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Transport yourself back up to a thousand years and explore historical buildings as they may have appeared in the past.
1125 .. 1149
1125 .. 1149
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Hugh of Champagne joins the Templars
Hugh of Champagne joins the Templars.
Stephen marries Matilda of Boulogne
King Henry I arranged the marriage between his nephew, Stephen of Blois and Matilda, the daughter and heiress of Eustace III, the Count of Boulogne. This gave Stephen control of the county of Boulgine and also lands in England that had belonged to Count Eustace II. Matilda was descended from both Malcolm III of Scotland and Edmund Ironside.
Henry I granted a charter for an annual fair to be held at Glastonbury known as the Tor Fair. The reaffirmed the right for the existing fair to be held there.
King Henry I of England arranged the marriage of his daughter Matilda to Geoffrey, the son of Fulk V of Anjou. This was done to ensure an alliance between England and Anjou and to prevent Fulk allying himself with Louis VI of France. A previous marriage proposal between Henry's son William and Fulk's daughter came to nothing when William was drowned during a sea crossing from Normandy to England in 1120. Matilda had been married to Henry V of Germany, but he died in 1125 and Matilda had returned to England.
Barons swear allegiance to Matilda
With Matilda the rightful heir to the English throne, Henry I had the barons swear allegiance to her to ensure she became Queen of England when he died.
Murder of the Count of Flanders
Charles the Good, Count of Flanders, was murdered as he prayed in the church of Saint-Donatien at Bruges. His murder came as a huge shock and, as he did not have a son to inherit his title, the murder started a period of conflict in the region. Several claiments came forward including William of Ypres, Thierry of Alsace and William Clito. William Clito's claim was backed by Louis VI.
Templars are donated land near Troyes
The first donation of land was given to the Templars in 1127 by Count Thybaud of Champagne at Barbonne-Fayel, some fifty kilometres north-west of Troyes. The farm called La Commanderie still exists.
During late 1128 and early 1129, Hughes de Payen visited both Scotland and England where he was apparently donated both land and money. At this time, in London, the original Temple in Holborn outside Holborn bars was built. It consisted of gardens, orchard, boundary ditch and cemetery, and was the first round church. In 1161 the site was moved to the New Temple between Fleet street and the Thames.
Templar Church in London
Hugh de Payens may have been granted the land for the first Temple Church in London at this time. Consisting of an orchard, a cemetery, a round church. The position was possibly at the end of Chancery Lane. The temple was moved in 1161.
First Cistercian Abbey in Britain
Waverley Abbey, the first Cistercian abbey was founded.
The nave at Durham Cathedral is vaulted
Work on the nave vaulting at Durham Cathedral took place from 1128 until 1133.
Lichfield regains Bishop's seat
Lichfield had lost the status to allow it a cathedral during the eleventh century, but in 1128 Lichfield was restored to its ancient status.
Construction of new church at Dunfermline Abbey
The construction of new church buildings was begun in 1128 at Dunfermline Abbey. The outline of this earlier church can be seen on the floor of the current nave.
Council of Troyes takes place
The Council of Troyes took place. Its aim was to consider the claim of the Knights Templars represented by Hughes de Payen and Andre de Montbard and was brought about by Bernard of Clairvaux. The Council provided papal approval for the Templars and resulted in many new recruits joining the order. The Order was provided it with its first rule, the Latin Rule.
Hugh de Payen visits Fulk of Anjou
To raise funds and attract new recruits Hugh de Payen travelled around France starting with a visit to Fulk of Anjou who had become an associate member of the Knights Templar order in 1120. Support and donations across Europe for the Templars increased. The visits lasted during April and May.
Matilda marries Geoffrey Plantagenet
Henry I arranged a marriage between his daughter Matilda and the son of Fulk V of Anjou, Geoffrey Plantagenet. He had previously arranged a marriage between his son William Adelin to Fulk's daughter also called Matilda, but William had died when the 'White Ship' sank returning the Prince from Normandy. Geoffrey and Matilda were married in St. Julien's Cathedral in Le Mans, Maine (France).
On the same day that Henry I attended the consecration of Rochester Cathedral, a fire took hold in the city and damaged the newly finished building.
