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Inventing History : forgery: a great British tradition (British History)
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Boreades


In: finity and beyond
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Mick Harper wrote:
[You may have to go to Stanmore.


This is no surprise to me. Dusty old archives (and their scholars) now have a habit of being evicted from valuable prime real estate.

Just like most of the world-famous Bodleian Library is now in a secret location in Swindon. Just off the A419 at South Marsden, past the Honda car factory, turn left before you get to B&Q's distribution centre.

The whole area was once the Supermarine Spitfire factory, guarded by none other than my dear old Dad with the help of a few very big Anti Aircraft guns. He had a habit of guarding important places. His previous posting (with his AA guns) had been guarding Headingley Cricket Ground. He ended his three-year all-in package tour of North Africa, Sicily and Italy in Austria, guarding a strategically imported Scottish Rite Monastery's stockpile of Cherry Brandy. He told me they were proud of their Scottish connection, and thought a Scottish person would take good care of their prized assets.

Ho hum...
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Wile E. Coyote


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Boreades wrote:

The whole area was once the Supermarine Spitfire factory, guarded by none other than my dear old Dad with the help of a few very big Anti Aircraft guns. He had a habit of guarding important places. His previous posting (with his AA guns) had been guarding Headingley Cricket Ground. He ended his three-year all-in package tour of North Africa, Sicily and Italy in Austria, guarding a strategically imported Scottish Rite Monastery's stockpile of Cherry Brandy. He told me they were proud of their Scottish connection, and thought a Scottish person would take good care of their prized assets.

Ho hum...


These anti aircraft guns will come in handy for the putsch. We can't expect orthodoxy to just give in. I trust they are now at Chateau Boro, under camouflage netting.
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Mick Harper
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We shall be fighting for and against both sides when the balloon goes up. Interesting about the Spitfire works which they told us was at West Bromwich, unless this was a shadow shadow factory set up by Lord Nuffield just along from his Bodleian works at Cowley. You're wrong about Honda, the Zero had Mitshubishi engines. It's all in the RAF Museum at Stanmore. Swindon itself of course has never recovered from the abolition of the compulsory twenty minute refreshment stop for GWR trains.

Was your dad involved in either of the 1945 Austrian mysteries?
a) the 'repatriation' of the 'Russians'
b) the fighting against Tito

My own dad fought in north Africa, Italy and Normandy. Dear old Unterfeldwebel Harper.
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Mick Harper
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The Great Brain Robbery

Unfortunately there has been a very serious break-in and theft from our main archive in Canterbury. Over 850 Anglo-Saxon glass beads, large quantities of coins and metal artefacts, and replicas from our education collection have been taken. Please spread the word!

Let us hope the 'replicas' were clearly labelled.
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Boreades


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I'm still hoping someone can explain why Henry II of Austria wanted Irish/Scottish monks to run his repository of knowledge.
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Boreades


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Mick Harper wrote:
You're wrong about Honda, the Zero had Mitshubishi engines.


WTF has Honda got to do with the Zero or Mitshubishi?
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Mick Harper
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Two typically challenging posts from Borry. I'll deal with them in reverse order because he's Australian. The 'Honda' reference was a gag, in fact a counter-gag, referring back to your mention of the Honda factory in the context of, indeed the vicinity of, a Spitfire 'shadow' factory. The second is more difficult since there is no Henry II of Austria but I will be back after undertaking some research.
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Mick Harper
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First result: there is indeed a Henry II of Austria, a duke of the twelfth century. Yet Wiki clearly states that he was the first duke of Austria or the first of that name as duke of Austria, or something, it's a bit early in the day to sort these dynasties out. Perhaps Borry means Henry II, Holy Roman Emperor. Never mind, whoever he was, he lived in the early-to-high Middle Ages so let us move on to Borry's puzzling reference to Irish and Scottish monks and repositories of knowledge. I shall return, as General MacArthur said.
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Hatty
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Borry is referring to Henry II of Austria who made Vienna his (i.e. Austria's) capital where he founded the 'Scottish Abbey' in 1155

The Schottenstift (English: Scottish Abbey), formally called Benediktinerabtei unserer Lieben Frau zu den Schotten (English: Benedictine Abbey of Our Dear Lady of the Scots), is a Roman Catholic monastery founded in Vienna in 1155 when Henry II of Austria brought Irish monks to Vienna. The monks did not come directly from Ireland, but came instead from Scots Monastery in Regensburg, Germany.

