|1180||Village of Loxley destroyed, Ailric killed. (Date shown on screen, but possibly occurred in 1178.)|
|3 September 1189||King Richard I's coronation. (Historical event mentioned in The Children of Israel. Sir Guy said that he was at the coronation with his father. Sheriff thought he'd be too young to remember it. So, he is supposedly a small child at this point.) Third Crusade begins.|
|1190 - 1192||Edmond of Gisburne supposedly killed in Palestine, although The Cross of St. Ciricus says Edmond fought in King Richard's (i.e. Third) Crusades which happened after King Richard's coronation, which Guy attended... Edmond actually survives and returns home to find Lady Margaret pregnant with Guy.|
|1191 - 1193||Guy of Gisburne born!!!!|
|April - May 1195||The band gets together. (1180 + 15 years. But really, the first episode probably happened in 1193, because that was before Kind Richard's return.... no wonder Gisburne seems like he was born yesterday!)|
|March 1194||King Richard returns from captivity, sieges Nottingham, goes hunting in Sherwood, holds a great council in Nottingham on March 30th, etc. (The actual historical date of the real events that inspired The King's Fool.) End of Season One.|
|1199-1201||Gisburne serves as "the worst page that ever dropped a cup of wine" to Earl of Gloucester. (Ten years before The Pretender.)|
|6 April 1199||King Richard dies from an arrow wound (well, more from the botched surgery) and John is crowned king on 27 May 1199 in Westminster Abbey. The events of the second season episode The Prophecy includes this event.|
|1198-1199||King John divorces Hadwisa (also called Isabella) of Gloucester.|
|24 August 1200||King John marries the 12-year-old Isabella of Angoulême (historical events referred to in The Pretender).|
|1202-1203||Arthur of Brittany, son of Richard's brother Geoffrey, captured by King John... and possibly murdered by John at some point. (Historical events referred to in The Pretender.)|
|10 May 1206||Janet of Elsdon (The Witch of Elsdon) is pardoned (date on the pardon).|
|1208||Robin of Loxley dies. End of Series Two.|
|1209-1211||The Third Season.|
|1209||According to the Robin Hood: The Hooded Man novelization, the events of Herne's Son took place in this year, one year after Robin of Loxley's death. Robert of Huntingdon becomes the new Robin Hood.|
|1209||Hadwisa upset about John divorcing her (Gods, news travels slow). John's "new" queen hasn't aged (she should look about 20 by now).|
|1211||Attempt on King John's life. Earl David of Huntingdon is among those accused. (Historical event that possibly inspired Rutterkin.)|
|1211||The Time of the Wolf (date mentioned on screen). It's said (in The Sheriff of Nottingham) that the outlaws have been in the forest for two years, this works if you take it to mean Huntingdon and accept the 1209 date.|
Better just forget about dates and enjoy the show!
RoS Timeline - Part I - Michael Praed Episodes
The timeline below was constructed by Frank Shailes based upon Allen W. Wright's original above, and is copyright to the authors.
Before Series 1:
c.1170?: Edmond of Gisburne supposedly killed in Palestine, although The Cross of St. Ciricus says Edmond fought in "King" Richard's (i.e. Third) wars, which if this refers to the Crusades which happened after King Richard's coronation, which Guy attended...! Edmond actually survives and returns home to find Lady Margaret pregnant with Guy. Probably these were earlier wars with "King" Richard (Lady Gisburne uses his latest title) when he was a young prince and fighting in Europe. It's likely then that it was c.1170 when Edmond of Gisburne was reported dead.
c.1173 (1171): Guy of Gisburne born (ten years before The Pretender he was not a knight, so he ought to be under 21 - the lowest age for knighthood - in c.1194 (1192). Knighted before April 1196 (1193) when he has taken up service with Abbot Hugo as "Guy the Gamekeeper"). See Note #2.
c.1175 (1173): Robin of Loxley born ('Legend' LP sleeve notes put him at 20 in Series One, i.e. about 5 at the start of the 1178/1180 sequence of the first episode).
c.1178 (1176): Marion of Leaford born (Legend sleeve notes put her at 17 in Series One).