Canterbury choir dedication
The construction of a new choir was started at Canterbury Cathedral in 1093 by Prior Ernulf and completed by Prior Conrad was dedicated in the presence of Henry I, David of Scotland and many English Earls.
The Knights Templars appear in the North East of Spain possibly as early as 1130 and were receiving privileges from Alfonso I. The Templars may have helped the rulers of Catalonia and Aragon regain land from the Moors. Alfonso I granted the Templars exemption of tax on a fifth of the wealth taken from the Moors and on his death he left a third of his kingdom to them. This was later successfully contested but the Templars were given land in Aragon, Catalonia, Valencia, Mallorca and Andalucia.
Rievaulx Abbey founded
The Cistercian abbey of Rievaulx was founded.
A minor order of monks and nuns was founded in this year by St. Gilbert. Most of the foundations were set up in the east of England as Gilbert came from Lincolnshire.
Basingwerk Abbey founded
The North Welsh Cistercian Abbey was colonised by monks from the Norman house called Savigny and was possibly founded by the Earl of Chester at the time, Ranulf de Gernon.
Fulk V becomes King of Jerusalem
King Baldwin of Jerusalem died and Fulk V, who had married the King's daughter Melisende, became the King of Jerusalem.
A Cistercian abbey founded by monks from Waverley Abbey.
Durham Cathedral Chapter house
Construction of the Chapter house at Durham Cathedral was begun in 1133 and continued until 1140.
Combermere Abbey founded
Ranulf, the Earl of Chester witnessed the foundation of the new Savigny abbey in the Midlands.
Augustinians at Portchester
A small priory was built by Augustinian monks within the confines of Portchester Castle.
Future king Henry II is born
King Henry II was born on the first day of the traditional new year at Le Mans.
There was an eclipse of the Sun over Scotland and the north of England.
An eye-witness account from William of Malmesbury tells of an earthquake affecting many parts of England. (Symeon of Durham's Historia Regum, by John of Hexham.) This is interesting as it occurred just after an eclipse. See year 1185 when another eclipse and earthquake occurred.
Robert Curthose, William the Conqueror's eldest son, died in captivity in Cardiff Castle where he had been locked up since being defeated by his brother in 1106. Robert was buried in Gloucester Cathedral where there is an effigy of him still.
Fountains Abbey Founded
Fountains abbey was founded.
Calder Abbey first founded
Colonising a new abbey at Calder was first attempted by monks from the Savigny order, but they were driven out by the Scots a few years later.
Hughes de Payen died and was succeeded by Robert de Craon as Master of the KnightsTemplar.
Baldwin de Redvers flees to Carisbrooke
The Earl of Devon, Baldwin de Redvers took refuge in Carisbrooke Castle on the Isle of Wight after a defeat at the hands of King Stephen.
Castle at Banbury is built
The Bishop of Lincoln built a castle at Banbury.
Buckfast Abbey founded
The site of an early Benedictine abbey was taken over by the Cistercians with the permission of King Stephen. Monks from Savigny colonised the abbey.
Forde Abbey founded
Initially Forde Abbey was situated at Brightly in Devon, but the site proved too difficult and in 1141 it was moved to its current location 4 miles south east of Chard in Somerset. The founding Cistercian monks came from Waverly Abbey in Surrey.
London Bridge damaged by fire
The old wooden London Bridge across the Thames was destroyed by fire this year or in 1135. St. Paul's was also damaged at this time so the fire must have affected a large area of the city. Rebuilding work was undertaken by Peter of Colechurch who would later undertake its reconstruction in stone.
Construction of a castle at Scarborough
William le Gros built a castle on the headland at Scarborough.
King Stephen captures Bampton
Bampton Castle in Devon captured by King Stephen.
Battle of Crug Mawr
The Normans were defeated in battle at Crug Mawr, south west Wales, by a Welsh army. Cilgerran Castle then fell to the Welsh.
A fire at St. Paul's
Reconstruction work on the Cathedral at St. Paul's had been going on since the last major fire of 1087, and this fire again did much damage to the building.
