Medieval Latin.

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by dorsetUK »

absque fenestris wrote:
Wed Mar 04, 2020 1:38 pm
Whose Book Is it Anyway?
Sorry, but I'm about to 'have a moment', or, 'go off on one', or just SHOUT.

Boydell and Brewer, generally speaking, a fantastic publisher who publish things such as "Fourteenth Century England".
Boydell & Brewer's monographs and series have made available substantial and significant new research into the middle ages over the past decades
https://www.cambridge.org/core/series/f ... 1AC4A25E6#

And they do. I've bought two of them - they're excellent. They're written by working historians - 'The modern view'. They're, new, challenging and thought provoking - and isn't that what history's meant to be?

DEEP breath - go on, just go on - click on this bloody link - GO ON - https://boydellandbrewer.com/

Maybe it works outside of my world, but it certainly doesn't in mine. Because of that I used Google Books to find; "King, Andy (2016) The death of Edward II revisited. In, Bothwell, James and Dodd, Gwilym (eds.) Fourteenth Century England IX. Woodbridge, GB. Boydell Press, pp. 2-21".

In order to 'prove' something.

Instead of paying £60 - which I should have spent on something that is far more important - and now can!

Copyright - pah!

DEEP breath - ummmmmmmmmm - breathe out.

I feel guilty for 'avoiding' paying the authors, but hey ho.

Jon - who knows that there's an 'issue' with certificates, but, blinkin' hell :roll:

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Re: Medieval Latin.

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Sorry.

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by absque fenestris »

Why "Sorry"... ... ?

Your thread was viewed by almost 1500 forum members, not counting guests.
Of course, linguistic subtleties and translation errors make the discussion a little more difficult, but can also open up completely new paths.
It's like Linux.
Hope dies last, I hope.

regards af
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Re: Medieval Latin.

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absque fenestris wrote:
Mon Mar 09, 2020 7:58 pm
Why "Sorry"... ... ?
Cheers af

I guess it was just "one of those moments".
absque fenestris wrote:
Mon Mar 09, 2020 7:58 pm
Hope dies last, I hope.
As do I.

Let's return to 7th July 1348 when the botch started - sadly - in Dorset.

It's now known as the Black Death. Damn - far too contemporary!

Anyway, the first recorded death due to the botch was when the anonymous priest of 'West Chickerel' died. Poor sod.

The botch killed about a third of us - I'm glad that I'm alive now.

Jon

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Re: Medieval Latin.

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The botch - sorry - the Plague carried on in ‘spits and spurts’ for over 300 years, and as it’s a different ‘disease’, I’m not suggesting any correlation with our current problems.

In 1665, “the villagers [of Eyam] were well ahead of their time. They didn’t know what the affliction was, but they reasoned that close contact with other people was how the illness was passing from one to another.” (In fact, infected fleas had been brought into the village in a bundle of cloth.) “They recognised the necessary business of keeping apart from other people.”

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/ ... 665-plague

Around about the same time in Dorset, we had;

A Preservative against the plague (17th Century).

Malagoe, Sack, Rue, Pepper, Ginger, Nutmeg, Treacle and Aqua Vitae.

Problem is though – what the hell are Malagoe and Sack?

Jon.

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by absque fenestris »

Malagoe:
Upon Malagoe and other Raisins, One Shilling and Sixpence per Cent':
https://www.british-history.ac.uk/commo ... pp170-172

In La Axarquía and Manilva, the Alexandria muscatel, fat muscatel, or Malaga muscatel grapes are grown. These are used to produce the raisins included in this Denomination of Origin.
The art of drying grapes has been practised since early times in the province of Malaga, which gave rise to an important industry.
https://www.spain.info/en/que-quieres/g ... alaga.html
Sack:
sack (sæk)
n.
a strong white wine formerly imported by England from Spain and the Canary Islands.
[1525–35; < French (vin) sec dry (wine) < Latin siccus dry; compare sec]
https://www.thefreedictionary.com/sack


The mixture - without Aqua Vitae - boiled briefly, seasoned and sweetened and then rounded off with Aqua Vitae*, should be stunning...

* uisce beatha or uisge beatha... ?
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Re: Medieval Latin.

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absque fenestris wrote:
Sun Mar 15, 2020 5:37 pm
The mixture - without Aqua Vitae - boiled briefly, seasoned and sweetened and then rounded off with Aqua Vitae*, should be stunning...
Cheers af, great to know about those two secret ingredients. I'll have to get my cauldron 'fired-up'.
* uisce beatha or uisge beatha... ?
Whiskey or whiskey? Irish, Scottish or Japanese? That remains one of the BIG questions that I must spend more time researching.

