Questions tagged [england]

For questions relating to the historic Kingdom of England prior to 1707, or the country of England within the modern United Kingdom that is one of Britain's Home Nations.

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25
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1answer
3k views

What was the reason for a sharp decline in life expectancy in 16th century England?

I was checking historical life expectancy and this was one of the charts I found. What was the reason for such a dramatic decline in life expectancy in England in the middle of the 16th century? Is ...
3
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1answer
255 views

What mining feature is this?

In a former lead mining region of Derbyshire (Just North of Wirksworth) there's this bank of earth running across the side of a hill, with a small "valley" alongside it: It's about 15-20m ...
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1answer
182 views

Did the Celts come to England from France and Belgium?

I apologize for this ridiculous question. I have little knowledge of European history. The following is a passage from Charles Dickens' A Child's History of England: "But the Phoenicians, sailing ...
10
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1answer
155 views

Did James I link the divine right of kings to apostolic succession in his writings? If so, where?

According to a Wikipedia article, King James VI of Scotland (later King James I of England) justified the theory of the divine right of kings in his famous essay The True Law of Free Monarchies by ...
10
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1answer
379 views

Did Victorian parents raise their children “sexless” to prolong innocence?

I was reading the (albeit not very historical) Chatelaine article "Can You Actually Raise A Baby Free From Gender?" and came across the statement: The notion that a boy should have short ...
7
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1answer
110 views

How to find the population and mortality in London during the period 1760-1834?

I have to reconstruct the graph showing death rates from infectious diseases and from all causes in London. But I have trouble with finding the data for the period 1760-1834. In the graph are shown ...
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0answers
100 views

What does an English Liberty-shaded lamp look like?

The London Venture by Michael Arlen several times mentions a woman with dark hair given a blue sheen as she sits under a Liberty-shaded lamp. Any idea what this lamp looked like? Illustrator: Michel ...
5
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0answers
57 views

Was the Protectorate's Instrument of Government influenced by other near-contemporary European constitutions?

John Lambert drafted the Instrument of Government, the constitution of the Protectorate, in 1653. How much was Lambert influenced by—or even aware of—the relatively recent near-contemporary European ...
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0answers
87 views

Was the term 'sir' or 'sire' in use in England in the 13th century? [closed]

A supposed ancestor of mine, one 'Sir' Henry Kymbold (born 1280 in Hitcham, Suffolk) appears in a list of direct ancestors. Would 'sir' have even been in use in this period, or does this reflect ...
22
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3answers
4k views

Why didn't pre-Norman English kings build stone town walls?

This question is about defensive city walls, not longer walls such as the Great Wall of China or Hadrian's wall. After the Norman conquest, many defensive city walls were built by Norman kings in ...
12
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1answer
277 views

How likely was an enlisted man to have fought at both Falkirk and Bannockburn?

A heroic Scottish song begins, "Scots who have with Wallace bled, Scots whom Bruce has often led..." William Wallace's most famous battle was Falkirk (1298). Robert Bruce's was Bannockburn (...
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1answer
208 views

How did 15th century royals identify themselves in England/Spain?

I'm studying the customs of medieval Europe to gather information for a novel I'm writing and a question has arisen about how the nobles, especially the royal family, identified themselves. Did they ...
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1answer
161 views

How hard did they beat up Henry II after the murder of Thomas Becket?

The story of the murder of Thomas Becket was one I learned at school and it's stuck with me. I was doing a little reading tonight and was surprised to find this paragraph on Wikipedia: The king ...
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105 views

Which English king voided noble land claims after a certain date?

If my memory holds, a medieval English king ruled that noble lands were falsely held and should be returned to the crown. Parliament, of course, rejected this seizure. King and parliament compromised ...
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1answer
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What was the motivation for the Church of England to begin recording births, marriages and deaths in 1538?

I have heard that Thomas Cromwell convinced Henry VIII to institute the keeping of these registers, after seeing the practice during a tour of Europe. It took many parishes a long time (and the ...
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1answer
649 views

What are the “blue books” of Mr. Balfour?

In the book The Balfour declaration by Jonathan Schneer p133 there is a critic of prime minister Arthur Balfour that reads "Critics accused him of laziness because he could not be bothered to ...
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78 views

How many barons did Magna Carta apply to? [closed]

How many barons had their rights improved by Magna Carta when it was signed in 1215? And how did this number evolve later? The supervising council consisted of 25 barons, but I presume more barons ...
10
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2answers
2k views

Was the name 'Valerie' used during the Regency Era (1811-1836)?