Treaty of Durham
A peace treaty signed by King David of Scotland and King Stephen. The Scottish King had invaded northern England in January and had captured many of the major towns including Carlisle and Newcastle. In response, Stephen had raised a large army and marched north to Durham. King David agreed to talk rather than fight and an arrangement was agreed allowing the Scots to keep Carlisle in return for stopping their advance. David refused to do homage to the English King as his loyalties rested with Matilda, King Henry's daughter. King David's son did pay homage to Stephen and received the Earldom of Huntingdon in return.
Carlisle Castle under Scottish control
After King Stephen gave up the rights to Cumberland after the Treaty of Durham to the Scots, King David made Carlisle his southern capital. The Scottish king made large improvements to the defences of the castle at Carlisle and built a keep.
Coronation of Matilda of Boulogne
Queen Matilda, the wife of King Stephen, was crowned at Westminster Abbey.
Stephen and the Court at Oxford
King Stephen held a magnificent court at Oxford attended by large numbers of important barons and members of the Church. No expense was spared.
Stephen at Hereford
Stephen visits Hereford Cathedral for his royal proclamation on Whitsunday. The chair reputed to have been used by Stephen still exists at Hereford.
York Minster was partially damaged by fire in this year. The near-by church of St. Mary's and some other 37 churches were also damaged.
Bath Abbey fire
A fire badly damages the church at Bath Abbey.
Stephen goes to Normandy
King Stephen sailed to Normandy to confront Geoffrey Plantagenet, count of Anjou and the Angevins who were attacking the southern areas of Normandy. Although Stephen had some success he was not able to deal fully with the count. Stephen did come to an agreement with the French King Louis VI and Eustace, Stephen's son, paid homage to the French king for Normandy.
Death of Louis VI
The French king died. He was succeeded by his son Louis VII.
Louis VII becomes King of France
King Louis VII was crowned king of France, a few months after the death of his father Louis VI.
This wealthy manor was given to the Knights Templar by Matilda, wife of King Stephen for their help getting Stephen to the throne. Later, the site was given to the Hospitallers when the Templars were suppressed.
Theobald becomes Archbishop
Theobald is elected as Archbishop of Canterbury.
Foundation of Bordesley Abbey
Waleran, the earl of Worcester founds a new Cistercian abbey with help from monks from Garendon.
Start of Civil War
Robert, the Earl of Gloucester and half brother to Matilda (daughter of Henry I) rebels against King Stephen, supporting Matilda's claim to the throne of England.
Arundel Castle siege
Matilda was given refuge by William de Albini at Arundel Castle. King Stephen built siege works around the castle in response but was unable to break the castle's defences. Matilda escaped but was later captured.
Exeter castle building work
Work on the curtain wall at Exeter Castle progressed from 1169 until 1177.
Calder Abbey attacked by the Scots
Monks of the Savigny order were attacked by the Scots under the control of David I, and were forced to return to Furness Abbey.
Shrewsbury Castle captured by Stephen
Stephen captured the castle at Shrewsbury. Henry (II) would capture back the castle before the end of Stephen's reign.
Dudley castle attacked by Stephen
The Castle and lands around Dudley were attacked by King Stephen during the early part of his war against Matilda.
Ludlow castle siege
Ludlow Castle was captured on behalf of Matilda in 1138 and King Stephen besieged the castle in an attempt to regain it. During the siege the King bravely saved Prince Henry of Scotland from being injured by a grappling hook thrown from the castle.
Gilbert de Clare becomes Earl of Pembroke
Gilbert de Clare was made the first Earl of Pembroke. He took control of the castle of the same name.
Victor IV becomes the Antipope
The reign or Pope Victor IV was very short. A different person was elected antipope in 1159 but took the same name of Victor IV.
The Scots invade Northumbria
King David of Scotland took an army across the border and attacked Northumbria. He wanted Northumbria for his son Henry.
Stephen marches north
In response to the Scottish attack in the north, Stephen took an army into Scotland but the two kings did not meet and Stephen returned to England.
Robert sides with Matilda
Robert, the Earl of Gloucester announces that he will assist Matilda, his step-sister in her claim for the English throne.
The Scots invade Northumberland
Led by their king, David I, the Scots invade and destroy Northumberland. The Scots moved south into Lancashire and North Yorkshire. This prompted Steven to mobilize an army to counter the invasion. The Scots captured and destroyed the important castle at Norham.
