Some of you that follow me will be aware that I am a keen football supporter –first my country, Spain, and then, the UK squad, the “Three Lions” –. Just as a kind of parting shot (regarding football) I would say that those “rageries de grosses pelotes” forbade by King Edward II in 1314 was a clear statement that football was already been played in the country, much to the displeasure of the London merchants of the time!
That medieval association was transferred to the UK squad (The Three Lions) referring to the team’s crest which is in turn based on the royal arms of England. From the beginning there were a variable number of lions on the kings’ coats of arms; it was after Henry II married Eleanor of Aquitaine –whose coat of arms already did have a lion- that the three lions appeared on some royal symbols. In fact, Richard the Lionheart is particularly linked to the lion symbol, as we can see in these two MS miniatures that I am showing (source: British Library Medieval Manuscript Blog). First pict: Richard the Lionheart from Sir Thomas Holme's Book of Arms, made in England, c. 1445–1524, Harley MS 4205, f. 3v
Second pict: Richard the Lionheart carrying a shield with three roughly drawn lions, from Matthew Paris's Abbreviated Chronicles of England, made in St Albans c. 1255–1259, Cotton MS Claudius D VI, f. 9v
Jesús Lorenzo Vieites
PS: Yes, again, it’s got nothing to do proper with Italian Old Masters but Medieval England did have some excellent connections via churchmen or artists with the Europe of the time! Also, I am conversant with Medieval England.
#threelions #arthistory #manuscript #mss #ukmss #richardthelionheart #kinghenryii #eleanorofaquitaine #churchhistory #heraldic #coatofarms #miniaturist #illuminated_mss #harley_ms #cotton_ms #britishlibrary @blmedieval
Jesús L. Vieites