Pontefract is a historic market town in West Yorkshire, near the A1 and the M62 motorway. Pontefracts motto is Post mortem patris pro filio, Latin for After the death of the father, support the son, at the end of the 11th century, the modern township of Pontefract consisted of two distinct and separate localities known as Tanshelf and Kirkby. Such a crossing point would have been important in the early days. Historians believe that, in all probability, it is this event which gives the township of Pontefract its modern name. The name Pontefract originates from the Latin for broken bridge, formed of the elements pons, Pontefract was not recorded in the 1086 Domesday Book, but it was noted as Pontefracto in 1090, four years after the Domesday survey. In 2007 a suspected extension of Ferrybridge Henge – a Neolithic henge – was discovered near Pontefract during a survey in preparation for the construction of a row of houses, once the survey was complete, the construction continued. The modern town is situated on an old Roman road, described as the Roman Ridge, the period of Yorkshires history between the demise of the Viking king Eric Bloodaxe in 954 and the arrival of the Normans in 1068 is known as the Anglo-Scandinavian age.
The modern township of Pontefract consisted of two Anglo-Scandinavian settlements, known as Tanshelf and Kirkby, in Yorkshire, place-name locations often contain the distinctive Danish -by i. e. Kirkby. And even today, the streets in Pontefract are designated by the Danish word gate e. g. Bailygate. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle makes its first reference to Tanshelf in the year 947 when King Eadred of England met with the council of Northumbria to accept its submission. King Eadred did not enjoy Northumbrias support for long, and a year the kingdom voted Eric Bloodaxe King of York, when the Doomsday Book was commissioned by William the Conqueror in 1086 Tanshelf was still a sizeable settlement for the period. The town had a priest,60 petty burgesses,16 cottagers,16 villagers and 8 smallholders, Tanshelf had a church, a fishery and three mills. Archaeologists have discovered the remains of the church on The Booths in Pontefract, off North Baileygate, the oldest grave dates from around 690. The church is likely to be at Tanshelf and may have similar to the church at Ledsham.
The area which is now the market place was the original meeting place of the Osgoldcross wapentake. In the Anglo-Saxon period a part of the township of Pontefract was known by the Anglo-Scandinavian name of Kirkby. Pontefract Castle began as a motte and bailey castle, built before 1086. The de Lacys lived in the castle for more than two centuries and were holders of the castle and the Honour of Pontefract from 1067 until the death of Alice de Lacy in 1348, King Richard II was murdered at the castle in 1400
Coronation of the British monarch
The coronation of the British monarch is a ceremony in which the monarch of the United Kingdom is formally invested with regalia and crowned at Westminster Abbey. It corresponds to the coronations that took place in other European monarchies. The coronation usually takes several months after the death of the previous monarch. This interval gives the planners enough time to complete the elaborate arrangements required, the ceremony is performed by the Archbishop of Canterbury, the most senior cleric in the Church of England, of which the monarch is supreme governor. Other clergy and members of the nobility have roles, most participants in the ceremony are required to wear uniforms or robes. Many other government officials and guests attend, including representatives of other countries, the essential elements of the coronation have remained largely unchanged for the past thousand years. The sovereign is first presented to, and acclaimed by, the people and he or she swears an oath to uphold the law and the Church.
Following that, the monarch is anointed with oil, invested with regalia. Wives of kings are anointed and crowned as queen consort, the main elements of the coronation service and the earliest form of oath can be traced to the ceremony devised by Saint Dunstan for the coronation of King Edgar in 973 AD at Bath Abbey. It drew on ceremonies used by the kings of the Franks, two versions of coronation services, known as ordines or recensions, survive from before the Norman Conquest. It is not known if the first rescension was ever used in England and it was the second recension which was used by Edgar in 973 and by subsequent Anglo-Saxon and early Norman kings. A third recension was compiled during the reign of King Henry I and was used at the coronation of King Stephen in 1135. It remained in use until the coronation of Edward II in 1308 when the fourth recension was first used, having been compiled over several preceding decades. Although influenced by its French counterpart, the new ordo focussed on the balance between the monarch and his nobles and on the oath, neither of which concerned the absolutist French kings.
