Strand is a major thoroughfare in the City of Westminster, Central London. It runs just over 3⁄4 mile from Trafalgar Square eastwards to Temple Bar, where the road becomes Fleet Street inside the City of London, is part of the A4, a main road running west from inner London; the road's name comes from the Old English strond, meaning the edge of a river, as it ran alongside the north bank of the River Thames. The street was popular with the British upper classes between the 12th and 17th centuries, with many important mansions being built between the Strand and the river; these included Essex House, Arundel House, Somerset House, Savoy Palace, Durham House and Cecil House. The aristocracy moved to the West End over the 17th century, following which the Strand became well known for coffee shops and taverns; the street was a centre point for theatre and music hall during the 19th century, several venues remain on the Strand. At the east end of the street are two historic churches: St Mary le Strand and St Clement Danes.
This easternmost stretch of the Strand is home to King's College, one of the two founding colleges of the University of London. Several authors and philosophers have lived on or near the Strand, including Charles Dickens, Ralph Waldo Emerson and Virginia Woolf; the street has been commemorated in the song "Let's All Go Down the Strand", now recognised as a typical piece of Cockney music hall. The street is the main link between the two cities of London, it runs eastward from Trafalgar Square, parallel to the River Thames, to Temple Bar, the boundary between the two cities at this point. Traffic travelling eastbound follows a short crescent around Aldwych, connected at both ends to the Strand; the road marks the southern boundary of the Covent Garden district and forms part of the Northbank business improvement district. The name was first recorded in 1002 as strondway in 1185 as Stronde and in 1220 as la Stranda, it is formed from the Old English word ` strond'. It referred to the shallow bank of the once much wider Thames, before the construction of the Victoria Embankment.
The name was applied to the road itself. In the 13th century it was known as'Densemanestret' or'street of the Danes', referring to the community of Danes in the area. Two London Underground stations were once named Strand: a Piccadilly line station that operated between 1907 and 1994 and a former Northern line station which today forms part of Charing Cross station.'Strand Bridge' was the name given to Waterloo Bridge during its construction. London Bus routes 6, 23, 139 and 176 all run along the Strand. During Roman Britain, what is now the Strand was part of the route to Silchester, known as "Iter VIII" on the Antonine Itinerary, which became known by the name Akeman Street, it was part of a trading town called Lundenwic that developed around 600 AD, stretched from Trafalgar Square to Aldwych. Alfred the Great moved the settlement into the old Roman town of Londinium from around 886 AD onwards, leaving no mark of the old town, the area returned to fields. In the Middle Ages, the Strand became the principal route between the separate settlements of the City of London and the royal Palace of Westminster.
In the archaeological record, there is considerable evidence of occupation to the north of Aldwych, but much along the former foreshore has been covered by rubble from the demolition of the Tudor Somerset Place, a former royal residence, to create a large platform for the building of the first Somerset House, in the 17th century. The landmark Eleanor's Cross was built in the 13th century at the western end of the Strand at Charing Cross by Edward I commemorating his wife Eleanor of Castile, it was demolished in 1647 by the request of Parliament during the First English Civil War, but reconstructed in 1865. The west part of the Strand was in the parish of St Martin in the Fields and in the east it extended into the parishes of St Clement Danes and St Mary le Strand. Most of its length was in the Liberty of Westminster, although part of the eastern section in St Clement Danes was in the Ossulstone hundred of Middlesex; the Strand was the northern boundary of the precinct of the Savoy, where the approach to Waterloo Bridge is now.
All of these parishes and places became part of the Strand District in 1855, except St Martin in the Fields, governed separately. The Strand District Board of Works was based at No. 22, Tavistock Street. Strand District was abolished in October 1900 and became part of the Metropolitan Borough of Westminster. From the 12th century onwards, large mansions lined the Strand including several palaces and townhouses inhabited by bishops and royal courtiers on the south side, with their own river gates and landings directly on the Thames; the road was poorly maintained, with many pits and sloughs, a paving order was issued in 1532 to improve traffic. What became Essex House on the Strand was an Outer Temple of the Knights Templar in the 11th century. In 1313, ownership passed to the Knights of St John. Henry VIII gave the house to William, Baron Paget in the early 16th century. Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, rebuilt the house in 1563 calling it Leicester House, it was renamed Essex House after being inherited by Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, in 1588.
