The last years of Richard II's reign were dominated by a number of political crises, notably the Lords Appellant, however, a smaller but more far-reaching issue was the fall out of the squabble between Henry of Bolingbroke and Thomas Mowbray. The two men sought to resolve their differences in the form of a duel, but before it began Richard stepped in and banished Bolingbroke and exiled Mowbray. It was during Bolingbroke's banishment that his father, John of Gaunt died, and Richard proceeded to deprive Henry of the right to inherit his father's land, much angered, Henry returned to England and landed at Ravenspur in the summer of 1399.
It was on this day in 1399 that Richard was arrested at Flint Castle as you can see illustrated in Jean Froissart Chronicle a contemporary account of events during the Hundred Years War - interestingly Froissart was in attendance at Richard's baptism in Bordeaux thirty-two years earlier.
On this day in 1486 the death of William Patten, or as history knows him William of Wainfleet.
William was the eldest son of Richard Patten and Margery a wealthy Lincolnshire family from Wainfleet, he would be chancellor under Henry VI and bishop of Winchester during the entire period of the Wars of the Roses. His younger John also entered the church, working under the title of Dean of Chichester.
Wainfleet made his will on the 26th April in 1486 and was buried in the chantry chapel in Winchester Cathedral, a tomb he had had constructed.
Mary of York, the second daughter Edward IV and Elizabeth Woodville was born on this day in 1467.
There is not much known of Mary's short life she was, however, a proposed bride for one of the son's of Christian I of Denmark and Dorothea of Brandenburg, but before the marriage could take place Mary died in the May of 1482, predeceasing her father by one month short of a year.
What a happy bunch they were!
While researching the reign of Charles I, I discovered that in 1813 Sir Henry Halford, King George IV's physician was asked to examine the body of Charles I. He found the skin was discoloured, the nose was missing, and only a single eye and ear apparently remained. What a gruesome pass time!
Charles was laid to rest in a vault at St Georges Chapel at Windsor, (because permission was refused for his burial at Westminster Abbey) where the coffin of Henry VIII was interred. On entering the vault it was noted that Henry VIII's coffin had been damaged, he supposed that this may have been a result of a hasty burial, speculating that the lowering of his coffin caused it to crash into that of the Tudor king.
The 1813 sketch seen here is titled Meditations Amonget the Tombs by the brilliant satirical illustrator George Cruikshank pokes fun at the whole thing.
On this day in 1553, Edward VI was buried at Westminster Abbey. Heraldic symbols displayed were the dragon, the greyhound, the lion and the rose a symbol which would appear at every Tudor coronation and funeral.
Edward was laid to rest beneath a white marble vault in the Lady Chapel. The night before, a procession was led with “great company” of men and children, including Henry VIII’s bedesmen from the Greyfriar’s Church and Edward’s servants who wore black. Behind them came the coffin “covered by a canopy of blue velvet upon a chariot decorated with cloth of gold pulled by seven horses.”
On this day in 1100 the coronation of Henry I, the youngest son of William Conqueror, just three days after the death of his brother William Rufus.
On his accession to the throne, Henry issued, from the Norman Chapel in the Tower of London, the Charter of Liberties - the forerunner of Magna Carta. There were fourteen clauses in all and begins.
Henry, king of the English, to Bishop Samson and Urso de Abetot and all his barons and faithful, both French and English - greetings.
I, Henry, by the grace of God having been crowned the King of England, shall not take or sell any property from a Church upon the death of a bishop or abbot, until a successor has been named to that Church property. I shall end all the oppressive practices which have been an evil presence in England.
If any baron or earl of mine shall die, his heirs shall not be forced to purchase their inheritance but shall retrieve it through force of law and custom.
Any baron or earl who wishes to betroth his daughter or other women kinsfolk in marriage should consult me first, but I will not stand in the way of any prudent marriage. Any widow who wishes to remarry should consult with me, but I shall abide by the wishes of her close relatives, the other barons and earls. I will not allow her to marry one of my enemies.