One manuscript of this recension is the Liber Regalis at Westminster Abbey which has come to be regarded as the definitive version, six years later, he was succeeded by his half-sister, Mary I, who restored the Catholic rite. Scottish coronations were held at Scone Abbey, with the king seated on the Stone of Destiny. The original rituals were a fusion of ceremonies used by the kings of Dál Riata, based on the inauguration of Aidan by Columba in 574, a crown does not seem to have been used until the inauguration of Alexander II in 1214. The ceremony included the laying on of hands by a senior cleric, Alexander III was the last Scottish king to be crowned in this way in 1249, since the Stone was captured by the English forces of Edward I in 1296
Edward II of England
Edward II, called Edward of Caernarfon, was King of England from 1307 until he was deposed in January 1327. The fourth son of Edward I, Edward became the heir to the following the death of his older brother Alphonso. Beginning in 1300, Edward accompanied his father on campaigns to pacify Scotland, Edward succeeded to the throne in 1307, following his fathers death. In 1308, he married Isabella of France, the daughter of the powerful King Philip IV, Edward had a close and controversial relationship with Piers Gaveston, who had joined his household in 1300. The precise nature of Edward and Gavestons relationship is uncertain, they may have been friends, Gavestons arrogance and power as Edwards favourite provoked discontent both among the barons and the French royal family, and Edward was forced to exile him. On Gavestons return, the barons pressured the King into agreeing to wide-ranging reforms called the Ordinances of 1311, the newly empowered barons banished Gaveston, to which Edward responded by revoking the reforms and recalling his favourite.
Led by Edwards cousin, the Earl of Lancaster, a group of the barons seized and executed Gaveston in 1312, English forces were pushed back in Scotland, where Edward was decisively defeated by Robert the Bruce at the Battle of Bannockburn in 1314. Widespread famine followed, and criticism of the Kings reign mounted, in response, Edward led a short military campaign and executing Lancaster. Edward and the Despensers strengthened their grip on power, revoking the 1311 reforms, executing their enemies, unable to make progress in Scotland, Edward finally signed a truce with Robert. Opposition to the regime grew, and when Isabella was sent to France to negotiate a treaty in 1325, she turned against Edward. Isabella allied herself with the exiled Roger Mortimer, and invaded England with an army in 1326. Edwards regime collapsed and he fled into Wales, where he was captured in November, Edwards relationship with Gaveston inspired Christopher Marlowes 1592 play Edward II, along with other plays, films and media.
Many of these have focused on the sexual relationship between the two men. Debate has continued into the 21st century as to whether Edward was a lazy and incompetent king, or simply a reluctant, Edward II was the fourth son of Edward I and his first wife, Eleanor of Castile. His father was the King of England, and had inherited Gascony in south-western France, which he held as the vassal of the King of France. His mother was from the Castilian royal family, and held the County of Ponthieu in northern France, Edward I proved to be a successful military leader, leading the suppression of the baronial revolts in the 1260s, and joining the Ninth Crusade. During the 1280s he conquered North Wales, removing the native Welsh princes from power and he was considered an extremely successful ruler by his contemporaries, largely able to control the powerful earls that formed the senior ranks of the English nobility. The historian Michael Prestwich describes Edward I as a king to inspire fear and respect, despite his successes, when Edward I died in 1307 he left a range of challenges for his son to resolve
Edward I of England
Edward I, known as Edward Longshanks and the Hammer of the Scots, was King of England from 1272 to 1307. He spent much of his reign reforming royal administration and common law, through an extensive legal inquiry, Edward investigated the tenure of various feudal liberties, while the law was reformed through a series of statutes regulating criminal and property law. Increasingly, Edwards attention was drawn towards military affairs, the first son of Henry III, Edward was involved early in the political intrigues of his fathers reign, which included an outright rebellion by the English barons. In 1259, he sided with a baronial reform movement. After reconciliation with his father, however, he remained throughout the subsequent armed conflict. After the Battle of Lewes, Edward was hostage to the rebellious barons, Montfort was defeated at the Battle of Evesham in 1265, and within two years the rebellion was extinguished. With England pacified, Edward joined the Ninth Crusade to the Holy Land, the crusade accomplished little, and Edward was on his way home in 1272 when he was informed that his father had died.
