Jack Straw (rebel leader)

Jack Straw (rebel leader)

Jack Straw (probably the same person as John Rackstraw) was one of the three leaders (together with John Ball and Wat Tyler) of the Peasants' Revolt or Great Rising of 1381, a major event in the history of England.

Little is known of the three leaders. It has been suggested that Jack Straw may have been a preacher, but his name may suggest a link to thatching. Some have suggested that the name may have been a pseudonym for Wat Tyler (see references below) or other peasants' leaders.

According to information in the church of St Mary in Great Baddow, in Essex, England, Jack Straw led an ill-fated crowd from the churchyard to one of the risings.

The British politician John Whitaker Straw (born 1946) adopted the name Jack Straw, allegedly after the rebel leader.Fact|date=February 2007

Straw is mentioned in Geoffrey Chaucer's "The Canterbury Tales", in The Nun's Priest's Tale:

:Certes, he Jakke Straw and his meinee:Ne made nevere shoutes half so shrille,:Whan that they wolden any Fleming kille. [Geoffrey Chaucer, "The Canterbury Tales" (Penguin Classics, 2005), p. 618.]



*Oman, Charles, "The Great Revolt of 1381" (Oxford: Clarendon, 1969), p. 44.A footnote cites an article in the " Historical Review" for January, 1906, by F. W. Brie and states that "the Continuator of Knighton held this view,...and that two or three ballads and several fifteenth-century chroniclers...speak of Jakke Straw being killed by Walworth at Smithfield."

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