1. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    Anyone From England that Knows About the Lollards?

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Lewdog, Oct 23, 2013.

    I have an idea for a book that involves the old religious group in the U.K. called the Lollards. I'm just curious if there is anyone out there that has some knowledge about them that I might not have found on line.
     
  2. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    There you go: http://lmgtfy.com/?q=lollards
     
  3. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    Haha yea I've done all kinds of internet searches, but I'm looking for information that people may know that I haven't found. For example several Lollards were burned at the stake in the Lollard's Pit, in Thorp Wood, Norfolk. Someone from England might be able to describe the place to me, so I can use it in my novel. Someone from England would also help to tell me some things about their inspectors.
     
  4. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Then what you want isn't info on Lollards, but details about England that's related to the Lollards. I'd suggest you go back to your OP and edit it to make it much more specific because I doubt you'd get very good responses otherwise. You might just end up with more links like mine :D

    If you're seriously interested in the specifics of the Lollards, seems to me you should be looking at primary sources. There're bound to be books written by people in the 14th century about the Lollards, perhaps people who were part of the Lollards. That's the best way to really get hold of real life details that normal history books wouldn't give you.

    Another piece of advice - go to university websites and track down the professors who lecture on this period - you can find out by looking up the kind of books they've written and what sort of modules they teach (which often includes a huge reading list). Email them. There might be a few who'd be willing to point you to more specific gems that no non-historian of the period would know about.
     
  5. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    Well my story is during the 1920's so I don't need to know everything about them, but some things like the Lollard Pit is extremely important. My two antagonist are Lollard Knights who have come out of hiding and have become fed up with the churches in the United States. So they start murdering clergy that are using their position to become popular among the community. That is iconism which the Lollards are extremely against. They also don't like how the churches take in so much money and build huge beautiful buildings. According to what the Lollards believe, Clergy should not draw attention to their selves or take large amounts of money. They are supposed to lay low and not worry about worldly items.
     
  6. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Is the moral of your story that pastors should be able to get as rich as they want? lol. Anyway, in that case you need to understand how the Lollards would or might develop in the modern day, as your Lollards would be vastly different to true Lollards of the 14th century. Is there some good reason why your characters must be Lollards rather than any other existing branch of modern Christians? It's certainly not only the Lollards who think pastors should not draw attention to themselves and make huge profits, and Christians far and wide today are fed up and disillusioned by these mega churches and their pastors. Your story would sound similarly plausible even if they weren't Lollards. Basically I'm saying, use the Lollards because they're unique in some way and this specific identity contributes something important to the story.

    So, we've exchanged a couple of medium-length posts now and STILL I haven't a clue what kind of info it is you want. You say you want info on Lollards, but now it's actually a very specific Lollard's Pit you want. Go back to your OP and edit your post - what SPECIFIC info do you need about the Lollards or their locations? What specific places or practices in the UK are you interested in? Few on here would be able to tell you anything beyond linking you to wiki - but if you were asking about the Scottish mountains or the chalk cliffs of the Isle of Wight, then you might get more responses.

    And why on earth are your Lollards killing people in Britain if they're fed up with the churches in the UNITED STATES? That doesn't make sense.
     
  7. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    Here I'll go ahead and link the outline to my story so you can understand it better. Really I'm just looking for any information on the Lollards that might be unique and not already on the internet that people who actually live where they were/are would know.

    It is placed in Chicago in the mid 1920's during prohibition and it involves the murders of religious people that backed the prohibition amendment. The cops at first think it is people trying to knock off those clergy in an attempt to scare people into revoking the amendment. They believe it is a group called 'The Crusaders'http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Crusaders_(repeal_of_alcohol_prohibition)But then after the murders start to hit the press the murder/s start leaving messages in blood. The first one says "The Lollard Knights Live." So the cops start to think that maybe it is a new Irish gang trying to make a name for themselves so they go to the largest Irish gang in Chicago at the time, the South Side O'Donnells, where they find out that the Lollard Knights are actually a fanatic religious group from England that is totally against the new clergy because they feel they are corrupted with their acts of iconicism, and greediness. Norfolk, England is a place famous for where Lollards were burned to death because they were convicted of heresy.

