Norman conquest of England
The Norman Conquest of England was the 11th-century invasion and occupation of England by an army of Norman, Breton and French soldiers led by the Duke of Normandy styled William the Conqueror. William's claim to the English throne derived from his familial relationship with the childless Anglo-Saxon king Edward the Confessor, who may have encouraged William's hopes for the throne. Edward was succeeded by his brother-in-law Harold Godwinson; the Norwegian king Harald Hardrada invaded northern England in September 1066 and was victorious at the Battle of Fulford, but Godwinson's army defeated and killed Hardrada at the Battle of Stamford Bridge on 25 September. Within days, William landed in southern England. Harold marched south leaving a significant portion of his army in the north. Harold's army confronted William's invaders on 14 October at the Battle of Hastings. Although William's main rivals were gone, he still faced rebellions over the following years and was not secure on his throne until after 1072.
The lands of the resisting English elite were confiscated. To control his new kingdom, William granted lands to his followers and built castles commanding military strongpoints throughout the land. Other effects of the conquest included the court and government, the introduction of the Norman language as the language of the elites, changes in the composition of the upper classes, as William enfeoffed lands to be held directly from the king. More gradual changes affected the agricultural classes and village life: the main change appears to have been the formal elimination of slavery, which may or may not have been linked to the invasion. There was little alteration in the structure of government, as the new Norman administrators took over many of the forms of Anglo-Saxon government. In 911 the Carolingian French ruler Charles the Simple allowed a group of Vikings under their leader Rollo to settle in Normandy as part of the Treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte. In exchange for the land, the Norsemen under Rollo were expected to provide protection along the coast against further Viking invaders.
Their settlement proved successful, the Vikings in the region became known as the "Northmen" from which "Normandy" and "Normans" are derived. The Normans adopted the indigenous culture as they became assimilated by the French, renouncing paganism and converting to Christianity, they adopted the langue d'oïl of their new home and added features from their own Norse language, transforming it into the Norman language. They intermarried with the local population and used the territory granted to them as a base to extend the frontiers of the duchy westward, annexing territory including the Bessin, the Cotentin Peninsula and Avranches. In 1002 English king Æthelred the Unready married Emma of Normandy, the sister of Richard II, Duke of Normandy, their son Edward the Confessor, who spent many years in exile in Normandy, succeeded to the English throne in 1042. This led to the establishment of a powerful Norman interest in English politics, as Edward drew on his former hosts for support, bringing in Norman courtiers and clerics and appointing them to positions of power in the Church.
Childless and embroiled in conflict with the formidable Godwin, Earl of Wessex and his sons, Edward may have encouraged Duke William of Normandy's ambitions for the English throne. When King Edward died at the beginning of 1066, the lack of a clear heir led to a disputed succession in which several contenders laid claim to the throne of England. Edward's immediate successor was the Earl of Wessex, Harold Godwinson, the richest and most powerful of the English aristocrats. Harold was elected king by the Witenagemot of England and crowned by the Archbishop of York, although Norman propaganda claimed the ceremony was performed by Stigand, the uncanonically elected Archbishop of Canterbury. Harold was challenged by two powerful neighbouring rulers. Duke William claimed that he had been promised the throne by King Edward and that Harold had sworn agreement to this, his claim to the throne was based on an agreement between his predecessor, Magnus the Good, the earlier English king, whereby if either died without heir, the other would inherit both England and Norway.
William and Harald at once set about assembling ships to invade England. In early 1066, Harold's exiled brother, Tostig Godwinson, raided southeastern England with a fleet he had recruited in Flanders joined by other ships from Orkney. Threatened by Harold's fleet, Tostig moved north and raided in East Anglia and Lincolnshire, but he was driven back to his ships by the brothers Edwin, Earl of Mercia, Morcar, Earl of Northumbria. Deserted by most of his followers, Tostig withdrew to Scotland, where he spent the summer recruiting fresh forces. King Harold spent the summer on the south coast with a large army and fleet waiting for William to invade, but the bulk of his forces were militia who needed to harvest their crops, so on 8 September Harold dismissed them. King Harald Hardrada invaded northern England in early September, leading a fleet of more than 300 ships carrying 15,000 men. Harald's army was further augmented by the forces of Tostig, who threw his support behind the Norwegian king's bid for the throne.
