I am playing a game of inverse “would I lie to you” each weekend. We don’t have so many rules as the TV shows; I was considering doing one on English Revolts, but decided not to; but made some interesting discoveries, which for me reinforces the need for a debate on English History teaching. I was also motivated to discover the truth about the Battle of Deptford Bridge. Here are the links I found, with a little bit of commentry. …

Peasants Revolt 1381

Peasant Armies from Kent & Essex forced concessions from the Monarchy, who then broke their agreements and brutally suppressed the leadership

  1. Peasants’ Revolt, at wikipedia/
  2. John Ball, at wikipedia, a priest, strangely released from prison in time for the Peasant’s revolt whose words have been recorded as a supporter (if not one of the instigators) of the revolt.
  3. BBC on English Revolts, Page 1 – summary, majoring on 1381
  4. BBC on English Revolts, Page 5, historiography – interpretation
  5. Seán Mac Mathúna on the Poll Tax revolt at fantompowa

Whig historians portrayed the revolt as the start of the English people’s fight for freedom as did their contemporary Socialists. More recently, historians argue that the feudal system was coming to an end anyway because the Black Death had made labour so expensive. More recent research suggests that support was more broadly based than the peasantry, and that there were political ideas of democracy embedded with the rebellious communities. Much has been made of the objection to the Poll Tax which was  being levied to fund the 100 years war.

Fantompowa’s Seán Mac Mathúna, recommends, “A Radical Reader: The Struggle for Change in England”, and his article’s above have more of value. In fact fantompowa might be the hosting name, and that the subsite is called Flame. I ma glad to see the site is protected by the wayback machine.

Cade Rebellion 1450

Basically a repeat of 1381

  1. Jack Cade’s Rebellion, wikipedia
  2. Cade’s Rebellion, Encyc. Britanica
  3. Seán Mac Mathúna on the Cade Rebellion.
  4. The Cade Rebellion, South East London – a discussion of the modern geography

The Battle of Deptford Bridge 1497

Michael An Gof led a Cornish Army to Kent where they hoped to reignite the rebellious forces of Cade, Tyler and Ball in opposing Norman rule and the taxes required to fight the wars in defence of the Crown’s French territory.

It’s one of the points of interest to me that this Battle occured and I have always heard it referred to as important in the 1381 revolt, but it’s not the case.

  1. An Gof and the Cornish rebels in Deptford, 1497 from a site called fantompowa by Seán Mac Mathúna
  2. In Search of the Battle of Deptford Bridge, another article about the geography of Deptford Bridge, and the lack of memorials to the Battle.


Here is a flickr collection following the Ravensbourne.

I have written previously about the English Civil War(s)

Featured Image: from British History Online. It’s dated 1815 so, 450 years too late.

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