1180 (1178): Village of Loxley destroyed, Ailric killed. (Date 1180 shown on screen, but possibly occurred in 1178. See The King's Fool below.) Robin is apparently 20 by 1195/6 (1193/4) (Legend sleeve notes) so must be 5 or so here.
c.1183 (1181): Robert of Huntingdon born (younger than his half-brother Guy of Gisburne, and based on the actor's age at filming - what was the gap for Lady Gisburne between having Guy, and her husband returning? Guy was old enough to ask questions... I think she was pregnant when he returned, but then some years would be required before David, Earl of Huntingdon, married his eventual wife and fathered Robert). In real history, David Earl of Huntingdon was temporarily stripped of his title from 1174 for ten years, due to taking part in Prince Henry's rebellion against Henry's father, King Henry II. He was then reconciled, and was involved in Richard's coronation...
3 September 1189: King Richard I's coronation. (Historical event mentioned in The Children of Israel. Sir Guy said that he was at the coronation with his father. Sheriff thought he'd be too young to remember it. So, he is supposedly a child at this point, but is aged about 16 to 19; but anything under 21 may have been considered a child in noble circles (knights no younger than 21). It's a bit rich to imagine Guy was too young to remember the events, and Guy corrects the Sheriff. Maybe the Sheriff was ridiculing Guy's naivety). The Third Crusade begins.
Before 1195: Gisburne serves as "the worst page that ever dropped a cup
of wine" to the Earl of Gloucester. ("Ten" years before The
c.1194/1195 (1192/1193): Guy of Gisburne knighted and leaves the Earl of Gloucester's service to work for Abbot Hugo.
1195 (1193)-1202: The First Two Series:
April - 1 May 1195 (1193): Robin Hood and the Sorcerer (1 & 2). The band gets together. (1180 + 15 years. But really, the first episode probably happened in 1193, because that was before King Richard's return.)
May 1195 (1993): The Witch of Elsdon (3). 10 May, Janet of Elsdon is pardoned (date on the pardon, but the year there says '1206'!!). James and Martin join the Merries.
1195 (1193): Seven Poor Knights from Acre (4). James (TV) / Martin (book) is slain.
1195? (1193?): Alan a Dale (5). Not certain if this precedes The King's Fool or follows it (choose to taste); but as Martin (TV) / James (book) is still in the Merries, must precede Season Two.
March 1194: The King's Fool (6). King Richard returns from captivity, sieges Nottingham, goes hunting in Sherwood, holds a great council in Nottingham on March 30th, etc. (The actual historical date of the real events that inspired The King's Fool.) End of Season One.
1195?: The Swords of Wayland (11 & 12). Marion still thinks her father is dead.
1196?: Lord of the Trees (9). Bertrand de Nivelle notes Guy's fire/fight-scars, new since The King's Fool? Seems early - Gisburne seems unaware of the Blessing or annual increase in poaching at that time. Marion says "You've spared Gisburne twice" (both in series one - Sorcerer part 2 and Witch of Elsdon) so this must come before Children of Israel.
1198?: The Children of Israel (8). Came before Lord of the Trees
in broadcast order, but that story probably chronologically precedes this given
that Guy seemed new to gamekeeping in Sherwood then, and Gisburne is spared by
Robin a third time here (see above). The Sheriff no doubt had more than one
trip to London, but many fans like to think Gisburne is left in charge as
Sheriff for Lord of the Trees, with the actual Sheriff returning from
the same trip as in Children of Israel.
However, given that the real Sheriff makes a scheduled return, bringing money, of which he gave advance notice (albeit getting the exact date wrong!) this does not seem to be the same trip as in Lord of the Trees: there, Gisburne finally goes "much too far", threatens all the Sheriff's peasants at the hands of a marauding mercenary army, and drives Hugo to summon his brother back early.
After 6 April 1199, before 27 May 1199: The Prophecy (7). King Richard dies from an arrow wound (well, more from the botched surgery) and John is crowned king on 27 May 1199 in Westminster Abbey. In reality, John received the news of his brother's death whilst on the continent with Arthur and Constance of Brittany.
1199: King John divorces Hawise/Hadwisa (also called Isabella) of Gloucester. Marriage dissolved on grounds of consanguinity (both share the same great-grandfather, Henry I). Hadwisa is never actually crowned Queen.
c.1200: Sir Richard of Leaford returns from France following King Richard's death at Chalus, buying his way back into King John's favour.
