Henry II

The martyrdom of St Thomas Becket appears in a fourteenth-century stained glass interpretation, which is known as the Becket Window, in Christ Church, Oxford.

Becket continues to be an enduring figure of controversy in the public eye. Why was he considered a saint in the first place?

Anthony Dent describes how this rich French province remained a royal English vineyard for a good three centuries.

J.J.N. McGurk describes how Gerald’s later years were filled with his excellent books on Wales and his unsuccessful struggle for a bishopric.

The son of a Norman Marcher lord and a Welsh princess, J.J.N. McGurk writes, ‘Giraldus Cambrensis’ was a brilliant recorder of British life in the twelfth century.

Arthur Bryant relates how Becket’s death, at the hands of Henry II's servants, made this once worldly prelate a popular religious hero.

In the twelfth-century conflict between Church and State, Henry II found his most determined opponent in his formerly devoted servant, Thomas Becket, as Arthur Bryant continues his Story of England series.

Nicholas Vincent celebrates the founder of the Plantagenet dynasty.

The effigies of Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henry II at Fontevraud Abbey. Wiki Commons/ElanorGamgee.

Richard Cavendish marks the anniversary of a royal marriage, on May 18th, 1152.

The Angevin Empire may have come about by a mixture of luck and calculation, but skill and respect for local custom were required for Henry II to preserve it intact.