Victorian History Quiz: Easy to Evil

This month I decided to do a quiz, as I haven’t done one for a while. I have also updated two old posts with some new photos and a video. The updated Tower Hill Cemeteries post can be found here and the updated Port Fairy and Cape Schanck can be found here

But to return to the quiz.

The rules are simple. There are sixteen questions in four categories: Easy, Medium, Hard, Evil. You will see a question then a photo clue, the answer is underneath the photo. Good luck and keep track of your score so you can see how you do at the end.

Have fun.

Easy

  1. What is the name of the capital of Victoria?

IMG_2070

 

A. Melbourne

 

2. Where was the best known book by Joan Lindsay set (hint it features a character called Miranda)

IMG_0695

 

A. Hanging Rock

 

3. What is the name of the main station in Melbourne? (this is very very easy if you look closely at the photo)

IMG_1517

 

A. Flinders Street Station.

 

4. What is the name of the island best known for its parade of little penguins

IMG_1822

 

A.Phillip Island

 

 

Medium

5. What was the Royal Exhibition Building in Melbourne built for?

IMG_1474

 

A. The 1880 Melbourne International Exhibition

 

 

6. Who was one of the founders of the State Library of Victoria, the the library of the University of Melbourne, the Supreme Court Library and was the judge who condemned Ned Kelly to death.

IMG_1235

 
A. Sir Redmond Barry

 

7. Where in Melbourne can you find 12000 unknown bodies?

IMG_1143

 

A.Under Queen Victoria Market.

 

8. What attraction was once known as the sow and piglets?

IMG_0127

 

A. The Twelve Apostles.

 

 

 

Hard

9. When was the State Library of Victoria established?

IMG_1160

 

A.1854

 

10. What and where is the photo below?

IMG_1952

 

A. The ceiling of the ANZ gothic bank in Collins Street Melbourne

 

11. What is the structure below called and what was it used for?

IMG_0333

 

A. Coop’s Shot tower and creating lead shot.

 

 

12. When was the Shrine opened?

IMG_0707

 

A. 1934

 

 

Evil

13. What decade was the Scenic Railway at Luna Park opened and which company designed it?

IMG_1514

 

 

A. 1910s (1912) and it is designed by L A Thompson Scenic Railway Company of New York.

 

 

 

14. What is the name of the mansion built in what is now Somers for Frederick Grimwade in 1895?

IMG_1697

 

 

A. Coolart

 

 

15. Who is the cairn on Arthur’s Seat dedicated to and why?

IMG_0714

 

 

A. Matthew Flinders because he stood on the mount in 1802

 

16. Who designed the Forum Theatre

IMG_0943

 

A. John Eberson and Bohringer, Taylor & Johnson

 

So that is the end. How did you do?

1-4: Well you’ve got some basics down pat. Good start.

5-8: You know more than basics, well on your way.

9-12: Good work, beginning to build a wealth of obscure facts.

13-15: Incredible effort. You may know more about Victoria than is sensible 🙂

16: Are you sure you didn’t write the quiz?

 

The photos are all mine

 

Advent Calendar of Medieval Religious Institutions: December 25th: Abbaye-aux-Hommes, Caen

This is the final post in my advent calendar. Thank you to everyone who has read them along the way, commented, shared and most importantly enjoyed them. Have a great Christmas and holiday season

Ellen

Du Hommes1Hommes3

hommes2

IMG_7063

The Abbaye-aux-Hommes was founded by William the Conqueror. It was a Benedictine abbey and dedicated to Saint Steven. The church of Saint-Etienne was consecrated in 1077. The majority dates to the 11th century but the choir was redesigned in the 13th century to reflect the then contemporary gothic style. The majority of the church is built in the romanesque style. The monastic buildings were erected in the 11th century but they were destroyed in the first war of religion  (1562-63) the first of the wars fought between the Roman Catholics and the Huguenots. They were rebuilt in the 18th century.

The church is also the burial place of William the Conqueror. His marble tomb can be seen in the photo above.

William married Matilda of Flanders in 1053 despite the fact that the Pope had banned the marriage due to consanguinity, they were distant cousins. They fought the Papal ban for nearly a decade and when it was finally lifted both of them built abbeys in Caen as a sign of gratitude. Matilda’s abbey was the Abbaye-aux-Dames which was the subject of yesterday’s post. Matilda is also buried in the abbey she founded.

The French Revolution forced the closure of the monastery and the monks were removed. In 1802 the abbey church becme the parish church and in 1804 the monastic buildings became a boy’s school.

In WWII in 1944 the high school provided refuge for the residents of Caen during bombing and survived intact. The monastic buildings are now home to the local council.

