More About William Marshal

By Conde Fernando Rodriguez de Falcon (Fernando Vigil)

Each of the following four articles contains information about William Marshal referenced in other sections on this website. We have provided an introductory paragraph or two for each to whet your appetite. If you click on the 'More Information' link for any of them, it will open a .doc file in a new browswer window so you may read the whole document.

William Marshal's Costly Mistake

William Marshal may be one of the best known names of the Middle Ages. I would wager that many people with an interest in this era could tell us something of him; perhaps especially his fame at capturing and ransoming opponents in tournaments and battles. But the Marshal's career on the field was almost over on his first day...

      For more information, click here.

The Marshal, the Monk, and the Lady

William Marshal, has been called the “greatest knight that ever lived“, and the “Flower of Chivalry“, but some of the very actions for which he was lauded are some of the hardest for a modern mind to understand.

In 1183, on his way to join young King Henry, the Marshal is said to have been resting on the side of the road with two traveling companions. Suddenly, a well dressed young man and woman ride past them at some speed. Curious at what he considers an unusual sight, William leaps upon his horse and rides after them.

After bringing the two travelers to a halt, William discovers the young man is in fact a monk, and that he and the woman are running off to be married. Strangely, at least to our modern minds, this does not seem to overly bother the Marshal...

      For more information, click here.

William Marshal and Concepts of Honor

Honor and chivalry are keystones of our Society, yet defining the fine details of acceptable chivalric behavior has led to many discussions and disagreements. But these arguments are certainly not new to our modern age, and sometimes even understanding the medieval answers can prove difficult.

In 1179, while in service to the son of Henry II, William Marshal was taking part in a tournament in northern France when he came across a company of English knights in combat with a group of French knights. Hard pressed by their opponents, the Frenchmen had retreated to the protection of an old fortification on a hill surrounded by a ditch or moat, but they were forced to leave their horses on the outside of the building.

When the Marshal noticed this, he stayed clear of the combat, and instead crossed the ditch to where the French destriers stood unprotected...

      For more information, click here.

William Marshal Captures Two Horses

An excerpt from William Marshal's Horses by Elizabeth Chadwick

There's an amusing tale about a tournament at Eu. The knight Matthew de Walincourt approached on a fast galloping horse and William Marshal rode to engage him. De Walincourt was knocked from his mount and William “quickly took his horse's bridle and rode off towards the men on his side.”

De Walincourt was somewhat upset at this turn of events and protested to the Young King, who told William to return the horse as a mark of courtesy...

      For more information, click here.

Marshal – Flower of Chivalry   •   Coming to Three Rivers Memorial Day Weekend 2009