Battle of 'the Standard'
David I of Scotland was defeated at the battle of 'the Standard' in Yorkshire. The name for the battle came from the banners that were carried into battle by the English.
A Papal Bull issued by Pope Innocent II, a former Cistercian monk and protégé of St. Bernard of Clairvaux, stated that the Knight Templars should owe allegiance to no one other than the Pope himself. This meant that the Templars answered to no one not even Kings or other political or religious authorities.
Wallingford Castle siege
After Brian fitz Count the owner of the castle at Wallingford sided with Matilda, king Stephen built two siege castles to force him out.
Kingswood Abbey founded
A Cistercian abbey was founded by monks from Tintern Abbey. The location of the abbey altered several times in the first few years, but finally settled at Kingswood in Gloucestershire. A sixteenth-century gatehouse is all that remains.
Kirkstead Abbey founded
A daughter house of Fountains Abbey. The initial location of the abbey proved unsuitable and the a new site was chosen near Horncastle in Lincolnshire.
Corfe Castle siege
In 1139 Baldwin de Redvers captured Corfe Castle for Matilda. King Stephen besieged the castle but was unable to take it back.
Leeds Castle siege
King Stephen besieged Leeds Castle which was being held against him by supporters of Matilda. The castle fell to the King and he took control of it.
Roger, Bishop of Salisbury is arrested
King Stephen arrested Roger, the Bishop of Salisbury. Bishop Roger was a powerful landowner and had several castles. Stephen also arrested Alexander, the bishop of Lincoln and had him imprisoned. Stephen wanted to take control to bishop Roger's castles and the bishop was taken to his castle at Devizes where he was held captive outside the walls and starved until the castle surrendered. Roger's son was also captured and tortured until the castle finally fell to the King. Roger's castle at Sherborne was also captured by Stephen. The castles at Newark and Sleaford in Lincolnshire belonging to bishop Alexander were forced to surrender to the King using the same underhand tactics.
Matilda arrives in England
Matilda arrives in England to further her attempts to take the throne from king Stephen. She was assisted by Robert of Gloucester, the illegitimate son of Henry I, King of England and a chief supporter of his step-sister Matilda's claim to the English throne.
The construction of the abbey church of St Denis in Paris, the first Gothic Cathedral was begun in aorund 1140. Combining stained glass windows, flying buttresses, choir vaulting and rib vaults, it was a daring innovation in architecture. The specifications were set by the abbot of St Denis, Suger.
Foundation of Augustinian canons at Bristol
Robert Fitzharding founded a monastery of Augustinian canons in Bristol.
Building of original Bristol church
Building of original Bristol church.
Castle at Sherriff Hutton
A castle at Sherriff Hutton may have belonged to Bertram de Bulmer .
Coggeshall Abbey founded
King Stephen and Matilda his wife founded Coggeshall Abbey. This was to be the last of the Savigny abbeys to be founded before the order merged with the Cistercians in 1147.
Construction of Framlingham Castle
A motte with a wooden tower was probably the first type of castle built by the Normans on the site. Hugh Bigod owned Framlingham at the time.
Whitland Abbey foundation
This Cistercian abbey in Wales was colonised by monks from Clairvaux.
Construction of Hedingham Castle
Built by the de Vere family, land owners in Essex.
Castle Rising Construction
The Norman Lord William D'Albini built a new stone keep at Castle Rising.
Woodstock held by Matilda
The Palace of Woodstock was held by Matilda's supporters during the conflict with Stephen. Henry (II) spent much of his time there.
The Anglo Saxon Chronicles reported that an eclipse of the sun occurred.
Stephen besieges Lincoln
Lincoln, held by Matilda's supporters, was besieged by King Stephen. The siege would continue until February the next year.
The roof of the Cathedral burnt down. Bishop Alexander the Magnificent started rebuilding work.
Winchester Castle burns down
The castle was destroyed during the civil war.
Battle of Lincoln
Matilda's forces defeated and captured King Stephen at the battle of Lincoln. Stephen was held captive until September when Matilda's forces were defeated at Winchester.
Matilda is elected Queen
After Stephen had been captured at Lincoln, Matilda was elected as Queen of England at Winchester. Her new position as ruler of England was not to last for long
Matilda enters London
Matilda and her supporters entered London for her coronation. Her supporters included David I, king of the Scots. Geoffrey de Mandeville who controlled the Tower of London, abandoned his king as he saw Matilda had the upper hand. He joined her side and offered her the Tower of London. He did this to ensure he kept the Earldom of Essex which made him one of the most powerful barons of the time.