So Henry started with good intentions, but did he follow them through? Well, that's a blog for another day.
Henry was England's king for thirty-five years but his reign ended in anarchy - the drowning of his son William, on board the White Ship in 1120, eventually led to the end of the mighty Norman dynasty.
On this day in 1415 the execution of Richard of Conisburgh on a charge of treason. Along with Henry Scrope and Thomas Grey he made an attempt to place Edmund Mortimer on the English throne. This rebellion would be known as the Southampton Plot.
Richard was the father of Richard, Duke of York and therefore the grandfather of Edward IV and Richard III.
On this day in 1557 the burial of Anne of Cleves at Westminster Abbey.
Mary, the daughter of Henry VIII by Catherine of Aragon was the reigning monarch is often portrayed as cold and unfeeling - you will know that history calls her Bloody Mary.
However, it was Mary who ordered that her body be buried at the Abbey and conducted according to Catholic rites as Anne had requested. Anne's tomb has carvings showing her initials with a crown, lions heads and skulls and crossed bones and the inscription on the back reads -
Anne of Cleves Queen of England Born 1515. Died 1557 this, however, is a 20th-century addition.
On this day in 1369 the death of Katherine Mortimer at the age of fifty-five.
Katherine was the daughter of Joan de Geneville and Roger Mortimer, the lover of Edward II's Queen Isabella of France.
As with many a medieval woman Katherine's life, on the whole, is viewed through the achievements of her male family members - notable she was the wife of Thomas Beauchamp who fought with Edward the Black Prince at Crecy and at Poitiers where Katherine is said to have accompanied him. An important member of Edward III's court she was the godmother to the king's granddaughter Phillippa.
Katherine and Thomas Beauchamp died within four months of each other and as you can see from the effigies on their tomb at St Mary's Church in Warwick their marriage may have been a loving one for she gave birth to fifteen children.
Following the Battle of Lincoln in 1141, King Stephen was captured and imprisoned and Henry I's daughter Matilda, made her play for the crown, but her advantage lasted only a few months, she marched on London under the title of Lady of the English and the city was ready with their support. However, she refused the people’s request to have their taxes halved and on arrival in London she found the gates shut, the civil war reignited on 24th June 1141.
After Matilda's withdrawal, London was taken over by the forces of another Matilda, Stephen's queen who stood firm with her husband. Coming back onside was the Kings brother, Henry of Blois, Bishop of Winchester who had previously supported Matilda's cause, after the events in London, however, Henry had switched sides making his way to the City of Winchester.
Angered at Henry's abandonment of her cause Matilda's forces made their way towards Hampshire, arriving at Winchester's city walls on the 31st July 1141 taking everyone by surprise.
Henry soon took to his horse and fled the city, his army too, causing much destruction as they left.
Henry of Blois defense of Winchester against Matilda is seen as one of the turning points of the civil war. She managed to flee, but her key ally Robert of Gloucester was captured.
There is little that remains of Winchester's city walls, however, there is what is left of Wolvesey Castle (seen below) then the bishop’s palace, that most certainly saw some action in the July of 1141.
History is so interesting isn't it? Do you love the story of King Alfred's unsuccessful afternoon in the kitchen or King Cnut unsuccessful attempt not to get his feet wet? Maybe you're interested in when the Normans landing on our shores or the stories of an era closer to our time?
- The Ancestors
- Bustaine of Braunton: Introduction
- Hunt of Barnstaple Introduction >
- Meavy Introduction >
- Mitchell of Crantock: An Introduction >
- Mohun of Dunster: Introduction >
- Scoboryo of St Columb Major >
Thomas Vaughan: An Introduction
- Smith of Barkby Introduction >
- Taylor Introduction >
- Tosny of Normandy >
- Toon of Leicestershire: Introduction >
- Underwood of Coleorton Introduction
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