24 August 1200: King John marries the 12/13-year-old Isabella of Angoulême (historical events referred to in The Pretender). Her birth, historically, was c.1187. This triggers wars in France from 1201 until 1220, with main conflicts in 1202-1206 (John losing three large provinces in late 1204).
Spring (May?) c.1202: The Enchantment (10) (shortly before The Greatest Enemy: Herne's comments "Soon will he face the greatest of enemies and find himself in the white flame of his power" to Marion in The Enchantment and "Who is the greatest enemy? Always with you, sometimes at your shoulder?" to Robin in The Greatest Enemy). "The Day of Mercury" (Wednesday). "The hour of his [Belleme's] death" can only refer to the time of day - it is not actually Beltane. Beltane fell on Wednesday in 1196 and 1202. Only the latter fits.
c. May/mid-late summer? 1202: The Greatest Enemy (13). Trees in full leaf, some browning? Robin of Loxley dies. End of Series Two.
RoS Timeline - Part II - Jason Connery Episodes
The timeline below was constructed by Frank Shailes. Thanks to Allen W. Wright for some entries.
c. 1202: The Merries argue, and part company. A pardon is given (bought) for Marion and she returns to live at Leaford Grange.
1 Aug 1202 - 3 (6?) Apr(?) 1203: Arthur of Brittany, son of Richard's brother Geoffrey, captured by King John at Mirebeau-en-Poitou... and possibly murdered by John at some point (traditionally 3 or 6th Apr 1203). (Historical events referred to in The Pretender.) Arthur of Brittany was was born on 29 Mar 1187 and he is rumoured to have been murdered in Rouen or Cherbourg over sixteen years later. He had been recognised as heir presumptive in 1190, brought up by Phillip II of France from 1996, promised his French lands (angered Eleanor of Aquitaine) and betrothed to Philip's daughter.
1203-1211 (or 1212?) The Third Series:
c. March - 1 April 1203?: Herne's Son (1&2). Just under a year
since The Greatest Enemy (comments throughout). N.B. According to the
'Robin Hood: The Hooded Man' novelization, the events of Herne's Son
took place in 1209, one year after Robin of Loxley's death. This doesn't really
fit with the amount of adventures for each Robin, or the Merries' ageing in
series 1 and 2. However, Robert, the Earl of Huntingdon's first son, (who in
history died young) must have been born after 1190 (Earl's marriage). This
makes him at least 12 years younger than Marion!! Clearly the Huntingdon
offspring do not follow their historical timeline (Robert is still alive as an
adult, not dead in childhood, and should have baby/toddler sisters by 1209!!).
Ends at "the end of this month", shortly after "The Feast of Arianrhod". Gulnar eats a pear at Huntingdon Castle (seasonal June through December but can be stored through to about March/April.)
c. April 1203: The Power of Albion (3). Robert of Huntingdon becomes
the new Robin Hood. After a week or two, word spreads that Robin Hood has
returned (Sir Richard of Leaford's words). Gisburne's sprained ankle has healed.
Spring flowers and new buds on trees (none/few in full leaf).
Spring 1204: Adam Bell (9). Must come before Sheriff of Nottingham (Much's comments about the Sheriff intending him a hanging). Second Robin's fame has spread. Little John's winter hair (wig) returns to normal hair, spring moves on by end. Edward de Rainault left his son Martin (conceived before dying on the 3rd Crusade, i.e. before late 1192) to his brother the Sheriff -- 11th birthday during this story (so, early 1204 at latest, probably earlier). Martin (the son) has been at the castle for 2 years (since 1202/03 gap when the outlaws were believed defeated - this fits well: the Sheriff might not consider it safe until then).
Winter 1204-05: The Betrayal (8). The "new" Robin has stolen Michaelmas and Easter taxes (Sep 1203 or 1204, and 25 Apr 1204 or 10 Apr 1205). Wars in France going badly (major territorial losses in late 1204 through to truce in Oct 1206). John's winter hair again (wig)! King John (and his Queen, one presumes) has not met Robert/Robin and needs a description. An early Huntingdon story, despite the playful kiss: the Merries tease Robert about his father, Marion mistrusts him for a while (and wears her Power of Albion costume), Will recalls the quarrels with Loxley: "All right: one leader".
