If I’m ever given the choice, the historical places I tend to want to be transported to first and formost are medieval catherdrals.
Although I love all historical places – be it a Georgian stately estate, a medieval timber-framed building, or a Victorian church – but there’s something uniquely special about about medieval religious houses. Continue reading Transporting Places: Medieval Cathedrals
This is an awesome video from an old childhood show of mine, called Maid Marian and her Merry Men,¹ which was super-popular back in the 90’s. Continue reading Pancake Day, Pancake day, P-p-p-p-p-p-p-p Pancake Day!
Did you know that Valentines Day is actually a saint day originating back to the ancient times…? Continue reading The True History of Valentine’s Day
Every January, at primary school,* I was told a certain frequent story by my ever-so-knowledgeable headmaster, Mr Davies.
He taught us that January was actually named after an ancient Roman God, Janus (Latin: inanua¹) who had two heads. One head looked forward into the future, and the other looked back into the past. Continue reading Ianuarius: The Month of Janus
It is common held belief that Christmas as we know it today started in the Victorian times. The husband of Queen Victoria, Prince Albert, became famed for bringing over fir trees from his native Germany to England, and thus started the tradition of having decorated Christmas trees in the home. Queen Victoria went step further by placing presents underneath it. Gatherings of people would sing Christmas carols at home round the piano, or out in the streets moving from door to door.
Unknown to many, the Christmas ways and traditions that we use to celebrate did not start in the Victorian period, but actually date back to the medieval era.
Continue reading The Medieval Origins of Christmas
I have been thinking about the reasons why we celebrate Guy Fawkes’ Night since I posted last night*…
Perhaps we are celebrating because it was lucky in some way that no-one died on that night, so it’s a celebration for the freedom of people? (Except for the poor plotters, who received the death penalty two months later.) Or perhaps we don’t really know the real reasons, since the ways of marking the occasion, changed over the years?
Not much is known about how they celebrated in the early days, although it was apparently very anti-Catholic, with sermons preached by the church. Continue reading Journey into Fireworks Night
Here in the UK, Guy Fawkes’ Night (aka Bonfire Night/Fireworks Night) is celebrated annually on the 5 November.
It’s a long-standing tradition that has been publicly acknowledged since the Stuart times, where bonfires are lit, fireworks are displayed, and sparklers are waved around in the air. All because a man, called Guy Fawkes from York, tried to blow up the Houses of Parliament in on 5 November 1605. Continue reading Remember, Remember the 5th of November…