hey, so are we on a “tu” basis or are we still pretty “vous”
no but i don’t think you understand how much i love richard the lionheart
Oh my word thank you!! He’s totally awesome! I saw where his heart was buried!!
P.S. If you are at all referring to OUAT, I totally knew Robin was the man with the lion tattoo just because of what it looked like!!
no but sit yo asses down, because historinerd hilary is here to learn you all some things (hide yo kids, hide yo wives)
1. Richard was approximately 6’4” in a time when the average medieval man was 5’8”, and had hair “between red and gold” and blue-grey eyes. He was handsome and fierce and long-limbed and otherwise a twelfth-century heartthrob; everyone who writes about him remarks on his looks and his appearance and generally the fact that they were all about to be smited (smote? smoted-ed?) by awesomeness (and also a sword).
2. Although he was almost certainly not into women sexually (ask me to explain more about the evidence around that if you’re interested, it will take up an entire post) and spent almost his entire life around/with men, he was very close with his mother (Eleanor of Aquitaine, who was also awesome) and basically left her in charge of everything when he was on Crusade. (His first act as king was to release her from prison where his father and her husband, Henry II, had put her for inciting their sons to rebel against him.) Eleanor also escorted Richard’s fiancee to him in Sicily, raised most of the ransom herself when he was captured by the Holy Roman Emperor, and rode to Germany to deliver it (at the age of seventy-two, mind you). Richard loved and admired her and knew a HBIC when he saw one. He also came to the rescue of his sister, Joanna, who had been imprisoned by the new king of Sicily after her husband died. He basically wrecked shit everywhere until Joanna was let out and given back her money and goods and dower properties. (He then took her with him to the Holy Land.) Yep, King Richard the Lionheart, the best warrior in Europe, in command of the Third Crusade on the way to Jerusalem and heavenly prerogative and rescue it from the Muslims and yadda yadda, held the entire shebang up for MONTHS because someone was bullying his little sister. If you don’t think that’s awesome, I don’t know what to tell you.
3. OH RICHARD WENT ON CRUSADE? HE MUST HAVE BEEN A BLIND RELIGIOUS ZEALOT!!! SUCH WRONG. VERY INCORRECT. WOW. (And considering our current foreign policy and public discourse, we need to be really really careful about this whole THE CRUSADERS WERE SO DIFFERENT FROM US AND SO UNENLIGHTENED LOL business). At Richard’s coronation in September 1189, London experienced a massive riot against the Jews, fueled by Crusading fever. Richard executed the worst offenders and allowed forcibly baptized Jews to return to their native religion, making a law that the Jews weren’t to be troubled on pain of death. But in March 1190, it happened again, this time in York. Richard sacked the castellan and sheriff, fined the citizens heavily, and made sure that everyone knew he wasn’t just talking about London when he said that whole “don’t kill the Jews” thing. When he got back from Crusade in 1194, he enacted the Capitula Judaeorum, a law for all his domains forbidding the killing of Jews. While it’s true that Jews were a valuable economic commodity due to their occupations as money-lenders and changers (something Christians weren’t allowed to do due to anti-usury laws) and Richard was always short of money, this was nothing like the policy in neighboring European states. In 1182, Richard’s bitter rival, King Philip of France, had expelled all the Jews from France, and in 1192, he had eighty of them burned alive at the Bray incident. In 1290, Richard’s similarly crusading great-nephew, Edward I, ordered all the Jews out of England. So yeah.
4. THIS IS NOT EVEN TO MENTION WHAT HAPPENED WHEN HOMEBOY WENT TO PALESTINE. The Christians who had lived there for generations were often more liberal and accepting of Muslims, while Christians coming from Europe were, understandably, much more prejudiced and intolerant. Except for Richard. He became such good buddies with Sultan Saladin’s brother and second-in-command, Saif al-Din, that he referred to him as “my brother and my friend.” He planned to marry Joanna (remember her?) to Saif al-Din and make them the king and queen of the Holy Land, before this fell through due to the shock that Richard would propose marrying a Christian woman to a Muslim man. He and Saif al-Din had a god damn dinner party and gave each other presents. He and Saladin wrote each other letters regularly. Lots of threats and posturing, right? Nope. How about: “The Muslims and the Franks are bleeding to death, the country is utterly ruined, and goods and lands have been sacrificed on both sides. The time has come to stop this.”
