Originally posted on History Extra.
In legend, Lady Godiva was willing to ride naked through the streets of Coventry to persuade her husband to lower taxes – but did it actually happen?
The naked truth of the matter is that: no, she didn’t. Lady Godifu (or Godgyfu) was a real woman and she was married to one of the wealthiest men in Anglo-Saxon England, Earl Leofric of Mercia.
Less famously, the pair were generous patrons of monasteries, and Godifu (which should actually be pronounced Gud-geef-uh), in particular donated much gold and silver to make crucifixes.
Despite both dying roughly around the time of 1066, the story of her naked ride through Coventry was first recorded by…