Advancing on York, the Norwegians defeated a northern English army under Edwin and Morcar on 20 September at the Battle of Fulford. The two earls had rushed to engage the Norwegian forces before King Harold could arrive from the south. Alth
Abingdon Abbey was a Benedictine monastery known as St Mary's Abbey located in Abingdon in the county of Berkshire but now in Oxfordshire, England. The abbey was founded in 675 either by Cissa, viceroy of Centwine, king of the West Saxons, or by his nephew Hean, in honour of the Virgin Mary, for twelve Benedictine monks. Cissa was buried here, as well. Endowed by successive West Saxon kings, it grew in importance and wealth until its destruction by the Danes in the reign of King Alfred, the sequestration of its estates by Alfred because the monks had not made him a sufficient requital for vanquishing their enemies. By the 950s the abbey was in a decayed state, but in about 954 King Eadred appointed Æthelwold Bishop of Winchester, abbot, he was one of the leaders of the English Benedictine Reform, Abingdon became the second centre of the Reform. There is a collection of 136 charters granted to this abbey by various Saxon kings, the Chronicle of the Monastery of Abingdon was written at the Abbey in the 12th century.
Abbots after the Norman Conquest included Faritius, physician to Henry I of England, Richard of Hendred, for whose appointment the King's consent was obtained in 1262. He was present at the Council of Lyon in 1272; the last abbot was Thomas Pentecost alias Rowland, among the first to acknowledge the Royal Supremacy. With the rest of his community he signed the surrender of his monastery in 1538, receiving the manor of Cumnor for life or until he had preferment to the extent of £223 per annum; the revenues of the Abbey were valued at £ 10s, 9d. Ælfric of Abingdon was buried here, before being translated to Canterbury Cathedral. Sideman was buried here, too; as was Margaret, Countess of Pembroke, Fulk FitzRoy, too. Robert D'Oyly and his wife Ealdgyth. There are some'ruinous' arches in the'Abbey Gardens', but this is a folly built in the 1920s; some of its architectural features are dubiously. Associated monastic buildings do, survive, including the Abbey Exchequer, the timber-framed Long Gallery, the Abbey bakehouse, the Abbey gateway, St John's hospitium and the Church of Saint Nicolas.
One of the original fireplaces is now still intact in Lacies Court. The Unicorn Theatre is now located in part of the Abbey. Abbot of Abingdon Abingdon Monks' Map Cosener's House, a conference centre in the grounds of the Abbey Abingdon School Media related to Abingdon Abbey at Wikimedia CommonsAttribution This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Herbermann, Charles, ed.. "Abbey of Abingdon". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton
The Normans are an ethnic group that arose in Normandy, a northern region of France, from contact between indigenous Franks and Gallo-Romans, Norse Viking settlers. The settlements followed a series of raids on the French coast from Denmark and Iceland, they gained political legitimacy when the Viking leader Rollo agreed to swear fealty to King Charles III of West Francia; the distinct cultural and ethnic identity of the Normans emerged in the first half of the 10th century, it continued to evolve over the succeeding centuries. The Norman dynasty had a major political and military impact on medieval Europe and the Near East; the Normans were famed for their martial spirit and for their Catholic piety, becoming exponents of the Catholic orthodoxy of the Romance community into which they assimilated. They adopted the Gallo-Romance language of the Frankish land they settled, their dialect becoming known as Norman, Normaund or Norman French, an important literary language, still spoken today in parts of Normandy and the nearby Channel Islands.