It was demolished around 1674 and Essex Street, leading up to the Strand, was built o
Alfonso XI of Castile
Alfonso XI of Castile, called the Avenger, was the king of Castile, León and Galicia. He was the son of his wife Constance of Portugal. Upon his father's death in 1312, several disputes ensued over who would hold regency, which were resolved in 1313. Once Alfonso was declared adult in 1325, he began a reign that would serve to strengthen royal power, his achievements include solving the conquest of Algeciras. Alfonso XI was the son of King Ferdinand IV of Constance of Portugal, his father died. His grandmother, María de Molina, his mother Constance, his granduncle Infante John of Castile, Lord of Valencia de Campos, son of King Alfonso X of Castile and uncle Infante Peter of Castile, Lord of Cameros, son of King Sancho IV assumed the regency. Queen Constance died first on 18 November 1313, followed by Infantes John and Peter during a military campaign against Granada in 1319, which left Dowager Queen María as the only regent until her death on 1 July 1321. After the death of the infantes John and Peter in 1319, Juan Manuel and Juan el Tuerto split the kingdom among themselves according to their aspirations for regency as it was being looted by moors and the rebellious nobility.
As soon as he took the throne, he began working hard to strengthen royal power by dividing his enemies. His early display of rulership skills included the unhesitant execution of possible opponents, including his uncle Juan el Tuerto in 1326, he managed to extend the limits of his kingdom to the Strait of Gibraltar after the important victory at the Battle of Río Salado against the Marinid Dynasty in 1340 and the conquest of the Kingdom of Algeciras in 1344. Once that conflict was resolved, he redirected all his Reconquista efforts to fighting the Moorish king of Granada, he is variously known among Castilian kings as the Avenger or the Implacable, as "He of Río Salado." The first two names he earned by the ferocity with which he repressed the disorders caused by the nobles during his long minority. Alfonso XI never went to the insane lengths of his son Peter of Castile, but he could be bloody in his methods, he killed for reasons of state without any form of trial. He neglected his wife, Maria of Portugal, indulged a scandalous passion for Eleanor of Guzman, who bore him ten children.
This set Peter an example. It may be that his early death, during the Great Plague of 1350, at the Fifth Siege of Gibraltar, only averted a desperate struggle with Peter, though it was a misfortune in that it removed a ruler of eminent capacity, who understood his subjects well enough not to go too far. Alfonso died in the night of 25–26 March 1350. Alfonso XI first had the union annulled two years later, his second marriage, in 1328, was to his double first cousin Maria of Portugal, daughter of Alfonso IV of Portugal. They had: Ferdinand. By his mistress, Eleanor of Guzman, he had ten children: Pedro Alfonso, Lord of Aguilar de Campoo Sancho Alfonso, 1st Lord of Ledesma Henry II of Castile King of Castile; the marriage was annulled and in 1366 she married Felipe de Castro. "... King Alfonso was not tall but well proportioned, he was rather strong and had fair skin and hair." Chapman, Charles Edward and Rafael Altamira, A history of Spain, The MacMillan Company, 1922. This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Hannay, D..
"Alphonso". In Chisholm, Hugh. Encyclopædia Britannica. 1. Cambridge University Press. León-Sotelo, María & González Crespo, Esther. "Notas para el itinerario de Alfonso XI en el periodo de 1344 a 1350". En la España Medieval. Vol. 8 no. 5. Complutense University of Madrid. Pp. 575–589. ISSN 0214-3038. Medieval Iberia: an encyclopedia, Ed. E. Michael Gerli and Samuel G. Armistead, Routledge, 2003
Ferdinand IV of Castile
Ferdinand IV of Castile called the Summoned, was a King of Castile and León from 1295 until his death. During his minority, his upbringing and the custody of his person were entrusted to his mother, Queen María de Molina, while his tutorship was entrusted to the Infante Henry of Castile the Senator, son of King Fernando III of Castile. At that time, for the rest of his reign, his mother tried to placate the nobility, confronted her son's enemies, prevented Ferdinand IV from being dethroned, he had to face the insubordination of the nobility, led at numerous times by his uncle, the Infante John of Castile, Lord of Valencia de Campos and by Juan Núñez II de Lara, who were supported in some occasions by Juan Manuel, Prince of Villena and grandson of the King Ferdinand III. Like his predecessors on the throne, Ferdinand IV continued the Reconquista and, although he failed to conquer Algeciras in 1309, he captured the city of Gibraltar that same year, in 1312 the city of Alcaudete was conquered.