Thanks af - have a drink on me. Jon

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by absque fenestris »

Hi Jon
The word "Sherry" is an anglicisation of Xérès (Jerez). Sherry was previously known as sack, from the Spanish saca, meaning "extraction" from the solera.
Solera is a process for aging liquids such as wine, beer, vinegar, and brandy, by fractional blending in such a way that the finished product is a mixture of ages, with the average age gradually increasing as the process continues over many years.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sherry
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solera
Here the word sack is derived somewhat differently. What I know from my own experience is that the mixture of must (grape juice) with a lot of fructose, white wine and several glasses of champagne has an extraordinary effect.
If a good shot of whiskey is added and the whole thing is possibly drunk hot ...

What I miss a bit in the recipe is cinnamon, it actually belongs to all mulled wines. Regards af
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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by dorsetUK »

absque fenestris wrote:
Mon Mar 16, 2020 5:36 am
What I miss a bit in the recipe is cinnamon, it actually belongs to all mulled wines. Regards af
af, how true.

A niece of mine lives in southern Germany and has recently taken up skiing. When she came home for Xmas I made "gluhwein" - from the old family recipe :lol: Cloves, lemon, cinnamon, sugar, wine, brandy and some warmth - yum.

In 1587, Sir Francis Drake captured the harbour [of Cadiz] and set fire to many of the ships, delaying the launch of the Armada by a year. He also captured 2,900 butts of Sherry that was at the docks waiting to be loaded for ships to South America. The wine that Drake brought back to England only increased the English esteem and thirst for Sherry. :wink: William Shakespeare characterized the English's love for "sack" with his character of Sir John Falstaff who most famously noted in Henry IV, Part 2 that "If I had a thousand sons, the first humane principle I would teach them should be, to forswear thin potations* and to addict themselves to sack."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_Sherry

* potation
noun archaic humorous
an alcoholic drink.
the action of drinking alcohol.
a drinking bout.

I feel the need to resurrect potation, and as I always preferred Port to Sherry, I raise a potation of Port to your good self. 8)

Jon

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Re: Medieval Latin.

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With thanks to a fellow forum member who was kind enough to PM me rather than embarrass me publicly, I've now got hold of 'The Safeguard of the sea', which I hope will allow me to expand on things such as this;

On May 8th 1293, Ralph le Blake of Waymue [Weymouth], Ralph le Bunde of Melecumbe and John le Fysshere of Melecumbe [Melcombe - now part of Weymouth], Robert Qwyntin of Ryngstede [Ringstead - just to the East of Weymouth], Henry Russel of Osmington [between Weymouth and Ringstead], Henry le Heyward of Estburton [East Burton], Roger de Blaneford [Blandford] and Henry de Swanwych [Swanage – were I was born].

And about 20 others, were pardoned, as were, Geoffrey de Upringestede [above Ringstead?] and Henry de Mary [of WHERE?], as they were accused of a “trespass committed by them upon James de Gwyenecurt and Andrew le Cunte, merchants of Amiens, as they are now staying on the sea with the barons of the Cinque Ports by reason of the contention that has there arisen.”, which was shown to be false.

There are many ‘holes’ in the records, but in 1321, when England was descending into civil-war, there was what I thought was ‘piracy’, as Ralph Wranne of Dorchester “requested a remedy, as he was robbed by Bataille and others of money and wool as he approached Portsmouth in a ship of Sandwich”.

When I saw ‘Bataille’, I thought – that must be the French, attacking our poor harmless ships!

Also in 1321, there was some more ‘piracy’ as, “Alexander Colin of Sherborne showed the king that he’d loaded a boat with cloth, but the money and goods from the boat were taken before Portsmouth by Robert de la Batayl and others of the Cinque Ports.”

I’ve had to get used to the fact that, ‘back then’, they wrote what they heard, and that Bataille and Batayl were the same person – and that the ‘Cinque Ports’, were English.

● 1320-1321 Bartholomew Badlesmere, 1st Baron Badlesmere
● 1321 Sir Hugh le Despenser, 1st Earl of Winchester
● 1321-1323 Edmund “of Woodstock”, Earl of Kent (son of Edward I)
https://cinqueports.org/lord-warden-off ... d-wardens/

Possibly interestingly, Bart Bad, got his head cut off by Edward II, and one of his best friends, or the son of one of his best friends, Hugh, the pirate, Despenser invaded England – naughty boy.

In 1330, Edmund “of Woodstock” – Edward IIs brother – was executed for trying to rescue his brother, who’d been deposed and died in 1327, from Corfe – even though his brother was dead – or not. Strange – if true.

JIC – officially, Edward II died on 21st Sept 1327, and in March 1330, Edmund “of Woodstock” was executed for trying – in late 1329 or early 1330 - to rescue his brother from Corfe. Strange.

To my fellow forum member - thanks again. Jon.