The Duchy of Normandy, which they formed by treaty with the French crown, was a great fief of medieval France, under Richard I of Normandy was forged into a cohesive and formidable principality in feudal tenure. The Normans are noted both for their culture, such as their unique Romanesque architecture and musical traditions, for their significant military accomplishments and innovations. Norman adventurers played a role in founding the Kingdom of Sicily under Roger II after conquering southern Italy and Malta from the Saracens and Byzantines, during an expedition on behalf of their duke, William the Conqueror, which led to the Norman conquest of England at the historic Battle of Hastings in 1066. In the ninth century, the Normans captured Seville in Southern Spain, Norman and Anglo-Norman forces contributed to the Iberian Reconquista from the early eleventh to the mid-thirteenth centuries. Norman cultural and military influence spread from these new European centres to the Crusader states of the Near East, where their prince Bohemond I founded the Principality of Antioch in the Levant, to Scotland and Wales in Great Britain, to Ireland, to the coasts of north Africa and the Canary Islands.
The legacy of the Normans persists today through the regional languages and dialects of France, England and Sicily, as well as the various cultural and political arrangements they introduced in their conquered territories. The English name "Normans" comes from the French words Normans/Normanz, plural of Normant, modern French normand, itself borrowed from Old Low Franconian Nortmann "Northman" or directly from Old Norse Norðmaðr, Latinized variously as Nortmannus, Normannus, or Nordmannus to mean "Norseman, Viking"; the 11th century Benedictine monk and historian, Goffredo Malaterra, characterised the Normans thus: Specially marked by cunning, despising their own inheritance in the hope of winning a greater, eager after both gain and dominion, given to imitation of all kinds, holding a certain mean between lavishness and greediness, uniting, as they did, these two opposite qualities. Their chief men were specially lavish through their desire of good report, they were, moreover, a race skillful in flattery, given to the study of eloquence, so that the boys were orators, a race altogether unbridled unless held down by the yoke of justice.
They were enduring of toil and cold whenever fortune laid it on them, given to hunting and hawking, delighting in the pleasure of horses, of all the weapons and garb of war. In the course of the 10th century, the destructive incursions of Norse war bands going upstream into the rivers of France penetrated further into interior Europe, evolved into more permanent encampments that included local French women and personal property; the Duchy of Normandy, which began in 911 as a fiefdom, was established by the treaty of Saint-Clair-sur-Epte between King Charles III of West Francia and the famed Viking ruler Rollo known as Gaange Rolf, from Scandinavia, was situated in the former Frankish kingdom of Neustria. The treaty offered Rollo and his men the French coastal lands along the English Channel between the river Epte and the Atlantic Ocean coast in exchange for their protection against further Viking incursions; as well as granting to protect the area of Rouen from Viking invasion, Rollo had to swear not to invade further Frankish lands himself, accept baptism and conversion to the Roman Catholic faith of Christianity becoming Christian and swear fealty to King Charles III.
He became the first Duke of Count of Rouen. The area corresponded to the northern part of present-day Upper Normandy down to the river Seine, but the Duchy would extend west beyond the Seine; the territory was equivalent to the old province of Rouen, reproduced the old Roman Empire's administrative structure of Gallia Lugdunensis II. Before Rollo's arrival, Normandy's populations did not differ from Picardy or the Île-de-France, which were considered "Frankish". Earlier Viking settlers had begun arriving in the 880s, but were divided between colonies in the east around the low Seine valley and in the west in the Cotentin Peninsula, were separated by traditional pagii, where the population remained about the same with no foreign settlers. Rollo's contingents from Scandinavia who raided and settled Normandy and parts of the European Atlantic coast included Danes, Norse–Gaels, Orkney Vikings, p
Anthony Browne (died 1548)
Sir Anthony Browne, KG was an English courtier, Master of the Horse and a Knight of the Shire. He was the son of Sir Anthony Browne Sr. Standard Bearer of England and Governor of Queenborough Castle, by his wife Lady Lucy Neville, daughter of John Neville, 1st Marquess of Montagu and widow of Sir Thomas Fitzwilliam of Aldwark. Anthony junior was thereby half-brother of 1st Earl of Southampton. Anthony Browne's recorded royal service began in 1518, when he was appointed surveyor and master of hunting for the Yorkshire castles and Lordships of Hatfield and Conisbrough, he was in an embassy to hand over Tournai to King Francis I of France. Thomas Howard, Earl of Surrey, knighted him on 1 July 1522. In 1525, he was made lieutenant of the Isle of Man, he was ambassador to France in 1527, reporting home in anti-French terms. By 1528, Anthony Browne married Alice Gage, daughter of Sir John Gage and Philippa Guildford, by her had seven sons and three daughters including: Anthony Browne, 1st Viscount Montagu Mary Browne, who married John Grey of Pirgo and was the mother of Henry Grey, 1st Baron Grey of Groby.
