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Ten Sixty Six And All Of That

Welcome to the Shieldwall fellow fyrdsmen.
Chin up. Stand firm. Parry and thrust.
You're suffering from both constipation and hayfever.
Your hauberk armour is hanging wet and heavy on your shoulders.
Your Spangenhelm helmet is digging into your nasal bridge.
Your kite-shield’s rough wooden surface is skinning your knuckles.
As we all know, The Battle of Hastings
didn’t actually take place in Hastings at all.
As we all know, the area surrounding
Senlac Ridge came to be known as Battle.
And not the other way around.
Long, fierce and bloody-beyond-belief
they began fighting at dawn on October 14th
and fought for as long as the daylight lasted.
And then they fought some more.
Neither side willing to concede.
The Anglo-Saxons refusing to yield.
The Normans refusing to give up the ghost.
The sandy stream transformed into a sanguine lake.
But don’t believe everything you read on a Bayeaux embroidery.
Tall dark and and handsome, King Harold Godwinson
was only identifiable from tattoos found upon his torso.
He was beheaded and gelded. Though not in that order.
And there was likely no arrow in his eye.
Whilst the king’s body was carried from theatre
and buried beneath stones in an unknown location,
the corpses of the 5,000 Englishmen who’d died in his name
were left to rot in the open-air for the next 10 years.
As a warning. As a deterrent. Like so much cheap manure.
The wyrds remain wholly inexorable.
The wyrds go ever as they will.
Where’s a Russian linesman when you need one?



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