Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Go Team Devil's Brood!

4 of his peeps took that literally (Reginald FitzUrse, William de Tracy, Hugh de Morville, & Richard le Breton)  & said hmmm let's get lots of rewards for doing him a favor, so they scampered across the Channel to Canterbury & plied swords on Becket right there at the main altar & twas the scandal of all Christendom, esp b/c twas the Christmas season & Baby Jesus likely saw it from the manger set-up & soiled his didies in shock.  Becket's brains spilt out of his head & one of the peeps had a look-see & said yup, this fellow's demised, all right.  Then they scampered back to Chinon expecting congrats & prizes.  Henry was all O SHITE b/c he knew ya didn't screw around w/ the Catholic Church.

This is how Becket got to be St Thomas the Martyr. Henry got his cojones squeezed real good by the Pope & had to do public penance & stuff. He was all but....but....& the Pope was all nope, tis all your fault mister, next time don't bellow so much.  Eleanor rolled her eyes & said TOLDJA SO, b/c she said twas a bad idea to make Becket the Archbishop of Canterbury but did Henry listen?  Noooo.

Henry was called Curtmantle behind his back b/c he wore a short cloak for ease of riding & he prolly spent more hrs in the saddle than any other king b/c of his vast domains.  He was hands-on mgmt & as his sons grew older they were irked that Dad still had his finger in every pie from the blue peeps wall to Bordeaux & wouldn't let them have any power.  In additional to Eleanor's ginormous inheritance that was bigger than France itself, there was England, Normandy, & Anjou to see to, & Henry looked over at that other island of mist & fog & rain & shrugged & said meh let's conquer that sucker while we're at it, a king can't have too many goodies.  He made a deal w/ Diarmait MacMurchada, overthrown King of Leinster, to help him get his throne back, sending over his bestest warrior peep, Richard de Clare AKA Strongbow, to kick Irish behind.  Strongbow married Diarmait's charming daughter Aoife & got to be heir to the kingdom.  Once all the fighting was done, Henry popped over & said nice job, lads, let's send some more peeps over to colonize & baptize these savages, & BTW I think I'll be king of the entire joint myself TYVM for doing all the work.  To this day the Irish spit on Diarmait for appealing to Henry for help & bringing those English over to meddle in Irish affairs.

The Scots decided to make a run for the border whilst Henry was busy elsewhere, led by their king, William the Lion.  Henry stormed up to Northumberland & soundly trounced the Scots at the battle of Alnwick.  The Scots king was captured & Henry now ruled the southern half of Scotland for yonks.  Peeps were mighty impressed w/ him & the humungousness of the Plantagenet empire.

extent of the Plantagenet empire under Henry II

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, his boys was a-plotting against him & Eleanor was all Go Team Devil's Brood! So 1st Henry took the keys & locked her up, my fair lady, for a good long time. Eleanor was not amused. Contrary to belief in legends, this had naught to do w/ Henry's GF Rosamund Clifford AKA The Fair Rosamund whom the jealous Eleanor was supposed to have poisoned.  Nobody can prove Rosamund & Eleanor were within spittin' distance of each other, as Rosamund was in England & Eleanor was mostly in Aquitaine.  Nope, she was imprisoned for encouraging her sons to rebel against her skinflint DH who refused to give up one iota of control over his goodies even tho the lads were all grown up (save for John, & even he was a teenager).

Then he commenced fighting battles against his own kids, & Louis & Louis's son Philip Augustus by his 3rd wife (he finally got one) were aiding & abetting b/c they was amused. Then Geoffrey got wounded in a tournament in Paris & had the demises.  He already had 2 daughters, Matilda & Eleanor, by his wife Constance of Brittany, & she gave birth to his son Arthur nigh on 7 mos after Geoffrey died. Then the YK came down w/ a whopping case of dysentery YUCK which was common for soldiering peeps & had the demises, too. So there was just Richard & John left. Richard was a Momma's Boy but John was the youngest & Daddy's Little Angel, so Henry thunk the odds were pretty good at last. He tried playing them off against each other by threatening to make John his heir & disinheriting Richard.

But John had a thunk & figured, Daddy's getting mighty old & if he doesn't disinherit Richard I shall be in deep doo-doo, so he threw his lot in w/ his brother. When Henry found out he had the collapses & demised himself, aged 56, at Chinon,
Chinon Castle

'w/ only his bastard sons William Longespee (Longsword) & Geoffrey, Bishop of Lincoln, caring enough to attend the deathbed. Good choice for John, as Richard was now the King of England....
tomb effigy of Henry II
at Fontrevault

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