Cultural depictions of William II of England

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William II of England is indirectly the subject of two historical novels by George Shipway, The Paladin and The Wolf Time. The main character of the novels is Walter Tirel (or Tyrell), his supposed assassin, and the main thrust of the plot of the novels is that the assassination was engineered by Henry I.

The death of William Rufus is portrayed in Edward Rutherfurd's 2000 fictionalised history of the New Forest, The Forest. In Rutherfurd's version of events, the king's death takes place nowhere near the Rufus Stone, and Walter Tyrrell is framed for it by the powerful Clare family. Also, Purkiss is a clever story teller who manages (much later) to convince Charles II that one of his ancestors had been involved.

William Rufus is a major character in Valerie Anand's 1989 historical novel, King of the Wood (1989). He is also a major character in Parke Godwin's Robin and the King (1993), the second volume in Godwin's reinterpretation of the Robin Hood legend. William Rufus and his relationship with Tyrell is mentioned and the manner of his death is included in Lammas Night by Katherine Kurtz. He is a character in Stephen R. Lawhead's King Raven Trilogy about Robin Hood.

On television, William was portrayed by Peter Firth in the 1990 play Blood Royal: William the Conqueror.

Singer Frank Turner told the story of the death of William II in the song "English Curse" from his 2011 album "England Keep My Bones".