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 (???? - 1799 AD) Pre-19th Century Battles    
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√Čireann_Ascendant
Dublin, Ireland
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Re: 950th Nniversary of the Battle of Hastings in 1066
Posted on: 12/14/2016 6:20:44 PM

Quote:
The Norman ruling classes did not as a rule interbreed with their vassals' womenfolk-that is not to say that odd encounters never happened.


I'd say the opposite - after, marrying the widows or daughters of your beaten foe was a great way of inheriting their land and ensuring that it would be legally passed down to your kids. And after Hastings, there were a lot of ripe English widow, waiting to be married off to Norman knights as a reward for the latter's services.

We can see in the naming conventions of the children from these marriages - Norman/French names for the boys, English names for the girls - that the new aristocracy of England were as much of the old as they were of the new ruling classes.

After all, Henry I, who ended up inheriting all of his dad's (William the Conqueror) territories - courtesy of his conveniently dead or imprisoned brothers - named his son (and heir), William, and his daughter Matilda (the name of Edward the Confessor's famous mother).

Feudal societies tend to go for continuity rather than anything radical, and Norman England fitted into that pattern.

SJ
Belfast N Ireland, UK
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Posts: 697

Re: 950th Nniversary of the Battle of Hastings in 1066
Posted on: 12/16/2016 5:57:49 AM
I have a paper to give on The Normans in Ulster: a prelude to plantation next year so have been brushing up on the period post Hastings.

I would make the following observations:

1. Matilda was a Royal name associated with many dark age dynasties. William the First's wife and the wife of Henry I (daughter of the King of Scotland). The Normandy dynasty may have brought it to England.

2. Be careful to discern between Normans of High Social Status and Low Social Status. The cream around William were HSS, but many of the followers were bastards, second sons and "adventurers". These LSS types would have married into Saxon stock. The HSS would have brought their Norman WAGS with them.

3. Historian turned historical author Carol McGrath (ex-QUB- where else?) is an emerging authority on the fate of high borne Saxon women. Yes, she creates fiction, but it is rooted in well cited research.
Many HSS Saxon women took refuge in convents and their fate became documented as the Church was the one provider of primary source literacy and record.

4. The more remote the Norman conquerors got from the south of England, the more likely to marry into the Saxon, Welsh or Gaelic community. The Normans in Ireland are a prime example. With the Papal assent Laudabilitor (good name for a bull on a Protestant farm), they invaded Ireland. Richard de Clare married Aoife MacMorrough. In a few generations the Normans went native. Likewise in Scotland, Stewarts and de Bruce to name a few "Royal" households and heroes of Scotland.

5. No doubt at high status, a political marriage reinforced legitimacy. But the Normans were conquerors and it was in the end the sword that prevailed. The Blissents in Antrim are a good example.


√Čireann_Ascendant
Dublin, Ireland
New User
E-2 Private


Posts: 16
https://erinascendantwordpress.wordpress.com/
Re: 950th Nniversary of the Battle of Hastings in 1066
Posted on: 12/16/2016 8:37:04 AM

Quote:
I have a paper to give on The Normans in Ulster: a prelude to plantation next year so have been brushing up on the period post Hastings.

I would make the following observations:

1. Matilda was a Royal name associated with many dark age dynasties. William the First's wife and the wife of Henry I (daughter of the King of Scotland). The Normandy dynasty may have brought it to England.

2. Be careful to discern between Normans of High Social Status and Low Social Status. The cream around William were HSS, but many of the followers were bastards, second sons and "adventurers". These LSS types would have married into Saxon stock. The HSS would have brought their Norman WAGS with them.

3. Historian turned historical author Carol McGrath (ex-QUB- where else?) is an emerging authority on the fate of high borne Saxon women. Yes, she creates fiction, but it is rooted in well cited research.
Many HSS Saxon women took refuge in convents and their fate became documented as the Church was the one provider of primary source literacy and record.

4. The more remote the Norman conquerors got from the south of England, the more likely to marry into the Saxon, Welsh or Gaelic community. The Normans in Ireland are a prime example. With the Papal assent Laudabilitor (good name for a bull on a Protestant farm), they invaded Ireland. Richard de Clare married Aoife MacMorrough. In a few generations the Normans went native. Likewise in Scotland, Stewarts and de Bruce to name a few "Royal" households and heroes of Scotland.

5. No doubt at high status, a political marriage reinforced legitimacy. But the Normans were conquerors and it was in the end the sword that prevailed. The Blissents in Antrim are a good example.


--SJ


Thanks for the highly detailed reply, I appreciate it!


 (???? - 1799 AD) Pre-19th Century Battles    
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