Mabel Browne, who married Gerald FitzGerald, 11th Earl of Kildare. During the uprisings in Lincolnshire and Yorkshire in 1536, known as the Pilgrimage of Grace, King Henry VIII of England sent Browne to contend with the Catholic protesters inorder to test his loyalty. Browne executed the task and maintained the King's trust from on. Browne was elected to Parliament as Knight of the Shire for Surrey in 1539 and re-elected in 1542, 1545, 1547, he was appointed Master of the Horse for life in 1539. In January 1540, when King Henry VIII came to Rochester to meet his future fourth wife, Anne of Cleves, he first sent Browne, as his Master of Horse, into her chamber. Browne declared that he was never more dismayed in his life, "lamenting in his heart to see the Lady so far unlike that, reported". King Henry VIII confided his own disappointment the next day to Browne as they returned to Greenwich by barge. In 1540, Browne was made a Knight of the Garter and given ownership of Battle Abbey, confiscated by the Crown in 1538 as part of the Dissolution of the Monasteries, which he turned into a country house.
Sometime after 1540, his wife Alice having died, Anthony Browne married Lady Elizabeth Fitzgerald, daughter of Gerald FitzGerald, 9th Earl of Kildare and Lady Elizabeth Grey. They had two children. Lady Elizabeth was one of the great beauties of the Court, known as " the fair Geraldine". After his death, she remarried Edward Clinton, 1st Earl of Lincoln. Upon the death of his elder half-brother, William FitzWilliam, Browne inherited Cowdray House from him in 1542, a residence that would remain in his family for generations to come; as a conservative, Browne had to be careful not to be brought down by factional politics at the court of King Henry VIII. He became so trusted by the King, that in the King's latter years, Browne held a dry stamp of the King's signature, to use for minor letters. By 1547, he was Keeper of Oatlands Palace. Anthony Browne died on 6 May 1548 at Byfleet in Surrey, was buried in a tomb with his first wife, Alice, he was succeeded by his eldest son, Viscount Montagu. Browne was said to be a good-looking man and two members of his family were said to have been mistresses of Henry VIII.
One,'Mistress Browne', we do not know her first name, but it was his sister. One piece of information, points to it being his sister, Elizabeth Browne, countess of Worcester; the ex-mistress was alleged to have been a prime mover in the downfall of Anne Boleyn. Elizabeth Browne was the chief witness against her. Another member of his family, Anne Bassett was rumoured to be in the running to become Henry's fifth wife and there were earlier rumours of an affair, shortly before his marriage to Anne of Cleves. Dictionary of National Biography, Sir Anthony, politician, by J A E Roundell. Published 1886
William II of England
William II, the third son of William the Conqueror, was King of England from 1087 until 1100, with powers over Normandy, influence in Scotland. He was less successful in extending control into Wales. William is known as William Rufus because of his ruddy appearance or, more due to having red hair as a child that grew out in life. William was a figure of complex temperament, capable of both flamboyance, he did not marry, nor did he father any offspring, which has led to speculations of possible homosexuality by historians. He died under circumstances that remain unclear. Circumstantial evidence in the behaviour of those around him raise strong, but unproven, suspicions of murder, his younger brother Henry I hurriedly succeeded him as king. Barlow says he was "A rumbustious, devil-may-care soldier, without natural dignity or social graces, with no cultivated tastes and little show of conventional religious piety or morality—indeed, according to his critics, addicted to every kind of vice lust and sodomy."
