa…


Happy birthday to Edward the Black Prince! 

Born on this day (15 June) in 1330, he was in line to become King Edward IV, but illness eventually led to him predeceasing his father King Edward III, and the throne went to his son Richard. It was the first time that the throne of England went from grandfather to grandson (the second time was when George III inherited from George II several centuries later).

Find out more at The Creative Historian!

upennmanuscripts: Ms. Codex 1063 –  [Book of…


Ms. Codex 1063 – 

[Book of hours: use of Sarum]

Another wonderful book of hours! This was produced in England, probably in London (ca. 1450-1460 CE), perhaps for a member of a religious confraternity or community. It includes a calendar, the Office of the Virgin (use of Sarum), Seven Penitential Psalms and incipits of the Gradual Psalms, litany, notated Office of the Dead (use of Sarum), and a variety of prayers. Fun fact: there is the erasure of Thomas Becket from the calendar, plus 17th-century additions in English to the calendar.

The decorated margins are extraordinary! See here for more (or click here if you want to know more).

realmedieval: ‎Photo credit unknown – photos c…


‎Photo credit unknown – photos courtesy of Taddeo Berni‎ 

St Botolph’s Church,Hardham, West Sussex.

According to wiki, It contains the earliest nearly complete series of wall paintings in England, including the earliest known representation of St. George in England.

Dating from the 12th century, they were hidden from view until uncovered in 1866. The simple two-cell stone building, with its original medieval whitewashed exterior, has seen little alteration and also has an ancient bell.

I’ll be back in the UK this year in April. Who…

I’ll be back in the UK this year in April. Who wants to catch up? #medieval #england #wales #scotland #ireland

I do wish I was back in England right now. Lik…

I do wish I was back in England right now. Like on this bench in the church yard in Rye. #medieval #england #rye #eastsussex

The view of the Cheviot Hills from the border …

The view of the Cheviot Hills from the border of Scotland and England at Carter Bar. I could have sat here for hours and daydreamed. Border revivers went back and forth through here and the Scottish army passed this way to Otterburn. Edwards III himself traveled through here as well during his campaigns against the Scots. So rich in history for a place that is a way from settlements. #medieval #cheviothills #scotland #england #carterbar

A medieval cellar underneath one of the pubs i…

A medieval cellar underneath one of the pubs in Canterbury. This cellar is a part of a network of underground rooms and tunnels which honeycomb the old city and go to the cathedral itself. Amazing stuff. #england #canterbury #theshakespere #kent

Inside the amazing Harbledown St Nicholas Lepe…

Inside the amazing Harbledown St Nicholas Lepers Hospital church. It really is an amazing place so full of medieval artifacts and history. #medieval #harbledown #kent #hospital #church #england