martes, 1 de marzo de 2011

External history

The Norman Conquest. The Normans. England at the time of the Conquest. The Battle of Hastings (1066)

Some scholars say about catastrophe because of the effects of Norman Conquest and its borrowings in the language. In the military and political sense was violent but French culture influence began in England before the Norman Conquest in 1066. This influence had grown after the Conquest also. Edward the Confessor was the last king of England form King Alfred (AS King). Was the son of the English father, but Norman mother. When he was a child he was taken to a Norman court during 30 years.
In France he adopted the French way of life and also friends. It seems that a given moment he was promised (bequest) of the throne of England to a cousin of him, the bastard William. The relationship was very good between them. The problem was that Edward died without son. After the death, another man was elected: Harold Godwineson. He was the on of the powerful earl. Almost immediately, after his election, the crown was challenge of William. He claimed that before dies, Edward promised the crown, though there are not any documents.
From the beginning of 1066 the English were expecting with the invasion of Normans. Harold expected the coming. They waited for a long time. They expected to be invaded in July, but the wind in the sea blew and they couldn’t arrive.
Also, other people find that was an invasion in the North of England. Tostig (the half-brother) started the invasion in the North, helped by the King of Norway, Hardrada. They took the river Ouse and arrived to York. The Scandinavian defeated the English in September. They rushed to the North to combat the Vikings, and they surprised the Vikings and they defeated the Scandinavian in 5 days. The battle was Stamford Bridge at the end of September.
When the English celebrated the victory, they heard the French had landed at the South (Pevensey). The King rushed back to the south to meet the French. The battle was in 13th of 1066, October. Harold died in the battle of Hastings. William the Conqueror became King of England.

The Norman Settlement. Linguistic Communication in England from the time of the Conquest until the loss of Normandy

William was the son of Robert the Devil. William was the 7th duke of Normandy. The 1st duke of Normandy was the Scandinavian King Rollo, that made agreement to the reign of France. The Normans, with the passing of time became French. They spoke their own variety of French: Norman-french. This language developed in England as Anglo-Norman (the 1st variety of French spoken in England) and became and developed as language for administrative purposes called Anglo-French.
The south of England was the 1st to be occupied with little resistance. The 1st place to surrender was Winchester. As to London, William wanted to enter in a peaceful way, to be acknowledged as legal heir of Edward the Confessor. He made a circuit form the south to the west, and destroyed the villages (f.i., Buckingham). At the end, Londoners accepted William as the king, and was crowned on Christmas Day in 1066.
He confiscated the Saxon estates (possessions) which gradually were given to the French. By the end of 1068 William was true lord of south of England, but in the Midlands and North, things were not so clear (Mercia, Northumbria). The 2 earls did not accepted the control of King William and they rebelled. William was generous and forgave the rebellion of  Edwin and Morcas, but they rebelled again and this 2nd rebellion was stronger because they received the helping of another Viking invasion: the sons of the King of Denmark.
Was a cruel campaign, very cruel vengeance of William. This appears as the Harrying of the North read in Doomsday Book, that contains historical events like that. Many villages were destroyed, cattle was killed, the houses were destroyed… During many years the places had not been occupied by anyone. All was destroyed. They forced the English habitants to a new way of life. He established a feudal system, a hierarchical society.
He convinced the Scandinavian people who lived in the North to follow this new life. They imposed the French the system of feudalism and in 1070 the fight was absolutely finished. The last place to be occupied was the Isle of Ely (there we find examples of Norman architecture)
The confiscations started as a result of local rebellions. William had the excuse to take the land of AS. King  Williams’s followers were given these lands.
            The confiscation presented different maps.
            English feudalism was peculiar because each baron had held lands in different parts of England, because the King was clever and careful (the lands were not together). With this situation there were no citizen having control over the large part of the shire. All was under the control of the king, and the king appointed an officer (a shire-reeve) the authority for administration. Is the equivalent of the English vicomte.
            He had an inquest: The Domesday Survey o Doomsday Book. Is a collection of facts for a fiscal purposes, the proper collection of taxes. With an accurate list of the citizens and their possessions; according to the goods, the king extracted the tributes. The 2 books are on the Public Record Office.
            In the religious area there was also a revolution consisted in replacing the former abbots, bishops and important posts in the church by French men. England became a place where 3 languages were spoken: Latin, French and English. Church and court spoke in French and in English.

            The loss of Normandy. French reinforcements and reactions against the foreigners. Progressive re-establishment of English.