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by absque fenestris »

The "5 ports" were a confederation with special rights and duties. Interesting. Just like the occasional excursions and ship visits to neighbors, which were, however, returned at least as friendly.
I still haven't found anything special about the business relationships of the alpine confederation, e.g. customer complaints would be very interesting.

Here is more to read:

https://doverhistorian.com/2016/02/13/o ... er-part-i/
https://doverhistorian.com/2016/03/05/o ... r-part-ii/
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Re: Medieval Latin.

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absque fenestris wrote:
Thu Mar 19, 2020 5:15 am
Just like the occasional excursions and ship visits to neighbors, which were, however, returned at least as friendly.
:D :lol:

As your interesting links show, the Cinque Ports squabbled with Yarmouth, and it's fairly easy to find out about the squabbles between London and Winchelsea and even Little and Great Yarmouth, but when it comes to Dorsets interaction with the Cinque Ports, there's little. So I appreciate your frustration here
I still haven't found anything special about the business relationships of the alpine confederation, e.g. customer complaints would be very interesting.
What I do have is that in 1321, Edward II had to write to his brother - Edmund, earl of Kent, constable of Dover castle and warden of the Cinque Ports.

Order to cause proclamation to be made forbidding any person of the aforesaid ports
damaging the men or mariners of the towns of La Pole [Poole], Weymouth, Melecombe, Lym, and Southampton and other towns of the adjoining parts, by land or by sea, or attempting anything against them by reason whereof the king's peace may be injured, under pain of forfeiture of all that they can forfeit, as the king understands that great dissension has lately arisen between the barons of the Cinque Ports and the said men and mariners of the western parts, and that homicides, depredations, and burning of ships and other damages have resulted ...

And to us - To the bailiffs and men of the town of La Pole.

Order to cause like proclamation to be made forbidding any one inflicting damage upon the barons or mariners of the Cinque Ports.

The like to the bailiffs and men of the following ports: Melcombe, Southampton, Weymouth, Lym*.

OK, England was descending into Civil war and was possibly still recovering from 'Wet n Windy' age, but it seems that we'd scrap with anyone.

* Lym - now, it's Lyme Regis - and very pretty. :roll:

As I mentioned Mr Bataille in a previous post, well, on May 13th 1322. Appointment, during pleasure, of Robert Bataill, a baron of the Cinque Ports, as captain and admiral of the ships of the Cinque Ports about to go against the Scots ...

Oh goodie, another war. :cry:

I'm hoping that The safeguard of the sea may bring some light into my dusty old corners, as it's currently illuminating my dark Saxon niches.

Jon

Edited cuz I caint right my own lang... gu ... aje.

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Re: Medieval Latin.

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By 1321 Edward II had allowed the Despenser family - Hugh the elder, and Hugh the younger - to run England. This annoyed plenty of people and the country began it’s descent in civil-war. I’ve already mentioned Robert Bataille and the Cinque Ports, and was having trouble finding out much about Dorsets situation. Well, as I’ve got little to do these days. And I know that as this is medieval French I’m going a bit off topic, but … Rolls of Parliament, I, 413.

Au Counsiel nostre Segnieur le Roy monstrent ses poveres genz Johan Huchoun, & Thomas Peverell, de Shyrbourne en Dorseet, qe par la ou il aveynt charge une Nief de Whytesond de vynt & cynq' drasz, chescun drape pres de cynq'Mars, & cynquaunt aunes de canevas pres de viii soudz, & dys & seept livres d'esterlinges, & vyndrent devaunt Portesmuthe le Vendredy procheyn apres la Feste de Seint Michel, en l'an du regne le Roy qe ore est, qe Dieu gard, quynszyme, la vyndrent Robert de la Bataille, Piers Ward, Johan Badding, Johan Dyne, & Andreu Sely, e autres gentz desconuz, des Cynk Portz, & en la dite Nief entrerent a force & armes, & les avaunditz deniers & chateux pristrent & enporterent, encountre la pees, a lour greve damage de iiiix livres, & surmistrent a les ditz Marchauntz q'il furent de Weymouthe les gentz Roger Damory, & sount de Shyrbourne cor les letres overtes l'Evesqe de Salesbuyrs lour tesmoigne.

And goes on to say; It is interesting to note that Robert Bataille, who was with Badding in the Southampton affair of 1321-22, was a member of the expedition sent from the Cinque Ports against the Scots in 1336. https://ia801900.us.archive.org/17/item ... 457390.pdf

Also c1321, there was some, what I originally thought, was English on English piracy, as Alexander Colin of Sherborne showed the king that he’d loaded a boat with cloth, but the money and goods from the boat were taken before Portsmouth by Robert de la Batayl and others of the Cinque Ports. It was alleged to him that he was from Weymouth, and the man of Damory, but he is of Sherborne as the letters close of the bishop of Salisbury attest. The king said that he should go to the common law.

