Pages

Thursday, 28 April 2016

AUTHOR J.P. REEDMAN-Historical fiction & fantasy. STONEHENGE & RICHARD III

http://www.amazon.com/J.P.-Reedman/e/B009UTHBUE


My author page on Amazon.com.
Please look to see my  various stories, long and short.

STONEHENGE/PREHISTORY : STONE LORD and MOON LORD--novels set in the era of Stonehenge.
GODS OF STONEHENGE-non fiction, mythology, anthropology

RICHARD III-
I, RICHARD PLANTAGENET, parts 1 and 2. Epic novel for those who like Sharon Penman, Rosemary  Hawley Jarman etc. Not Shakesapare's monster but not a sullen 'saint' either. Bawdy, bloody, lighter account of the Wars of the Roses
SACRED KING- historical fantasy about Richard III's last days, the Afterlife and his return in Leicester
WHITE ROSES, GOLDEN SUNNES. Collection of short stories covering Richard's life from birth onwards

and many more!

Tuesday, 26 April 2016

ONE BRONZE AGE KING WAS THE 'FATHER' OF WESTERN EUROPE

Not really a surprise. It has becoming gradually clear that incoming peoples settling and trading throughout western Europe around the time of the 'Beaker horizon' were, although not in  huge number, highly successful genetically especially in the male line, indicating a strong elite.The older neolithic y-dna such as G began to falter and diminish before the advent of  R1b, the most common western Y-dna (especially common in Britain (upwards of 65% England to over 90% of Welsh men; Ireland (as high as nr 100% in western Ireland), Iberia, France, and anywhere that has a connection to the Atlantic coasts (Belgium, Germany, Netherlands, Denmark and even the very westernmost tip of Norway.)
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/2016/04/25/half-of-british-men-descended-from-one-bronze-age-king/

Wednesday, 23 March 2016

MY NAME IS NOT MIDNIGHT : Sister Agrippa--Teacher from Hell



 QUEST FOR THE ROSE HAS NOW BEEN REVISED AND RETITLED 'MY NAME IS NOT MIDNIGHT. It also has a new cover.

The following post  refers to the terrifying antagonist, Agrippa





The Quest For The Rose: Sister Agrippa--Teacher from Hell: Sister (in the book Sestren) Agrippa, the antagonist  in QUEST,  is based on a real life teacher of mine, the dreaded Sister Elaine Marie. M...

Saturday, 17 October 2015

GODS OF STONEHENGE - A religion for the megalith builders?


BUY THE BOOK HERE

A short look at mythology and folklore connected with Stonehenge, the world's most famous stone circle, and with other megalithic monuments. 

Who is the sinister 'Bowed One' and what relationship do the bones of a silver-handed saint have to an Irish deity of healing, mist and dogs? Did a Man in the Moon stare down at Stonehenge, and a female sun ride across the skies in a chariot with spoked wheels...or was it the reverse? 
Howling blue hags with single eyes bleary as the setting Midwinter Solstice sun; dancing stones drinking at the river; petrified women, wedding guests and hurlers; spirits out of mounds, benign or malign; healing bluestones and Merlin the Wizard with his stones from the West, desconstructed by 'ingenious devices' before being brought to Salisbury Plain. 

All Folklore mixed with potential folk memory...in which there may be an existing grain of truth about the gods and spirits of ancient Stonehenge.


Monday, 7 September 2015

Newly discovered ‘superhenge’ dwarfs Stonehenge

Newly discovered ‘superhenge’ dwarfs Stonehenge



Learned about this dicovery last year but it has finally been made public. A possible  setting of giant standing stones described as being in a C-shape (is this perhaps a loose representation of the horseshoe shape  in the interior of Stonehenge?) which are between Woodhenge and Durrington Walls. Some may still be in situ, others just leaving massive holes. The henge back of DW covered them, when it seemed to have been erected in what appears to be a 'closing ceremony' that decomissioned the monument.

Friday, 7 August 2015

WHAT GODS DID THE PEOPLE OF STONEHENGE WORSHIP?



A short look at mythology and folklore connected with Stonehenge, the world's most famous stone circle, and with other megalithic monuments. 

Who is the sinister 'Bowed One' and what relationship do the bones of a silver-handed saint have to an Irish deity of healing, mist and dogs? Did a Man in the Moon stare down at Stonehenge, and a female sun ride across the skies in a chariot with spoked wheels...or was it the reverse? 