Yes, that’s from our friend Richard. YOU CAN JUST SEE THE BLIND RELIGIOUS ZEALOTRY EVERYWHERE. Saladin, meanwhile, respected him so much that he sent his personal physicians to treat Richard when he fell gravely ill, and in a famous moment, sent Richard two horses after spotting him fighting on foot at the Battle of Jaffa (July 1192). Richard, for his part, was willing to go on record that he’d much rather be fighting with a brave and honest pagan prince like Saladin, rather than his scheming and treacherous so-called Christian allies. No wonder they wanted to accuse him of undue familiarity and commerce with the “heathen Saracens.”
5. Richard was a clever, educated, literate man who wrote troubadour poetry and spoke at least five languages. He was also possessed of OH THE SASS and deployed it liberally on fools in the way. Case in point: he deposed Emperor Isaac Comnenus, a local tyrant, on his way to the Holy Land, after Isaac had tried to capture his fiancee and sister (remember, you don’t mess with Richard’s women). Isaac pleaded not to be put in irons. Richard obliged… by putting him in silver chains instead.
6. Richard also had a wicked sense of humor and swore like a sailor. The Itinerary of Richard I and others to the Holy Land, the English translation of the chronicle called the Itinerarium Peregrinorum, tells us primly that the language he used when told to get his ass to the Holy Land faster was “not at all suitable for inclusion here.” When the Duke of Burgundy, a French partisan who clashed with him constantly, wrote a dirty song slandering Richard’s intimate habits and “indecent follies,” Richard got him back… by writing a dirtier and cleverer song about the Duke of Burgundy that was then much more popular, because Richard the Lionheart, that’s why.
7. Richard arrived in England in 1194 for a brief housecleaning after his little brother, John, had generally fucked matters the fuck up. He arrived in Nottingham, a city that was holding out for John, and ordered the castellans to come out and see if it was really him (they didn’t believe he’d escaped captivity in the Holy Roman Empire). Finally they came out and got the shock of their lives. Richard’s response while they were gawking: “Well, what do you see? Am I here?” AS I SAID. THE SASS.
8. Richard built a new castle in Normandy in 1196-97, the fastest a damn castle had ever been built anywhere. It was called Château Gaillard, the sentiment of which translates approximately as “In-your-face Castle,” due to his continued border wars with Philip of France (who almost always ended up on the short end of the stick). Philip boasted that if the castle was made of iron, he’d still take it. Richard, unimpressed, retorted that if the castle was butter, he’d still hold it. A rain of blood hit during the construction, which was supposed to be a bad omen, but Richard completely ignored it. The chronicler William of Newburgh comments, “The king was not moved by this to slacken one whit the pace of work, in which he took such keen pleasure that, unless I am mistaken, even if an angel had descended from heaven to urge its abandonment he would have been roundly cursed.” YEP. RICHARD WOULD HAVE KICKED CASTIEL’S ASS.
9. Remember when I mentioned he was a prisoner? He was captured by Henry Hohenstaufen, the Holy Roman Emperor, as he was returning from Crusade in 1192, and held for almost two years in Germany. During this time, he sassed Hohenstaufen at every opportunity, served as his own lawyer during his trial, negotiated a peace between the emperor and his rebellious vassals, and single-handedly undermined Philip and John’s attempts to keep him captive by doing so. As mentioned, Eleanor helped raise his ransom, from whence we get the phrase “a king’s ransom.” 150,000 silver marks was almost three years’ worth of revenue for England at the time. So yeah. It was a lot.
10. Richard never met Robin Hood (the Robin Hood legends are more likely to date from the reign of his nephew, Henry III) but he did go hunting in Sherwood Forest once. He was also the one who added the third lion to the English royal coat of arms (the two lions, the flag of Normandy, had been introduced by his great-grandfather, William the Conqueror, and used by every king since) the way it still appears today.
tl;dr: I love Richard a ridiculous amount and your faves could never
one time in an english class we were making notes about shakespeare’s life and the teacher was like “his father was a glove maker” and the guy next to me started laughing really hard so i looked over at him
his pen had stopped working before he could write “maker” so it just said “shakespeare’s father was a glove” and that was the funniest thing in the world to this guy for some reason