During the Cortes of Valladolid of 1312, he promoted the reform of the administration of justice, that of all areas of administration, while attempting to strengthen the royal authority to the detriment of the nobility. He died in Jaén on 7 September 1312 aged 26, his mortal remains are now in the Royal Collegiate Church of Saint Hippolytus. Ferdinand was born in the city of Seville on 6 December 1285 as the second child and eldest son of King Sancho IV of Castile and his wife María de Molina, he was baptized at Seville Cathedral by Archbishop Raimundo de Losana and was proclaimed heir to the Crown and received the homage of the nobles of the Kingdom. King Sancho IV entrusted to Fernán Pérez Ponce de León the raising of his newborn son, since he had been First Majordomo of King Alfonso X; the prince and his tutor left for the city of Zamora. The King appointed Isidro González and Alfonso Godínez as Chancellors of the prince, while appointing Samuel de Belorado almojarife of the prince. Fernán Pérez Ponce de León and his wife, Urraca Gutiérrez de Meneses, had a significant influence on Ferdinand's character, he would show them, as a King, a profound gratitude.
In his infancy the question of his marriage was raised, being the desire of Sancho IV to choose a princess from Kingdoms of France or Portugal. In the agreement signed by Sancho IV and King Denis of Portugal in September 1291, was established the betrothal between Ferdinand and the Infanta Constance, daughter of the Portuguese sovereign. In spite of the commitment contracted with the Portuguese monarch, in 1294, Sancho IV thought about the possibility of marrying his son with Margaret or Blanche, daughters of King Philip IV of France; the death of Sancho IV a year put an end to the negotiations with the French court. King Sancho IV of Castile died in the city of Toledo on 25 April 1295, leaving his eldest son Ferdinand as heir of the throne. After the burial of the sovereign at Toledo Cathedral, his widow María de Molina retired to the Alcázar of Toledo for a mourning of nine days; the now Dowager Queen was in charge of the regency of her 9-years-old son. Because the marriage between Sancho IV and María de Molina was without validity, all their children were illegitimate, so the Dowager Queen had to face numerous problems to keep her son on the throne.
To the incessant struggles with the Castilian nobility, led by the Infante John of Castile, Lord of Valencia de Campos and by the Infante Henry of Castile the Senator, son of Ferdinand III and great-uncle of Ferdinand IV were joined the claims of the Infantes de la Cerda, who were supported by France and Aragon and by their grandmother Dowager Queen Violante of Aragon, widow of Alfonso X. To this were added the problems with Aragon and France, who tried to take advantage of the political instability that suffered the Kingdom of Castile in their own benefit. At the same time, Diego López V de Haro, Lord of Biscay, Nuño González de Lara, Juan Núñez II de Lara, among many others nobles, sowed confusion and anarchy in the kingdom. In the Cortes of Valladolid in 1295, Henry of Castile the Senator was appointed guardian of the King, but the Dowager Queen María de Molina got that the custody of her son was entrusted to her. While celebrating the Cortes of Valladolid, John of Castile, Lord of Valencia de Campos, left the city of Granada and tried to occupy the city of Badajoz, when failing in this attempt, he seized Coria and the castle of Alcántara.
He passed to the Kingdom of Portugal, where he pressed King Denis of Portugal to declare war to Castile and, at the same time, to support his claims to the Castilian throne. In the summer of 1295, when the Cortes of Valladolid were finished, the Dowager Queen and Henry of Castile met in Ciudad Rodrigo with King Denis of Portugal, to whom they delivered several localities located near the Portuguese border. In the meeting of Ciudad Rodrigo was renewed the betrothal between Ferdinand IV and Constance of Portugal, daughter of King Denis, in addition Infanta Beatrice of Castile, younger sister of Fernando IV, would marry Afonso, heir to the Portuguese throne. At the same time, Diego López V de Haro was confirmed the possession of the Lordship of Biscay, John of Castile, who recognized Ferdinand IV as his sovereign, was momentarily restored his property. Shortly after, King James II of Aragon returned the Infanta Isabella of Castile to th
Leicestershire is a landlocked county in the English Midlands. The county borders Nottinghamshire to the north, Lincolnshire to the north-east, Rutland to the east, Northamptonshire to the south-east, Warwickshire to the south-west, Staffordshire to the west, Derbyshire to the north-west; the border with most of Warwickshire is Watling Street. Leicestershire takes its name from the city of Leicester located at its centre and administered separately from the rest of the county; the ceremonial county has a total population of just over 1 million, more than half of which lives in'Greater Leicester'. Leicestershire was recorded in the Domesday Book in four wapentakes: Guthlaxton, Framland and Gartree; these became hundreds, with the division of Goscote into West Goscote and East Goscote, the addition of Sparkenhoe hundred. In 1087, the first recorded use of the name was as Laegrecastrescir. Leicestershire's external boundaries have changed little since the Domesday Survey; the Measham-Donisthorpe exclave of Derbyshire has been exchanged for the Netherseal area, the urban expansion of Market Harborough has caused Little Bowden in Northamptonshire to be annexed.