Howling blue hags with single eyes bleary as the setting Midwinter Solstice sun; dancing stones drinking at the river; petrified women, wedding guests and hurlers; spirits out of mounds, benign or malign; healing bluestones and Merlin the Wizard with his stones from the West, deconstructed by 'ingenious devices' before being brought to Salisbury Plain. 

All Folklore mixed with potential folk memory...in which there may be an existing grain of truth about the gods and spirits of ancient Stonehenge. 

Nodens and St Melor of Amesbury, drinking and dancing stones, plus a selection of tales of 'barrow ghosts.'
I hope you enjoy!

J.P.R




Tuesday, 7 April 2015

PREQUEL TO STONE LORD, BASED IN PREHISTORIC BRITTANY

Yes, this is an exclusive folks! After a small sabbatical focusing on writing for a few other subjects, I have decided to return back to my STONEHENGE SAGA and write a prequel.

No details as yet other than this will expand An'Kelet's story, as a Breton Dagger Prince. It is likely to either be a long, short-story, or novella length, and Kindle format only.






Sunday, 1 February 2015

IMBOLC,BRIDGET & TARA BOY



Today is February first, the Feast of Imbolc, one of the four Cross Quarter Days. One of the major 'celtic' festivals, it seems, like the other three, to potentially have much older roots. Even the name has a certain primal ring, with the meaning of 'bag', perhaps refering to a 'pregnant belly' as in livestock giving birth (it is often called the Feast of Lambing; however in Scotland, because of the bleakness of the time of the year, it is also known as Death-Month.)
  Of couse Imbolc is sacred to Brighid, first the triadic goddess, and then the Saint, whose cross is the lightning/fire 'swastica' symbol found from bronze Ireland and Britain to prehistoric India.A goddess of the sacred fire, she was also associated with smithying--interesting to find a female deity connected what is traditionally seen as a male craft.
   The saint Brighid, whose cult became firmly entangled with that of the pagan goddess, has a fascinating story to do with her skull, which was carried in 1283 to Portugal  and venerated there. Apparently the Portuguese also took to the Irish saint and honoured her with a rather pagan rite which carried on into fairly modern times--they would drive white cattle in front of her skull on her Feast Day for purification.
  As  for the oldest roots of Imbolc, they appear to be neolithic. Cairn L at Loughcrew seems to have an alignment to both Imbolc and Samhain. More famously, The Mound of the Hostages at Tara also has an alignment to the rising sun at both quarter days.
   The Mound of the Hostages famously figures in many mythological tales, and sits at the heart of the Tara complex, a bridge between the world of the living Kings of Ireland and the world of the Dead Ancestors from the Time Before. As with other passage graves, it contains an array of art, circles and spirals and x-markings.It has an exceptional amount of burials in it for a passage grave, potentially over 200. Approximately  40 have been excavated, and the upper parts of the mound continued to be used for burial into the following bronze age, showing a certain continuity.
   Perhaps the most famous burial there is that of Tara Boy, a young man buried somewhere around 1700 BC in the mound itself. He was buried, in the usual crouched position,  with a variety of trade goods, most famously a composite necklace of faience beads, amber, jet and a bronze bead. At one time the faience was believed to be from Egypt, but new analysis has discounted this idea; however, new study on Tara Boy has shown that he was probably not a local...he could be from the West or Ireland, or potentially western Britain or the western Seaboard from France down to Portugal.  Tara Boy  died at around 14, a short (only 5 ft tall) and very stocky individual who must have had high status despite his youth. (As it is impossible to 100% sex adolescents without dna, there is some chance chance 'he' is female, especially as some of the  gravegoods are more commonly found in female graves...however, the heavy robustness of the bones and shape of the the sciatic notch indicate a male. Tests are ongoing.)
   However, thought Egypt is out of the question for his necklace, Wessex, especially the the area near Stonehenge, is not. Very similar faience beads are found there, as well as bronze or gold coated beads and jet. His other grave goods, a possible awl or razor and a small copper-alloy blade, are also commonly found in graves near to Stonehenge.  So, although he was not from the chalklands near the Henge, he may have visited them or even had ancestry from that area.
   Interestingly, when I was writing MOON LORD, second novel in my Stonehenge saga, I was going to have the character Gal'havad, who died at Newgrange, be buried in the Mound of the Hostages, in a creative re-imagining of the Tara Boy burial. Instead, I had his father Ardhu carry his cremated remains back to Wessex for interment there. Reading about this young elite male burial, who may have indeed had ties with the ancient cultures of Wessex, I wish now that I had gone with my initial idea!

