Michael Cahill

Michael Cahill

I have history degrees from the University of Warwick, which I attended as a “mature student” in the 1990s.  From 2002 I worked for Open Studies, becoming a freelance lecturer in 2010.  I teach in Leamington, Coventry, and at the Percival Guildhouse adult education centre in Rugby.  My training was in early modern English history, but I have ranged more widely since then.


From Henry II to Richard the Lionheart;                   1171 – 1199

The course looks at the final troubled years of Henry II – years  characterised by rebellion and loss within the royal family – before considering the reign of his charismatic son, Richard I.  There are many tales associated with Richard the Lionheart and we will seek to distinguish fact from fiction. 


Our class is friendly and informal, and participation is encouraged.  No prior knowledge of the period is required.  The course runs for 11 weeks and our sessions are as follows.

  • Week 1:      Henry II – Fortune’s favourite?
  • Week 2:      A family at war with itself
  • Week 3:      Contemporary town life and trade
  • Week 4:      Bound to Fortune’s wheel?
  • Week 5:      Assessing Henry
  • Week 6:      Disaster in the Holy Land
  • Week 7:      The new King and the verdict of history
  • Week 8:      Crusader hero
  • Week 9:      The trouble with Prince John
  • Week 10:    “Those who live by the sword….”
  • Week 11:    Aristocratic preoccupations

The following books are of interest:

  • Asbridge, T., The Crusades: the War for the Holy Land (Simon and Schuster, 2012)
  • Asbridge, T.,  The Greatest Knight (Simon and Schuster, 2015)
  • Bartlett, R., England under the Norman and Angevin Kings (Oxford, 2000)
  • Bartlett, R., Gerald of Wales: a Voice of the Middle Ages (History Press, 2006)
  • Berber, R., Henry Plantagenet, a Biography (Barnes and Noble)
  • Gillingham, J., Richard I (Yale, 1999)
  • Knight, S., Robin Hood; a Complete Study of the English Outlaw  (Blackwell, 1994)
  • McLynn, F., Lionheart and Lackland (Vintage, 2007)
  • Scott, W., Ivanhoe (Penguin)
  • Warren, W.L., Henry II (Yale)  

Oddfellows F. S., 6 Clarence Terrace, Warwick Street, Leamington Spa, CV32 5LD


Thursdays from 9.45 a.m to 11.45 a.m, with a break for refreshment.  (Course members are asked to contribute £1 from time to time to maintain a kitty for tea, coffee and biscuits.)


20th September 2018


£88 for 11 weeks


If you wish to enrol for this course, or have any queries, you may contact me by typing your name, e-mail address and message in the boxes below and clicking “submit”.  You do not need to enter a website address, but it would be helpful if you would give a phone number together with your message in the Comment box.  I will try to answer your message as soon as possible.









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