In 1974, the Local Government Act 1972 abolished the county borough status of Leicester city and the county status of neighbouring Rutland, converting both to administrative districts of Leicestershire. These actions were reversed on 1 April 1997, when Rutland and the City of Leicester became unitary authorities. Rutland became a distinct Ceremonial County once again, although it continues to be policed by Leicestershire Constabulary; the symbol of the county council, Leicestershire County Cricket Club and Leicester City FC, is the fox. Leicestershire is considered to be the birthplace of fox hunting. Hugo Meynell, who lived in Quorn, is known as the father of fox hunting. Melton Mowbray and Market Harborough have associations with fox hunting, as has neighbouring Rutland. Leicestershire and Herefordshire are the only three English counties lacking a registered flag. A design was proposed for Leicestershire in 2017 based on symbols associated with the county – a fox and a cinquefoil; the River Soar together with its tributaries and canalisations constitutes the principal river basin of the county, although the River Avon and River Welland through Harborough and along the county's southern boundaries are significant.
The Soar rises between Hinckley and Lutterworth, towards the south of the county near the Warwickshire border, flows northwards, bisecting the county along its north/south axis, through'Greater' Leicester and to the east of Loughborough where its course within the county comes to an end. It continues north marking the boundary with Nottinghamshire for some 10 kilometres before joining the River Trent at the point where Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire meet; the geographical centre of England is in Leicestershire, near Fenny Drayton in the southwest of the county. In 2013, the Ordnance Survey calculated. A large part of the north-west of the county, around Coalville, forms part of the new National Forest area extending into Derbyshire and Staffordshire; the highest point of the county is Bardon Hill at 278 metres, a Marilyn. 150–200 metres and above in nearby Charnwood Forest and to the east of the county around Launde Abbey. The lowest point, at an altitude of about 20 metres, is located at the county's northernmost tip close to Bottesford where the River Devon flowing through the Vale of Belvoir leaves Leicestershire and enters Nottinghamshire.
This results in an altitude differential of around 257.5 metres and a mean altitude of 148.75 metres. The population of Leicestershire is 609,578 people; the county covers an area of 2,084 km2. Its largest population centre is the city of Leicester, followed by the town of Loughborough. Other large towns include Ashby-de-la-Zouch, Hinckley, Market Harborough, Melton Mowbray, Oadby and Lutterworth; some of the larger of villages are:Burbage Birstall, Broughton Astley, Castle Donington, Kibworth Beauchamp, Great Glen, Ibstock and Kegworth. One of the most expanding villages is Anstey, which has seen a large number of development schemes; the United Kingdom Census 2001 showed a total resident population for Leicester of 279,921, a 0.5% decrease from the 1991 census. 62,000 were aged under 16, 199,000 were aged 16–74, 19,000 aged 75 and over. 76.9% of Leicester's population claim they have been born in the UK, according to the 2001 UK Census. Mid-year estimates for 2006 indicate that the population of the City of Leicester stood at 289,700 making Leicester the most populous city in East Midlands.