Now - les gentz Roger Damory, and; he was from Weymouth, and the man of Damory. Roger Damory, a friend of Edward II, held land in Weymouth and was made constable of Corfe in 1318, but was replaced by John de Rythre in 1321, because he swapped sides and joined the rebellion.

Then, Edward II spoke to his brother. To Edmund, earl of Kent, constable of Dover castle and warden of the Cinque Ports, or to him who supplies his place.

Order to cause proclamation to be made forbidding any person of the aforesaid ports damaging the men or mariners of the towns of La Pole, Weymouth, Melecombe, Lym, and Southampton and other towns of the adjoining parts, by land or by sea …

To me, that’s part of the civil-war – I’m sure that the Cinque ports didn’t get on with other ports, and vice-versa, but this was during a time of rebellion and they were under the control of the kings brother. Dorset had many people, such as Damory, who favoured the Despensers.

Also in 1321 there was a large, £5,000, wreck of the sea in the Isle of Wight. Amongst many others, Hugh Toterrich of Lymynton, Thomas le Coliare of Christchurch, Henry le Muleward of Christchurch and John de Warham were involved, maybe suggesting some local cooperation, but that could quite easily be ‘we locals’ pirating a ship, killing all on board, and calling it wreck of the sea.

Why do I think that? On Feb 20th 1322; Order to sheriffs and all other bailiffs, ministers and others to be intendant during pleasure to William Edward of Dertmuth [Dartmouth], who the king appointed to arrest and take into the king's hand a ship of Roger Dammory at Weymuth and the ships of the king's subjects not opposing the king, and to keep the same under arrest until further order after the king have been certified thereon.

That’s the grounding all ships – whichever side they were on – which suggests some confusion, and then in 1323 the perpetrators of the Isle of Wight ‘wrecking’, were taken to court.

Also c1323, the burgesses of Melcombe Regis asked the king for a remedy regarding their dispute with the burgesses of Weymouth over customs due from the River Wey and the lands between their two towns, claiming that the people of Weymouth have claimed the moiety of the sums customarily due to the people of Melcombe. Although writs were issued in their favour, the burgesses of Melcombe were then brought to Dammory's castle at Usk and forced to pay a bond of 200 marks.

The king replied; Concerning the impediments of the people of Weymouth let them have another writ, and if they are in contempt, let them be attached; and concerning the fine, they are dead, therefore the action is invalid.

A writ from the king meant DO this, and ‘attaching’ seems to mean the start of legal proceedings. But … they are dead … seems a bit strange. Turns out that they were, the rebel Roger Dammory and Henry de Montfort.

As the rebellion ended it seems that some people weren’t entirely happy, as there’s a Writ of aid for John de Bello Campo [Beauchamp] of Sumersete [Somerset] and John de Erlegh [a friend of the Despensers] appointed to arrest disturbers of the peace in the counties of Somerset, Dorset and Wiltshire, and to commit them to prison.

Nationally, many people were pardoned, some were executed and some ran away, and so forfeited their lands. From an Inquisition taklen at Craneburn [Cranborne] on the Sunday after the Invertion of the Holy Cross; John Mautravers the younger [of Lychet Matravers] lately held of the abbess of Wylton the manor of Phelippeston co. Dorset by the yearly service of 25 quarters of salt; the abbess was peaceably seised of that rent from time beyond memory until the manor was taken into the king's hand on Tuesday the feast of the Purification 15 Edward II [1322], by the forfeiture of the said John; the manor is of the yearly value of 8L.

Damory died in 1322 at Boroughbridge, John Matravers* may have stayed abroad until Queen Isabella invaded England in late 1326 and defeated her husband, Edward II.

* There are conflicting records, but there were three John Matravers', or Mautravers', or Maltravers'..

A comment about some English authors. “Robert Bataille, who was with Badding in the Southampton affair of 1321-22”. The Southampton affair, or should you prefer, when English people invaded another part of England.

Happy days. Jon.

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by RollyShed »

dorsetUK wrote:
Thu Mar 19, 2020 10:47 am
I'm hoping that The safeguard of the sea may bring some light into my dusty old corners, as it's currently illuminating my dark Saxon niches.

Jon
With self-isolation, stay at home now so common I see that Jon has taken on a fitness course. That book is heavy, physically, with near 800 pages in small print - pick it up, put it down, pick it up, put it down...... He'll be the strongest member of this forum soon. :)

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Re: Medieval Latin.

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RollyShed wrote:
Sun Mar 22, 2020 3:50 pm
That book is heavy, physically, with near 800 pages in small print - pick it up, put it down, pick it up, put it down...... He'll be the strongest member of this forum soon. :)
To make things worse, it's the hard-back version as well. Luckily, as we say down 'ere - Dorset born and Dorset bred, strong in arm and thick in head.

