Friday, 3 June 2016

Local History

I propose to summarize a few details of British history that are shown in Poul Anderson's works, then to insert a few more details that I experienced today:

Malcolm Lockridge, time traveler, leads a tribal confederation that builds Stonehenge;

Lockridge also visits England during the reign of Henry VIII;

Hanno, an immortal, visits Stonehenge, in 310 BC and the court of the warlord Artorius in post-Roman Britain;

Poul and Karen Anderson's The King Of Ys shows us Britons, Britannia and Brittany (still called Armorica) in the fourth century;

Gunnhild spends time in York in the tenth century;

Manse Everard of the Time Patrol visits London in 1885, 1894 and 1944;

Everard had also been in London in 1943 before joining the Patrol;

"It turned out that even the Patrol knew little about the dark period when the Romans had left Britain, the Romano-British civilization was crumbling, and the English were moving in. It had never seemed an important one." (Time Patrol, p. 29)

What does "never" mean to the Time Patrol? If post-Roman Britain seems important to the London office in 1894, then they record its importance in archives that are accessible to the organization as a whole. In any case, Everard and Whitcomb must travel to Kent in 464 AD:

"Among the jostling Jutes, [Everard] spotted an occasional Romano-Briton, disdainfully picking a way through the muck and pulling his shabby tunic clear of contact with these savages." (p. 35)

What I learned today:

in the Lake District village of Grasmere, the church is dedicated to Oswald of Northumbria, King and champion of Christianity, who preached on the site and died in battle in 642;

the graves of the English poet, William Wordsworth (and see here), and other members of his family are in the church graveyard;

directly beside the church is a shop selling gingerbread made to a secret recipe;

the shop is in a building that, for 220 years, housed a village school founded in 1630;

Wordsworth and his wife and sister taught in the school.

As I have said before, we live history.

1 comment:

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

That bit you quoted from PA about the Romano/Britons disdain for the barbarians who overran Britannia reminded me of Winston Churchill's HISTORY OF THE ENGLISH SPEAKING PEOPLES. I mean the comparison he made in the first volume to how high and advanced a civilization Roman Britain had to how crude and primitive the barbarian way of life was.