Virtual Mirage

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1067 AD, etc.

1066 AD stands out as a momentous year for change in England. Harold defeated the Vikings at Stamford Bridge only to have to rush south and face William and his Normans, Bretons, and Flemish, where he lost his life.

Much has been of William’s victory, of the Papal Bull (and Papal Flag) that declared him to be God’s chosen in the contest, and of the close-run thing that was the battle. William’s combined arms force was anything but a certain victor.

Since an arrow ended Harold’s claim to the throne,  much is made of the value of archery at Hastings.

The Bayeux Tapestry is an embroidered cloth nearly 70 meters long and 50 centimeters tall that depicts the events leading up to the Norman conquest of England concerning William, Duke of Normandy, and Harold, Earl of Wessex, later King of England, and culminating in the Battle of Hastings.

The winners write the books.

What happened to the Saxons after they lost? Many of the Saxon combatants weren’t going anywhere, after the Battle at Senlac, otherwise known as the Battle of Hastings — many were dead. But the survivors fled, and of course, not all of the Saxon lords were part of the battle and the slaughter that followed it.

Some fled to Ireland, others to Europe (to Saxony). It wasn’t easy to leave a place where most of your wealth was held in land and structures.

A group, known as the Sons of Harold, who weren’t actually sons or brothers of Harold Godwinson — his spiritual sons and supporters launched a seaborne attack but it fizzled in the Bristol Channel area, off the southeastern corner of Wales, or along the coast of Somerset or North Devon. The weather gods did not favor.

A rebellion centered on Exeter was successfully put down by William’s forces — which by that time involved a good many Englishmen (the original invasion force was only about 3,000 men).

William was totally ruthless in suppressing any opposition (the extreme example of this was the Harrying, or Harrowing, of the North) Many of the surviving Saxon lords took a look at the way the weather ran and came to a recognition that they could accept him as their King, or die.

East Anglia, which in those days was largely flooded, marshy, undrained fenland mounted an insurrection or rebellion centered on the Island of Ely, which really was an island then, even though it’s a long way from the coast. The Saxon Abbot of Ely had long been regarded by William as troublesome and uncooperative, and he was largely superseded by a new Norman abbot in Peterborough. History records. that the Saxon cannon didn’t recognize the Papal Bull.

The fens around Ely were perfect guerrilla warfare country, and the local rebels were led by a dispossessed Lincolnshire squire from Bourne, called Hereward. Suppressing Hereward’s uprising posed a considerable problem for William, and took both time and major ingenuity, as his forces needed to attack from the seaward side. You can see something of the geographical problem from this map:

“The Deeds of Hereward,” by Michael Swanton, is one account of that uprising. Swanton drew most of his material from a 13th Century Latin manuscript, now in the Library of Cambridge University, which belonged to one Robert de Swaffham, at Peterborough Abbey.

That account was, in turn, a copy of an earlier work by a 12th Century monk who wrote of Hereward. William attacked Ely eventually and Hereward came to an accommodation with the king, but we don’t know what that was. Of course, this is all racist because it claims that Africans didn’t play a central role.


ID The Mystery Aircraft & Nation of Origin

This one might be tough even for the best of you. The story of this aircraft is at the bottom of this blog page. Big credit if you can identify it without scrolling down.




From the Photo Album:  Veterans of the 1944 Warsaw Uprising.

Then and now – You’ve got to love Poland.


None of them are woke.



There was a general perception that Barack a child and grandchild of communists was out to get Big Capital. Others hold that he merely wanted his cut (Chicago Style).


Either way you slice it, it’s apparent that Jo/Ho aren’t running the country and that there are oligarchs (big tech, Wall St., and their puppets in the media) who call the shots.


A Mystery Plane Story


Some blog commenting by me is slow because I’m on the road intermittently.

Ok, that makes sense.

29 thoughts on “Virtual Mirage

  1. I had never seen nor heard of that plane before today. Builder / operator sounds like a cool dude. Pretty sure we would just give him a license, here… or would have, back in the day.