As 'Safeguard' is discussing what happened at sea, it doesn't help me with my Bataille issue, but I've got another in 1338 that came from the sea - I wonder if anything'll come to light?

Up, down, up, down, rest.

Jon.

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by absque fenestris »

Hi Jon

At least the year would be right and so it would be a "bataille"

Bataille d'Arnemuiden - 23rd September 1338

Kingdom of England - John Kingston (d.1338)
English Cogs: Five great cogs (all captured)
Overwhelmed by the superior numbers and with some of their crew still on shore, the English ships fought bravely, especially the Christopher under the command of John Kingston, who was also commander of the squadron. Kingston surrendered after a day's fighting and exhausting every means of defense.
The French captured the rich cargo and took the five cogs into their fleet, but massacred the English prisoners.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_Arnemuiden
https://threedecks.org/index.php?displa ... tle&id=998

Apparently it wasn't the happiest day of English seafaring... af


Battle_of_Arnemuiden.jpg
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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by dorsetUK »

absque fenestris wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 2:32 pm
Apparently it wasn't the happiest day of English seafaring... af
:lol: :lol:

Hi af, you really should be on the stage and streamed internationally. Some English people would say that we're the understated ones, but I beg to differ - let's hear it for the Swiss. Your post has given me something that I didn't know I needed, but now, many bricks have fallen in to place. Sorry for the hero worship, but thank you very much.

Today I've fitted my newly re-spocked and re-tyred rear wheel, whilst fitting a new caliper, that needed some fairly serious surgery to make it fit - why's there no hammer Smilie? - and written nearly 3,000 words about how Dorset fared before, during, and after the, or Le, Bataille d'Arnemuiden. I'm hoping to get confirmation of a point before posting, but, who knows, 3,000 words may become 4 or 5,000 - said an ex-master of 'ye good olde' understatement.

Jon.

Whoops, edit - great image - thanks again.

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by RollyShed »

dorsetUK wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 3:41 pm
absque fenestris wrote:
Mon Mar 23, 2020 2:32 pm
Apparently it wasn't the happiest day of English seafaring... af
:lol: :lol:
Page 96 Safeguard of the Sea. The one thing I noticed in the book everyone seemed to be continuously at war. I do wonder if the internet might be helpful for peace? If you want to be annoying, the "bricks" you throw won't actually break anything - much.
Today I've fitted my newly re-spocked and re-tyred rear wheel, whilst fitting a new caliper,
Arrh, still some of us who do serious bicycle repairs. I never had broken spokes on a wheel I'd built. So yesterday? Fix the power supply in this computer, typical fault, capacitor bulged signalling loss of capacity. Being the computer guy at the Shed, a bicycle bottom bracket to set up the other day. Now it is all lock-down and remote advise.

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by dorsetUK »

RollyShed wrote:
Tue Mar 24, 2020 4:53 pm
Page 96 Safeguard of the Sea. The one thing I noticed in the book everyone seemed to be continuously at war. I do wonder if the internet might be helpful for peace? If you want to be annoying, the "bricks" you throw won't actually break anything - much.
Yep, p96 is a good 'un, and 'war' seems to have one their favourite hobbies - land meant power and money, and that's what kings wanted.

The internet. We say that travel broadens the mind, and with t'internet we can travel at home, so hopefully it will break down 'things' - just being careful! - and bring us all together.
Today I've fitted my newly re-spocked and re-tyred rear wheel, whilst fitting a new caliper,

Arrh, still some of us who do serious bicycle repairs. I never had broken spokes on a wheel I'd built. So yesterday? Fix the power supply in this computer, typical fault, capacitor bulged signalling loss of capacity. Being the computer guy at the Shed, a bicycle bottom bracket to set up the other day. Now it is all lock-down and remote advise.
RE-SPOCKED - what blinkin' idjit wrote that, jeez, some people are so useless. Although Mr Spock spinning around at many miles per hour may be an amusing thought.

It's a great shame that your shed has closed, but it's not all bad, I was getting my bike ready for its MOT - and now don't need to. https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-52036333 I hope you can find other stuff to do - I'm currently re-writing yesterdays draft 3000 words.

Stay well, Jon

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Re: Medieval Latin.

Post by dorsetUK »

Dear proof-readers, please be kind.

My modus-operandi is to do my ‘Dorset research’ in the Patent, Close, Fine, Memoranda, Charter Rolls, etc. The many and various Inquisitions, Cartularies, Chronicles, etc. Then I try to make some sense of what I’ve found and then read real Historians such as Rodgers’ The Safeguard of the sea, in order to see ‘the bigger picture’, as written by people who know what they’re doing.