.... Ireland was known in Latin as "Scotia Major";[1] therefore, in German, Irish monks were called "Schotten" (Scots) or "Iroschotten". The monasteries that they founded were called "Schottenklöster". In the foundation documents of the Schottenstift, Henry II specified that it was to be occupied exclusively by these "Iroschotten" ("Solos elegimus Scottos").


The reference to Regensburg sounds an alarm. Regensburg is one of those strategical, political and cultural highlights of the Carolingian/Dark Age with of course an immense library stuffed with manuscripts. There were good reasons to establish a working pedigree

Between 1135 and 1146, the Stone Bridge across the Danube was built at Regensburg. This bridge opened major international trade routes between northern Europe and Venice, and this began Regensburg's golden age as a residence of wealthy trading families. Regensburg became the cultural centre of southern Germany and was celebrated for its gold work and fabrics.

Regensburg, or Ratisbon, was the 'traditional' capital of Bavaria. There is clearly a lot of political capital too since Austria had gained its independence from Bavaria. Henry was Duke of Bavaria prior to being named Duke of Austria.
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Mick Harper
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Hatty can be General MacArthur on this one.
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Hatty
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It may be the case that Schotten doesn't have any relation to Scots apart from the obvious similarity in spelling.

A town in Germany is called Schotten for no known reason. Something about a Chatti tribe, perhaps from Roman records since they had a military presence here. Either way the town has a historical footprint that precedes Scottish or Irish monks even though the town is apparently named for them

Archaeological finds from the Schotten area reach back to the New Stone Age. Several barrows bear witness to prehistoric times as do the "Alteburg" and "Wildhauskopf" ringwalls, whose building date is unknown.

Schotten had its first documentary mention in 778. The "Horstburg", a local castle near the constituent community of Rudingshain, may have stood in connection with the town's founding. There were digs at the ruins in the 1970s, and they were interpreted as having been a Carolingian royal court. Schotten is said to have been founded by Irish-Scottish monks.

'May have', 'unknown', in connection with', interpreted as' said to have been' are equivalent to 'no evidence found'. So much for a Carolingian, never mind Irish/Scottish, history.

Schotten is in Hesse in central Germany and seems to have been sandwiched between Saxons in the north and Franks in the south. Schot(t) is spelt skot in Old Norse; its meaning/etymology in Dutch is given as 'partition, division' and in German (figuratively) as 'gates, borders, limits' but aren't all territories to some extent 'gated'? The modern translation of schott is a) Scot(ch) and b) watertight compartment. The two meanings are seemingly unrelated (though possibly scotch was brought in 'watertight compartments'?),
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Boreades


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I'm grateful for the contribution, but agree with Hatty - Schotten doesn't have any relation to Scots apart from the obvious similarity in spelling.

It's Scots, but not as we know them (Jim).

In the late 12th century Duke Heinrich II of Austria, requiring a monastery for his new city, brought Irish monks to Vienna from Regensburg. At this time, during the early middle-ages, Ireland was known in Latin as "Scotia Major" and the Irish Gaelic culture stretched from Éireann (Ireland) across to Alba (Scotland) by way of the ancient kingdom of Dal Riada. Known as the "Scoti", these Gaels would travel further afield and would in time, also give their name to the country that was to become Scotland. It was during this same period Gaelic monks from monasteries in Ireland and what is now the Scottish Isles (Iona) were actively involved in missionary work throughout Europe.

In the foundation documents of the Schottenstift in Vienna, Heinrich II specified that it was to be occupied exclusively by these "Iroschotten" by his decree - "Solos elegimus Scottos".