The population density is 3,814/km2 and for every 100 females, there were 92.9 males. Of those aged 16–74 in Leicester, 38.5% had no academic qualifications higher than 28.9% in all of England. 23.0% of Leicester's residents were born outside of the United Kingdom, more than double than the English average of 9.2%. Engineering has long been an important part of the economy of Leicestershire. John Taylor Bellfounders co
Elizabeth of Aragon
Elizabeth of Aragon, more known as Saint Elizabeth of Portugal, T. O. S. F. was queen consort of Portugal, a tertiary of the Franciscan Order and is venerated as a saint of the Catholic Church. Born in 1271 into the royal house of Aragon, Elizabeth was the daughter of Infante Peter and his wife Constance of Sicily and the sister of three kings: Alfonso II and James II of Aragon and Frederick III of Sicily. Elizabeth showed an early enthusiasm for her faith, she said the full Divine Office daily and did other penance, as well as attended twice-daily choral Masses. Her marriage to King Denis of Portugal was arranged in 1281 when she was 10 years old, receiving the towns of Óbidos and Porto de Mós as part of her dowry, it was only in 1288 that the wedding was celebrated, when Denis was 26 years old, while Elizabeth was 17. Denis, a poet and statesman, was known as the Rei Lavrador, because he planted a large pine forest near Leiria to prevent the soil degradation that threatened the region. Elizabeth pursued the regular religious practices of her youth and was devoted to the poor and sick.
Such a life caused ill will in some quarters. Her prayer and patience succeeded in converting her husband, leading a sinful life. Elizabeth took an active interest in Portuguese politics and was a decisive conciliator during the negotiations concerning the Treaty of Alcañices, signed by Denis and Sancho IV of Castile in 1297. In 1304, the Queen and Denis returned to Spain to arbitrate between Fernando IV of Castile and James II of Aragon, brother of Elizabeth, she had two children: a daughter named Constance, who married King Ferdinand IV of Castile. Elizabeth would serve as intermediary between her husband and Afonso, during the Civil War between 1322 and 1324; the Infante resented the king, whom he accused of favoring the king's illegitimate son, Afonso Sanches. Repulsed to Alenquer, which supported the Infante, Denis was prevented from killing his son through the intervention of the Queen; as legend holds, in 1323, mounted on a mule, positioned herself between both opposing armies on the field of Alvalade in order to prevent the combat.
Peace returned in 1324, once the illegitimate son was sent into exile, the Infante swore loyalty to the king. After Denis' death in 1325, Elizabeth retired to the monastery of the Poor Clare nuns, now known as the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Velha in Coimbra, she joined the Third Order of St. Francis, devoting the rest of her life to the poor and sick in obscurity. During the great famine in 1293, she donated flour from her cellars to the starving in Coimbra, she was known for being modest in her dress and humble in conversation, for providing lodging for pilgrims, distributing small gifts, paying the dowries of poor girls, educating the children of poor nobles. She was a benefactor of various hospitals and of religious projects (such as the Trinity Convent in Lisbon, chapels in Leiria and Óbidos, the cloister in Alcobaça, she was called to act once more as a peacemaker in 1336, when Afonso IV marched his troops against King Alfonso XI of Castile, to whom he had married his daughter Maria, who had neglected and ill-treated her.
In spite of age and weakness, the Queen-dowager insisted on hurrying to Estremoz, where the two kings' armies were drawn up. She again caused terms of peace to be arranged, but the exertion brought on her final illness. As soon as her mission was completed, she took to her bed with a fever from which she died on 4 July, in the castle of Estremoz, she earned the title of Peacemaker on account of her efficacy in solving disputes. Although Denis' tomb was located in Odivelas, Elizabeth was buried in the Convent of Santa Clara in Coimbra, in a magnificent Gothic sarcophagus. After frequent flooding by the Mondego River in the 17th century, the Poor Clares moved her mortal remains to the Monastery of Santa Clara-a-Nova, her body was transferred to the main chapel, where it was buried in a sarcophagus of silver and crystal. She was beatified in 1526 and canonized by Pope Urban VIII on 25 May 1625, her feast was inserted in the General Roman Calendar for celebration on 4 July. In the year 1694 Pope Innocent XII moved her feast to 8 July, so it would not conflict with the celebration of the Octave of Saints Peter and Paul, Apostles.