Making a slow return, he reached England in 1274 and was crowned at Westminster on 19 August, after suppressing a minor rebellion in Wales in 1276–77, Edward responded to a second rebellion in 1282–83 with a full-scale war of conquest. After a successful campaign, Edward subjected Wales to English rule, built a series of castles and towns in the countryside, his efforts were directed towards Scotland. Initially invited to arbitrate a dispute, Edward claimed feudal suzerainty over the kingdom. In the war followed, the Scots persevered, even though the English seemed victorious at several points. At the same there were problems at home. In the mid-1290s, extensive military campaigns required high levels of taxation and these crises were initially averted, but issues remained unsettled. When the King died in 1307, he left to his son, Edward II, Edward I was a tall man for his era, hence the nickname Longshanks. He was temperamental, and this, along with his height, made him an intimidating man, nevertheless, he held the respect of his subjects for the way he embodied the medieval ideal of kingship, as a soldier, an administrator and a man of faith.
The Edict remained in effect for the rest of the Middle Ages, Edward was born at the Palace of Westminster on the night of 17–18 June 1239, to King Henry III and Eleanor of Provence. Among his childhood friends was his cousin Henry of Almain, son of King Henrys brother Richard of Cornwall, Henry of Almain would remain a close companion of the prince, both through the civil war that followed, and during the crusade. Edward was in the care of Hugh Giffard – father of the future Chancellor Godfrey Giffard – until Bartholomew Pecche took over at Giffards death in 1246, there were concerns about Edwards health as a child, and he fell ill in 1246,1247, and 1251
The Despenser War was a baronial revolt against Edward II of England led by the Marcher Lords Roger Mortimer and Humphrey de Bohun. The rebellion was fuelled by opposition to Hugh Despenser the Younger, Edwards response to victory was his increasingly harsh rule until his fall from power in 1326. The initial success of the reflected the power of the Marcher Lords. The death of the last Earl of Gloucester meant the redistribution of his vast estates and lordships in Ireland, the important Lordship of Glamorgan passed to the late earls brother-in-law, the younger Despenser, married to his eldest sister Eleanor. Roger Mortimer, his uncle, Roger Mortimer de Chirk, and Humphrey de Bohun, the younger Despenser, through his marriage with Eleanor, received many expensive gifts, and much property and land grants in the Marches. The passage of Glamorgan to Despenser in its entirety angered his brothers-in-law, Roger dAmory and Hugh de Audley, hostility deepened among the Marcher Lords when Despenser titled himself Lord of Glamorgan and Earl of Gloucester.
In February 1321 Mortimer and Lancaster agreed on an attack on the Despenser lands in Wales, Edward responded in March by mobilising his forces in Wales, demonstrating that he intended to make any attack on the Despensers an attack on the crown, and therefore treasonable. The king travelled to Gloucester and called upon the Marcher Lords to join him there, mobilising more forces, Edward marched on to Bristol, and repeated his call for the Marcher Lords to convene with him there in May. Mortimer and Hereford promptly began their attack on the Despenser lands, newport and Caerphilly were seized by Mortimer in an intense eight-day campaign. Mortimer and Hereford set about pillaging Glamorgan and Gloucestershire, before marching north to join Lancaster at Pontefract, the barons swore an alliance at Sherburn-in-Elmet in June, naming their faction the contrariants and promising to remove the Despensers for good. Edward had returned to London, where he held his own parliament to discuss courses of action, Mortimer led his army east towards London as well, reaching St Albans in late July.
The city of London refused to let Mortimers forces in, the Earl of Pembroke, a moderate baron with strong French links, intervened in an attempt to defuse the crisis. Edward continued to refuse to negotiate or exile the Despensers, so Pembroke arranged for Queen Isabella to publicly go down on her knees to appeal to Edward to exile the Despensers. This provided him with an excuse to exile the Despensers and defuse the crisis. Historians believe that the pilgrimage was an act by Isabella on Edwards behalf to create a casus belli. Lord Badlesmere was away at the time, having left his wife Margaret in charge of the castle, when the latter adamantly refused the Queen admittance, fighting broke out outside the castle between Isabellas guards and the garrison. Before long, chroniclers record that Edward had an army of 30,000 men besieging Leeds castle, the castle surrendered at the end of October and Edward took a vicious revenge on the constable and his men. Edwards position was now stronger than in August and he set about revoking the banishment order on the Despensers
Earl of Derby
Earl of Derby is a title in the Peerage of England. The title was first adopted by Robert de Ferrers, 1st Earl of Derby under a creation of 1139 and it continued with the Ferrers family until the 6th Earl forfeited his property toward the end of the reign of Henry III and died in 1279. Most of the Ferrers property and, by a creation in 1337, the title merged in the Crown upon Henry IVs accession to the throne. It was created again for the Stanley family in 1485, Lord Derbys subsidiary titles are Baron Stanley of Bickerstaffe in the County Palatine of Lancaster, and Baron Stanley of Preston, in the County Palatine of Lancaster. The courtesy title of the heir apparent is Lord Stanley and they were at times one of the richest landowning families in England. The family seat is Knowsley Hall, near Liverpool, Ferrières in Normandy, the hometown of the de Ferrers family, was an important centre for iron and takes it name from the iron ore mines used during the Gallo-Roman period. Lord of Longueville, and a Domesday Commissioner, he built Tutbury Castle, the Ferrers, lords of the barony of Ferrières in Normandy, were accompanied to England by three other families who were their underlords in France, the Curzons, the Baskervilles and the Levetts.
