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View Diary: Bookflurries-Bookchat: Desperadoes: Dangerous, Despicable, Fun or Redeemable? (184 comments)

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  •  Since you mention Henry II (4+ / 0-)
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    cfk, shari, jlms qkw, Brecht

    Just about all of the Plantagenets. Not so much desperadoes as antiheroes. Henry II of course brought on 750 years of Irish occupation, Edward I overran Wales and tried to conquer Scotland, Edward III nearly brought both England and France to ruin ... a few don't qualify, mostly because they were pathetic (Edward II, eg). But if we're going to go historical, the list becomes endless.

    If you have Faramir how can you not have Turin!? Well, OK, he might be a desperate hero.

    But for desperate antiheroes, once again it has to be Harry Flashman. Breathe a hint of danger and he's off like a shot.

    •  Yes, there is the interesting myth about them (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      alefnot, shari, jlms qkw, Brecht

      Found this site (it has a pop up, though)


      Popular legends surrounding the Angevins suggested that they had corrupt or demonic origins. The chronicler Gerald of Wales is the key contemporaneous source for these stories, which often borrowed elements of the wider Melusine legend. For example, Gerald wrote in his De instructione principis of "a certain countess of Anjou" who rarely attended mass and one day flew away, never to be seen again. A similar story was attached to Eleanor of Aquitaine in the 13th century romance Richard Coeur-de-lion. Gerald also presents a list of sins committed by Geoffrey V and Henry II as further evidence of their "corrupt" origins.

          According to Gerald these legends were not always discouraged by the Angevins. Richard I was said to have often remarked of his family that they "come of the devil, and to the devil they would go." A similar statement is attributed to St Bernard regarding Henry II. Henry II's sons reportedly defended their frequent infighting by saying "Do not deprive us of our heritage; we cannot help acting like devils." The legends surrounding the Angevins grew into English folklore and led some historians to give them the epithet "The Devil's Brood".

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      by cfk on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 08:20:42 PM PST

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