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Cambrensis, The History and Topography of Ireland.

Cambrensis, The History and Topography of Ireland.

Cambrensis, Giraldus (Gerald of Wales) / O’Meara, John J. (Translator). The History and Topography of Ireland. Here Translated from the Latin With a Map & Drawings from a Contemporary Copy c. 1200 A.D. Portlaoise, Dolmen Press, 1982. 14.5 cm x 22.5 cm . 136 pages. Original Hardcover with dustjacket. Cover has some slight paint damage and staining. Otherwise very good condition with only minor signs of external wear.

Gerald of Wales (Latin: Giraldus Cambrensis; Welsh: Gerallt Gymro; French: Gerald de Barri; c.?1146 – c.?1223) was a Cambro-Norman archdeacon of Brecon and historian. As a royal clerk to the king and two archbishops, he travelled widely and wrote extensively. He both studied and taught in France and visited Rome several times, meeting the Pope. He was nominated for several bishoprics but turned them down in the hope of becoming bishop of St Davids, but was unsuccessful despite considerable support. His final post was as archdeacon of Brecon, from which he retired to academic study for the remainder of his life. Much of his writing survives. Gerald became a royal clerk and chaplain to King Henry II of England in 1184, first acting mediator between the crown and Prince Rhys ap Gruffydd. He was chosen to accompany one of the king’s sons, John, in 1185 on John’s first expedition to Ireland. This was the catalyst for his literary career; his work Topographia Hibernica (first published 1188, and revised at least four more times) is an account of his journey to Ireland; Gerald always referred to it as his Topography, though “History” is the more accurate term.[4] He followed it up, shortly afterwards, with an account of Henry’s conquest of Ireland, the Expugnatio Hibernica. Both works were revised and added to several times before his death, and display a notable degree of Latin learning, as well as a great deal of prejudice against a foreign people. Gerald was proud to be related to some of the Norman invaders of Ireland, such as his maternal uncle Robert Fitz-Stephen and Raymond FitzGerald, and his influential account, which portrays the Irish as barbaric savages, gives important insight into Anglo-Norman views of Ireland and the history of the invasion. Gerald spent the remainder of his life in academic study, most likely in Lincoln, producing works of devotional instruction and politics, and revising the works on Ireland and Wales he had written earlier in his life. He spent two years (1204–6) in Ireland with his relatives and made a fourth visit to Rome, purely as a pilgrimage, in 1206. The controversy over St David’s soured his relationship with the crown. In 1216 a baronial plan to put Louis VIII of France on the throne of England in the First Barons’ War was warmly welcomed by him. He died in about 1223 in his 77th year, probably in Hereford and he is, according to some accounts, buried at St David’s Cathedral. (Wikipedia).

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Cambrensis, The History and Topography of Ireland.
Cambrensis, The History and Topography of Ireland.