Robert de Ferrers, 2nd Earl of Ferrières was created Earl of Derby by King Stephen in 1138 for his valiant conduct at the Battle of Northallerton and he was married to Hawise de Vitre and died in 1139. His son Robert de Ferrers, 2nd Earl of Derby became the earl and was married to Margaret Peverel. He founded Darley Abbey and Merevale Abbey and his son William de Ferrers, 3rd Earl of Derby was married to Sybil de Braose. He rebelled against King Henry II and was imprisoned at Caen and he died in the Crusades at the Siege of Acre. He was succeeded by his son William de Ferrers, 4th Earl of Derby who married Agnes de Kevelioc, daughter of Hugh de Kevelioc, through one line the descent of the Earls of Derby eventually gave rise to the Earls Ferrers. Laurence Shirley, 4th Earl Ferrers, was the only peer of the realm to be hanged for murder, another familial line takes in the Baron Ferrers of Chartley descent. The large estates which were taken from Robert in 1266 were given by Henry III to his son, Edmund Crouchback, John of Gaunt’s son and successor was Henry Bolingbroke, who acceded to the throne as Henry IV in 1399.
The title Earl of Derby merged into the Crown, the Stanley family was descended from Ligulf of Aldithley, who was the ancestor of the Audleys. One of his descendants married an heiress whose marriage portion included Stoneley, Sir Thomas Stanley served as Lord Lieutenant of Ireland and represented Lancashire in the House of Commons. In 1456 he was summoned to the House of Lords as Lord Stanley and his eldest son Thomas Stanley, 2nd Baron Stanley, married Lady Margaret Beaufort, the mother of King Henry VII, and Eleanor Nevill. The title of Earl of Derby was conferred on him in 1485 by his stepson Henry VII after the Battle of Bosworth Field where Thomas decided not to support King Richard III
A favourite or favorite was the intimate companion of a ruler or other important person. In medieval and Early Modern Europe, among other times and places, from 1600 to 1660 there were particular successions of all-powerful minister-favourites in much of Europe, especially in Spain, England and Sweden. The term is sometimes employed by writers who want to avoid terms such as royal mistress, or friend. Too close a relationship between monarch and favourite was seen as a breach of the order and hierarchy of society. Since many favourites had flamboyant over-reaching personalities, they led the way to their own downfall with their rash behaviour. As the opinions of the gentry and bourgeoisie grew in importance, dislike from all classes could be especially intense in the case of favourites who were elevated from humble, or at least minor, backgrounds by royal favour. Titles and estates were usually given lavishly to favourites, who were compared to mushrooms because they sprang up suddenly overnight, the Kings favourite Piers Gaveston is a night-grown mushrump to his enemies in Christopher Marlowes Edward II.
Their falls could be even more sudden, but after about 1650, favourites who came from the higher nobility, such as Leicester, Lerma and Oxenstierna, were often less resented and lasted longer. Oxenstierna and William Cecil, who died in office, successfully trained their sons to succeed them. Elizabeth I had Cecil as Secretary of State and Lord High Treasurer from the time she ascended the throne in 1558 until his death 40 years later. She had more colourful relationships with several courtiers, the most lasting and intimate one was with Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester, who was a leading politician. Only in her last decade was the position of the Cecils and son, challenged by Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, Cardinal Wolsey was one figure who rose through the administrative hierarchy, but lived extremely ostentatiously, before falling suddenly from power. Cardinal Granvelle, like his father, was a trusted Habsburg minister who lived grandly and it has been claimed that le Daims career was the origin of the term, as favori first appeared around the time of his death in 1484.
