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Re: [bowesgenealogy] More to Question About William de Arcubus, 500 Archers and Bowes Castle

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  • Allen Bowes
    Martha, indeed another question which strains any credibility regarding the de Arcubus story. Recall too that Burke s account is based upon a supposed, and
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 9, 2009
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      Martha, indeed another question which strains any credibility regarding the de Arcubus story. Recall too that Burke's account is based upon a supposed, and conveniently unamed manuscript, that was we are informed held by St.Mary's monastery in York. Unfortunately that Abbey as totally destroyed during the Reformation, thus making it somewhat difficult to verify Burke's account.

      --- On Fri, 9/1/09, mhbowes11 <martha.bowes@...> wrote:
      From: mhbowes11 <martha.bowes@...>
      Subject: [bowesgenealogy] More to Question About William de Arcubus, 500 Archers and Bowes Castle
      To: bowesgenealogy@yahoogroups.com
      Date: Friday, 9 January, 2009, 3:11 AM

      Could they all FIT in this castle (see photos at source at bottom of message)? It would be
      interesting to know the dimensions. Note especially the part (in last quote below) that it
      was more a garrison post than a residential castle ... yet Burke's "A Genealogical and
      Heraldic History of the Commoners of Great Britain and Ireland" states that Alan Niger who
      built the castle "placed therein, William, his relation, with five hundred archers to defend it
      against some insurgents ..." But I guess garrison posts need staff too. One thing I don't
      understand is ... if William de Arcubus is false, where is the real story about who manned
      this garrison? Granted, maybe we just don't know. The text continues "...from whence both
      the castle and its commander derived their names, the former being called Bowe castle..."

      At the same site sourced below, under Richmond Castle in the same area, I find:

      "In 1069, rebels slaughtered the new Norman garrison at York. In reprisal, William I 'the
      Conqueror' laid waste to all the countryside form York to the Wear. Once the local
      opposition had been crushed through this 'Harrying of the North', William I divided out the
      land between his Norman lords. Alan the Red was one of these men and he was given the
      Borough of Richmond as a reward for his good service to William I."

      This is the first context I've seen for the claim: "here was a town [Bowes] which, the
      tradition of the inhabitants states, was burned. It then belonged to the earls of Brittany
      and Richmond... the castle was built ... by Alan Niger..."

      Still kicking the tires.

      "Bowes Castle

      Started by Conan the Little, Earl of Richmond, and finished by Richard the Engineer for
      Henry II between 1171 - 87, Bowes Castle is sited within the remains of the Roman fort
      Lavatrae. It's purpose, similar to that of the Roman fort, was to guard the approaches to
      the Stainmore pass, a highly strategic border area with Scotland.

      The entrance to the keep is on the first floor, originally entered through a forebuilding, of
      which only the footings are visible. The keep had three levels, the main hall originally sited
      on the first floor. Bowes was more a garrison post than a residential castle for it was a
      solitary keep that stood without the protection of curtain walls. A rectangular ditch
      enclosure was its only outer defence. The ruins of the Roman fort supplied some of the
      building material and it was raised for a cost of about £600."

      From http://www.dales- castles.org. uk/bowes. htm#


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