Lady Godiva stopped Leofric’s Heregeld collection for King Canute

old coins

Lady Godiva’s naked horse ride stopped her husband Leofric collecting the Heregeld tax for King Canute, according to Ranulph Higden’s Polychronicon (1257) and an inquiry by Edward I. Both investigations found that all tax collection in Coventry stopped, except for taxes on horses. The first telling of the Godiva story, …

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Cornish rebellion: Thomas Flamank and Michael Joseph An Gof

June 1497 Royal tax collector Sir Richard Flamank’s son Thomas Flamank, from Bodmin, and St Keverne blacksmith Michael Joseph An Gof led the Cornish tax rebellion. The rebels disliked Henry VII’s taxes raised to fund his war against the Scots. Flamank and An Gof spoke against the taxes, claiming a …

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Other tax rebellions

tax forms

The British tend to rebel over the issue of tax. Tactics have included non-payment, riots, armed mobs and even murder. And the rebellions have often led to changes in government – and even to the US war of independence (“No taxation without representation”). Five examples are: The Peasants’ Revolt of …

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