Rout of Winchester
Matilda's forces were besieging a royalist held castle at Wolvesey near Winchester and were attacked and defeated by a royalist relief army. King Stephen who was being held captive at the time was exchanged for Robert, earl of Gloucester one of Matilda's supporters who was captured in the defeat.
Exchange of King Stephen and Gloucester
Robert, Earl of Gloucester was held captive at Rochester Castle before being exchanged for King Stephen who had been captured earlier in the year at Lincoln.
Stephen's second coronation
After his release Stephen insisted on a second coronation so that the barons would swear their loyalty to him. The coronation took place at Canterbury Cathedral.
The Savigny order of monks colonised the a new abbey at Calder in this year. The earlier attempt at colonising the location had failed after being attacked by the Scots.
Dundrennan Abbey founded
David I, King of the Scots may have been involved in the foundation of this Cistercian abbey in Scotland. The founding monks probably came from Rievaulx.
Mandeville and Matilda
Secret negotiations between Matilda and Mandeville take place.
Cistercians in Ireland
The first Cistercians arrived in Ireland invited by St. Malachy. Their Abbey of Mellifont was the first of many.
Hospitallers granted Krak de Chevaliers
The Kinghts Hospitaller were given the massive castle Krak des Chevaliers by Raymond II, Count of Tripoli.
Henry (II) land in England
Henry of Anjou, the future King of England landed on the south coast of England with his uncle Earl Robert of Gloucester and several knights, Henry spent a year in England at Bristol being taught by Master Matthew. Soon after landing in England Earl Robert captured Lulworth Castle, Rufus Castle on Portland and Wareham Castle.
Oct (to Dec)
Oxford siege and Matilda's escape
Oxford was besieged by King Stephen trapping Matilda inside the city. But just before Christmas Matilda managed to escape across the snow and ice of the frozen Thames dressed in white so that she would not be seen. Matilda escaped to Wallingford Castle and Oxford fell to the King.
A new Cistercian abbey at Revesby was founded by monks from Rievaulx in this year. The abbey was founded by William de Roumare I, earl of Lincoln and the first abbot was Ailred, who moved back to Rievaulx in 1146 to become the head of that abbey.
Boxley Abbey founded
Boxley Abbey, run by Cistercians was founded in 1143 or 1146 by William of Ypres and was colonised by monks from Clairvaux. The Abbey is situated near Maidstone in Kent.
Celestine II becomes Pope
Baldwin III becomes king of Jerusalem
When his father Fulk died, Baldwin became king of Jerusalem. But at only 13 years of age Baldwin was too young to rule unaided. He was made co-ruler of the Crusader state along side his mother Melisende.
Mandeville is arrested
King Stephen arrested Geoffrey de Mandeville at a meeting of the Royal Court. Mandeville had tried Stephen's patience with his disloyalty and the king did not want the Tower of London (which Mandeville controlled) fall into the hands of Matilda. Mandevilles castles and title of Earl of Essex were taken from him, and he became an outlaw.
Built by Robert, Earl of Gloucester. The castle soon came under siege by King Stephen who after four days took the castle and destroyed it.
Lucius II becomes Pope
Geoffrey Plantagenet captures Normandy
After several years of conflict between the Angevins and the Barons of Normandy Geoffrey Plantagenet, count of Anjou, captured Rouen and took control of the whole of the duchy of Normandy. Geoffrey also took the title of Duke of Normandy.
Capture of Edessa
The county of Edessa, a Crusader state, was captured by Zengi, ruler of Mosul. This triggered the Second Crusade in 1148.
King Stephen captures the castle at Farringdon from Matilda.
Woburn Abbey founded
A colony of monks from Fountains Abbey move to set up a new Cistercian abbey at Woburn.
Jervaulx Abbey founded
Initially a Savignic foundation, the abbey was taken over by the Cistercian order and responsibility for it was taken by Byland.
Construction of Brightwell Castle
Built by King Stephen (or the Earl of Chester). The castle had a moat and was situated on the site of current manor house.