    A gruesome reminder of this persecution is the 'Lollards Pit' in Thorpe Wood, Norfolk,where men are customablie burnt.[8]

    So the Chicago police ask for help from Norfolk and they send an Inspector that knows all about the Lollard history. The murders continue with cryptic messages left in blood at each scene, then finally they catch up with the guy that is the single murderer, and find out he is doing it out of revenge because he is a direct decedent of John Badby, whom was the first Lollard to be convicted of heresy and burned in a barrel by Henry V http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Badby . When they finally have the murderer cornered, he gives out a long speech about why he did what he did, then he pulls a gun and forces the police to kill him. At last he has become a martyr for his cause. The detective and inspector think they have finally solved and ended the reign of terror. The inspector makes plans to go back to the UK, but when he returns to his hotel room, he is kidnapped. After not hearing from the inspector and the inspector missing his ride to NY to get on a ship, the detective knows something is wrong. The detective then goes on a search to find the inspector. His first stop is at the warehouse where they had killed the murderer. There he finds the inspector tied up and another man, with a less recognizable accent is threatening to kill him. "An eye for an eye," he says, stating the detective and inspector killed his brother. The murderer and the detective have some conversation when somehow the inspector creates a diversion and the detective gravely injures the man. On his death bed he tries to explain that he isn't an evil man, just a man carrying out the work of God according to the 'only' bible, the Old Testament. He also dies a martyr.


    Irish Gang:


    Chicago[edit source |editbeta]
    Prohibition[edit source |editbeta]
    The successors of Michael Cassius McDonald's criminal empire of the previous century, the Irish-American criminal organizations in Chicago were at their peak duringProhibition, specializing inbootlegging andhijacking. However, they would soon be rivaled by Italian mobsters, particularlyAl Caponeand theChicago Outfit.

    The organizations existing before Prohibition - including theNorth Side Gang, which includedDion O'Banion,Bugs Moran, andLouis Alterie; the Southside O'Donnell Brothers (led byMyles O'Donnell); the Westside O'Donnell's;Ragen's Colts; theValley Gang;Roger Touhy;Frank McErlane;James Patrick O'Leary; andTerry Druggan- all were in competition with Capone for control of the bootlegging market.
     
  8. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    @Lewdog I haven't heard of the lollards so I can't give you any info first hand and I'm sure you have the interweb covered. However I have to ask, are you writing a historic novel on these guys? If you feel you can't find any more detailed info maybe you can just change their name and write your own story based on these guys...
     
  9. Fred
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    I live in Norwich, which is where the Lollard's Pit once existed. There used to a pub on the site (it's closed now, mores the pity), which is across the road from the old bridge that spans the river and leads to the cathedral and bishop's palace. You can easily understand why it would have been easy to carry out grisly executions of so-called heretics on the doorstep of one of the most powerful clerics in the country at the time: Norwich was the wealthiest city in Medieval England outside London, and not the bishop, the Mayor and his council, nor the king would tolerate even the slightest threat to that, and so it's very likely that such a spectacularly brutal suppression was deemed necessary in order to re-emphasise the established political as well as ecclesiastical status quo.

    It's a while since I was at school, but my understanding of Lollardy is that it was a populist movement that strove to make the Church accessible to ordinary people, and thus they ran afoul of the Papal authorities. Hence I'm having trouble with your description of Knights who seem to be on a violent campaign to restore some form of conservatism to the Church. I'm quite likely wrong, but wouldn't the historical Lollards be more likely to actively support churchmen who worked hard to support Christianity in the community? Like I said, I may well be wrong, but in any case, naturally, it's your fictional baby, so there's no reason why you can't create a group of zealots whose militant fanaticism is a corruption of the founding ideals - and, in fact, that sounds like a promising parallel with actual 21st century events!
     
  10. erebh
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    erebh Contributing Member Contributor

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    Didn't Henry VIII 'kick out' the pope way back when? I though the horny king built his own church (CoE) when the pope wouldn't let him divorce so why would the English authorities be worried about Rome?
     
  11. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    .

