The historical material on Henry’s reign is considerable. This play –while simplifying the political maneuverings combining ameeting of the French and English kings in 1183 with a Royal Court held at Windsor in the following year into a Christmas Court that never was –is accurately based on the available data.
The people in this play, their characters and passions, while consistent with the facts we have, are fictions. The play contains anachronisms in speech, thought, habit, custom and so on. The author is aware of the way, for instance, Christmas is celebrated, and this is not intended to outrage the historical aspects of the play.