I am working on a novel that takes place in England during the Regency Era (1811-1836, the era right before the Victorian Era). I was wondering if you know if the name 'Valerie' or 'Valeria' existed ...
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0answers
57 views

Where does Edmund Burke explain aristocratic eccentricity as a reaction to the influx of non-titled country gentlemen?

I am looking for the source of a notion of Edmund Burke’s that the English aristocracy turned to eccentric behavior in order to distinguish themselves from the “new men” who were acquiring estates in ...
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93 views

Is there any evidence of naval ramming in the 9th and 10th century North Sea?

In Bernard Cornwell's 'Sword of the Kings', his main character uses the tactic of ramming to sink an enemy ship before engaging in hand-to-hand combat with surviving ships which get leashed together. ...
7
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0answers
88 views

Are there 15th or 16th century English sources that exemplify Empress Matilda as an impediment to having a Queen Regnant?

I'm reading Alison Weir's 'Elizabeth of York', and she makes claims as to why Elizabeth of York couldn't succeed to the throne after Richard III which are not supported by evidence. Legally, there ...
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3answers
528 views

Are there recorded incidents of the Gentlemen Pensioners protecting the monarch in the 16th century?

The Gentlemen Pensioners were the forerunner to the modern Her Majesty's Body Guards. Henry VIII instated it in 1509, disbanded it in 1515/16, and re-created the unit in 1539. They are described as ...
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3answers
2k views

What received constitutional understandings did Pitt break in 1784?

An Introduction to the Study of the Law of the Constitution was first published in 1885, but I quote the 1915 8 edn. p. 260 of this transcribed online PDF. Here's scan of original. I don't ...
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1answer
503 views

Was there a contemporary understanding that 1706 was an exceptionally poor year?

This relates to the numerous (British) news items which seem to have overnight turned the present virus-induced economic downturn into a 'historic downturn'. While there are opinion-based aspects that ...
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1answer
266 views

Was Queen Henrietta Maria (of England) known for scratching her initials into things?

C. S. Lewis's novel That Hideous Strength contains the following passage: “Look out! Look out!” said a dozen voices at once as a splintering of glass became audible and a shower of stones fell onto ...
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1answer
157 views

How was St Edwards Crown fixed after Blood flattened it?

In 1671 Thomas Blood tried to steal the crown jewels. To do this he flattened the crown with a mallet. There are many sources that said he did flatten it but I cannot find anything about the aftermath....
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1answer
219 views

What did typical mid-18th century housing look like in English villages?

There seems to be a plethora of resources available that describe what mid-18th / early 19th century housing looked like in major English cities, particularly London. But, I cannot find much ...
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1answer
200 views

What were English 'rules restricting marriage'?

I am reading the book by Steven LeBlanc and Katherine Register, Constant battles, (2003). It is about history of warfare, but on p. 165 I found the mysterious sentence: For example, rules can be ...
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2answers
935 views

Why don't Americans claim English ancestry? [closed]

Through a lot of American Movies and TV shows, and also my personal experiences of interacting with people in America, I know that most White Americans are informed of their European ancestry, and are ...
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0answers
210 views

Did Henrietta Maria leave any writings in which she described her thoughts with respect to Charles I's afterlife?

Henrietta Maria, Charles I's queen consort, was a famously strident Roman Catholic. She outraged her husband's subjects by praying publicly under the gallows at Tyburn, where many Roman Catholics had ...
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2answers
219 views

How would “distraint of knighthood” law in medieval England fit with the fact that all knights must be of noble birth?

I've read recently about “distraint of knighthood” law in medieval England started by Henry III but I found it very strange indeed. This law forced all rich people who has 40 £ or more to be knighted ...
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1answer
180 views

Did anyone in England in the 1680's wear a beard?

I'm trying to find any examples of beards in England during the 1680s. I know they weren't popular but that doesn't mean they didn't exist at all. A picture would be ideal, although I appreciate this ...
6
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2answers
568 views

Why does the name “England” hold no reference to the Saxons?

Something that has always surprised me was that originally Saxon kings were referred to as kings of the Angles or kings of the English when they conquered or reconquered the Germanic parts of the ...
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6answers
8k views

What was the point of horse armour?