References:

Site visit 2015

Abbaye-aux-Hommes information booklet.

http://www.caen-tourisme.fr/en/discover-caen/william-the-conqueror/abbaye-aux-hommes

https://thefreelancehistorywriter.com/2012/05/10/matilda-of-flanders-queen-of-england-and-duchess-of-normandy/

The photos are all mine.

 

 

Advent Calendar of medieval Religious institutions: December 10th: St Mary’s Abbey Ferns.

StMFerns1StMFerns2JPGStMGerns3The town of Ferns in County Wexford, Ireland stands at an important strategic site as the area was historically the capital of the Kings of Leinster. The first christian community roughly on this site was founded by St Aidan in about 600.

The legend is that whilst he was building his monastery his followers were complaining that water couldn’t be found. So St Aidan ordered them to dig in a certain spot. Beautiful clear water then emerged from the hole and became known as St Mogue’s well (Mogue being another name for Aidan). The well is now under the road next to the abbey, but it is still accessible from a more modern structure just to the side. It is said to have curative powers, including the ability to reduce baldness.

The abbey you see today was founded by Diarmuid MacMurrough King of Leinster in 1158 as an Augustinian Abbey. The foundation charter of the abbey included a portion of all the beer brewed in Ferns. Not much of the abbey remains today; only parts of the church and the vaulted chancel survive sadly. The bell tower is the most unusual feature, the base is square shaped and then it tapers into a round top as it reaches higher. Stairs to the top of the tower still survive.

The abbey’s founder MacMurrough holds the dubious distinction of being the Irish king who invited the Anglo-Normans to Ireland (they never left again). MacMurrough lost his kingdom in the late 1160s and he sailed to England to invite the Anglo-Norman lords to come and help him reclaim it. Richard Strongbow Lord of Striguil (now called Chepstow) was the key lord to answer his call and MacMurrough promised Strongbow his kingdom on his death and marriage to his daughter Aoife if he would help. Strongbow agreed and MacMurrough took sanctuary at St Mary’s in 1167/68 while his waiting for his Anglo-Norman allies to arrive.

MacMurrough died in 1171 and is buried in the abbey’s grounds.

Strongbow had married Aoife by this point and he became the ruler of Leinster. The Anglo-Norman lords never left Ireland again. Strongbow’s daughter was Isabel de Clare who married William Marshal and inherited Leinster in her own right.

The abbey continued to function under Anglo-Norman rule and it was dissolved in 1539 as part of the Dissolution of the Monasteries.

References:

Site visits 2012 and 2015

Ferns: Ancient capital of Leinster book.

https://historicalragbag.com/2016/12/20/advent-calendar-of-castles-december-20th-ferns-castle/

https://historicalragbag.com/2014/11/27/marriage-alliances-1180-1250-part-4-isabel-de-clare/

The photos are all mine.

Who am I? Medieval edition

Simple rules:

  1. There are four clues
  2. To see the next clue scroll down
  3. If you guess on the first clue you get four points, second clue three points etc.
  4. The fourth clue is always pictorial
  5. Some are harder than others and there is no particular order. Each question is weighted the same
  6. There are ten questions.
  7. The answer is after the final pictorial clue
  8. If you see the next clue you don’t get the point.

 

1.

a) Married twice

 

 

b) A patron of Fontevraud

 

 

c) A great heiress and Duchess in her own right

 

 

 

 

 

d)eofa

Answer: Eleanor of Aquitaine

 

2.

a) Born to the daughter of the Earl of Salisbury

 

 

 

b) Once won a pike

 

 

c) Regent of England.

 

 

d) IMG_3421

Answer: William Marshal

 

3. 

a) Died in Rouen

 

 

 

b) Ordered what is known as an early census

 

 

 

 

c) Was a bastard in many senses of the word.

 

 

 

d) Bayeux Tapestry 7JPGAnswer: William I

 

4. 

a)  Known as a great writer and thinker of the early medieval period

 

 

 

b) Had a son called Astrolabe

 

 

c) Was castrated for his great passion for one of his students (it’s a little more complicated, but that’s the gist)

 

 

 

d)IMG_7444

Answer: Abelard 

 

5.  

a) The illegitimate daughter of a king of England

 

 

 

b) Married to a foreign Prince

 

 

c) Helped broker a peace between her husband a Prince of Wales and her father King John

 

 

 

 

d)joanna close

Answer: Joan of Wales

 

6. 

a) An Irish lord

 

 

 

b) Buried in Ferns

 

 

c) The reason the Normans came to Ireland

 

 

 

 

d) Diarmut grave

Answer: Diarmait mac murchada

 

7.

a) The second oldest son of a King.

 

 

 

 

b) Died in 1183

 

 

 

c) Known as reckless and crowned in his father’s life time.