    Black Jesus was after Big Capital… in his wallet. He was also after Big Capitol under his dominion. That’s about as far as it goes, and he got both.

    Ya gotta watch out for swamp dwellers, they are sneaky. Applies equally now and then, and all kinds of swamps.


  2. Harold won at Stamford Bridge because he tricked the Norse into thinking there was going to be a truce, and attacked them when they were coming in unarmored.

    The fight ON Stamford Bridge is a heroic last stand. One Norse Viking held the narrow footbridge against all, defeating over 40 Anglo-Saxons until the Anglo-Saxons got in a boat, came underneath and stabbed the Norsker up the bum with a spear.

    As to William, three years after conquering England even the most stubborn Anglo-Saxon admitted that the land was much safer under Norman rule than Anglo-Saxon rule.

    As to the Harrowing of the North, if that rat-bastard Malcolm, King of the Scots, had just stayed on his side of the border, well… In 100 years the Normans have successfully taken over control of the Lowlands and Midlands.

    Which brings me to a funny SCA story. Some guy asked me, a known know-it-all, how to pronounce in Gaelic his name ending in ‘Bruce.’ My answer? Blah-blah de Brucee. Because that’s what the Bruce clan was/is. Frogs. HAHAHAHA. Frenchified Normans.

    The same could be said for the aristocracy of Wales and Ireland too.

      1. The Vikings should have shown up with armor, temperature notwithstanding.

        Harald Hadrada had Tostig with him, which was a severe liability.

        1. Yes. Tostig was the period version of having the modern early 20th Century French fight on your side.

          Or, well, a RINO. He’s the Mitt Romney of 1066.

          And one should always wear the appropriate business suit when conducting business.

      2. Yep. Got some Attentot blood from my mother’s side. That name changed, after the Attentot did a whiz-bang job of quartermastering for William, to Despenseurs, and then to de Spensers, and then to… Spenser.

        That and two bucks can buy me a 24 ounce coffee at the local convenience store that tastes far better than Starbucks…

  3. love the plane story. i thought it might have been the plane those p.o.w.’s built to escape from their prison in the alps….alas, poor harold.

  4. A song about the Battle of Stamford Bridge.

    It’s just not worth trying to thwart Finns, who will do what they want anyway. I trust there is no need to point out that some random Finn builds at least three working planes from scratch, but other parts of the world (culture is downstream of biology) you get Cargo Cult effigies of planes built instead.

    1. Gee, deny a Finn his God-given right to be a Finn. What’s the worst that can happen? It’s not like he’s going to ski to your house in the dead of winter, set fire to it, and sit back and watch you chose to either watch you burn to death or freeze to death, or just shoot you from a snowbank.

        1. Helvetti! None of those sissy Swedish names. Saatana perkele!

          Jaakko Reachääläinen. Now with extra sisu. And spare umlauts.

          1. Hehe…decidedly NOT Swedish…ptueyptuey…(‘E’n not ‘O’n). Tried to “invoke” a Finnish sounding name of our intrepid protagonist by asking the Danish bride some spelling but it came out more Norwegian. My bad.

            I do like your proper Finn name better…could be a book series; guy flies around Finland in his farm scrap plane solving murders, evading the Finnish FAA the whole time.

  5. I really enjoyed the plane story. I had no idea what it was though I figured due to the landing gear that it was Canadian or Scandinavian in origin. Finnish wasn’t too far off from my guess. I’ve heard of VW engines being used in home built aircraft, so that part doesn’t surprise me.

    1. VW engines do lend themselves to aircraft, more particularly in colder climates. They might struggle in the Arizona desert.

  6. In the modern bible (small ‘b’) that is America, Biden – aka The Corrupt Pedo Whispering Hologram (only SLIGHTLY redundant), is the Anti-Trump, so no surprise the crap continues flowing downhill towards us, like The Blob. Impeaching Biden is not in their plan, nor in Cuomo’s prosecution, far too many Dem’s are involved…self-preservation is paramount.

