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Inventing the Bosworth Tradition: Richard Ap Hywel, the 'king's Hole' and the Mostyn Family Image in the Nineteenth Century

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In 1885–6 the Mostyn family commissioned a painting from the artist Herbert Sydney which depicted them in the guise of their late fifteenth-century ancestors. Loaded with references to the family's heritage and their embeddedness in Welsh history, the artwork was designed to recreate a prominent family tradition centred on Henry Tudor's victory at Bosworth in 1485. This article traces the invention and development of the tradition in the nineteenth century and assesses how and why the family fashioned the legend into a central part of their public image. The case study opens up wider questions about the Welsh gentry's engagement with the history and culture of Wales, suggesting a level of ancestral patriotism which complicates the prevalent narrative of 'anglicization'.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2018

More about this publication?
  • Published by the University of Wales Press since its inception in 1960, The Welsh History Review / Cylchgrawn Hanes Cymru is the most authoritative journal in its field. This twice-yearly journal is committed to publishing research on Welsh history, from medieval to modern. The internationally-renowned editorial board includes scholars from universities in Wales, the UK, Europe and the United States, whose collective breadth of knowledge contributes to a diverse range of cultural, social, political and economic history.

    Cyhoeddwyd The Welsh History Review / Cylchgrawn Hanes Cymru gan Wasg Prifysgol Cymru ers sefydlu'r cyfnodolyn yn 1960. Hwn yw'r cyfnodolyn mwyaf awdurdodol yn ei faes, a'i brif hanfod yw arddangos amrywiaeth eang o feysydd ymchwil ym maes hanes Cymru, o'r canoloesol hyd at y modern. Ar y bwrdd golygyddol, ceir ysgolheigion o brifysgolion Cymru, y Deyrnas Unedig, Ewrop a'r Unol Daleithiau. Adlewyrchir arbenigeddau'r bwrdd yng nghynnwys y cyfnodolyn, sydd yn ymdrin â hanes diwylliannol, cymdeithasol, gwleidyddol ac economaidd.

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