Category Archives: The Normans

1066 and Brexit

In a week’s time it will be the 950th anniversary of the one event that most people in Britain know…the Battle of Hastings.  It is no surprise that this totemic event has been linked to the equally totemic decision to … Continue reading

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Suger: The Life of Louis VI ‘the Fat’

JUST PUBLISHED The kingdom of France when Louis VI came to the throne in 1108 was a patchwork of feudal principalities over which the authority of the French Capetian monarchy was weak. Beyond the heartlands of Capetian power around Paris, … Continue reading

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400,000 and counting

PASSING 400,000 I started my Looking at History blog on Blogger on 30 July 2007 and it’s taken until 7 June 2013 to reach 400,000 ‘hits’: an average of around 66,000 per year.  I’ve published 823 blogs in that time, … Continue reading

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Posted in Australia, Autobiographical fragments, Books, Canadian history, Chartism, History of Britain in 100 Places, Home, News and politics, Nineteenth century politics, Nineteenth century society, Nineteenth century women, The Normans, What is History? | Tagged ,

The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book V, lines 285-415

[285] While this had been happening, his noble son Roger[1] had continued unceasingly to threaten Cephalonia. Robert intended to go himself to that island which he had sent his son to capture. He took ship there, but before he could … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book V, lines 210-284

[210] An unusually cold winter led the people quartered near the River Glykys to sicken. A great many of them suffered from cold and hunger, and disease spread so rapidly that almost ten thousand men died in less than three … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book V, lines 80-209

[80] Meanwhile, after repairing their ships, the Venetians[1] returned to the city of Durazzo and gained entry there without resistance. Indeed hardly anybody remained in the city, for a terrible famine had led the citizens to migrate to all sorts … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book V, lines 1-79

When Alexius learned that Robert had crossed the sea[1], he strove to regroup his battered forces and to destroy the camp of the absent duke, which was guarded by the latter’s son Bohemond [5] and Brienne, two men who were … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book V, commentary

In the final part of his work, William of Apulia deals with events around Durazzo during Guiscard’s absence in Italy: the pillage of Durazzo by the Venetians and the role of Adrian, Alexius’ brother in the campaign against Bohemond. He … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book IV, lines 450-573

[450] There was at Durazzo a distinguished man who had come from Venice, called Domenico.[1] He hated another man, said to be the son of the Doge of Venice[2], because he himself was not allowed to be part of his … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book IV, lines 325-449

[325] In addition he ordered Basil Mesopotamites to lead the advance guard of two thousand picked cavalrymen to reconnoitre Duke Robert’s camp. Mesopotamites was a battle-hardened veteran, and carried out the orders he had been given. He was close to … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book IV, lines 185-324

[185] Meanwhile his wife and the counts who had been summoned arrived. With a great crowd looking on, Robert called his fine son Roger[1] and, in the sight of all, designated him as his heir and placed him in charge … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book IV, lines 73-184

The duke’s heart was much grieved by the outrage done to his son-in-law and daughter who had been driven from the imperial throne[1]. [75] Many felt this to be a grave injury done to the duke, and he wished to … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book IV, lines 1-72

At this time Michael was cast down from his throne and became a monk.[1] He was the man who had treated the innocent Romanus so cruelly and unworthily. His brother, who was associated with him, was also driven out. [5] … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book IV, commentary

Books IV and V recount the last years of Guiscard’s life (1078-1085) and are far darker in tone than the opening three books. They contain important details of events. Book IV begins with the marriage of two of Guiscard’s daughters … Continue reading

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The Deeds of Robert Guiscard: Book III, lines 589-683

After this victory Robert set off immediately for Giovinazzo. [590] The faithful citizens hurried out to meet him. Who could describe all the thanks that he addressed to them? He praised them all for placing their sworn fealty above even … Continue reading

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