They were all named Norman?

We hope by now you know what the Middle Ages were. We won’t take any risks though..just in case, the Middle Ages are also known as the Medieval Period in history. This describes the time between the fall of the Roman Empire to the beginning of the Renaissance. It does also include the Dark Ages but nothing there you need to worry about! Unless in which case go have a roam around the internet for some facts!

The Middle Ages are mainly concerned with Lords and Ladies, Kings and castles, war and peace and so on. One of the main antagonists during this period was a man by the name of William the Conqueror. Now I know what your thinking and no!…it’s not the same William the Conquerer that came 2nd in the World Conkers Championships in Leitrim last year!

Here's the Champ!

William the Conqueror was a Norman! The Normans controlled a region in France called Normandy, hence the name. In 1066 William and his men invaded England and defeated the Anglo-Saxons led by King Harold at the Battle of Hastings. Now Anglo-Saxons are a mixture between Britons and settlers from the German regions of Angeln and Saxony, who made their way over to Britain during the downfall of the Roman Empire around AD 410. After the victory, William rewarded his men with land in England. Soon afterwards, the Normans introduced their way of life to the locals through their laws, system of government and farming. They also inter-married with the Anglo-Saxons. Below is a picture of the very famous Bayeux Tapestry. This scene shows the fatal blow inflicted by a Norman archer on Harold (left). He was shot in the eye with an arrow.

King Harold receives a deadly blow. Bayeux Tapestry, embroidery (11th).
King Harold receives a deadly blow. Bayeux Tapestry, embroidery (11th).

The Normans Come to Ireland

After the Normans had successfully conquered Briton, they set their sights on Ireland. In 1169, Anglo-Norman Lords invaded Ireland. They were led by a man named Strongbow or Richard de Clare, Earl of Pembroke who landed with his army at Passage Co.Waterford. Over the next 60 or so years, this well trained army conquered many areas of Ireland. Like, Briton, they introduced their customs and culture to the land. It is worth noting that a lot of Irish/English tension over the years would have originated from this point, but not totally have escalated until later on!

This website unfortunately has stopped but it use to let you have a bit of craic with the tapestry. Ha…like a TV Chef..”Here’s one I made earlier”

A friend had a birthday once and we were hoping that one day people would record the events of the night.

ebwa

You can however make something like this in slideshow form here: http://www.bayeuxtapestry.org.uk/interactive/BayeuxCreate.htm

So there you go! The Normans changed the landscape and customs of Ireland forever it seemed through their own laws and culture.

Always remember that if you want to learn more about the MIddle Ages you can keep it here! I will leave you with the great words of the Normans themselves (apparently!)

“I FART in your general direction!! Your mother was a hamster, and your father smelled of elderberries!”

norman gif

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