When RollyShed mentioned ‘Safeguard’, I thought, that’s something I need to read, but my money’s needed for other things at the moment – damn. I then noticed that I had a PM and thought, who the hell would want to speak to me – unless it was to tell me to shut up. I clicked on the PM and, thank you, thank you so much, RollyShed – and then felt like a complete and utter numpty.

From half the world away, RollyShed let me know that ‘Safeguard’ is available at my local Library.

I curled up in a corner and wept with shame – SEE, I can do understated! Although I maybe should have, I didn’t but went to my Library and ordered it. As it was in the Bath Library they said it would take about a week to get here, and it did.

RollySheds ‘wider picture’ allows me to understand records such as this one from the Close Rolls.

June 4th 1336;

To the constable of Corf castle.

Order, upon sight of these presents, to cause that castle to be securely guarded, and to show such diligence in the custody thereof that no harm shall happen thereto by any crafty deceit, hostile attacks or otherwise, but that the people of the adjacent parts and the same parts may be strengthened and defended by the good custody of the castle. By K.

First of all – these presents – seems to be medieval for ‘see attachment’. Sadly that no longer exists, but the order certainly suggests that Purbeck was at least under threat, if not being attacked. I suppose that I should admit that that order also went to eleven other castles, so it wasn’t just Purbeck – but hey!

The fact that it’s dated 1336, at first, seemed a bit odd, and showing my own ignorance, Edward III was doing his best to kick the Haggis out of the Scots, but how could that effect us on the south coast?

With af posting his great info and reading things such as RollySheds ‘Safeguard’, and other historians such as Alban, I can try to piece some things together. Please remember, I’m not a historian, so this is a story, and not a history.

In 1335, after four years of some pretty shady dealing, Edward III began his ‘great offensive’ up in Scotland, and as the French and the Scots had their ‘auld alliance’, in 1336, France sent ships to help the Scots by raiding along the south coast - the two front war - but records of their effect seem to be missing. Rodgers says that they took ‘prizes’ off the Suffolk coast and near to the Isle of Wight.

Suddenly that June 4th 1336 - To the constable of Corf castle - record, began to make some sense. However, was it a ‘warning of’, or a ‘reaction to’.

When I re-read it … by any crafty deceit, hostile attacks or otherwise, but that the people of the adjacent parts and the same parts may be strengthened and defended by the good custody of the castle.

… crafty deceit … is a phrase that hardly ever appears in such records, and it makes me wonder if something ‘crafty’ had happened, making it a reaction. But, presumably, they knew that the French were sailing up and down La Manche, so it could also be a warning, or perhaps it’s both.

What it certainly does do is to show that castles were becoming less important. Traditionally, if you took someones castle then you controlled the surrounding area, but up in the north, the Scots were confusing us with their guerilla warfare, and down south, the French were confusing us with their hit and run tactics. Rodgers explains this as a new tactic, that of avoiding all out battle, but weakening the enemy.

I should note here that Englands export of wool to Flanders was a very profitable area for the king, so this had a financial aspect as well as one of morale.

Early in 1337 Edward III said that he was the King of France and so, on 30 April ‘37, the real King of France declared war, and it’s possible that the French and their allies raided the Isle of Wight, but again, the records are skant.

John Richard Alban says … In March 1338, a fleet of French and Norman galleys descended upon the ill-defended English town of Portsmouth and ‘severely burned it’. Later, in October of that year, an even more serious attack was made upon Southampton, and by the end of the year, a host of towns along the south coast among them Plymouth, Swanage - yeeha! - Portsea, and Eastdean, had suffered some damage through enemy action. Moreover, the Isle of Wight had been ravaged and the Channel Islands lost to the French and their allies …

Also in March, keepers ‘of the coast’, or ‘of the maritime lands’, were appointed to organise our defence, and counties were [may have been?] grouped together in order to provide ‘troops’ etc, eg. Southampton, Berkshire and Wiltshire were one group, Dorset and Somerset were, supposedly, another. The ‘keepers’ were allowed to order locals to do their bidding.

Also in 1338, the Prior of Wareham was ordered to move to ... manors nearer the sea, for the defence of the coast in view of a threatened attack. Beacons were held ready and keepers of the coast appointed.

And then came The battle of Arnemuiden, Rodgers says – in 1338 the French naval campaign was resumed. On 24 March the French galleys burned Portsmouth, and moved on to raid Jersey. Meanwhile no fewer than 20 Genoese galleys under Ayton Doria were on their passage north to reinforce the French campaign, later followed by a further 17 Grimaldi galleys from Monaco. In the Bay of Biscay a Castilian galley squadron based on La Rochelle took two ships out of an English convoy off the Gironde on 23 August. In September the Genoese took Guernsey. They arrived in the Channel too late to stop Edward III crossing to Flanders. But his lines of communication were cut cut behind him and he himself remained in Flanders until February 1340. Five English ships, including the king’s own biggest ships the Cog Edward and the Christopher, were taken in Arnemuiden harbour.