Eugenius III becomes Pope
Return of the comet now named after Edmond Halley who died in 1742 that returns approximately every 75 years.
First formal Bull of crusade
The first formal Papal Bull of Crusade or 'Bulla cruciata' calling on France to restore the Holy Land to Christendom was issued by Pope Eugenius III, together with 'Quantum praedecessors' which was reissued on the 1st of March 1146.
The Knights Templars adopted cross pattee; a splayed red cross.
Llansteffan Castle captured
Llansteffan Castle was captured by the Welsh.
The Pope reissues Papal Bull for a Crusade
Pope Eugenius III reissued an amended Bull, a formal proclamation issued by the pope, proclaiming the Second Crusade.
Sermon at Vézelay
St. Bernard's sermon at Vézelay so moved Eleanor of Aquitaine that she vowed to go on Crusade.
Diet of Speyer
At the Diet of Speyer; the emperor Conrad III took the cross and secured the election of his son Henry as his successor in Germany. He was persuaded to take part in the crusade by the the Abbot of Clairvaux, St. Bernard.
Stephen's Crown Wearing
King Stephen's 'crown wearing' ceremony was held in Lincoln at Christmas.
King Stephen leys siege to Pevensey castle and has to wait for the castle's reserves to run out before the castle falls.
Foundation of Biddlesden Abbey
Biddlesden Abbey, a new Cistercian abbey was founded in 1147 by Ernald de Bosco with monks from Garendon.
Henry arrives in England
Henry landed in England with a small army intent on attacking Stephen. Unfortunately, Henry's army of mercenaries was small and they were not being paid enough. Stephen gave Henry money to pay the mercenaries and for Henry to return to Normandy. Henry left England.
Bruern Abbey founded
A Cistercian abbey in Lincolnshire founded by Nicholas Basset and colonised by monks from Waverley.
The Savigny order joins the Cistercians
The order of Savigny became part of the larger Cistercian movement in this year. The Savigny order was having trouble running its abbeys and it was decided that a merger with the more prosperous Cistercian order was advantageous for both sides.
Dore Abbey founded
The Cistercian abbey of Dore, south-west of Hereford was founded in 1147 by monks from Morimond
Kirkstall Abbey founded
A daughter house of Fountains Abbey, the abbey at Kirkstall was first located at Barnoldswick , but was moved a few years later to its current location near Leeds in West Yorkshire.
Capture of Marrakesh
The Muslim Almohads under the leadership of Abd al-Mu'min, captured the important city of Marrakesh from the Almoravids and became the the major Islamic power in northern Africa. The Almohads were a Berber tribe orginally from the Atlas Mountains who practiced a fundamentalist form of Islam.They would spread their influence into southern Spain.
Eugenius meets King Louis
The Pope left Viterbo in January and travelled to France. At the start of April he met the King at Dijon. It was agreed that Abbot Sugar would take care of France while the French King was away and the Pope and Abbot met several times.
May (to 1148)
The start of the Second Crusade
The crusaders left Regensburg to march across land to Constantinople.
Louis VII joins the Crusade
King Louis VII of France and his wife Eleanor of Aquitaine began their Crusade. They declared Abbot Suger regent of France,
Robert, Earl of Gloucester dies
The death of Robert was a blow to Matilda's attempts to fight for the English throne. Matilda was to leave England shortly afterwards.
The Augustinian Abbey at Bristol founded by Robert Fitzharding was consecrated on Easter day in the presence of the Bishops of Worcester, Exeter, St. Asaph and Llandaff.
Lilleshall Abbey Founded
The Augustinian Lilleshall Abbey was founded in around 1148 by Richard de Belmeis.
Matilda leaves England
Without the support of the Earl of Gloucester, who died the previous year, Matilda left England for Normandy.
The decision was made to attack Damascus. The armies were assembled in Acre. Present were Baldwin, the Patriarch Fulcher, Kings Louis and Conrad, Archbishops of Caesarea and Nazareth, Masters of the Knights Temple and Hospital.
Conrad III leaves the Holy Land
Hostilities between the French and German leaders of the Second Crusade became such a problem that the German Emperor, Conrad III, abandoned the crusade and returned to Constantinople. The Second Crusade ended in failure.