Early 1205?: The Pretender (10): Arthur I of Brittany was born 29 Mar
1187 - Isabella of Angoulême is thought to have been born in 1187 too.
His impostor (and Isabella) is well past puberty in this episode, so it's set
after 1202 at least. King John's 12/13-year-old bride (since 24 Aug 1200) is
now at least 5 years older (17 or 18, which coincidentally fits her appearance),
and Hadwisa of Gloucester (and her father, who in history died in 1183) have
had time to arrange the plot.
Since Guy was a page "ten" years before (more like 12), and the real Arthur is confirmed dead ("King John murdered him", Isabella saw it), this is probably after Easter 1203 (possibly before 1204?? Depending if the ten years reference is applied from 1993 or the 1195 date used on episode 1's caption). The Queen is still called "new" and "young", "some blame her for our losses in France" (King John caused a war there when he married her, during which he captured Arthur) - early 1205 fits the losses best.
Marion wear her purple robes still and seems to not yet be in love with Robert (the Arthur/Robert fight and aftermath). The Queen sees Robin clearly, so this must come after The Betrayal where the King needed a description of him (he wouldn't trust the Sheriff, but should trust the Queen as a witness - after all, she saw him murder the real Arthur).
Mid-Summer 1205: The Cross of St Ciricus (6). Robin's success is famous and news of his justice widespread. Marion not yet ready for romance, whereas in The Sheriff of Nottingham they are getting closer (nose rubbing!). Still early for Huntingdon, as Will resents how "the Earl's son puts me in my place". For discussion of Lady Gisburne's words, see Note #2.
Late Summer 1205: The Sheriff of Nottingham (5). It's said (in The Sheriff of Nottingham) that the outlaws have been in the forest for two years, this works if you take it to mean Huntingdon. Two sessions' taxes stolen (1 year), putting the Betrayal a year or more earlier. The "old prisoner" thinks he's been in the dungeon for 27 years (since 1176), so the Sheriff was in power at least 2 years before he killed Ailric of Loxley. By Time of the Wolf De Rainault's visiting mother must be about 75 or more(!), and the Sheriff himself at least 53 (assuming he's aged about 20 at the time of episode 1, a very young High Sheriff indeed!).
1206? October: Cromm Cruac (7). Tuck's been away from the abbey for how long? He was there from age 17 to 28, after 11 years the Abbot procured him appointment as Chaplain to the Sheriff of Nottingham - being 28 in 1993 or so, he must be at least 41 now! Marion admits to the Abbot that she loves Robin, so must come after The Cross of St. Ciricus when she is unsure. Gulnar to Robin: "Long have I awaited you!" - about 3 years
1209?: The Inheritance (4). Midsummer. Crusades 17 years earlier would be a good fit for Raven and Skulley's ages (mid-late 30s). Robin seems reconciled to his father, so may follow Rutterkin; however Carpenter's novelisation has the events of Time of the Wolf following soon after Rutterkin (the King flees there from the Nottingham riots, to be with his anti-Llewellyn army). Marion is not averse to spending her life alone with Robin in Caerleon, and holds his hand on the 3-day walk home. Ah, romance!
1209 (November): King John excommunicated.
c.1211/2: Rutterkin (11). Attempt on King John's life. In history, King John learned of a plot to assassinate him while at Nottingham in 1212. One of the suspected plotters was the Earl of Huntingdon. However, Marion is still with the outlaws in this story so it must be set earlier than Time of the Wolf. Robin seems to know Guy is his brother (after St Ciricus, then?). He asks his father to use his influence to curb King John's excesses, perhaps leading into the 1214-15 Baronial revolt. The Earl seems a little infirm (struggling with Edgar) not surprising if he's about 67 years old! Marion seems very close to Robin, "oh yes you will!" re: pig-gathering. Almost like a wife ;o)
1211/2: The Time of the Wolf (12 & 13). (1211 date mentioned on screen). Despite having put down the Welsh Uprising of 1211, King John was planning a campaign against the Welsh in 1212: the Merries saving of the grain must have delayed John's invasion plans from 1211 to 1212! Either that or the Sheriff is post-dating his tithes (possible, especially when one considers that the events of Rutterkin correspond with 1212 in real history; see above).
