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Tony Grist

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Battle [Jun. 15th, 2008|09:08 am]
Tony Grist
 

This is the field where modern English history began. Here the Saxon king Harold Godwinson faced an invading Norman army led by William the Bastard. The Saxons held the high ground, fighting on foot; the Normans attacked with archers and cavalry. It was- as the Duke of Wellington said of Waterloo- a near-run thing. In the end the Normans won because they were trickier. The battle is most commonly known as the battle of Hastings- even though the town of Hastings is many miles away. Alternative names for it are Senlac or Santlache. William- now William I, King of England- had the Benedictines build an Abbey on the ground where the Saxons had stood. Maybe that laid the ghosts. The town that grew up around his Abbey is called Battle. 



The Abbey was dissolved by Henry VIII and sold into secular ownership. The church and cloister and many other buildings were pulled down. What's left is divided in ownership between English Heritage and a private school. 



 
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: saare_snowqueen
2008-06-15 12:04 pm (UTC)
What beautiful ribbed vaulting. Keep on travelling, please. I love your photo-history essays.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-06-15 01:17 pm (UTC)
Thanks.

There'll be more. I seem to be on a mission right now to photograph as much of picturesque Britain as I possibly can.
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[User Picture]From: frumiousb
2008-06-15 12:24 pm (UTC)
I'm really enjoying these pictures. The last one in this series is particularly lovely.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-06-15 01:18 pm (UTC)
Thanks.

I'm glad you like that one. It could have been a nothing shot, but I think it works.
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[User Picture]From: arielstarshadow
2008-06-15 01:19 pm (UTC)
Do you know what those beautiful pink flowers are in your first picture??
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-06-15 01:24 pm (UTC)
I'm almost certain they're wild roses.
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[User Picture]From: arielstarshadow
2008-06-15 02:08 pm (UTC)
They're so lovely. *sigh* Your pictures make me miss England.
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[User Picture]From: wyrmwwd
2008-06-15 01:54 pm (UTC)
Beautiful! Thank you for sharing!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-06-15 03:18 pm (UTC)
I'm so glad you like 'em.
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[User Picture]From: mummm
2008-06-15 03:19 pm (UTC)
I love the daisies on the old stones and the flowers in the battlefield! You have an amazing homeland and you take the nicest photos of it all!
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-06-15 04:15 pm (UTC)
Thanks.
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[User Picture]From: pondhopper
2008-06-15 03:56 pm (UTC)
Fantastic! I am enjoying your wanderings these days. I've long wanted to visit Battle. The last photo is almost a perfect composition. The first is also lovely indeed.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-06-15 04:16 pm (UTC)
Thanks.

Battle is a handsome town. Driving down the main street and seeing the abbey gatehouse looming up ahead was a bit of a "wow!" moment.
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[User Picture]From: heleninwales
2008-06-15 06:07 pm (UTC)
I really enjoy your illustrated travelogues. It's nice to see all these places I haven't had chance to visit yet but maybe will one day.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-06-16 08:26 am (UTC)
Thanks.

We only recently acquired a car- and I guess I'm making up for lost time.
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[User Picture]From: baritonejeff
2008-06-15 11:38 pm (UTC)
Food for thought...

I'm one of the many who look foward to, and enjoy immensely, your impressions/historical background/photos-posts. Most especially when they are accompanied by your poetic musings.

Combined together, they would make a most unique, valuable and rewarding view of one of the world's richest histories. I would absolutely order a copy of such a thing, were it to someday become a reality.
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[User Picture]From: poliphilo
2008-06-16 08:25 am (UTC)
Thank you.

It hadn't crossed my mind that these posts could be issued in book form. Hmmm, I wonder if a publisher would be interested...
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