 

 

 

 

d)IMG_7222Answer: Henry the Young King

 

8.

 

a) A medieval writer who liked to travel

 

 

 

 

b) Descended from Nest, a well known Welsh princess.

 

 

c) Known for his descriptions of Wales and Ireland

 

 

 

 

d)IMG_5579Answer: Gerald of Wales

 

9.

a) 12th child

 

 

 

 

b) Knight of the Garter

 

 

 

 

c) Arguably the last Plantagenet.

 

 

 

d)IMG_5855

Answer: Richard III

 

10.

a) Married at a very young age

 

 

 

b) Daughter of Alice de Courtenay

 

 

c) Remarried when her husband died and her children with her second husband reaped great benefits at the court of Henry III

 

 

d)Richard IAnswer: Isabel of Angouleme

 

 

So how did you do?

1-10: Not too bad, maybe read a little more

11-20: Absolutely getting there, excellent effort

21-30:  Brilliant, you really know your medieval figures!

31-40: Are you sure you didn’t check the next clue? No? Didn’t just have a pile of lucky guesses? No? Well then, exceptional effort!!

 

Medieval Quotes Advent Calendar 8th of December

Henry of Huntingdon on the marriage of Henry I to Adela (Also known as Adeliza) of Louvain in 1120.

“At Christmas, King Henry was at Brampton with Theobold, count of Blois, and after this, at Windsor, he married Adela, daughter of the duke of Louvain, because of her beauty. After the king had been at Berkeley for Easter, he wore his crown in London at Whitsun, with his new queen. Then in the summer, as he went with his army to Wales, the Welsh humbly came to meet him, and agreed to everything that the majesty of his pleasure desired. But on Christmas Eve, an extraordinary wind demolished not only houses but stone towers. I have spoken in elegiacs of the beauty of the said queen.

o queen on the English, Adela, the very muse who prepares to call to mind your graces is frozen in wonder. What to you, most beautiful one, is a crown. What to you are jewels? A jewel grows pale on you, and a crown does not shine. Put adornment aside, for nature provides you with adornment, and a fortunate beauty can not be improved. Beware ornaments, for you take no light from them; they shine brightly through your light. I was not ashamed to give my modest praise to great qualities, so be not ashamed, I pray, to be my lady.”

From: Henry of Huntingdon. The History of the English Speaking People. ISBN: 9780199554805

Medieval Quotes Advent Calendar 7th of December

A description of the ships on which Richard I was sailing to the Holy Land for the 3rd crusade.

“The ships which the king found already prepared on the shore were one hundred in number, and fourteen busses, vessels of great magnitude and admirable swiftness, strong vessels and very sound, whereof this was the equipage and appointment. The first of the ships had three spare rudders, thirteen anchors, thirty oars, two sails, three sets of ropes of all kinds, and besides these double whatever a ship can want, except the mast and the ship’s boat. There is appointed to the ship’s command a most experienced steersman, and fourteen subordinate attendants picked for the service are assigned him. The ship is freighted with forty horses of value, trained to arms, and with arms of all kinds for as many horsemen, and forty foot, and fifteen sailors, and with an entire year’s provisions for as many men and horses. There was one appointment for all the ships, but each of the busses received a double appointment and freight. The king’s treasure, which was very great and inestimable, was divided amongst the ships and busses, that if one part should experience danger, the rest might be saved.”

 

From: The Chronicle of Richard of Devizes Translated by J.A Giles. pg 13

http://www.yorku.ca/inpar/devizes_giles.pdf

Advent Calendar of Medieval Quotes 3rd of December

3rd of December

From Roger of Wendover. A description of happenings immediately after the death of Henry II.

I would like to point out that I am not including these quotes as examples of definitive facts. All medieval chroniclers need to be taken with a large grain of salt.

“He died on the octaves of the apostles St. Peter and St. Paul, after a reign of thirty-four years,seven months,and five days. On the morrow,as they were carrying him to be buried, arrayed in his royal robes, his crown, gloves, shoes, ring, sceptre, and sword, he lay with his face uncovered; and when Richard, hearing the news of his death, came to meet the convoy, blood flowed from the nostrils of the deceased, as if he was indignant at the presence of one who was believed to have caused his death.”

From Roger of Wendover Flowers of History Volume II. Pg 76

https://ia800503.us.archive.org/35/items/rogerofwendovers02roge/rogerofwendovers02roge_bw.pdf

 

The Magna Carta

In celebration of the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta I thought I’d share a letter from Henry III to the people of Ireland regarding the institution of the Magna Carta. It was unlikely to have been written by him, as it was still during William Marshal’s regency.

The King to all archbishops, bishops, abbots, earls, barons, knights, free tenants and all our faithful subjects settled throughout Ireland, greetings.