    Well if you read more about the Lollards you will find that they expected their clergy to stay out of the eye of the public because if one of them drew attention to themselves and became popular they deemed that as iconicism. They believed God should always be the only person who is revered by others. They also believed churches and those that worked for the church not be powerful or wealthy, and that is a major reason why at first the Lollards were backed by royalty like Richard II because he thought they helped keep the peasants in check and helped him fight against the churches that were trying to gain power among the people from him. This was especially true with the Catholic church. Eventually this didn't work out and the peasants had a revolt and the Church and state became one, and under Henry V laws were passed to make Lollardy a form of heresy that came with the sentence of death by being burnt at the stake. So most of the Lollards went under ground, or the ones that had positions of power just no longer spoke about it. So what my story does is show that the Lollard Knights that were under Richard II continued to be passed down through generations secretly, and these two descendants are now executing their beliefs against clergy who are violating the rule of iconicism by becoming such large public figures for their push for prohibition. Prohibition was a really big deal back then. Also the Lollards only believed in the Old Testament, so they believe they are no committing sins by killing these clergy members, but as stated in my synopsis, they can not commit suicide so they pull their guns on the cops so that the cops kill them and they become martyrs instead.
     
  12. Fred
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    This all predates Henry VIII by 150 years or so.

    @Lewdog - I did say that it's been a while since I was at school! I think, though, that if you delve into the context of Richard II's reign you'll find a great many other, secular, influences on policy and rebellion that can only add colour and flavour to your story. I'm still not sure what you mean by "Lollard Knight" as it seems unlikely that such an office (which requires swearing an oath before God to defend, among other things, the Church) could be held by someone allied to what was considered a heresy by the established Church. The Old Testament thing surprises me, too - wouldn't they have believed in the New Testament as well, otherwise they'd have denied the Christian gospels? I know that there was no central authority for Lollards, so what might have held true for one group may not have done so for another. Sounds like a recipe to make a few zealots over the course of six hundred years or so!
     
  13. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    Well the starter of the Lollards, John Wycliffe, was the first person to translate the Old Testement into English, and the Catholic church didn't like that one bit. The Lollard Knights were basically the head honchos under Henry the II, but once Lollardy was considered heresy they had to keep their beliefs quite in order to maintain their status, heh and their lives for that matter. The Wikipedia page is pretty good as far as a resource, but I have read a lot of other sites as well. Check it out. It is pretty interesting.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lollardy
     
  14. Fred
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    All this stuff has got me thinking of the Peasant's Revolt again, which only serves to remind me how easily we permit unfair taxes and corruption in modern Britain. I wonder if all our stroppy peasant rebel genes sailed across the Atlantic a few centuries ago, and now all we can do over here is grumble and opt out of the democratic process through apathy and contempt. Dammit, I mourn the loss of that historical sense of justice and we had before it could be bought off with electronic bling and celebrity chatter…

    Are you still looking for research resources on our local police, btw? Norfolk Police HQ is about 3 miles from where I live. Their website, including an email addy for enquiries, is here: http://www.norfolk.police.uk/contactus.aspx
     
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  15. Lewdog
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    Cool yeah I need to know exactly what they call their 'detectives.' Like do they call them inspectors, or whatever. Thanks for the link.
     
  16. Fred
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    Basically (and I wait to be corrected) in any British police force you have the uniform branch and the CID (Criminal Investigation Department), which is the "plain clothes" division to which detectives belong. Ranks are, if memory serves, Detective Constable, Detective Sergeant, Detective Inspector, Detective Chief Inspector, Detective Superintendent, and Detective Chief Superintendent. They tend to be referred to by initials - DC Jones, DS Smith, DI Green, DCI Brown etc. I'd guess that if a UK police force like Norfolk County Constabulary were invited to send officers to Chicago on secondment or what have you, the senior officer would certainly not be below DI. I would expect the senior officer on such a high-profile detachment to be quite high. Maybe even a DS. I doubt he'd have gone without at least one or two subordinates. Maybe the police look at these things much as anyone in civilian occupations do: "A few weeks away from the office, in Chicago on company expenses? Hell yeah! I'm in charge, so I'm definitely having me some of that!" In the 1920s, though, things may have been quite different - there would quite probably have been an amount of the arrogant mindset that came with Empire. In any case, I can't imagine there being an absolute absence of politics, office or otherwise. We'd call that a "jolly" over here :)

    Of course, if your scenario is likely to have suggested issues of national security, then perhaps Special Branch would be involved, which is quite another thing!
     
  17. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    Well in my story the Chicago force is really just looking for someone that knows the Lollards the best to help on the case. With that as the standard, it could be anyone on the force really. I do think I would likely use a Detective Inspector (DI). I'm just wondering overall what some of you think about the plot. I am trying for a mix of The DaVinci Code mixed with some kind of Silence of the Lambs minus the cannibalism. I want the murders to be very gory, because it is not only punishment for iconicism, but revenge for the deaths of Lollards by the church.
     