Privado in Spanish was older, but was partly replaced by the term valido, in Spanish. Queen Victorias John Brown came much too late, the devotion of the monarch, in England, the scope for giving political power to a favourite was reduced by the growing importance of Parliament. Strafford can therefore hardly be called a favourite in the usual sense even though his relationship with Charles became very close and he was from a well-established family, with powerful relations. After several years in power, Strafford was impeached by a Parliament now very hostile to him, there were minister-favourites in England, but they knew that the favour of the monarch alone was not sufficient to rule, and most had careers in Parliament. In France, the movement was in the opposite direction, the absolute monarchy pioneered by Cardinal Richelieu, Mazarins predecessor, was to be led by the monarch himself
Edward III of England
Edward III transformed the Kingdom of England into one of the most formidable military powers in Europe. Edward was crowned at age fourteen after his father was deposed by his mother, Isabella of France, at age seventeen he led a successful coup against Mortimer, the de facto ruler of the country, and began his personal reign. After a successful campaign in Scotland he declared himself heir to the French throne in 1337. This started what would become known as the Hundred Years War, following some initial setbacks the war went exceptionally well for England, victories at Crécy and Poitiers led to the highly favourable Treaty of Brétigny. Edwards years, were marked by international failure and domestic strife, largely as a result of his inactivity, Edward III was a temperamental man but capable of unusual clemency. He was in ways a conventional king whose main interest was warfare. Admired in his own time and for centuries after, Edward was denounced as an adventurer by Whig historians such as William Stubbs.
This view has been challenged recently and modern historians credit him with some significant achievements, Edward was born at Windsor Castle on 13 November 1312, and was often referred to as Edward of Windsor in his early years. The reign of his father, Edward II, was a problematic period of English history. One source of contention was the inactivity, and repeated failure. Another controversial issue was the kings patronage of a small group of royal favourites. The birth of an heir in 1312 temporarily improved Edward IIs position in relation to the baronial opposition. To bolster further the independent prestige of the prince, the king had him created Earl of Chester at only twelve days of age. In 1325, Edward II was faced with a demand from his brother-in-law, Charles IV of France, Edward was reluctant to leave the country, as discontent was once again brewing domestically, particularly over his relationship with the favourite Hugh Despenser the Younger. Instead, he had his son Edward created Duke of Aquitaine in his place, the young Edward was accompanied by his mother Isabella, who was the sister of King Charles, and was meant to negotiate a peace treaty with the French.
While in France, Isabella conspired with the exiled Roger Mortimer to have Edward deposed, to build up diplomatic and military support for the venture, Isabella had Prince Edward engaged to the twelve-year-old Philippa of Hainault. An invasion of England was launched and Edward IIs forces deserted him completely, the king was forced to relinquish the throne to his son on 25 January 1327. The new king was crowned as Edward III on 1 February 1327 and it was not long before the new reign met with other problems caused by the central position at court of Roger Mortimer, who was now the de facto ruler of England
Battle of Falkirk
The Battle of Falkirk, which took place on 22 July 1298, was one of the major battles in the First War of Scottish Independence. Led by King Edward I of England, the English army defeated the Scots, shortly after the battle Wallace resigned as Guardian of Scotland. King Edward learned of the defeat of his army at the Battle of Stirling Bridge. As a preliminary step he moved the centre of government to York, a council-of-war was held in the city in April to finalise the details of the invasion. The Scottish magnates were all summoned to attend, and when none appeared they were all declared to be traitors, Edward ordered his army to assemble at Roxburgh on 25 June. Edwards own supply fleet was delayed by bad weather, and when the army reached central Scotland it was tired and hungry. The Welsh infantry in particular were badly demoralised, while the army was encamped at Temple Liston, near Edinburgh, they erupted in a drunken riot that was broken up by the English cavalry, who killed 80 Welshmen.
