Ten Reasons to Love the Plantagenets

Posted on 13. December 2012

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Susan Higginbotham of “History Refreshed” recently featured a list of “Ten Reasons to Love the Tudors“. Since I’m a big fan of the Middle Ages, the Wars of the Roses and the Plantagenets, I felt like doing a similar list for my favourites as well.

  1. Their great idea to name all the important men Edward or Henry (with a few rare Richards and Johns in between) and all women either Margaret or Elizabeth is almost certainly the foundation of British humour.
  2. They managed to start the longest war in history and lose it to the totally disorganised French, which is an achievement in itself.
  3. While it’s true that we’d be a lot poorer without Shakespeare, what would Shakespeare have been without all the inspiration he got from the Plantagenets and all their drama?
  4. They ruled for about four hundred years, so if you get bored by a certain time period (or simply don’t like the clothing, weapons or whatever else interests you), you have plenty of choice.
  5. The Internet would be a sad, empty place without discussions about Richard III – the best flamewar topic this side of Nightwish and their lead singers.
  6. English Wars of the Roses reenactors sure know how to throw a great party.
  7. Face it: late-medieval Gothic or Western European armour simply looks about ten times cooler than Renaissance armour.
  8. Whatever literary genre you want to write about them, from romance to battlefield action to murder mystery, there’s material enough.
  9. You can spend many interesting hours wondering what their family dinners must have been like (thanks, Gabriele!).
  10. While Shakespeare has written a fantastic play about “young men trying to figure out whether they should avenge their fatherโ€™s death at the hands of their uncle”, during the Wars of the Roses many of the protagonists were actually there, did that and got… well, probably a tabard or something.
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Posted in: history, humour, medieval