POD: c 85,000,000 BCE;
Relevant POD: 1452
|Type of Appearance:||Direct POV|
|Nationality:||English settler of Atlantis|
|Date of Birth:||1401|
|Date of Death:||1470|
|Cause of Death:||Murder by decapitation|
|Relatives:||Patriarch of the Radcliffe line|
Edward Radcliffe (1401-1470), also known as Edward the Founder and the Discoverer, was the first person to settle (although not to discover) the continent of Atlantis. He also christened it, after being astonished by its otherworldly qualities.
Radcliffe was a fisherman from Hastings, England. In 1452, he docked his ship, the St. George, in Le Croisic, Brittany (later France), to purchase salt. Upon entering a pub with his son Richard, he suddenly found himself involved in a conflict between Breton and Basque sailors over which year it was. When the Basques asked Radcliffe to settle the matter, Radcliffe told them that they were incorrect. The Breton group invited the Radcliffes to join them, which they accepted after ordering a round of drinks for the Basques.
The Radcliffe's learned that their host was François Kersauzon, a legendary fisherman in his own right. Kersauzon and his men hinted to Radcliffe that on their most recent trip to the Atlantic Ocean, they had found a new land, unknown to humans. As evidence, they offered the Radcliffe's a roasted bird, the likes of which they'd never tasted. Intrigued, Edward Radcliffe (against the advice of his son) agreed to give Kersauzon one-third of his catch if Kersauzon would lead Radcliffe and his crew to the new land. The bargain struck, both crews sailed for the new land.
After some days, Radcliffe sighted the Atlantean coast. His sons conceded that he'd been right to trust Kersauzon, although Radcliffe himself had been entertaining doubts. He, his sons, and master salter Hugh Fenner went ashore, meeting Kersauzon and his landing party. They wandered the island briefly admiring barrel plants and redwoods. They also saw one of the large birds the Bretons had been eating. Kersauzon explained how easily it was to simply walk up to these birds and kill them. Fenner decided to do so, and quickly fell victim to a large predatory bird, to the surprise and horror of all.
Despite this incident, Radcliffe was enchanted with Atlantis, and began considering moving his family to the continent. Turmoil was rearing its head at home, and Radcliffe saw the island as an opportunity to flee the constraints of English society. While Richard was receptive, Henry took convincing. Ultimately, conceding that a settlement would require substantial work, Edward Radcliffe convinced Henry to help found a colony in Atlantis.
After a few days trapped in Le Croisic due to inclimate weather, Radcliffe sailed the St. George back to Hastings. Having convinced his sons, Radcliffe now had to convince his wife, Nell, as well as the required craftsmen, church leaders, and government officials. Radcliffe succeeded with token resistance in most quarters. He secured the Church's blessing by inviting priest Father John to join them. The Baron of Hastings, Sir Thomas Hoo, was indifferent once he confirmed that Radcliffe was not trying to remove the whole of Hastings or cut ties once arriving in Atlantis.
The voyage through the English Channel was unpleasant for the small fleet of settlers, made worse by the cargo holds full of livestock. This voyage was made even more unpleasant by fog. Finally, the arrived, although not quite in the same place they first visited. Nonetheless, the settlers established the town of New Hastings. Radcliffe and his people thrived, become farmers and hunters as well as fishermen. When the War of the Roses began in England, the town's numbers swelled with refugees, many of whom were craftsmen who provided much needed skills to the community.
Six years after the establishment of New Hastings, a flotilla from Dover established Freetown 80 miles south of New Hastings. Shortly after, François Kersauzon established Cosquer south of Freetown. When a delegation from Freetown demanded that the two English colonies join together to expel the Bretons, Radcliffe refused, warning that he would stand with Cosquer against Freetown. However, Radcliffe issued the same warning to Kersauzon, much to the Breton's amusement.
In 1470, everything changed for New Hastings when Richard Neville, the Earl of Warwick arrived. Warwick had been a supporter of the House of York, but he had angered King Edward IV, who ordered Warwick into exile. Warwick had originally sought to land in Freetown, but decided he would make do in New Hastings.
Warwick immediately imposed a harsh rule, establishing himself as unto a king in New Hastings. Many of its citizens began to quietly seethe at this turn of events. Soldiers who patrolled alone were killed, until Warwick ordered larger patrols. He also warned Radcliffe that harsh reprisals would occur. Radcliffe and his son Henry quietly plotted. Both feared what might happen if New Hastings staged a revolt that failed, and so Edward Radcliffe pleaded for patience. He also predicted that any rising from New Hastings would be triggered by an act that was too outrageous for the people to bear.
This act came when Warwick decided to impose taxes upon New Hastings. This act went beyond the pale; even the King of England needed permission from Parliament to impose taxes. Ironically, Radcliffe was forced to argue for the rights of New Hastings as Englishmen, an argument which contradicted the very purpose of Atlantis. Warwick delighted in reminding Radcliffe of this. He also made it clear to Radcliffe that if any of New Hasting's people left, he'd hold Radcliffe responsible.
The first night the Earl's men attempted to collect taxes from Edward, they were ambushed by Richard Radcliffe. One was killed. While Richard escaped, one of the enraged soldiers hacked and then decapitated Edward Radcliffe. His death was the final straw for the people of New Hastings. Henry and Richard Radcliffe led the overthrow of the Earl of Warwick.