Was 29th March a day of retribution for a certain 14th-century lord….?

  For the past two/three years I have been grappling (off and on, so to speak) with some defiant dates. No doubt I’ve bewailed this particular problem before because my interest in the lord concerned is quite considerable. Not least because he may have had great significance for the House of York. So here goes… Continue reading Was 29th March a day of retribution for a certain 14th-century lord….?

Medieval tombs weren’t commenced at the time of death….

  According to this article about the tomb of Edward of Woodstock, the “Black Prince”, at Canterbury: “….The study also re-dates the effigy to a decade after Edward’s death, suggesting that although Richard II faithfully followed his father’s instructions, it did not happen immediately….” Perhaps it should be remembered that Richard II was only ten… Continue reading Medieval tombs weren’t commenced at the time of death….

John of Gaunt by Kathryn Warner

This is a very valuable new biography of John of Gaunt. As usual with this author, the incredibly complex network of family relationships is successfully navigated. There is a fair amount of ‘correction of the record’. For example, Duchess Blanche did not die of plague in 1369, but of unknown causes in 1368. Duchess Constanza… Continue reading John of Gaunt by Kathryn Warner

The Earliest Roots of the Wars of the Roses: Edward II and Thomas of Lancaster?

  It may seem bizarre to go back to the reign of Edward II (reigned 1307-27) when talking about the Wars of the Roses, but bear with me. Edward and his cousin, Thomas Earl of Lancaster, got on together quite well in the early years of Edward’s reign. Gradually, though, a feud between them grew… Continue reading The Earliest Roots of the Wars of the Roses: Edward II and Thomas of Lancaster?

Completing the Set (2006) – Henry VIII’s other “wives”

{as adapted from the Ricardian Bulletin: December 2006} Introduction The Ricardian article The Lancastrian claim to the throne (John Ashdown-Hill, 2003) showed Henry’s relationship to Catherine of Aragon, both descended from Blanche of Lancaster, the first wife of John of Gaunt. Genealogical conundrums (Wendy Moorhen, 2006) illustrated the descent of Anne Boleyn, her first cousin… Continue reading Completing the Set (2006) – Henry VIII’s other “wives”

The Castle of Leicester and St Mary De Castro

Leicester Castle   Since 2015 going to Leicester is the equivalent of going to visit the tomb of the last Plantagenet King who died in battle: Richard III. Everything there speaks of him from the Visitor Centre named after him, to The Last Plantagenet Pub not to mention attractions and shops that display his portrait… Continue reading The Castle of Leicester and St Mary De Castro

How and why the House of York laid claim to the throne….

Here is an article from English Historical Review, 1st June 1998, telling of how and why Richard, 3rd Duke of York, laid claim to the throne of England. The root cause was an entail to the will of Edward III, who was admittedly in his dotage at the time. The entail, which excluded a female… Continue reading How and why the House of York laid claim to the throne….

The 10 greatest medieval royal romances? Some, maybe….

Well, my opinion only, of course, but where are John of Gaunt and Katherine Swynford/de Roët? I don’t believe his first wife, Blanche, was his greatest love. That honour went to Katherine, for love of whom he went to extraordinary lengths, enduring scandal and opprobrium, but eventually making her his third duchess. And managing to… Continue reading The 10 greatest medieval royal romances? Some, maybe….

Henry VII’s iffy Beaufort claim….

There is always a howl of outrage if fingers are pointed at Katherine de Roet/Swynford and John of Gaunt, and the legitimacy of their Beaufort children is called into question. The matter is guaranteed to end up with someone’s digit jabbing toward Richard III. Why? Because in his proclamation against Henry Tudor, Richard derided the… Continue reading Henry VII’s iffy Beaufort claim….

The truth about the Beauforts and the throne of England. . . .

  John of Gaunt, third son of Edward III, was the Duke of Lancaster, and his illegitimate children, the Beauforts, were barred from the throne by his legitimate, firstborn son, Henry IV. Clearly the latter wasn’t having any baseborn relative wearing the crown. Nevertheless, we eventually ended up with a Beaufort king, who claimed to… Continue reading The truth about the Beauforts and the throne of England. . . .