With out hearty commendation of your fidelity in the Lord, which you have ever exhibited to our lord father and to us in these our days are to exhibit our pleasure is, that in token of this your famous and notable fidelity, the liberties granted by our father and by us, of our grace and gift to the realm of England shall in our kingdom of Ireland be enjoyed by you and your heirs forever.

Which liberties distinctly reduced to writing by the general council of all our liege subjects we transmit to you sealed with the seals of our Lord Gualon, legate of the apostolical see and our trusty earl William Marshal, our governor and governor of our kingdom because as yet we have no seal. And the same shall in the proceeds of time and on fuller council  receive the signature of our seal.

Given in Gloucester on the 6th day of February.

Dr Thomas Leland, History of Ireland from the Invasion of Henry II, London, 1773, p. 203.

This is obviously in translation, and was part of a significantly complicated situation but it is still interesting.

Skellig Michael

Skellig Michael is one of the most extraordinary places I have ever been. Situated roughly 13 km off the coast of Kerry in Ireland in the Atlantic Ocean. It stands with Little Skellig, which is a thriving bird habitat.IMG_2664

Skellig Michael and Little Skellig, Skellig Michael is in the back.

IMG_2489Little Skellig

IMG_2578

Skellig Michael.

Although from the photos both Skellig Michael and Little Skellig might seem to be simply harsh lumps of rock in the middle of the ocean, this is far from the truth. Skellig Michael has a fascinating history of habitation, and the most spectacular monastery I have ever seen is situated on its seemingly impassable slopes.

The history begins with the first known mention of Skellig in 1400 BCE when legend has it that Milesius, an early invader of Ireland, lost one of his sons, Irr, to Skellig’s cliffs. There is also legend of Skellig being a refuge for Duagh King of Munster when he fled for his life in the 5th century.

The most interesting aspect of the history of Skellig is its monastery.IMG_2531

Beehive huts Skellig Michael monastery.

There is debate over when the monastery was first founded, but it was part of the early Christian monks’ attempts to find sanctuary, refuge, seclusion and closeness with God in distant and remote places. As a rock in the Atlantic, Skellig is about as remote as it gets.

The monastery was probably founded in around the sixth century, no one is entirely sure and I have been unable to find any real agreement on this date. It consists of a collection of drystone beehive huts that are as weathertight today as they would have been when they were built. The integrity of the construction is truly remarkable.

IMG_2529 IMG_2543

The beehive huts.

They would have been inhabited by a community of 12 monks and an Abbot. The conditions would have been harsh to say the least. We know they had fresh water because a rainwater collection system still exists, and works as well when it’s been cleaned out, but beyond that we don’t know much about their day to day existence. They would have lived and eaten very simply.

IMG_2532

The monastery, including the Oratory on the left and a high cross and the graveyard.

The most important building for the monks was the Oratory, here prayers would have been said over a simple altar which no longer survives.

IMG_2546

The Oratory.

If the community of 12 on Skellig Michael was not remote enough then there was also a hermitage built high on another point of the rock, it’s almost a sheer cliff so currently inaccessible. It is possible that this was also a refuge during viking attacks of which there were several.

The first was in c. 795 CE. They were attacked again in 812 CE and again in 823 CE. Some records of this third attack remain beyond the fact that it occurred. It is recorded in the Annals of Ulster and the Annals of Inishfallen that this time the Vikings took Etgal, the Abbott of Skellig Michael, and they starved him to death. There were also further attacks in 833 CE and 839 CE.

Somehow despite all this the Skellig community survived. It isn’t known exactly when monks ceased to live on the rock, but Gerald of Wales reported that they returned to the mainland to become part of the Augustinian priory in Ballinskelligs at the end of the 12th century, however other sources report that there was still repair work going on into the 1300s.

IMG_2625

Ballinskellings Abbey from the water.

Human habitation did continue on Skellig with the construction of  two lighthouses in the 1800s, one of which is still in use today. The remaining light is automated rather than having a lighthouse keeper.

IMG_2583

Skellig Lighthouse

The monastery can still be visited today, though numbers are strictly limited. Once you arrive at the the rock the monastery is reached by awe inspiring, though very daunting, steps which would not be that different to the way the monks ascended.

IMG_2557 IMG_2512

There are 640 sheer steps and it is a hard walk, but the monastery is absolutely worth it and if you are lucky the resident puffins will be out.

IMG_2564IMG_2505

Skellig Michael has been a site of pilgrimage for centuries, a place of penance for some, a holy place for others, a spiritual place for more and for many a rock with a truly fascinating history. I fall into this final category, but no matter your reason for going it is truly one of most remarkable places in the world.

References: The Skellig Story Des Lavelle

ISBN: 9780862788827

The photos are all mine