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Old 02-09-2010, 04:00 PM
 
Location: Colorado
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Why is Richard III so reviled for the apparent murder of his nephews (the princes in the tower) and John not even considered for the supposed murder of his nephew Arthur?
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Old 02-09-2010, 04:05 PM
 
Location: Peterborough, England
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Not sure I follow. When I learned my history, John was always considered a thoroughly bad king. My old "Book of Knowledge" written in the 1950s, decribes him as perhaps "the worst of all English kings".
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Old 02-09-2010, 04:22 PM
 
Location: Wheaton, Illinois
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John wasn't a usurper; that, not murder, was Richard's supposed crime.

One thing about Richard; the guy had balls.
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Old 02-09-2010, 06:22 PM
 
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Richard III is reviled because William Shakespeare wrote a famous play about him (or rather he is still reviled because of that). Also because killing children generates special horror, even in periods like the middle ages.

John I is among the most detested English kings. This occured initially because of his loss of French lands, because in an age that stress courage he had Richard the Lion Heart (a horrible king but a great warriar) as his brother, and because he got into serious trouble with both Church and barrons (thus the Magna Charta). But he remains detested because of the Robin Hood literature that has reminded generations of Westerners of his failings.

Of course the literature actually had little to do with John initially (there were no longbows in his era in England) but he eventually came to be associated with it - more because of the desire to utilize his brother then his own failings. The point is that one's long term reputation has more to do with specific types of crimes, who you are compared to, and (especially) who writes about you than anything else.
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Old 02-09-2010, 06:37 PM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chilaili View Post
Why is Richard III so reviled for the apparent murder of his nephews (the princes in the tower) and John not even considered for the supposed murder of his nephew Arthur?
Because Richard III was succeeded by his Lancastrian/Tudor enemies who then wrote the story to make themselves look as good and the Yorkist king as bad as possible. John was succeeded by his son, who didn't have the same motivations and so the Arthur episode faded into relative obscurity.
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Old 02-09-2010, 09:06 PM
 
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Still I suspect if you were to take a poll, John I would be ranked close or above Richard III as an awful king.

Historians might chose George IV as even worse, but thankfully for him few remember him. Not interesting enough to get written about.

The novel The Vikings from the mid-50's made what to me is the central point about reputation. That poets and writers determine your reputaion. Some might say historians today, but I think the public memory of figures even now is more tied to the popular not academic press.
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Old 02-10-2010, 04:08 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn
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Originally Posted by noetsi View Post
Still I suspect if you were to take a poll, John I would be ranked close or above Richard III as an awful king.
It's not even a debate: the man has gone down in history as John, not John I--the single most reviled of all British monarchs, since no succeeding kings have taken the name!
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Old 02-10-2010, 05:24 PM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
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Originally Posted by Fred314X View Post
It's not even a debate: the man has gone down in history as John, not John I--the single most reviled of all British monarchs, since no succeeding kings have taken the name!
Unlike Richard IV.
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Old 02-10-2010, 08:23 PM
 
Location: Brooklyn
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I'm aware of that. But John reigned more than 200 years before the third king named Richard.
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Old 02-10-2010, 08:24 PM
 
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No one took the name of Stephen, Matilda, Anne or Victoria either again. Its been four centuries since anyone took the name of Richard or Henry. That has more to do with the names prefered by the Houses that ruled England then it has to do with the reputation of the people who held these names. You might think that as no one took the name Elizebeth for about 350 years after Elizebeth I she was greatly hated by her people

In discusing George IV I meant a poll of historians not the public. I did not make this clear.
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