Aquitaine ring How did the Aquitaine sundial get its name? Almost 900 years ago, in 1152, Eleanor of Aquitaine gave a sundial like this one to King Henry II of England so that Henry would know when to return from the hunt for their love trysts. Henry had a copy of the dial made for Eleanor that was inlaid with diamonds and engraved with the words Carpe Diem or "Seize the Day."
Courtly Love-Eleanor of Aquitaine is credited with the introduction of 'courtly love' to France and later England. Courtly Love was meant to be platonic, romantic 'courtship', by a man, of a Lady, (not his wife) whose social position was above his own. An unattainable Lover. This romantic play was an accepted part of Court life. Evidence of this sort of play was, sadly, used against Anne Boleyn.
The first woman to ask for divorce and lead an army, Eleanor of Aquitaine lived until she was 82 (pretty good considering most died in their 40s). She got a formal education, which was really rare for women in that era. There are rumours that she poisoned her second husband Henry II’s mistress, the Fair Rosamund. (Painting by Edmund Blair Leighton)