Note #1: Episode Order
Using the evidence, history, and some guesses, the best-fit episode order could be:
1-2: Robin Hood and the Sorcerer (1 & 2). April - 1 May 1193.
3: The Witch of Elsdon (3). May 1993.
4: Seven Poor Knights from Acre (4). 1193.
5: Alan a Dale (5). 1193?
6: The King's Fool (6). March 1194.
7-8: The Swords of Wayland (11 & 12). Early Summer - 1195?
9: Lord of the Trees (9). 1196?
10: The Children of Israel (8). 1198?
11: The Prophecy (7). After 6 April 1199, before 27 May 1199.
12: The Enchantment (10). Spring 1202.
13: The Greatest Enemy (13). c. May 1202.
1-2: Herne's Son (1&2). c. March/April 1203.
3: The Power of Albion (3). c. April/May 1203.
4: Adam Bell (9). Winter 1203-Spring 1204.
5: The Betrayal (8). Winter 1204-05.
6: The Pretender (10). Early 1205?
7: The Cross of St Ciricus (6). mid-Summer 1205.
8: The Sheriff of Nottingham (5). late-Summer 1205.
9: Cromm Cruac (7). End-October. c.1206?
10: The Inheritance (4). Midsummer. 1209?
11: Rutterkin (11). c.1211 or 1212.
12-13: The Time of the Wolf (12 & 13). 1211 (or 1212).
Note #2: Some musings on Guy of Gisburne's birth
Was Guy of Gisburne born after 1189? According to Lady Margaret Gisburne's confession in The Cross of St Ciricus, Edmond of Gisburne, disgusted with his and Lady Margaret's inability to conceive children, became cruel and violent. Eventually he went with "King" Richard to the Holy Land, where he was apparently killed. Lady Margaret then married her lover, David of Huntingdon, in secret. She hoped that David's father, the Earl (died 1152 in real history), would one day accept their marriage. But Edmond actually survived and returned home to find Lady Margaret pregnant with Guy. Shortly after Guy was born, David inherited the Earldom of Huntingdon (1152 in real history!), and marries another woman (in real history, David married Maud(e) de Kevilioc or De Kerlioc, daughter of the Earl of Chester, in 1190); Margaret then felt it is too late to tell him that he gave her a son. After enduring years of cruelty, Guy is eventually told of his illegitimacy by Edmond. Guy then alienates his mother.
Lady Margaret cannot refer to the Third Crusade which began after King Richard's coronation (1189), which Guy says he attended. Either Guy or his mother is misinformed! Setting RoS around 1209, as in the final novelisation, would make Guy around 20 when the series finished, and solve many of these problems; however, King Richard is clearly alive and well in The King's Fool, having just returned from the short captivity in Austria/Germany following the Crusade (relaying Saladin's words to Nasir; the King's ransom is also mentioned). This occurred in 1194 in real history, but Guy is no five-year-old child there but a full-fledged Knight.
The only way to reconcile Lady Gisburne's confession is to assume that she is delirious with pain and shock and misremembering the exact circumstances of Edmond's absence. He may indeed have Crusaded later, but Guy must 've been born around 1170-1175. Probably the wars in which Edmond went missing/ presumed-dead were earlier wars with the King-to-be, Richard, when he was a young prince and fighting in Europe. David of Huntingdon was born around 1144, so a dalliance at the age of 26 (around 1170) would not be unreasonable. Gisburne may have rejected his mother as early as age 7 (circa 1178) after David married; in the RoS universe David's father, the old Earl, must have lived longer than the 1152 in our universe - it seems wrong for David to impregnate someone before age 8! It took some years for Edmond to tell Guy he was illegitimate: Margaret kept quiet about the father's identity when David married (before 1179 in RoS universe, going by Robert/Robin's age).
All comments and suggestions are welcome! The "real" history of Plantagenet
times can't align exactly with RoS in all respects - but it can come pretty
RoS Fandom History
Over twenty-five years after Robin of Sherwood was made, it's fandom is still
very much alive and thriving. This is an overview of what happened in all
those years. The early years are based on A History of 'Robin of Sherwood'
fandom in the United States that Cindy Fairbanks compiled for the
Weekend in Sherwood I (1992) convention