         The loss of Normandy

            The conditions of life changed with William. After the Conquest for 150 years French had been necessary and useful in the upper classes, of power. But from the 13th c, maintaining French in England was more and more difficult. The loss of Normandy influenced in this fact. It England had kept control over 2/3 of France and if the nobility had kept their possessions there, the continuous use of French in the upper classes would have been justified. But the English lose their possessions in France, so they did not need French.
            The loss of Normandy was the result of a love affair. The king of England was the duke of Normandy: was the same person. But in 1204 this changed. English lost their possessions in France. In 1204 the King of England lost the duchy of Normandy. He was John Lackland (Juan sin Tierra). He decided to marry to Isabella of Angouléme that was already engaged with Hugh of Lusignan (he was supported by very influential family). John didn’t respect the previous engage and the thought that he was being attacked by Lusignan family and then he attacked 1st.
            Both were asked by the king of France, Philippe. John was called to the court and the charges were presented and the verdict told. But John didn’t go because he was the king of England and he was very proud and important. The king of France thought that he had to go because John was duke of Normandy and Normandy belonged to France. And then, Normandy was confiscated. The king of France attacked Normandy and won. After that important lost, the King for England concentrated in England. But for a time some of the nobility continued to have extends of land in parts of France, in the south west. The connexion was not the same as Normands, but was something. The true was that the nobility didn’t feel that they didn’t belong to France or England.
            After the confiscation, the French king, Louis said he was going to confiscate more parts. Those who had lands in both countries were forced to decide to leave one or other country, to serve one or other king. The English nobility had to give their possessions to different parts of their families. King William had done already that.
            In 1244 the new incident had to have two lands: there were double allegiable.
            King Henry II of England, as an answer to Louis send French people to France, dispossessed their lands. For this political reason we can say that of about the half of 13th c England and nobility was only English.

French reinforcements and the reactions against the foreigners

            For a long time, the royal family was still connected to the continent by marriage, because the kings of England kept on marriage French women. For instance, King John. His wedding was the reason that many French people accompanied the court to England. Henry III did something like that and married a French lady, Leonor of Provence. With the new queen, lots of French people came to England. This is a silent invasion, not cruel.
            In 1233, the king of England dimissed his English officers, appointing the French. In 1236, Henry III married Eleanor. In 1246 Henry’s mother died and more people came to England. During Henry III’s reign, lots of French people came to England. To sum up. During Henry III reign, the country was invaded by French people. This peaceful invasion found stop, because there were national English reaction to coming foreigners. Hostility arose.

Reactions against the foreigners

During Henry III’s minority, the chancellor of England defended the policy of “England for the English”. Some of the criticism of French people was because they didn’t speak English. The knowledge of English was guarded by English man (the 3rd language in use).
A great patriotic feeling arose. When the fist migration occurred, in 1233, this antagonism was evident, and some bishops wanted the king to be advised of this, although they were not successful.
            The barons’ war was a revolt in which both the barons and the middle classes joined and complaint against the French power. The leader of this revolt was Simon de Monfort. Some of their reasons were that they did not know to speak English.

            The progressive re-establishment of English

            The middle of 13th c is considered as a turning point (punto de inflexion) because there was a renewed interest as English as a language. English became necessary and used in upper classes. It is that time that more words in French are adopted in English because people who spoke French had to go to live to England and speak English .The loss of lands in Normandy and in France was very important. They introduced French words.
            There were many French words, because people that spoke French and they didn’t feel the appropriate words in English, and they used French words in origin. During 13th c French was used but there were many reasons to use it: touch of class or in some universities, like Oxford, had a rule that the pupils had to use French. But English was growing, though the official documents were in French. In church they also used French.
            In other words: during this century the upper classes continued using French because it was considered the language of cultivated people. In those years, French had to be taught to children, and it was still the language of laws and the Parliament until 1362. At the end of the 13th century, French declined. Some institutions tried to maintain French at any price, as monasteries or the University of Oxford.
            Henry III’s son, Edward I, made an unexpected change: he spoke English as his natal tongue. In some literary circles the use of French was criticized.

There were indications of different nature that explains the raising of English:
a)                          Linguistic reason: The Anglo-French was very different from the rest of the dialects that France had. Anglo-French was a mixture of different Norman dialects, also from the south of France. When English people used French their French was not good. This complex of inferiority is reflected in the texts of the time. They wanted to change.
b)                          Political circumstances: Political war between France and England: the Hundred Years War (1357-1453). For different generations were rivals. The king of England, Edward III claimed the throne of France, and he invaded France. French was the language of the enemy.
c)                          Social and economic nature: The rise of the middle class. Consisted on rural and merchant population. The rural population changed: serfs started to disappear. A new hierarchy became. There were free tenants, and became more and more powerful. The process of the economic changes was accelerated by an important event that started in t summer of 1348: the black death. It started in the south-west. Chronicles give us the information that of only 1/10 of the population remained alive. Poor people died quickly. This resulted in shortage of workers. They were offered more money (rise of wages). Many people moved to the towns looking for better conditions of life. The Black death improved the economic position of the workers. As the people spoke English, the English was important, and got a better position.

General adoption of English in the 14th century

By the 14th c the adoption of English was general. In 1362 the Parliament was opened for the 1st time in English. Before was French the language of Parliament. As a written language this was the 1st step: English was as an official written language in the end of 14th c and the beginning of 15th c. For a long time it competed with Latin (lingua franca) and French. The 1st wills in English were in the beginning of 15th c. Written records of the guilds (gremios) were on the 1st time in English by the 15th c.

No hay comentarios:

Publicar un comentario