About Arnemuiden, Froissart says; Thus conquering did these said mariners of the king of France in this winter take great pillage, and especially they conquered the handsome great nef called the Christophe, all charged with the goods and wool that the English were sending to Flanders, which nef had cost the English king much to build: but its crew were lost to these Normans, and were put to death.

Alban. In July 1338 ... overseers of commissioners of array were appointed with control of large groups, each comprising several counties … bearing instructions 'to array the men of the counties for the defence of the realm against the French' … in [Nov] 1338, John de Grandison, bishop of Exeter, and Hugh de Courteney were appointed to guard the coast of Devon and to array the men of the county for its defence … The severe depredations wrought by the enemy in Hampshire in 1338 were ascribed chiefly to the negligence of the keepers of the maritime lands in that county, who, knowing that the attack was to be made, not only neglected to provide for the defence of the parts threatened, but basely fled with the men of the said town [Southampton] on sight of the enemy and [allowed those meant to be guarding the coast] to go home. An inquiry was ordered and the guilty were imprisoned in the Tower of London.

Rodgers says … on 5 October the Franco-Genoese galleys captured and burnt Southampton, by far the most important English seaport to have been attacked in living memory.

Paraphrasing Rodgers, he goes on to say that in October ‘38 Edward III warned us that the enemy would soon be back “Intending to proceed from port to port and place to place along the coast in order to burn ships wherever they are found and to attack and occupy ports and towns on the sea or up its rivers perpetrating every evil that man can work.”

There was also a … writ in November 1338 regarding the ringing of church bells to warn of the approach of enemies ... the year of 1338 witnessed a defensive crisis. And that ... By the end of the year many coastal areas were devastated and England was in a state of panic.

Rodgers continues … In March ‘39 the French fleet, led by Carlo Grimaldi, consisted of 17 galleys, about 35 Norman barges, and the Christopher, were joined by another 5 galleys. About 8,000 soldiers were aboard, by medieval standards a large army. They attacked Jersey, but were repulsed, but did take Guernsey. Ayton Doria took another fleet northwards and attacked Harwich, but were driven off. They continued north and in July, Sir William Douglas and the French privateer Hugh Hautpol closed the Tay and starved the English garrisons of Cupar and Perth into surrender.

In May, the southern fleet sailed westwards ending up in the Bristol channel. On the way they obliterated Hastings, devastated Southampton and then attacked Portsmouth.

Me - and others - on 20 May ‘39, eighteen French ships entered Plymouth bay, attacking boats moored in the harbour and disbursing troops into the town, where they burned houses and caused extensive damage. Within days, sixty-four year old, Hugh de Courteney, the earl of Devon had mustered an army and descended on Plymouth. There was pitched battle in the streets before the invaders were driven back towards the sea, where a large number drowned.

We eventually managed to get our act together and Lord Morley sailed for Flanders with 63 ships. They met a French convoy, escorted by the Genoese, and chased them into Sluys, and destroyed them. In 1340 things swung our way when we ‘found’ the French fleet anchored in Sluys and so destroyed many of them, in what has become known as the Battle of Sluys.

For me, here comes the big one, both because it’s about Purbeck and because it demonstrates how English democracy was evolving.

Back then, you could petition the king, via his council, and get ‘his’ ruling. As time went by, because they could be quoted back at him, his ‘rulings’ became more and more important, giving we, the common people, a voice – if we had good advice. Even Kings – and eventually Queens – had to take what their predecessors had said into account, or risk bad feeling, maybe even rebellion, and that was something Edward III was very good at, but often managing to get his own way.

Anyway – one of my most ‘eye-opening’ moments - This petition is in three parts, from various sections of the community of Dorset:

1) The community of Dorset ask the council that Richard Lovel, Roger Chandos and William Everard might be associated with Robert Fitz Payn in the guard of the sea, as the most suitable men in their counties. And as the weakness of Dorset does not allow it to make a sufficient guard, they ask that the people of Somerset might aid them, as has been done before in similar case.

2) The people of the vills and hamlets of Swanage, Langton, Studland, Whitecliff, Holwell, Godlyngston, Herston, Lazerton, Acton, and Moulham, and of other hamlets in Purbeck in Dorset state that all their goods and chattels are burnt and destroyed, and that they have nothing left to live on, although they are charged as much for the fifteenth and for wools as before. They ask the King and council that they might be discharged.

https://discovery.nationalarchives.gov. ... r/C9440399

Just imagine – being able to contact your ‘ruler’ and say – OY, or is it OI - what about THIS? If your ruler agrees, then s/he is a good ruler, if not, resentment begins to grow. Please bear in mind that I’m taking about England, 700 years ago.

