Lanercost Priory

Lanercost was founded roughly in 1169 by a 12th century nobleman, Robert de Vaux, who later became the Sheriff of Cumberland. Robert’s family had been granted a barony on the border with Scotland, as reward for their part in the Norman Conquest, but the area had only come under English rule in 1157. According to English Heritage, the founding of a priory was a symbol of Robert’s permanence in the area and of his wealth, as well as an act of piety. He gave the priory considerable lands and the living from churches nearby, and allowed the canons the freedom to elect their own prior. Much of the work on the priory is from the late 13th century, using stones taken from Hadrian’s Wall—as evidenced by the fact that you can still see Roman inscriptions on some of the stones. Read more…

Scotland and Its War for Existence

Today I have a guest post on a parallel subject to my interest in Wales:  JR Tomlin on the Scottish quest for independence.  Her book,  Freedom’s Sword, is available from Amazon or Smashwords:  http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/46734.  Welcome! ____________________ Because I write about Scotland, I felt it would be a good idea to briefly discuss Scotland’s history, and in particular, its invasion by England, as well as the eventual loss of its independence. I won’t do so with an emphasis on academics. For that, I suggest reading the work of G. W. S. Barrow, Professor Emeritus at the University of Edinburgh and probably the pre-eminent medievalist of the last century. In particular, I recommend reading both his Robert Bruce and the Community of the Realm of Scotland and his Kingship and Unity: Scotland, 1000–1306, that is if you have a deep interest in the subject.  Otherwise, just Read more…