epub Lion Rampant
Probably the most romantic, exciting and yet most tragic story in the history of medieval Wales. It is the true story of Princess Nest and the Lord Owain ap Cadwgan, Prince of Powys in the years after the Norman invasion, based on the 'Chronicles of the Princes'. Nest was the daughter of Rhys ap Tewdwr, ruler of South Wales, and became known as Helen of Wales, not only because of her beauty, but also for the passions she aroused in so many men, which led to wars and vendetta. When her father was slain by the Normans, she became ward, then mistress of King Henry I of England, who gave her in marriage to Gerald of Windsor, castellan of Pembroke. At Christmas 1109, she was abducted, albeit willingly, from Cilgerran Castle by her cousin Owain, her husband having ot escape through the privy shaft. This lead to years of unrest and warfare, both between various Welsh factions and between them and the Normans, culminating in her husband's revenge. Nest had a least nine children by five different fathers, including Owain and King Henry. From these liaisons came a remarkable progeny, including the Fitzgeralds, from whom JFK could trace his ancestry. One son was Bishop of St Davids, another two conquerors of Ireland, one of whom took his father's flag there which later became St Patrick's Cross, now part of the Union Jack. Her grandson was Giraldus Cambrensis, the famous priest and chronicler - and her nephew was The Lord Rhys, instigator of the first Eisteddfod in 1176. This fast-moving tale of love and lust, tenderness and treachery, its historical accuracy brings the atmosphere of twelfth century Wales to life with vibrant authenticity.
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