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.

Friday, 10 June 2022

A tale of two swords

No, sorry, this is not a discussion of Gelasian Dualism - much as I might like to reflect on the theory and expression of that particular theory as to the nature anf function of governmen - but rather is concerned with two recent archaeological finds. One is from Norway, the other from Greece, and both are of swords. In both cases they open up for us vistas of past conflicts and past trade routes.

The reports both come from Live Science on the internet which has had accounts of these two recent discoveries. 

The Norwegian example is of a relatively rare type and dated to about 800. It could have been made in England or France, but it is also possible that it was made by a Norwegian smith who copied or was influenced by English or Frankish models. The find is illustrated and described in Broken pieces of rare Viking sword reunited after 1,200 years apart

The Greek discovery appears to be a sword from the fourteenth century anf the time when the Ottomans were increasing their pressure on emwgat little remained of the Byzantine Empirein what are now the coastlands
of northern Greece. The article gives a useful glimpse of the turbulent conditions prevailing along the Aegean coastline in the fourteenth century. It can be read at Rusty saber, possibly wielded by medieval Turkish pirates, unearthed in Greece

Please don’t blame me for the North American spelling of sabre …. 

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