Edward faced the prospect of the kind of retreat that became a regular feature of his sons campaigns in the succeeding reign. Edward was delighted, As God lives and they need not pursue me, for I will meet them this day. The Scots army, again made up chiefly of spearmen as at Stirling, was arranged in four great armoured hedgehogs known as schiltrons, the long spears pointed outwards at various heights gave these formations a formidable and impenetrable appearance. The gaps between the schiltrons were filled with archers and to the rear there was a troop of men-at-arms, provided by the Comyns. On Tuesday 22 July, the English cavalry, divided into four battalions, the left was commanded by the Earls of Norfolk and Lincoln. The right was under the command of Antony Bek, Bishop of Durham, while the King commanded the centre, in a disorganised pell-mell the cavalry finally closed on the Scots, on the right and left. The party of men-at-arms under John Comyn left the field immediately, the Scots bowmen commanded by Sir John Stewart of Bonkill, the younger brother of the High Steward of Scotland, stood their ground and were quickly destroyed.
But the schiltrons held firm, with the knights making little impression on the dense forest of long spears, King Edward arrived in time to witness the discomfiture of his cavalry and quickly restored discipline. The knights were ordered to withdraw and Edward prepared to employ the tactics that the Earl of Warwick had used to defeat the Welsh spearmen at the Battle of Maes Moydog in 1295. The Scottish cavalry charged the English cavalry, but seeing the vast numbers that were formed against them they fled the field, Edwards longbowmen were brought into place and quickly overcame the inexperienced force of badly armed Scottish archers. The schiltrons were a target, they had no defence
The privileges associated with nobility may constitute substantial advantages over or relative to non-nobles, or may be largely honorary, and vary from country to country and era to era. There is often a variety of ranks within the noble class. g, san Marino and the Vatican City in Europe. Hereditary titles often distinguish nobles from non-nobles, although in many nations most of the nobility have been un-titled, some countries have had non-hereditary nobility, such as the Empire of Brazil. The term derives from Latin nobilitas, the noun of the adjective nobilis. In modern usage, nobility is applied to the highest social class in pre-modern societies and it rapidly came to be seen as a hereditary caste, sometimes associated with a right to bear a hereditary title and, for example in pre-revolutionary France, enjoying fiscal and other privileges. Nobility is a historical and often legal notion, differing from high socio-economic status in that the latter is based on income. Being wealthy or influential cannot, ipso facto, make one noble, various republics, including former Iron Curtain countries, Greece and Austria have expressly abolished the conferral and use of titles of nobility for their citizens.
Not all of the benefits of nobility derived from noble status per se, usually privileges were granted or recognised by the monarch in association with possession of a specific title, office or estate. Most nobles wealth derived from one or more estates, large or small and it included infrastructure such as castle and mill to which local peasants were allowed some access, although often at a price. Nobles were expected to live nobly, that is, from the proceeds of these possessions, work involving manual labour or subordination to those of lower rank was either forbidden or frowned upon socially. In some countries, the lord could impose restrictions on such a commoners movements. Nobles exclusively enjoyed the privilege of hunting, in France, nobles were exempt from paying the taille, the major direct tax. In some parts of Europe the right of war long remained the privilege of every noble. During the early Renaissance, duelling established the status of a respectable gentleman, Nobility came to be associated with social rather than legal privilege, expressed in a general expectation of deference from those of lower rank.
By the 21st century even that deference had become increasingly minimised, in France, a seigneurie might include one or more manors surrounded by land and villages subject to a nobles prerogatives and disposition. Seigneuries could be bought, sold or mortgaged, if erected by the crown into, e. g. a barony or countship, it became legally entailed for a specific family, which could use it as their title. Yet most French nobles were untitled, in other parts of Europe, sovereign rulers arrogated to themselves the exclusive prerogative to act as fons honorum within their realms. Nobility might be inherited or conferred by a fons honorum
Henry II of England
Henry was the son of Geoffrey of Anjou and Matilda, daughter of Henry I of England. He became actively involved by the age of 14 in his mothers efforts to claim the throne of England, occupied by Stephen of Blois and he inherited Anjou in 1151 and shortly afterwards married Eleanor of Aquitaine, whose marriage to Louis VII of France had recently been annulled. Stephen agreed to a treaty after Henrys military expedition to England in 1153. Henry was an energetic and sometimes ruthless ruler, driven by a desire to restore the lands and privileges of his royal grandfather, Henrys desire to reform the relationship with the Church led to conflict with his former friend Thomas Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury. This controversy lasted for much of the 1160s and resulted in Beckets murder in 1170, Henry soon came into conflict with Louis VII and the two rulers fought what has been termed a cold war over several decades. By 1172, he controlled England, large parts of Wales, the half of Ireland and the western half of France.
