Skip to main content

My Five Favourite Henry the Young King Quotes

As I have already metioned February is Henry the Young King month, at least here, in Henry's realm, and I have been trying to make it really special (in spite of all the odds, such as unexpected bout of flu :-)). Today I would like to share a few of my favourite Henry the Young King quotes with you. To make it more attractive I have decided to limit myself to only five. Difficult decision to take, but eventually I have come to it. Here they are, my absolutely favourite top five....

Indisputable Number 1.The criticism is harsh, but what an imagery and writing style!!!
"Truly, he left nothing unprobed, no stone unturned; he befouled the whole world with his treasons, a prodigy of unfaith and prodigal of ill, a limpid spring of wickedness, the attractive tinder of villainy, a lovely place of sin… the originator of the heresy of traitors… a false son to his father… the peaceful king" From De nugis curialium by Walter Map

Very special Number 2. The Young King in his own words:
"... it could be a source of much harm to me to stay idle for so long, and I am extremely vexed by it. I am no bird to be mewed up; a young man who does not travel around could never aspire to any worthwhile thing, and he should be ragarded as of no account." Henry the Young King on his enforced stay in England, 1175. From The History of William Marshal


Noble or Joyous Number 3? Here I couldn't decide :-)
"Noble hospitality and giving without fickle heart, and fair conversation and warm welcome, and a great court, well paid and well kept up, presents and gifts of arms and living without doing wrong, eating to the sound of viol and song, with many a companion bold and mighty among the best" From Mon chan fenis ab dol et ab maltraire by Bertran de Born,the famous bellicose troubadour and Henry's familiaris

"But if God please, the young king Henry will restore fun, laughter and joy to the world”. From The History of William Marshal

Laudatory Number 4
"Gracious to all, he was loved by all; amiable to all, he was incapable of making an enemy. He was matchless in warfare, and as he surpassed all others in the grace of his person, so he outstripped them all in valour, cordiality, and the outstanding graciousness of his manner, in his generosity and his true integrity" From Otia Imperialia by Gervase of Tilbury, Henry the Young King's chaplain

Miraculous Number 5
"One thing appeares almost miraculous, namely, that almost all the world attached themselves to a man who was totally without resources, either in money or territory.” From The Topography of Ireland by Gerald of Wales




Comments

  1. Henry's quote about himself is by far the best! I love the word vexed!

    ReplyDelete
  2. And I love "I am no bird to be mewed up"(Henry, like his father and brothers, was an avid falconer :-)) Sounds so rebellious. I like to picture a scene in which Henry really says so to his father in one of their (I'm sure numerous) verbal clashes.

    ReplyDelete
  3. These are great! I also love 'I am no bird to be mewed up' ;-)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Thank you, Kathryn! Perhaps Henry too, like Richard, inherited a share of their great-grandfather's poetic skills :-)

    ReplyDelete
  5. These are fabulous. Especially love number two. Shared on fb. :)

    ReplyDelete
  6. Kasia, wouldn't you love to be at table with your fellow admirers, those listed above (minus Walter Map), with Henry the young king entertaining all of you. I have to say I love the quote "a lovely place of sin" (not referring to Henry). Did Map originate that phrase or was it something he heard elsewhere?

    I hope your're feeling well now
    Joan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for your lovely comment, dear Joan! reminds of a "conversation" we had the other day on Sharon's blog (about time-travelling in general, romantic evenings and wetnurses :-)) Of course, I would love to be at table with them all, including Walter Map (especially him!). Would be great fun :-) Unfortunately I don't know where he took the phrase from.

      Yes, I'm better. I'll be e-mailing you tomorrow.

      Delete
  7. Good ones! But the 4th one praising Henry is a bit over the top! :p
    I prefer Henry in his own words.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I know the 4th is highly flattering, but still I love it. It's highly poetic, too. Especially the opening lines.

    Thank you for dropping by, dear Cristina!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Very interesting quotes, Kasia!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Thank you, dear Emilie! I'm happy you like it. Warmest regards from Poland :-)

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

28 February 1155: In Celebration of Henry the Young King's Birthday

On the pages of his Chronicon Geoffrey, prior of Vigeois, described in meticulous detail how young Henry packed as much repentance into his deathbed as he could before he passed away.  Geoffrey left nothing unsaid. The hair shirt, bed of ashes, halter around neck, Bernard, bishop of Agen administering the last rites, and many other men of religion … all was there to ‘draw the readers attention away from the affairs of this world to those of the next’. Of course, Geoffrey, a man of religion himself, must have seen young Henry’s untimely passing as a divine punishment. But there were other voices who disagreed with that of the prior. Thomas de Agnellis, for example, in his sermon claimed that as the Young King’s sad retinue was toiling over the jolly sunbathed hills and dales of Aquitaine, it became the focus for many miracles. The rumors of the late king’s sainthood began to circulate. The monasteries pillaged by him shortly before his death- as it happened some of the most sacred shri…

The History of William Marshal on the War of 1183. Part I

The anniversary of Henry the Young King's untimely passing is fast approaching and though I have discussed the surrounding events many times here, on the blog, I have never focused solely on the version introduced by one John, the author of the History of William Marshal. If we are believe to him, this is what happened in the spring of 1183 and these are the roots of the conflict that broke out between the Angevins, the conflict in which brothers stood against each other, and sons stood against father (following the translation by Nigel Bryant):

'(...) the following Lent saw conflict between the three brothers. The Young King and his brother Count Geoffrey, lord of Brittany, angrily left their father, offended and enraged that their brother, the count of Poitiers, with their father's backing, had made so bold as to wage war on the highest nobles of that land and to treat them most unjustly. They'd complained to the Young King and declared that they would sooner serve hi…

14 June 1170. Henry’s First Coronation

On 14 June 1170, Henry II had his son Henry [since then called the Young King] crowned king of England at Westminster, with Rogerof Pont-l’Eveque, Archbishop of York performing the act instead of the exiled Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Becket. Four English bishops assisted at the ceremony. These were Hugh of Durham, Gilbert of London, Jocelyn of Salisbury and Walter of Rochester. The Norman bishops present were Henry of Bayeux and Giles of Evreux. By crowning his eldest surviving son in his own lifetime Henry II followed the continental tradition, which had worked out for French and German kings. The king wanted to avoid future disputes over the succession. The coronation enraged Thomas Becket and renewed the long-lasting dispute over primacy betweenCanterbury andYork. The Archbishop of Canterbury reminded that it was the traditional right of the archbishop ofCanterbury, and not the archbishop ofYork, to perform coronations. In his turn, Archbishop Roger evoked Pope Gregory the Gr…