On the other hand, he was a wise ruler and victorious general. Barlow finds that, "His chivalrous achievements were all too obvious, he had maintained good order and satisfactory justice in England and restored good peace to Normandy. He had extended Anglo-Norman rule in Wales, brought Scotland under his lordship, recovered Maine, kept up the pressure on the Vexin." William's exact date of birth is not known, but it was some time between the years 1056 and 1060. He was the third of four sons born to William the Conqueror and Matilda of Flanders, the eldest being Robert Curthose, the second Richard, the youngest Henry. William succeeded to the throne of England on his father's death in 1087, but Robert inherited Normandy. Richard had died around 1075 while hunting in the New Forest. William had six sisters; the existence of sisters Adeliza and Matilda is not certain, but four sisters are more securely attested: Adela, who married the Count of Blois Cecily, who became a nun Agatha, who died unmarried Constance, who married the Duke of Brittany.
Records indicate strained relations between the three surviving sons of William I. William's contemporary, chronicler Orderic Vitalis, wrote about an incident that took place at L'Aigle in Normandy in 1077 or 1078: William and Henry, having grown bored with casting dice, decided to make mischief by emptying a chamber pot onto their brother Robert from an upper gallery, thus infuriating and shaming him. A brawl broke out, their father had to intercede to restore order. According to William of Malmesbury, writing in the 12th century, William Rufus was "well set; the division of William the Conqueror's lands into two parts presented a dilemma for those nobles who held land on both sides of the English Channel. Since the younger William and his brother Robert were natural rivals, these nobles worried that they could not hope to please both of their lords, thus ran the risk of losing the favour of one ruler or the other, or both; the only solution, as they saw it, was to unite Normandy once more under one ruler.
The pursuit of this aim led them to revolt against William in favour of Robert in the Rebellion of 1088, under the leadership of the powerful Bishop Odo of Bayeux, a half-brother of William the Conqueror. As Robert failed to appear in England to rally his supporters, William won the support of the English with silver and promises of better government, defeated the rebellion, thus securing his authority. In 1091 he invaded Normandy, crushing Robert's forces and forcing him to cede a portion of his lands; the two made up their differences and William agreed to help Robert recover lands lost to France, notably Maine. This plan was abandoned, but William continued to pursue a ferociously warlike defence of his French possessions and interests to the end of his life, exemplified by his response to the attempt by Elias de la Flèche, Count of Maine, to take Le Mans in 1099. William Rufus was thus secure in what was the most powerful kingdom in Europe, given the contemporary eclipse of the Salian emperors.
As in Normandy, his bishops and abbots were bound to him by feudal obligations. The king's personal power, through an effective and loyal chancery, penetrated to the local level to an extent unmatched in France; the king's administration and law unified the realm, rendering him impervious to papal condemnation. In 1097 he commenced the original Westminster Hall, which when completed in 1099 was the largest hall in Europe, built "to impress his subjects with the power and majesty of his authority". Less than two years after becoming king, William II lost his father William I's adviser and confidant, the Italian-Norman Lanfranc, Archbishop of Canterbury. After Lanfranc's death in 1089, the king delayed appointing a new archbishop for many years, appropriating ecclesiastical revenues in the interim. In panic, owing to serious illness in 1093, William nominated as archbishop another Norman-Italian, Anselm – considered the greatest theologian of his generation – but this led to a long period of animosity between Church and State, Anselm being a stronger supporter of the Gregorian reforms in the Church than Lanfranc.
William and Anselm disagreed on a range of ecclesiastica
Athelney Abbey, established in the county of Somerset, was founded by King Alfred in 888, as a religious house for monks of the Order of St. Benedict, it was dedicated to our Blessed Saviour, St. Peter, St. Paul, St. Egelwine. Athelney was a small island in swampland, in what is now the parish of East Lyng, covered with alders and infested by wild animals, it was inaccessible except by boat, according to William of Malmesbury. Here Alfred found a refuge from the Danes; the dedication to St. Æthelwine suggests that it may have been an enlargement of a hermitage or monastery in existence. He peopled it with foreign monks, drawn chiefly with John the Old Saxon as their abbot; the original church was a small structure, consisting of four piers supporting the main fabric and surrounded by four circular chancels. From the 11th century up to the time of its dissolution the monks of Glastonbury Abbey attempted to annex it or have it placed under the Glastonbury jurisdiction; the Abbey appears in the Domesday book, the Taxatio of 1291.
