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‘What Hastings had heralded, the Harrying confirmed. The Normans were here to stay’ James Aitcheson on The Harrowing

Posted on: 07/07/2016 with tags: Battle of Hastings, English History, historical fiction, historical novel, history, James Aitcheson, Medieval, medieval history, Norman Conquest, The Harrying of the North, The Middle Ages, Medieval, Norman

This year marks the 950th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings, one of the best known events in British history. On 14 October 1066, English and Norman armies clashed at the site now occupied by Battle Abbey in East Sussex, in a fierce struggle for the English crown that ended in the death of the incumbent king, Harold Godwineson, and in victory for the invader, William of Normandy. Most people today, if asked what was the most significant event of the Norman Conquest, would probably name Hasti…

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The Harrying of the North by James Aitcheson

Posted on: 06/07/2016 with tags: Battle of Hastings, historical fiction, medieval history, Middle Ages, Norman Conquest, The Harrying of the North, william the conqueror, Medieval, Norman

Ask most people what was the defining event of the Norman Conquest and they’ll probably name the Battle of Hastings, when William the Conqueror defeated and killed his rival Harold Godwineson en route to seizing the English crown in 1066. However, it was the cruel coda to Hastings that has arguably done most to define modern perceptions of the Normans and their impact on England. Over the winter of 1069-70, William the Conqueror’s armies laid waste Yorkshire and the north-east of England in a ru…

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What to expect from The Leopards of Normandy

Posted on: 21/04/2016 with tags: david churchill, duke, leopards of normandy, normans, tom cain, william of normandy, william the conqueror, Medieval, Norman

On publication of Duke, the second book in his Leopards of Normandy series author David Churchill outlines what you can expect. Book. 1: The Devil And His Bastard Son  Robert of Normandy is a young man in a hurry. He’s handsome, brave, impetuous, and he’s just seized Normandy’s mightiest castle. But Robert has an older brother, Richard. He’s the Duke of Normandy. He wants his castle back. And he’ll take it by force if he has to. Herleva of Falaise is the daughter of a humble tanner, but she’s mo…

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Roast peacock for a medieval Christmas

Posted on: 07/12/2015 with tags: christmas, karen maitland, Medieval, richard II, the raven's head, wassial, Medieval

Karen Maitland, author of The Raven’s Head, writes about a typical medieval Christmas banquet… If you’re feverishly shopping for all those meals you’ll have to cook during the extra-long Christmas weekend this year, spare a thought for medieval cooks. In centuries past, Christmas lasted not just two or three days but twelve, from Christmas Day to Epiphany on 6th January. In 1398, after King Richard II remodelled Westminster Hall, originally built in 1097/8 by William the Conqueror’s son, Rufus,…

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