That petition can’t be dated precisely, and who knows how quickly the bureaucracy responded, but on 24th April 1339;

Order to discharge the men of the towns of Stoudlond, Whiteclife, Swanewich and Herstone co. Dorset and the takers and purveyors of wool in that county, of the wool which the king has pardoned them [loads of numbers concerning wool] in consideration of the damage suffered by them in the burning of their houses, and the plundering of their goods and chattels by the late
invasion in that county with galleys and ships.

Also in 1339, Edward III warned Portland; To Robert Fitz Payn, Richard Lovel and the sheriff of Dorset ... the king hearing that his enemies propose to invade the island …

The French devastated Portland.

Notice how Fitz Payn has Lovel by his side – did our petition work?

In June ‘39;

To the keepers of the maritime land in Dorset. Order not to compel the abbot of Middleton [Milton Abbey] to find any men for that custody, as he has shown the king that they distrain him to find men and archers, although he is staying with his power at his manors of Holeworth and Osemyngton,
co. Dorset, near the sea, for their defence, by the king's order, and finds 100 armed men and archers for himself and his bondmen upon the said custody.

Didn’t they speak funny back then. That’s Edward III telling his ‘keepers’ to leave the Abbot alone, as he’s guarding the Dorset coast, so he doesn’t have to go off on one of Edwards other wars.

Send the children to bed.

The French occupied Guernsey in September 1339, and were a tad brutal ... during the occupation one particular crime was singled out for more detailed treatment. According to a letter from Edward III, the French captured certain simple English fisherman who had done nothing wrong. Then, raging inhumaniter in their faces, the French cut off the sailors’ noses, their ears and finally their genitals – which ought to be covered, pro humanitate – and put them in the poor men’s mouths, before leading them naked through the town. And all that was done to the public humiliation and insult of the English nation – before they were cruelly executed.

Then in 1340, Portland was excused paying taxes or fighting in any of the various wars going on ... as the town and their houses have been burned and destroyed together with their goods there by the king's enemies of France, who lately invaded the island.

Even after we won the battle of Sluys in 1340, Alban has raids happening on the south coast only a few months later, and whether that last Portland raid was a hangover from the one in 1339 or another in 1340, I just do not know. And it didn’t stop there, in 1348 Bindon Abbey [Dorset] was so in debt due to frequent raiding by foreigners ‘coming upon them unawares’, as well as by the hospitality they extended to other mariners*, that it faced ruin. *They had to house and feed the defence force.

Just up the road, also in ‘48 ... the king granted a licence to the abbess and convent of Tarrant Keynes [Tarrant Crawford] to cut down 200 acres of under-wood in their demesne on their petition setting forth that their house and possessions in the county of Dorset had been burned and destroyed by an invasion of the king’s enemies in those parts.

This next bit’s weird.

I’ve mentioned John Matravers and that he probably returned to England with Queen Isabella in order to overthrow Edward II, and then ‘looked after’ him until his death on 21st Sept 1327, weeellll, he was very well rewarded by Isabella and when Edward III finally took control in late 1330, Matravers ran away – again – because he’d been accused of causing the Earl of Kents death, who was executed in March ‘30 for trying to release his dead brother – Edward II – from Corfe castle in late ‘29 or early ‘30.

I’ve mentioned that there were three John Matravers’ and they were, grandfather, father and son. The son died young and in 1348 the grandfather was old, leaving the father, who was the one who’d ‘looked after’ Edward II until his death, and then had the foresight to run away before being hung, back in 1330. Weeellll, on June 11 ‘48 there was a commission to Thomas Cary, sheriff of Dorset and Somerset, to select [???] man at arms and 120 [?archers?], and array them to be ready to go and defend the islands of Gerneseye, Jereseye, Serk and Aureneye*, when summoned by John Mautravers le piere, keeper of those islands. * The Channel islands.

It’s not me saying that – that’s what proper historians say, and I believe them, but HOW, just HOW, can a condemned traitor be running the Channel islands, HOW, just HOW?

Matravers was eventually pardoned in 1351 and his lands were restored in 1352, due to him not having had a proper trial, thus proving what an excellent and benevolent king Edward III was. To me, that’s hogswash, but that’s something I’m working on.

Many thanks to John Richard Alban. NATIONAL DEFENCE IN ENGLAND, 1337-89.
[Unpublished] Thesis submitted in accordance with the requirements of the University of Liverpool for the degree of Doctor in Philosophy. September, 1976.

And many other historians who’ve let me ‘plug’ Dorset ‘into’ English history.

And especially to RollyShed and af, who’ve very kindly provided the ‘lift’ my fumbling around desperately needed.

Cheers guys, Jon.

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