LADY GODIVA

Lady Godiva was a real person and lived in the twelfth century.

She was married to Leofric, Earl of Mercia and they lived in the small city of Coventry in the centre of England.

She is famous because she rode naked through the streets of Coventry on a white horse.  But why did she do this?

At the time, Leofric was a confidante of the English King, John and Leofric was asked to increase taxes.

Godiva was a fair minded woman and objected.

Her husband Leofric made a challenge that if she would ride naked through the streets of Coventry, he would not charge the Mercian people this tax.

Leofric never expected for one moment that Lady Godiva would dare to do it.  But dare to do it she did.

All the people of Coventry stayed inside their home and averted their eyes, except for one man called Thomas who could not resist peeping at her beautiful body as she rode her horse.

He wrote it down in a diary which was later reported and several centuries later, the expression ‘Peeping Tom’ was used to describe  an unwelcome voyeur.

The intriguing tale of Lady Godiva was created.

Lady Godiva was perhaps a virtuous victim, compelled to perform a humiliating act resulting from her Husbands domination but she was also an intelligent independent woman, acting out of self-devotion and inspired by pagan rituals for goodness and respect.

The tale itself was later epitomized by the Poet Alfred Lord Tennyson in 1842 for the whole world to know about.

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