Today I am reading Viking Britain an Exploration by Thomas Williams. Thomas Williams is a curator who brought to us an amazing exhibition of Viking artefacts, “Viking Life and Legends” in 2014-15. I personally was blown away by the exhibition and am looking forwards to a glass of mulled wine and a quiet night in reading the book. But, that being said, I would not have normally picked it up but when I saw it in Waterstones I knew I had to buy it. It’s one of the most beautiful book covers Ive ever seen. If you want to join me reading this book you can pick your own copy up from Amazon by just clicking the image below.
I must admit to being a big fan of the wodwos. Wodwos are a mediaeval character that appears across medieval media. From Sir Garwain and the Green Knight to church carving (above) wodwos get everywhere.
I think it’s worthwhile thinking about medieval media in the same way as we think about modern comics. A modern superhero can have his or her own story, can trespass into other heroes stories and even join up with others to do special jobs.
In the same way Wodwos are an antagonist in medieval stories for Sir Garwain and Alexander the Great. Garwain beats them in a fight whilst Alexander uses gile. As I am sure we all know Wodwos and Unicorns can’t resist virgins so the one intending to catch Alexander is himself ensnared.
Wodwos appears regularly in carvings and on meisercords. He is naked, armed with a club and accompanied with a lion. I suspect by the look of sheer love on the lions face he is in fact The Lion. Wodwos himself is a joyous exultant character full of energy and the love of the wild.
It’s this love, joy and exultation that I admire and aspire too. The medieval world was certainly not nasty, brutish and short. If their fiction was anything to go by, it was vivid.
Hello! My name is Dom and I go by the name of HistoryTalker. I am a writer, lecturer and workshop provider. I usually work with children but when I can I give talks to adults.
I first became interested in History at school because it was the only thing I could do well. Since then I have completed academic training and continue to read history for pleasure and for work.
This short blog is to share my passion and my little adventures with a wider audience.
I do hope you enjoy it.