So : Schotten is no more Scottish than Scotch Corner is a corner selling scotch.

I noticed in the history that all the Abbots were Irish until
"a papal bull of 1577 transferred the monastery from Irish hands to abbots from Scotland".


That meant Catholic Scotland (as it was at the time). Maybe it was a Catholic HQ reaction to the Scottish Reformation, making sure the Catholic clergy being ousted from Scotland had somewhere to go and something useful to do?

How so? The first Scottish abbot under the new arrangements was Ninian Winzet. He had recently been Mary Queen of Scots' confessor, and a Head Honcho in Catholic Scotland. But he fell out of favour big time just about the same time that Mary lost her head. Winzet then escaped from Scotland along with the Papal Nuncio.

Winzet was also an arch-rival (theologically) of John Knox. Who had himself been one of the Marian exiles, mostly Protestant clergy, scholars, printers and propagandists in exile in Protestant parts of Northern Europe, but mostly in Germany and Switzerland.

Just wondering - maybe there was a big feeling at the time of "what goes around comes around" as the Protestant Marian exiles went home and their places in Geneva and Vienna were taken by the Catholic exiles. Not sure if Reformation Theologians had a word for kharma?

All well and good - but I'm still wondering why Henry II of Austria wanted Irish/Scottish monks to run his repository of knowledge. I mentioned my confusion on this topic to a friend. The response?

Why would an Austrian insist on Irish when he could have asked the Pope for a few Italians? Very strange. Especially when all truth was to be found in the Vatican not in some Irish bog. After all the Synod of Whitby put an end to all that nonsense didn't it?


Which reminder me, the Synod of Whitby (in 664AD) had officially handed over ecumenical authority from the Irish/Scottish Church (based in Iona) to the Roman Church. The Irish monks at Iona were told to shut-up and go home.

It seems like something had still lingered for 100's of years, and had an impact on events. Why would Henry II risk papal displeasure (or worse) by encouraging an obscure &/or obsolete Irish fringe branch of the church that the Romans had already clamped-down on?

Did it have any connection with the Northern Crusades?
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Mick Harper
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"a papal bull of 1577 transferred the monastery from Irish hands to abbots from Scotland"

That meant Catholic Scotland (as it was at the time).

This is surely the key. Scotland was rabidly Protestant by this date so we are looking at a damage limitation exercise. My guess would be that some of the properties in Ratisbon belonged legally to the 'Scottish Church' (including Scottish monasteries) and legal title is legal title, whatever the denomination. The Scottish Catholic hierarchy, having fled from Scotland, needed support. Up to and including funds needed to launch the Counter-Reformation in Scotland.

I suppose it goes without saying that all the historical documents are forgeries made (presumably) in the 1570's.
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Wile E. Coyote


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scot=scout
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Hatty
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The low-down on Schottenstift Abbey from an Austrian culture 'n' travel guide says

With the Melk Reforms of the early 15th century, stricter and more standardised rules were forced upon the pseudo-Scottish monks, to which they objected. As a result, Duke Albrecht V threw them out in 1418 and replaced them with a more disciplined crowd of Benedictine monks from Melk.

No details are available on 'Melk Reforms' nor indeed on the reform-minded Duke Albrecht V, unless they mean Duke Albrecht V of Bavaria, 1528-1579.

On 4 July 1546 he married Anna of Austria, a daughter of Ferdinand I, Holy Roman Emperor and Anna of Bohemia and Hungary (1503–1547), daughter of King Ladislaus II of Bohemia and Hungary and his wife Anne de Foix. The union was designed to end the political rivalry between Austria and Bavaria.

A strict Catholic by upbringing, Albert was a leader of the German Counter-Reformation.

So, yes, 1570's rather fits the bill. This Albert was compared to the Medici, he collected vast amounts of antiquities and art works, mainly Italian, which were shipped 'at dead of night' and were undoubtedly less antique than advertised.
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