From my knowledge (and please correct me if I'm wrong), horse armour wasn't very thick (0.4mm-1.9mm) according to the paper in the link: How thick was late medieval horse armor? Even without ...
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0answers
77 views

Were there farms in the early 19th century in England, which only focused on agriculture?

I think back in the day most farms consisted of both agriculture and livestock, but I think, there must have been exceptions. I'm also especially interested in small-scale family-based farms. The ...
5
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1answer
829 views

What was the relationship between Angles, Saxons, and Jutes; and the Vikings? [closed]

I'm reading Seamus Heaney's translation of Beowulf and I cannot get my head around how Angles, Saxons, and Jutes relate to the Geats, Danes, and/or the Vikings and/or the Scandinavians generally. ...
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1answer
88 views

Why is “Jonathan Wild” spelt “Ionathan Wild” in this ticket to his 1725 hanging?

The ticket: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jonathan_Wild#/media/File:Ticket_to_the_hanging_of_Jonathan_Wild.jpg I was thinking it might be to indicate the etymology of the word from some language, but ...
2
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2answers
416 views

Is it true that Christian English monks adopted Norse hairstyles before the start of the Viking age?

I remember a documentary suggesting that Vikings traded a lot with English monks, before the Viking Age started, and that the monks ended up adopting their hairstyles. They mentioned a senior monk or ...
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0answers
238 views

Is there a known origin for the Beaufort motto “Mutare vel Timere Sperno”?

The House of Beaufort (and cadet branch the House of Somerset) use the motto "Mutare vel timere sperno" ("I scorn to change or to fear"). I assume it references the Beaufort loyalty to and support ...
2
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1answer
495 views

Why did Oliver Cromwell ban Christmas in 1644? [closed]

I am aware of the religious conflicts between Catholics and Protestants during and after the reign of King Henry VIII, but can't imagine why Cromwell would ban Christmas. I read this in an article ...
2
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1answer
155 views

Did Robert Devereux's monopoly on sweet wine encroach upon Sir Christopher Hatton's monopoly on wine?

I know that Robert Devereux was given a monopoly on sweet wine following the death of Robert Dudley, his step-father and the previous holder of this monopoly, but I recently read that Sir Christopher ...
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1answer
785 views

What does “two ells within the selvages” mean in the Magna Carta?

Clause 35 of the Magna Carta defines some standard weights and measures to be used throughout the realm. The first part is straightforward: the standard weight/mass used for wine, ale and corn is the ...
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2answers
306 views

Why did the coins of England minted under Richard I and John bear the name of Henry?

From the middle Anglo-Saxon period until the reign of Edward I, England's coinage mainly comprised silver pennies bearing the monarch's portrait and name on the obverse side. These were frequently ...
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5answers
1k views

Were there any monarchs of England or the United Kingdom who were not technically first in the line of succession? [closed]

Pretty self-explanatory. Who (if anyone) became an English/UK monarch without being the actual heir to the previous monarch (due to wars, coups, etc.)? Bonus points for circumstances.
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1answer
610 views

Is The King (2019) historically realistic? [closed]

The King (2019) by Netflix is about king Henry V. A few aspects of the movie struck me as either unbelievable, or contradicting what little even I know about history. In no particular order: The ...
9
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2answers
1k views

What is the meaning of the hand gesture performed by King James II in the portrait by Peter Lely?

This portrait by Peter Lely is one of the most well-known images of James II of England (aka James VII of Scotland). It is used to illustrate his Wikipedia article. Is there some meaning behind the ...
9
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1answer
1k views

How close would a peasant from middle ages England ever come to interacting with the king?

Presuming we have a peasant who works on land owned by a "common" lord (sorry, here I don't know the terminology. I mean a landowner who is not a royal), how close would that person ever get to ...
9
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3answers
756 views

How many people died in the British Isles from religious persecution between 1532 and 1791?

The English Reformation was "a series of events in 16th-century England by which the Church of England broke away from the authority of the Pope and the Roman Catholic Church". It involved the ...
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1answer
1k views

How was ownership of property managed during the Black Death, when so many original owners had died?

Historically, in the UK if a property owner died intestate with no heirs, the property ownership went to the Crown under an escheat. During the Black Death, in the 12th century, the population of ...
5
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2answers
277 views

Does anyone know anything about this poem

My near 80 year old mother remembers having this poem recited to her by her mother as a young girl. She remembers a great deal but there are some gaps. Is anyone able to place it in context or ...

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