Skull of St Bridget in Portugal
MOON LORD LINK TO AMAZON


Saturday, 24 January 2015

800 Years Of Human Sacrifice In Kent

800 Years Of Human Sacrifice In Kent



Interesting article about possible late bronze age sacrifice  on the Isle of Thanet. Thanet had been traditionally known as an 'Isle of the Dead' and has many barrows. A possible original name is Tan-Ard, the High Fire (s), perhaps suggesting rituals. What is particularly interesting about the site is the variety of origins for the people living there. Native Britons mingled with Scandinavians and people from the Mediterranean

Saturday, 20 December 2014

RACTON MAN: WARRIOR OF THE WASTELAND

The news was full of information on a Beaker Era burial the other day...Racton Man. Found nearly 30 years ago, his importance only came to the fore after new analysis had been done on his remains and on the unusual rivetted dagger buried with him.
 Racton man lived between 2100 BC- and 2300 BC, the 'Beaker' period and the era when the last re-arrangements to Stonehenge were being  made, with the Bluestones being reshuffled into an approximation of their current positions (at least one notable thinks one or two stones could have been fiddled with in the Romano-British period.). It is also the time the Stonehenge Archer was buried in the terminal of the ditch, a young man of  about 24 with his back pierced by many arrows, fired from different directions, each finding their mark...almost as this had been no chance shooting but something that deliberately involved many--an 'overkill.'
   Racton man, living in Sussex, was a 'big man' in every way, whoever he was. He was 6 foot tall and sturdily built and he had outlived most of his fellows, being over 45 years of age. (This left him with the unfortunate side of EBA life--chronic toothache from worn teeth/caries and backache from arthritis/degeneration that was common in almost everyone in the period. He also had a chronic sinus infection that would doubtless have given him annoying nasal congestion and cracking headaches!)
  Although he didn't have the mutiple beakers of the earlier Amesbury Archer, his gold hair tresses, or his masses of archery equipment, Racton Man's  knife was extraordinary. Longer than most of the others appearing at this period, analysis has shown that it was not the usual copper...it was mixed with Cornish tin...it was bronze. The bronze age proper, the heroic age of ancient Britain, had begun. It was also rivetted in an unusual way, which, apparently, would have been very diffuclt to accomplish; piercing with stones or metals does not seem to be able to adequately make the rivet-hole.
   There is some confusion over his origins--some reports saying his isotopic signatures showing he was from southern England, others that there was an chance he came from Cornwall or Brittany, even the outside chance he was from Ireland. (I will keep my ear to the ground on this point for further confirmation.) It would be interesting if they could test DNA samples as well, should the dna be viable. In Germany, tests of several Beaker Males have shown an abundance of y-Dna R1b (of the 'Atlantic' type rather than the 'Germanic' kind.) This is the most common type of male DNA  in all the British Isles today, as well as much of western/northwestern Europe. seemingly replacing or becoming dominant over the older G and I, despite the fact the Beaker migration was relatively small, though influential...it was certainly not the 'invasion' of metal-wielding genocidal warriors touted by some pre-50's archaeology books! Possibly it was the old story...these 'big men' with their great height, glittery hair tresses, metal daggers and 'cult of the individual' appealed to the local women! They were the 'rock stars' of prehistoric Britain and ended up producing the most surviving children..
   However, it was a hard life, and one thing I endeavoured to show in my novels, which did not go down very well in some quarters, was that it could be a violent and unpredictable time. Like our Stonehenge Archer, the tall man from Racton suffered a severe injury inflicted by another person or persons, which led to his death. He had taken a serious injury to one arm inflicted by a sharp impliment (described as a sword, but would have been a dagger doubtless similar to the one he carried), which would have caused massive and fatal bleeding. He also showed signs of having suffered another stab wound in life, from which he had recovered.
   It will be interesting to see if new technologies find us any more 'dagger princes'; with recent finds of an Irish style lunula in Dorset, tin beads in a rich female buurial on Dartmoor, and Wessex style implements in a grave in Scotland, it is clear to see this bronze age world has greater cultural contacts, and more wealth, than was ever imagined. Gone, certainly, are the days when we believed the ancient Britons, on their mist-shrouded isles, were isolated poor cousins to those on the continent.



http://www.amazon.co.uk/Stone-Lord-Legend-Arthur-Stonehenge-ebook/dp/B009XTYEJW/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1419078373&sr=8-1&keywords=stone+lord