Was Roger Mortimer, 1st Earl of March, an “anti-royalist”? Surely being anti-Edward II and his favourites wasn’t the same thing as being anti-royalist in general?
“….There she [Queen Isabella] openly took a lover, the English baron and anti-royalist Roger Mortimer (1287-1330 CE)….”
The above extract is from this site and gave me pause for thought. What, exactly, were Mortimer’s motives? Self-aggrandisement? The good of the realm? Jealousy that he wasn’t the foremost magnate in Edward II’s realm? Love for Queen Isabella? Or all of these?
One thing’s certain in my mind, he was not anti-royal. And with Edward III already fifteen, being Lord Protector was a limited prospect that would surely not be enough for a man like Roger. So what did he want ultimately, in his heart of hearts? To “ignore” Edward II’s offspring—well, sadly, accidents do happen, right?—and become king to Isabella’s queen? Or was he simply noble in his love for Isabella, and want to see her treated as she should have been all along?
Let’s be honest, we don’t even really know if they were lovers. Yes, they were close, but just how close isn’t clear. No cameras then to catch them in flagrante delicto. Just as we don’t really know if Edward II’s relationships with his favourites were physical. Yes, he treated Isabella badly, flaunting these men, starting at their wedding, but was he sexually unfaithful with them? Question marks, question marks.
Whatever Roger’s real ambition, it didn’t go well in the end! That is a known fact.