Henry and Eleanor had eight children, as they grew up, tensions over the future inheritance of the empire began to emerge, encouraged by Louis and his son King Philip II. In 1173 Henrys heir apparent, Young Henry, rebelled in protest, he was joined by his brothers Richard and Geoffrey and by their mother, Scotland and Boulogne allied themselves with the rebels. The Great Revolt was only defeated by Henrys vigorous military action and talented local commanders, many of them new men appointed for their loyalty, Young Henry and Geoffrey revolted again in 1183, resulting in Young Henrys death. The Norman invasion of Ireland provided lands for his youngest son John, Philip successfully played on Richards fears that Henry would make John king, and a final rebellion broke out in 1189. Decisively defeated by Philip and Richard and suffering from an ulcer, Henry retreated to Chinon in Anjou. Henrys empire quickly collapsed during the reign of his youngest son John, many of the changes Henry introduced during his long rule, had long-term consequences.
Historical interpretations of Henrys reign have changed considerably over time, in the 18th century, scholars argued that Henry was a driving force in the creation of a genuinely English monarchy and, ultimately, a unified Britain. Late-20th-century historians have combined British and French historical accounts of Henry, Henry was born in France at Le Mans on 5 March 1133 as the eldest child of the Empress Matilda and her second husband, Geoffrey the Fair, Count of Anjou. In theory, the county answered to the French king, but royal power over Anjou weakened during the 11th century, Henrys mother, firstly married to the Holy Roman Emperor Henry V, was the eldest daughter of Henry I, King of England and Duke of Normandy. She was born into a ruling class of Normans, who traditionally owned extensive estates in both England and Normandy. Geoffrey took advantage of the confusion to attack the Duchy of Normandy but played no role in the English conflict, leaving this to Matilda and her half-brother.
The war, termed the Anarchy by Victorian historians, dragged on, Henry probably spent some of his earliest years in his mothers household, and accompanied Matilda to Normandy in the late 1130s
Henry III of England
Henry III, known as Henry of Winchester, was King of England, Lord of Ireland and Duke of Aquitaine from 1216 until his death. The son of King John and Isabella of Angoulême, Henry assumed the throne when he was nine in the middle of the First Barons War. Cardinal Guala declared the war against the barons to be a religious crusade and Henrys forces, led by William Marshal, defeated the rebels at the battles of Lincoln. Henry promised to abide by the Great Charter of 1225, which limited royal power and his early rule was dominated first by Hubert de Burgh and Peter des Roches, who re-established royal authority after the war. In 1230 the King attempted to reconquer the provinces of France that had belonged to his father. A revolt led by William Marshals son, broke out in 1232, following the revolt, Henry ruled England personally, rather than governing through senior ministers. He travelled less than previous monarchs, investing heavily in a handful of his palaces and castles. He married Eleanor of Provence, with whom he had five children, in a fresh attempt to reclaim his familys lands in France, he invaded Poitou in 1242, leading to the disastrous Battle of Taillebourg.
After this, Henry relied on diplomacy, cultivating an alliance with Holy Roman Emperor Frederick II. Henry supported his brother Richard in his bid to become King of the Romans in 1256 and he planned to go on crusade to the Levant, but was prevented from doing so by rebellions in Gascony. The baronial regime collapsed but Henry was unable to reform a stable government, in 1263 one of the more radical barons, Simon de Montfort, seized power, resulting in the Second Barons War. Henry persuaded Louis to support his cause and mobilised an army, the Battle of Lewes occurred in 1264, where Henry was defeated and taken prisoner. Henrys eldest son, escaped captivity to defeat de Montfort at the Battle of Evesham the following year. Henry initially enacted a harsh revenge on the rebels, but was persuaded by the Church to mollify his policies through the Dictum of Kenilworth. Reconstruction was slow and Henry had to acquiesce to various measures, including suppression of the Jews, to maintain baronial.
Henry died in 1272, leaving Edward as his successor and he was buried in Westminster Abbey, which he had rebuilt in the second half of his reign, and was moved to his current tomb in 1290. Some miracles were declared after his death but he was not canonised, Henry was born in Winchester Castle on 1 October 1207. He was the eldest son of King John and Isabella of Angoulême, little is known of Henrys early life