In 1955, Pope Pius XII abolished this octave. The 1962 Roman Missal changed the rank of the feast from "Double" to "Third-Class Feast"; the 1969 revision of the Calendar classified the celebration as an optional memorial and restored it to 4 July. Her feast is kept on the Franciscan Calendar of Saints. Since the establishment in 1819 of the Diocese of San Cristóbal de La Laguna, Saint Elizabeth is the co-patron of the diocese and of its cathedral pursuant to the papal bull issued by Pope Pius VII. In the United States her memorial has been transferred to 5 July since 4 July is the date of the independence of that nation, a national holiday. St. Elizabeth is depicted in royal garb with a dove or an olive branch, she was the subject of a 1947 Portuguese-Spanish film, The Holy Queen, in which she was played by Maruchi Fresno. In Portuguese popular culture, she is associated with a "miracle of the roses". Colonnade Statue at St Peter's Square
Castrojeriz or Castrogeriz is a locality and municipality located in the province of Burgos, in the autonomous community of Castilla y León, the comarca of Odra-Pisuerga, the judicial district of Burgos, head of the town council of the same name and former head of the Castrojeriz judicial district. It is a popular stop along the French Way of the Camino de Santiago or The Way of Saint James, which crosses the city longitudinally for more than 1,500 meters; the village is located along the Odra River. It was head of the Castrojeriz judicial district, one of the fourteen that formed the municipality of Burgos, in the period between 1785 and 1833. In the 1787 Floridablanca Census it fell under the jurisdiction of a lordship with its proprietor being the Marquesa de Camarasa, with an ordinary mayor, it is believed to have been the former Castrum Sigerici. The village is arranged like other villages along the Camino. On this street-route there are notable buildings. There is a castle, in ruins; the village was established by Count Muño, who defended the fort at the end of the ninth century against the Arabs.
Before that it had been a Celtiberian and Visigoth fortress. In 974, Count García Fernández of Castile granted it a charter, the Charter of Castrojeriz, considered to be the 1st granted in Castile, it is an example of Jacobean urbanism, with houses located around the street-route, the longest of all on the pilgrimage route. As an important stage in the Camino de Santiago it had several hospitals along this street. There is a cruise ship which sports a Cross of Tau instead of the Latin cross as a reminder of the Order of the Antonians who had a monastery and hospital on the outskirts of the town, where they healed and tended to the sick afflicted by St. Anthony Fire, called the holy fire, a disease now known to be caused by ingesting a fungal parasite on rye; as of 1 January 2010 the population of the municipality stood at 882 inhabitants, of which 447 are males and 435 females. Bien de Interés Cultural Category: Conjunto histórico Observation: An integral part of the Camino de Santiago delimited by decree 324/99, of the 23 December Date — Commencement: 20 December 1974 — Declaration: 20 December 1974 — BOE Declaration: 31 January 1975 Bien de Interés Cultural Date — Commencement: 22 April 1949 — Declaration: 22 April 1949 — BOE Declaration: 5 May 1949In 1359 queen Eleanor of Castile, daughter of king Ferdinand IV of Castile and wife of king Alfonso IV of Aragon, was murdered here by order of her nephew Pedro of Castile.
Bien de Interés Cultural Date — Commencement: 22 April 1949 — Declaration: 22/04/1949 — BOE Declaration: 5 May 1949 Bien de Interés Cultural Date — Commencement: 22 April 1949 — Declaration: 22/04/1949 — BOE Declaration: 5 May 1949 Bien de Interés Cultural Date — Commencement: 21 November 1980 — Declaration: 29 June 1990 — BOE Declaration: 3 July 1990The present building was erected for burial of several families of lineage. It contains the following main elements of interest: Sixteenth century cloister - Three galleries or pandas still remain, it has a Mudejar style coffered ceiling with astrological references, decorated with the coats of arms of the Gómez Sandovals, who were lords of Castrojeriz between 1426 and 1476. There are some stamped crossings of Templar origin on the capitals of the columns. A funeral chapel built by Juan Gonzalez Gallo, located in the south aisle - It is sixteenth century; the altarpiece is composed of 12 panels attributed to Ambrosius Benson. Castro-Mujica Chapel, located in the first section of the north aisle - It was built by Juan and Pedro Henestrosa.
There is the Gothic interment of Diego Mújica who died in 1527. It is depicted by the sarcophagus adorned with his coats of arms; the main altarpiece, built of golden pine in the eighteenth century Rococo style. Its construction was ordered by the Knight Commander and Preceptor General of the Order of San Antonio, Damián García Olloqui, for the San Antón Convent in the town, transferred to the Church of San Juan when the Order of San Antonio was canonically attached to the Order of Malta in 1777 and became defunct in 1791, it has a choir loft with stairs with Gothic tracery. Just outside, Castrojeriz on what was the palace and the garden of King Pedro I of Castile, are the ruins of the ancient monastery of San Antón, run by the Hospital Brothers of St. Anthony, who were dedicated to caring for the sick who came along the Camino de Santiago those with the disease called St. Anthony's fire, sacred fire, fire of sick. Only the arch that formed a tunnel, through which pilgrims came and went, is left standing.