    This gets much worse, the tyrannical weasels will up the ante, and a lot of America is too patient still believing government won’t do us harm (flatly ignoring the past 18 months)…and they “have nukes.”

    The Finnish pilot is certainly his own man, telling officials to go pound sand. Maybe we all should use his example here (and not in scrap-built planes).

  7. Interesting about the airplane, I had never heard of it before but it is a testament to the builder’s skill that he has built at least three aircraft that have zero accidents against them. To bad the fix was not to give the guy a pilot’s license, instead they take the propeller.

    When I was living in East Anglia you could tell that a lot of the land had been reclaimed. Just about all of the rivers were banked so that they were well above the surrounding countryside. I never heard of one of the banks failing though. I have read that the English reclaimed more land from swamps and the sea then the Dutch have; don’t know if that is true or not.

    Totally off subject; today is the anniversary of the detonation of Little Boy over Hiroshima, the bomb killed the city but helped save thousands of American and Japanese lives.

      1. When I was stationed at Whiteman back in 98 there was a Captain Paul Tibbets stationed there as a B-2 driver. It was pretty darn cool when his grandfather, yes that Paul Tibbets, came to visit with the rest of the surviving aircrew. Heard some great stories that night; truly the greatest generation.

    1. Saved millions. And saved Japan. Could have gone in several directions, either enforced starvation with the US doing defoliation of all farms and forests and firebombing of any above-ground structure and sinking anything that floated, or an invasion that would basically have ended when the last Japanese was dead.

      Saved us, too. Who would we have been after 3 years of starving a people to extinction or having to fight over every square inch of terrain that makes Italy look tame and ending with the extinction of the Japanese. We would have died morally as a people.

    2. I have remembered the year 1066 also for Haley’s Comet and the muslim massacre of Jews at Granada.

      Not, thousands, not tens of thousands. Millions. The invasion of the Japanese home islands had been planned. Execution of the plan was all that remained. U.S. intel estimated 3 Army divisions to defend the southern approaches to the Japanese home islands.

      (The Allies had planned to commence the invasion on the southern approaches. The Japanese had deduced the same since it was most logical. Therefore, most of the defensive force was in the area of the landing beaches.)

      Years after the unconditional surrender of Japan, it was publicized that not three but eleven Army divisions were amassed to defend against the invasion. Based on the estimate of three divisions. it was estimated one million casualties. We can speculate what the number would have actually been if not for the bombs which brought about the surrender.

      Too, while U.S. intel recognized there would be a sizable civilian defending force, that too was underestimated. It may have been as high as 400% underestimation although most historians (that I know of) state at least 200-250%.

      Like riverrider I thought the aircraft to be the Colditz glider. (The Colditz glider was also high wing with sizable wing struts.) But the engine…. Seeing they escaped from the Germans, perhaps a later event wrangled a VW engine. The government should had simply left the man alone. Or, allow him to fly but restrict to limited distance from base of operations and maximum altitude. Totalitarian governments see only one course of action; complete domination. The spirit in the man would not cow to such a government. Therefore the government, of course, had to double down and ratchet up as it could consider no alternative.

    1. It wasn’t WWI or WWII that was potentially destructive to the Bayeux Tapestry, it was the French Revolution where it was used as a wagon cover and set on fire.

      And the colors are still vibrant even now. Blacks are really black though not coal-tar black.

  8. I’m with Paul on the political thing, and enjoyed the Hastings review. If you count the Normans as Norse, which they kind of were, the Vikings ended up beating the Saxons, curiously.

    Great plane story.

  9. Do you have a source for the photo album of the Warsaw Uprising heroes? Love the then-and-now photos — a reminder that many seasoned citizens were at one time VERY badass … not all of them male. The pacifier pinned to the nurse’s blouse is interesting. Thanks for these.

    1. I had more but because of technical issues on my server, I couldn’t get them loaded. I had a source. Let me look around.

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