The House of Habsburg: The House of Habsburg, also known as House of Austria, is one of the most important royal houses of Europe.
It is best known for being an origin of all of the formally elected Holy Roman Emperors between 1438 and 1740, as well as rulers of the Austrian Empire and Spanish Empire and several other countries.
The House takes its name from Habsburg Castle, a fortress built around 1020–1030 in present day Switzerland by Count Radbot of Klettgau, who chose to name his fortress Habsburg. His grandson, Otto II, was the first to take the fortress name as his own, adding "von Habsburg" to his title. The House of Habsburg gathered dynastic momentum through the 11th, 12th and 13th centuries.
By 1276, Count Radbot's seventh generation descendant, Rudolph of Habsburg, had moved the family's power base from Habsburg Castle to the Archduchy of Austria. Rudolph had become King of Germany/Holy Roman Emperor in 1273, but the dynasty of the House of Habsburg was truly entrenched in 1276 when Rudolph became sovereign ruler of Austria, which the Habsburgs ruled for the next six centuries.
A series of dynastic marriages enabled the family to vastly expand its domains, to include Burgundy, Spain, Bohemia, Hungary, and other territories into the inheritance. In the 16th century, the family separated into the senior Habsburg Spain and the junior Habsburg Monarchy branches, who settled their mutual claims in the Onate treaty. As a result of generations of Habsburg inbreeding, the House of Habsburg became extinct in the male line in the 18th century: The Spanish branch ended upon the death of Charles II in 1700 and was replaced by the Anjou branch of the House of Bourbon in the person of his great-nephew Philip V.
The Austrian branch went extinct in the male person in 1740 with the death of Charles VI and in the female person in 1780 with the death of his daughter Maria Theresa and was succeeded by the Vaudemont branch of the House of Lorraine in the person of her son Joseph II. The new successor house styled itself formally as House of Habsburg-Lorraine (German: Habsburg-Lothringen), although it was often referred to as simply the House of Habsburg.
Translation, of course, played the major role in this diffusion of the sciences. The schools of translation were like the bridges between the Muslim and Christian scholars. Chief among these was the school of translators founded at Toledo by Alfonso X during the thirteenth century. Translations from Arabic (the medieval language of science) into Latin, the classical European language, had been going on since the tenth century. Centers of translation sprang up all over Christian Europe Barcelona, Tarazona, Leon, Segovia, Pamplona, Toulouse, Beziers, Narbonne, and Marseilles.
Bologna, Salerno and Paris made extensive use of Moorish scientific treatises. The translations from the Arabic provided links between Spain, Portugal, France, Italy and England. Alphonso X promoted Moorish erudition at every opportunity. The first university of Christian Spain was founded at Valencia by Alfonso VIII in the 13th century and the teachers employed were the Muslims and the Jews.
Nearly all the major universities in Europe sprung up around the same time, beginning in the second half of the 12th century right up through the 13th, a span of about one hundred and fifty years. A period which coincides with the flowering of Moorish science and the establishment of centers in Europe to translate Moorish treatises from Arabic into Latin.
In Italy we have Bologna, Padua, Naples, Rome; in France, Montpelier and Toulouse; in Portugal, Lisbon and Coimbra; in England, Oxford. Several of the Moorish works in mathematics, astronomy and medicine became standard texts at these universities. For example, Judwal, a Moorish work in astronomy, became a standard text at Oxford.
Frederick II founded a university at Naples in 1224 and there he established a curriculum which emphasized Moorish scholarship. Under him all theological studies ceased at Italian universities and Moorish medicine and law became the major disciplines.
A curious schizophrenia developed among the Catholics in relation to Moorish science and knowledge. On the one hand they were very much aware of the superior knowledge of the Moors and they made efforts to acquire that knowledge so that they would not be left too far behind.
At the same time they strove desperately to keep it away from the common people and even, at times, to vilify it so that it would not become a challenge to Catholicism. Top right detail of the conquest of Majorca, spain, date 1250 A.D.
They were afraid that the Enlightenment, the new ideas that this new knowledge would bring, could affect the populace. So that, even though they were given the keys to the inner sanctum, they kept the cage closed to the masses. Into Europe came the advances of an empire more immense than those of either Alexander the Great or Rome at its height. Rice was introduced into Europe by the Moors in the tenth century, cotton by the ninth.
