Once I was a clever boy learning the arts of Oxford... is a quotation from the verses written by Bishop Richard Fleming (c.1385-1431) for his tomb in Lincoln Cathedral. Fleming, the founder of Lincoln College in Oxford, is the subject of my research for a D. Phil., and, like me, a son of the West Riding. I have remarked in the past that I have a deeply meaningful on-going relationship with a dead fifteenth century bishop... it was Fleming who, in effect, enabled me to come to Oxford and to learn its arts, and for that I am immensely grateful.

Sunday, 11 July 2010

World Cup Final - an historian writes

Fr Hunwicke has been suggesting which team his readers should support in the World Cup Final, and attracted a number of comments to his post.
Not being one to totally hide my light under a bushel I though I would republish the comment I contributed here in my own blog:

Although I loathe and abhor football, certainly so in the case of the professional game,like you I am inclined to support the Spanish team, if only for historical-cultural reasons. Your post conjures up a new historical interpretation of the Revolt of the Netherlands as a football match. The teams captained by Philip II and William of Orange, with Philip's new striker in the Duke of Alva, whilst the Dutch have such English signings as Sir Philip Sidney and the Earl of Leicester. Of course they have the problem of Egmont and Horn being sent off early in the first half, and their captain the Prince of Orange during the second.The Spanish may have scored the occasional own-goal during the match. The result - a score draw?

Here are the two team captains, but not in the appropriate modern football kit:

King Philip II of Spain

Prince William of Orange

Perhaps I should add that thought that, given his name, William the Silent was a reporter's nightmare in the post match interview.

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