In 1267 Henry III granted the abbey a weekly market on Mondays. However, it was not a rich community. An indulgence of thirty days was given in 1321 for those who should assist in the rebuilding of the church, the monks humbly petitioned Edward I of England to remit corrody for which they were unable to find the means of payment; the last abbot was Robert Hamlyn. With eight monks of his community, he surrendered February 8, 1540, receiving a pension of £50 per annum and retaining his prebend of Long Sutton; the revenues were £209. 0s. 3/4 d. Following the dissolution it was acquired for use as a private residence by Lord Audley who had the church demolished. Audley's plans never eventuated and records show that on 17 August 1544 Lord Audley sold the abbey to John Clayton, for £182 15s, and in April 1545 Clayton obtained a licence to sell it to John Tynbere. In 1674 further demolition work occurred by labourers of the landowner, Captain John Hucker. In this work, excavations dug-up the bases of the pillars of the church and revealed graves, one being 8-foot in length.
With the church demolished and other buildings fallen into disrepair, nothing visible remains at the site today. Several geophysical surveys have been carried out to explore the remains which still exist below ground level. Today the site of the Abbey is marked by King Alfred's Monument, a Grade II listed building, Scheduled Ancient Monument; the monument was built in 1801 by Sir John Slade of Maunsel House. The original charter from Alfred the Great still exists, the Abbey appears in both the Domesday book, the Taxatio of 1291. Both the 1267 charter of Henry III, latter Henry VII exist. List of the known Abbots of Athelney Abbey include: John, the'Old Saxon,' temp. Seignus, occurs 937 Alfric, occurs 1007 Alfward Simon Athelward Athelwin, occurs 1020–5 Ralph Maledoctus, occurs 1125 Simon, occurs 1135 Benedict I, occurs 1159 Roger I, 1174–92 Benedict II, 1198–1227 Roger II, elected 1227 Robert, elected 1245 occurs 1263 Osmund de Reigny Richard de Derham, occurs 1267 Andrew de Sancto Fonte, 1280–1300 Osmund de Sowi, 1300–25 Robert de Ile, 1325 Richard de Gothurst or Cotehurst, 1341–9 John Stoure, 23 September–22 October 1349 Robert de Hache, elected 1349 John Hewish, 1390 John Brygge, 1399 John Petherton, 1424 Robert Hylle, 1458 & 1462 John George, 1485 & 1498 John Wellington, 1503 Richard Wraxall John Herte, 1518 Thomas Sutton, 1527 John Maior, 1531 Robert Hamlyn or Hamblyn, 1533–9 Robert Hamblyn, 1534 Richard Wells 1539 Attribution This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Herbermann, Charles, ed..
"The Abbey of Athelney". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton; the entry cites: William Dugdale, Monasticon Anglicanum. Hist. Angl. XXVIII, 587-90
A priory is a monastery of men or women under religious vows, headed by a prior or prioress. Priories may be monasteries of monks or nuns. Houses of canons regular and canonesses regular use this term, the alternative being "canonry". In pre-Reformation England, if an abbey church was raised to cathedral status, the abbey became a Cathedral Priory; the bishop, in effect, took the place of the abbot, the monastery itself was headed by a prior. Priories first came to existence as subsidiaries to the Abbey of Cluny. Many new houses were called Priories; as such, the priory came to represent the Benedictine ideals espoused by the Cluniac reforms as smaller, lesser houses of Benedictines of Cluny. There were many conventual priories in Germany and Italy during the Middle Ages, in England all monasteries attached to cathedral churches were known as cathedral priories; the Benedictines and their offshoots, the Premonstratensians, the military orders distinguish between conventual and simple or obedientiary priories.
Conventual priories are those autonomous houses which have no abbots, either because the canonically required number of twelve monks has not yet been reached, or for some other reason. Simple or obedientiary priories are dependencies of abbeys, their superior, subject to the abbot in everything, is called a "prior". These monasteries are satellites of the mother abbey; the Cluniac order is notable for being organised on this obedientiary principle, with a single abbot at the Abbey of Cluny, all other houses dependent priories. Priory is used to refer to the geographic headquarters of several commanderies of knights. Media related to Priories at Wikimedia Commons