Hidden historical heroines (#34: Edith Swanneck)

Edith Swannesha (Ealdgȳð Swann hnesce – “Edith [the] Gentle Swan” – c. 1025 – c. 1086) – also known as “Edith Swanneck” or “Edith the Fair” – was the first wife and consort of Harold Godwinson, a famous beauty known for her gentleness and the pleasing paleness of her skin. Edith was Harold’s common-law wife […]

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The naked truth: Lady Godiva

Legend has it that on this day (10 July) in 1040, Lady Godiva made her naked journey on horseback through the streets of Coventry, seeking a remission on the harsh taxes that her husband had imposed on his tenants.    The legend First recorded in the 13th century, the story of the good Lady Godiva’s […]

Hidden historical heroines (#31: Saint Margaret of Scotland)

Margaret of Wessex (c. 1045 – 16 November 1093) – known posthumously as Saint Margaret of Scotland – was an English Princess who was born in exile and became queen-consort of Scotland. Known for her piety and praised for her charitable works in life, she was canonised as a saint of the Roman Catholic Church […]

What If..? (#01: Harold Godwinson had won the Battle of Hastings)

Part of a new series on revisionist history, speculating on tiny changes in British history that could cause a ‘butterfly effect’.     Before the first week of the year 1066 was out, Edward the Confessor, Over-King of England, was dead. Likely heirs scrambled to claim the throne. Harold Godwinson – the Earl of Wessex […]

Hidden historical heroines (#02: Nest ferch Rhys)

  Nest ferch Rhys (c. 1085 – c. 1136) – or Agnes, daughter of Rhys – was a Welsh princess from the High Middle Ages.   She was the eldest legitimate child of Rhys ap Tewdwr, the last King of Deheubarth, by his wife, Gwladys ferch Rhiwallon ap Cynfyn, herself a princess of Powys. Both Deheubarth and Powys were […]