317 – Æthelred: A Culture of Corruption

At 16 years old, King AEthelred was considered fully grown by Anglo Saxon standards. And as a bonus graduation present, the powerful Bishop AEthelwold of Winchester… who appears to have been the defacto head of state while AEthelred was a child… had died. With his passing, the power of the old guard had been broken [...]

315 – Æthelred: The Cracks in the Foundation

“Under AEthelred nothing was done; or, more truly, throughout his whole reign he left undone those things which he ought to have done, and he did those things he ought not to have done.”   That is the damning conclusion of  Edward Augustus Freeman, a Victorian historian, and epic beard grower.  

312 – King Edward

King Edgar is Dead… and in his place reigned his son, King Edward of England. And you’d think that we’d be referring to him as King Edward the First.  Or, if you wanted to fudge it a bit and give Edward the Elder some credit for forming the Kingdom of the Anglo Saxons… maybe King [...]

311 – Team Edward

King Edgar the Peaceable was buried at Glastonbury in 975. But weirdly that isn’t the end of his story. William of Malmesbury tells us that nearly a century later, in 1053, the Abbot Ailward re-opened the King’s tomb. Malmsbury doesn’t tell us WHY the monk opened the grave, so I suppose we can just assume [...]

310 – Political Theater

Human beings can’t really be summed up in a nickname. Usually we are more complicated than a word or two. And sometimes, the nickname just doesn’t reflect reality. If you take  Edward the Elder, for example, the name probably conjures up an image of Gandalf. But Edward was only in his early 50’s when he [...]

308 – A Thirst for Reform

Across the North Sea, in Scandinavia, a man named Harald Greycloak was struggling for dominance in the region.  He wasn’t just any man, he was a son of Erik Bloodaxe and Gunnhilde. And his fight brought him into direct conflict with King Haakon.

296 – Darkening Skies

It begins in France. The struggle for power between King Louis IV and Hugh the Great had been raging for quite some time… When we last visited the continent, , Hugh the Great, King Otto of Germany, Duke William of Normandy, Count Herbert II, and various other supporting characters were allied against King Louis IV, [...]

295 – The Return of England

You know the pieces on a chessboard? There’s the knight, and the queen, and the castle….and then there’s the bishop. There’s a reason why a game that simulates medieval power strategy has a piece called the bishop. Bishops had power. And it was a power that didn’t flow from the monarchy. And in britain, it [...]