Tuesday, February 5, 2013
Greeting my dear friends I’m sure by now the lasted news on the burial in the carpark has swept through the internet universe. Yes indeed the University of Leicester after some fine archaeological and rigours scientific testing has discovered the lost King Richard III. Well done that crew! In the surge of celebration as you may have seen a host of blogs or articles has appeared each with their own spin on what this discovery means to British history and the reputation of Richard III. Though from examination of the damage to the skeleton we can now be sure that Richard did die in battle as according to the almost eyewitness reports. Also Lord Blackadder is now cleared from the scurrilously assertion that he cowardly cut off his monarch’s head bringing much belated relief to his various descendants.
In celebration of this discovery I’m putting up my ‘Tudor’ novel The Fetter Lane Fleece as a free down load from Amazon for two days. Secondly I can assure you that a draft already exists for Ned Bedwell and his friends doing their own Tudor directed investigation into the death of Richard III and the fate of ‘misplaced Plantagenet’ heirs involved in a White Rose conspiracy. I can assure you that the results are not what anyone expected.
Here are the download links for Red Ned;
The promotion will run from 5/2 at approximately 12:00 AM Pacific Standard Time to 6/2 11:59 PM Pacific Standard Time.
In the mean time here is a selection of some of the most interesting links related to Richard III.
The Search for Richard III completed
Richard III Mysteries remain over the notorious King.
DNA confirms bones are Richard III
Grim Clues to the Death of a King
What the discovery of the King’s mortal remains has to do with restoring Richard’s reputation is a very good question, Polydore Virgil and Sir Thomas More were the originators of the tales of hunchback depravity. Both writers can be safely and reliably described as hack polemists, whose individual success and patronage was solely due to the glowing references they penned for the Tudor monarchs Henry VII and Henry VIII. Neither writer has what could be credible called a track record for truthfully dispassionate reporting of events. According to some contemporaries Virgil had a nasty habit of editing his sources to fit his version of events, then ensuring the originals disappeared. While Master More despite his recent elevation to sainthood is particularly infamous for the moral flexibility of his quill. This is evidenced by his grovelling panegyric to the young King Henry VIII slamming the disgraceful and greedy reign of his father. Or a better example is this one; on the fall of Cardinal Wolsey his recent lord and patron, Sir Thomas got up in the Parliament of 1529 and let loose a stream of insult, accusation and invective rarely equalled since. So much for gratitude and loyalty.
Thus it would be the height of folly to accord their descriptions of Richard III the status of historical fact, just because they were recorded by distinguished men of letters. In my training as a researcher and historian I’ve always wanted to understand the motive behind the words since it can be far more revealing. When it comes to both More and Vergil motive to cast a bad light on Richard III would be enough to get than a prime post as Stalinist historians.
What we can discern about Richard is that he was a loyal to his elder brother, accounted a good knight and a decent leader and was a fairly typical late medieval monarch. But a depraved murder and hands drenched in the blood of innocents? I don’t think so, though nor was he a blameless scapegoat as is made out by apologists. Richard was a man of his time and according to his position in late medieval England if blood needed to be shed then it would be so and masses would atone for the necessary sin. As for his nephews, hmm personally Richard doesn’t strike me as the kind of ruler stupid enough to have the Yorkist genre pool drained after the traumatic fratricidal years of the Wars of the Roses. So for the rest of my thoughts on this English monarch and his reputation you will have to wait for Red Ned in The White Rose Conspiracy.