The Churchill Coventry Myth – Beachcombing’s Bizarre History Blog

Originally posted on Beachcombing’s Bizarre History Blog.

bombed-out-cathedralMoonlight Sonata was the German code name for the bombing raid on Coventry 14 Nov 1940, the first major German bombing raid on a British civilian target. Over five hundred German bombers shimmied over the city in thirteen waves. Most estimates put the number of deaths at just over five hundred hundred and the damage to the town was devastating: Coventry’s centre is entirely modern for the very simple reason that it had to be rebuilt from scratch. The memory of Coventry died hard. When British troops prepared to run onto Normandy beaches in June 1944 the loudspeakers on some ships instructed them to ‘Remember Coventry, Remember Dunkirk’, the great civilian and the great military disasters of the British war in the west. So much for the facts. Behind the disaster there is a longstanding conspiracy theory: namely that Churchill sacrificed Coventry to make sure that the Germans did not know that enigma had been broken. The conspiracy theory is expressed nicely in a novel by Robert Harris, Enigma (1995).

‘I think, it’s possible to know too much. When Coventry was bombed, remember? Our beloved Prime Minister discovered from Enigma what was going to happen about four hours in advance. Know what he did?’ Again Jericho shook his head. ‘Told his staff that London was…

Source: The Churchill Coventry Myth – Beachcombing’s Bizarre History Blog

Did Lady Godiva actually do her naked ride through Coventry? | History Extra

Originally posted on History Extra.

Lady Godiva 2

Lady Godiva sculpture by J Thomas, 1861. (Photo by Universal History Archive/UIG via Getty Images)

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…

via Did Lady Godiva actually do her naked ride through Coventry? | History Extra.