This monastery was under royal protection, why there are royal crests on the front of the church and on the keys of the vaults. It was founded by Alfonso VII in the twelfth century, was known as the royal xenodoquio of San Antonio Abad; the present ruins are from the fourteenth century. The hospital was important, because it was the headquarters of the General Commandery of the Order of San Antonio in the various realms of the Crown of Castile and Portugal, with over twenty dependent encomiendas; the ceremonies that the Anthonian monks held to bless various objects were famous, to which many adherences came. The symbol of the Order was the tau cross. Constance of Castile, Duchess of Lancaster. Second daughter of Peter the Cruel, King of Castille, of María de Padilla, married to John of Gaunt, Duke of Lancaster and third child of king Edward III of England. Laín Calvo (Castrojeriz or Castro Xeriz, 798 -
María de Padilla
María de Padilla was the mistress of King Peter of Castile. She was a Castilian noblewoman, daughter of Juan García de Padilla and his wife María González de Henestrosa, her maternal uncle was Juan Fernández de Henestrosa, the King's favorite between 1354 and 1359 after Juan Alfonso de Alburquerque fell out of favor, the mediator in an apparent pardon for Fadrique Alfonso, King Peter's half-brother. She was the sister of Diego García de Padilla, Grand Master of the Order of Calatrava. María’s family, members of the regional nobility came from the area of Padilla de Abajo, near Castrojeriz in the province of Burgos, she is described in the chronicles of her time as beautiful and small of body. King Peter met María in the summer of 1352 during an expedition to Asturias to battle his rebellious half-brother Henry, it was her maternal uncle, Juan Fernández de Henestrosa, who introduced them, as mentioned in the chronicle of King Peter’s reign written by Pero López de Ayala. At that time, María was being raised at the house of Isabel de Meneses, wife of Juan Alfonso de Alburquerque, a powerful nobleman.
They became lovers and their relationship lasted until her death despite the King’s other marriages and affairs. The Padillas were raised to various dignities, her uncle, became Alcalde de los fidalgos. In the summer of 1353, under coercion from family and the main court favorite, Juan Alfonso de Alburquerque, Peter wed Blanche of Bourbon, the first cousin of King John II of France. Peter abandoned Blanche within three days when he learned that she had an affair with his bastard brother Fadrique Alfonso en route to Spain, that the dowry was not coming. María and Peter had three daughters: Beatrice and Isabella, a son, crown-prince of Castile. Two of their daughters were married to sons of King of England. Isabella married Edmund of Langley, 1st Duke of York, while the elder, married John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster, leading him to claim the crown of Castile on behalf of his wife. Constance's daughter, Catherine of Lancaster, married Henry III of Castile in order to reunify any claim to succession that may have passed via Constance.
María de Padilla died in July 1361 a victim of the plague, although Pero López de Ayala does not specify the cause in his chronicle of the King's reign. She was buried in the Real Monasterio de Santa Clara de Astudillo which she had founded in 1353. Shortly afterwards, her remains were taken, following the orders of King Peter, to the Cathedral of Seville where she received burial in the Royal Chapel with other members of the royal house. Gaetano Donizetti composed an opera about her relationship with King Peter. Rudolf Gottschall wrote a drama about her life. Arco y Garay, Ricardo del. Sepulcros de la Casa Real de Castilla. Madrid: Instituto Jerónimo Zurita. Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas. OCLC 11366237. Estepa Díez, Carlos. Las Behetrías Castellanas, Vol. I. Junta de Castilla y León, Consejería de Cultura y Turismo. ISBN 84-9718-117-4. Fernández-Ruiz, César. "Ensayo histórico-biográfico sobre D. Pedro de Castilla y Dª María de Padilla. El Real Monasterio y el Palacio de Astudillo: recuerdo de un gran amor".
Publicaciones de la Institución Tello Téllez de Meneses. Institución Tello Téllez de Meneses: 17–62. ISSN 0210-7317. Vaca Lorenzo, Ángel. "Documentación Medieval de la Villa de Astudillo". Publicaciones de la Institución Tello Téllez de Meneses. Institución Tello Téllez de Meneses: 29–100. ISSN 0210-7317. Valdeón Baruque, Julio. Pedro I el Cruel y Enrique de Trastámara. Santillana Ediciones Generales, S. L. ISBN 84-03-09331-4