A Moorish botanist, Ibn Bassal, partitioned the land into ten different classes, according to particular characteristics, and taught the farmers ways of increasing the fertility of their plots. Surveys were done to locate sweet water below the earth. In Britain, for instance, the Morris-dance, England's national dance, which has been performed every May-day for centuries was originally a dance performed by Moors. Middle left a Moorish dancer, from Munich, Germany date 1480 A.D.
It is of African origin, and was introduced to England before William the Conqueror in 1066. Sir John Hawkins, an eighteenth century man-of-letters and music authority in London, wrote:
"It is indisputable that this dance was the invention of the Moor." Tabourot another authority chronicled the same strong statement.
Dr. Samuel Johnson who compiled the first English dictionary in the middle years of the century eighteenth defined the Morris dance as "A Moorish dance" and the invention of the Moors in England in the seventeenth century. Any kind of entertainment or masquerade was called "Mauresque," wrote Paul Mettl, "because the guise of the black man was the most important and popular, a phenomenon which points on the one hand to the significance of the black race for the aesthetic life of the whites; on the other hand to the ancient habit of all Europeans to paint the face black on certain occasions of cult ritualism." Quoted Nettl. Historian David McRitchie, shows that some of these noble families were descendants of the Moors.
Arbeau, the French writer of the sixteenth century, who stated that often in good society he would see "a youth with blackened face" do this Morris dance. In the Italian madrigal literature of the Renaissance, says Arbeau real Negroes were introduced."
Real African minstrels were popular entertainer in the Scottish and Tudor courts of England during the fifteenth century. Bottom left Black Venetian Gondolier. David McRitchie writes:
In 1501 one of the King's minstrels was Peter the Moryen or Moor. In 1504 two blackamoor girls arrived and were educated at the court where they waited on the Queen. They were baptized, Elen and Margaret. In June 1507 a tournament was held in honour of the Queen's black lady, Elen Moore, which was conducted with great splendor.
Queen Elizabeth I had one favorite African in her Tudor court. She was Luce Morgan also known as Lucy Negro. Elizabethan history tells much about this fascinating African beauty that was sought after by gentlemen in the Inns of Court in London, titled men and even William Shakespeare. Her association with the Bard of Avon was not only intriguing but mysterious, as well.
That love affair has been meticulously swept under the carpets of English history. But eventually the truth will always show itself and this one is now known to an ever-growing number of scholars. The effect that Luce Morgan had on Elizabethan England was tremendous.
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Dr. George Bagshawe Harrison, an authority on Shakespeare, claims that Shakespeare fell in love with Lucy Negro only to lose her later to the Earl of Southampton.
Dr. Harrison makes a further more startling statement:
"This Lucy Negro I would identify as the Dark Lady of the Sonnets";
the woman to whom William Shakespeare is said to have written this immortal line.
Dr. Leslie Hotson, a man of brilliant and unorthodox scholarship and an expert on Shakespeare, after exhaustive research throws further light on Lucy Negro:
I have been at some pains to collect fts and reports acabout Luce Morgan.
My reward is the discovery of a series of documents indicating that some years before she charmed Shakespeare she had first charmed Queen Elizabeth.
The House of Plantagenet
A branch of the Angevins, was a royal house founded by Geoffrey V of Anjou, father of Henry II of England. Plantagenet kings first ruled the Kingdom of England in the 12th century.
Their paternal ancestors originated in the French province of Gâtinais and gained the County of Anjou through marriage during the 11th century.
The dynasty accumulated several other holdings, building the Angevin Empire that at its peak stretched from the Pyrenees to Ireland and the border with Scotland.
Edward II king of England - House of Plantagenet
Edward's downfall came when his wife Isabella of France and her baronial lover Roger Mortimer set out to depose the king with the help of Henry, Earl of Lancaster, brother of the executed Earl Thomas.
In defeat Edward agreed to abdicate the throne in favour of his and Isabella's son, Edward III of England.
Edward III king of England (the Black Prince) - House of Plantagenet
Edward III married Philippa of Hainaut, (1314 – 1369).
Hainaut consisted of what is now the Belgian province of Hainaut and the southern part of the French département Nord.
In Roman times, Hainaut was situated in the Roman provinces of Belgica and Germania Inferior and inhabited by Celtic tribes (Black people), until Germanic peoples (White people) replaced them and ended Roman Imperial rule.
The eldest of her fourteen children was Edward, the Black Prince, who became a renowned military leader.
Philppa died at the age of fifty-five from an illness closely related to dropsy. The Queen's College, Oxford was founded in her honour.