  18. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Surely if your Chicago police are just looking for a Lollard expert, they'd just hire a professor from a university? Like, you want an expert - actually hire an expert, and a self-proclaimed "expert" who works full-time as an Inspector won't cut it when you're talking about using him to help solve a series of murders. I don't find your premise realistic in this sense.

    As for your plot - well, I dislike conspiracy theories and I detested The Da Vinci Code (I don't think I made it past p.50, the writing was appalling). Generally I find the idea of religious fanatics going on a murder rampage a tired and boring premise - maybe it's because I'm a Christian, I generally dislike stories that put religious groups in a negative light because I know 99% of their members are not like this. The twist of: "It's a religious group doing it for God" for me isn't a twist at all, which means it's gonna take something really fresh to make it interesting. So far, your Lollards sound like your typical religious fanatic murderers. Now, a fresh perspective would be if you actually portrayed these religious fanatics as caring, conscientious and perhaps even genuinely kind people and made their reason for murdering accessible to a large audience. I've yet to see that.

    However, your plot smells of a potential bestseller (it's a good thing lol) - regardless of my taste, conspiracy novels are popular indeed. Although if I were trying to hit a trend, I'd go with something about information gathering and infiltration and NSA - it's in our social psyche right now and highly relevant. With the right plot, an NSA novel would likely make it big I think.
     
  19. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    @Mckk

    The reason I took the angle I did with the Chicago police department contacting the Norfolk, England, law enforcement, is it is the 1920's so there is not the benefit of the internet and the Lollards aren't exactly a well known group. Plus I believe the police would prefer to work with another law enforcement group rather than a educator.
     
  20. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    But isn't that all the more reason why you'd need an educator? There's no internet - whatever this experts says, one cannot truly verify it. You'd have to take their word for it. Wouldn't you go for someone actually educated in this field?

    Whether the police would prefer to work with another law enforcement group or an educator would surely depend on the purpose of having the person around at all? You said it yourself - it's for information on the Lollards - so an educator makes more sense. You do not want this guy to be helping you solve the case, but only to inspect the scenes and evidence in order to glean more understanding on the Lollard's behaviour and for better interpretation.

    But don't trust me. Ask a police officer :) I think there's a user on here who works with CSI or something - she's written LOADS on criminal investigations and police procedures. Maybe ask her. Lemme go check what her username is.
     
  21. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    @captain kate - this is her! Maybe she can tell you more about potential police procedures with these things. Right now I can't seem to find her old entries about CSI stuff though.
     
  22. Lewdog
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    @Mckk You have to remember this is being set in the 1920's, in which they are going to have a totally different attitude than they have these days. I'm trying to think of something other than Sherlock Holmes as a reference. He really doesn't count because he was the MC.

    Even if I did follow your premise of using an educator instead of a member of law enforcement, they more than likely still be from England due to the obscurity of the subject of Lollards.
     
  23. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Yeah sure, I think having someone from England is fine - it's the character's profession that I have doubts about. I don't pretend to know anything about attitudes in the 1920s - for that, I'd ask a senior person :) It's your story, have whatever/whoever you want, it's fine. I'm just saying this is something that would've jumped out at me if I were reading your book - it would be a slightly annoying believability issue for me. But I am ONE person, one reader. My opinion is by no means universal. My advice is to ask other people and see if anyone has similar reactions. I'm a rather critical reader, and not all readers will be like this. Feel free to keep what you have if it's what's best for the story - always, whatever's best for the story :)

    Going from my POV, if I wanted to keep the English inspector, then I'd simply have the US side actually ask for assistance in solving the case - so not only for knowledge of Lollards but somehow they want another officer who would actually get involved in the case. In which case, an inspector makes perfect sense, and an inspector with a particular knowledge of the Lollards would be ideal. The difference is not great, to be honest - it's just an issue of WHY does the US force want a British outsider to come in? What's the purpose? For Lollard knowledge (in which case, educator) or to get involved in the case as an equal officer (in which case, inspector and if he has Lollard knowledge, then all the better)?
     
  24. Lewdog
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    Lewdog Come ova here and give me kisses! Supporter Contributor

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    My tentative title is, "When Our Icons Fall."
     
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  25. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Sounds quite memorable :) I wish I had a title lol!
     
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