Saturday, 29 March 2008

Richard the Lionheart

Is this really what "The Lionheart" looked like?

It certainly fits all the clichés for what a Plantagenet king should look like - a crown, a beard and sort of noble looking.

This is one of his tombs - the one at Fontevraud, where his body is buried. The one at Rouen is where they buried his heart. The tomb at Charroux contains his brain.

I suppose over time we will collect the full set - but that does mean running the risk of getting lost in Rouen. Again.



  1. I always thought he looked like Anthony Hopkins. ;)

  2. I've always wondered how these four "gisants" in the abbey church in Fontevraud survived at all, closer to us through the ravages of the Revolution, and later when the compound was a prison!

  3. Really as far as what the Lionheart looked like there are plenty of portrayals to satisfy all tastes - Frankie Howerd, Peter Ustinov, Richard Harris, Sean Connery, and Patrick Stewart to name but a few. I suspect that CHM may have the right of it. By now I would certainly have expected the effigy to have needed as 'nose job'.

  4. I'd forgotten it was Anthony Hopkins in the film - I haven't seen it for many a year (ever since I helped build a set for The Lion in Winter on stage in 198something). I will have to seek it out, because I don't have a mental picture of Richard as a slightly stocky Welshman.......

    The gisants are in remarkable condition. Where they are situated now is a best guess situation, because (I read somewhere, probably in the really inetresting museum at the Abbay itself) they were moved when the church beacme a prison and the bodies disinterred and destroyed.

    I am amazed, looking at the face, that what I see is what a king really should look like. I don't know if that opinion is informed by actors being made to look like the statue, or Richard had a really good stylist............