King John reigned from 1199 to 1216. He is often pictured as a bad king but was he really a bad king?
John enforced heavy taxes. This, however, was because Richard 1 left the treasury empty. This made John unpopular with the peasants and barons. one baron said ‘We have to pay for his wars with heavy taxes.’ He was fighting a losing war with France. If he hadn’t thought it, he would lose the land but because he did fight it he had a chance of retaining the land. Also, if he had decided not to fight this would make him look like a bad king as well. He wasn’t greedy, he was just trying to refill the treasury for his country’s good.
John quarreled with the Pope and consequently got excommunicated for 5 years. This made lots of people angry again, as the church was very important to people in the middle ages. A monk said ‘He was a tyrant… He lost Normandy and many other territories.’ This monk was biased because he was angry about being excommunicated. I think he was wrong because a tyrant has aboslute control but John had hardly any control.
John was forced by his barons to sign the Magna Carta in 1215. This ‘Great Charter’ sets out the rights of English freemen. A modified version is the law now. A while later, John claimed he was forced to sign it. This is the sign of a weak King. This shows John was greedy and was trying to get the maximum power. I think John was a weak leader for this events.
Amongst these failures, John won battles against the Scottish and the Welsh. The Irish accepted as thier overlord. ‘He gave England a well organised navy and he enforced laws strongly and justly,’ one historian writes. Although he was writing 900 years into the future, he looked at a number of sources.
I won’t say whether I think King John was good or bad but I will post a poll for other people to say what they think.
Ok, so sorry for the break, we’ve had exams which I’ve been revising for like crazy.
This post is going to be on the roman baths, as the title suggests. We’ve been doing this a lot at school and was on our exam although I didn’t choose it.
The baths were a building in town. They were there because most Romans didn’t have a bathroom of their own so the baths were just like communal bathrooms.
To go in was the equivalent of a couple of GBP and this would be paid at the entrance. The first room you would come to would be the apodyterium– Latin word. see end of post. This had niches in the wall and there were slaves to guard your clothes as everyone went in naked. Because of this, men and women bathed separately.
After the apodyterium, you would come the palaestra. This was a gym, outdoors and surrounded by a colonnade. There were lots of activities such as discus and javelin throwing you could partake in.
Then came the tepidarium, which was basically like a sauna. The customers just sat in this room and waited…
Until they came to the caldarium! This hot room had a large pool of hot water where the bathers ‘sat or wallowed’ according to the Cambridge Latin Course book 1. There were also marble slabs which the bathers lay on and were scraped by a strigil by a slave. Then a masseur came and rubbed oil, the equivalent to soap, into your back. You would then sluice off in a cool bath.
The frigidarium came next, this had a freezing plunge bath which must have been refreshing after a hot room and a warm room. After this you got changed and went home.
The floor was heated with a hypocaust, using slaves to stoke the fire. This was an idea that was stolen and improved from the Greeks.
Apodyterium- changing room
Tepidarium- warm room
Caldarium- hot room
frigidarium- cold room
strigil- blunt instrument for scraping dead skin and dirt of people’s backs.
hypocaust- heating system where hot air was circulated around under the floor- hard to build in minecraft, I tried and failed.
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