“We are Lancastrians. We beg for nothing.”

The House of Lancaster was the name of two cadet branches of the royal House of Plantagenet. The first house was created when Henry III of England created the Earldom of Lancaster—from which the house was named—for his second son Edmund Crouchback in 1267. The second house of Lancaster was descended from John of Gaunt, who married the heiress of the first house.

in this gifset: earls + dukes + kings + the Beauforts (illegitimate line)

Henry III of England (1 October 1207 - 16 November 1272) 

“A 13th century English king who came to the throne at an early age and whose reign was marked by strife with barons, led by Simon de Montfort.

Henry was born on 1 October 1207 in Winchester, the son of John. Henry was nine when his father died and he became king. The country was ruled by a series of regencies until 1234, when Henry took over. Problems began as early as 1237, when his barons objected to the influence of Henry’s Savoyard relatives. The marriage arranged in 1238 between Henry’s sister and English nobleman Simon de Montfort only made relationship between Henry and his leading nobles worse. In 1242, Henry’s half brothers involved him in a disastrously expensive military venture in France. This prompted parliament to demand new blood on the council to act as ‘conservators of liberties’ and oversee royal finances. But the king was able to exploit the differences between his opponents and little happened.

Finally, in 1258 a bungled deal with the Papacy threatened Henry with excommunication. This, together with defeats in Wales and local crises, brought about the main crisis of his reign. The Provisions of Oxford (1258) created a 15-member privy council, selected by the barons, to advise the king and oversee the entire administration. Parliament was to be held three times a year and the households of the king and queen were also to be reformed.

The settlement began to break down in 1260 with quarrels between the Earl of Gloucester and the ambitious Simon de Montfort. Civil war was inevitable. In May 1264, Simon de Montfort won a resounding victory at Lewes and set up a new government. In May 1265, Henry’s eldest son Prince Edward escaped captivity and rallied the royalist forces, defeating and killing de Montfort at Evesham before taking control of government from his weakened father.

The rest of the reign was occupied by resolving the problems created by the rebellion. Henry deprived de Montfort’s supporters of their lands, but the 'disinherited’ fought back until terms were agreed in 1266 for former rebels to buy back their lands. By 1270, the country was sufficiently settled for Edward to set off on crusade. Henry died on 16 November 1272. He was buried in Westminster Abbey, which he had largely rebuilt in the gothic style during his reign.”

Source: BBC

Magna Carta Originals Reunited for 800th Anniversary

Magna Carta Originals Reunited for 800th Anniversary

The four surviving original Magna Carta copies go on display together for the first time from Monday as Britain kicks off 800th anniversary celebrations for a contract with global significance.

Considered the cornerstone of liberty, modern democracy, justice and the rule of law, the 1215 English charter forms the basis for legal systems around the world, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

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Great Scot!

The past few days have been spent touring around Scotland and getting myself out of the depressing rut. Money is not unlimited unfortunately and my traveling comes with a very strict budget. I went first to Inverness which is far north of Scotland. A rather pretty town, but there is not much to do apart from the drink and walking around.

However, the bus trip from Edinburgh to Inverness is spectacular. The Highlands are incredibly beautiful, serene and yet rugged in the same breath. The roads seem to flow with the landscape rather than against it. The next day I went to Stirling, which is where I am currently. The town is rather pretty as well, and it is where William Wallace is from and his monument is. I am currently sitting in the hostel with Iron Man in the background and a man who always wears a kilt. Today we talk about one of the other Provençal sisters. In alphabetical order, we are on to Eleanor of England.

Eleanor of Provence, Queen of England (1223-1291)

Eleanor was the second daughter of Beatrice of Savoy and Raymond Berenguer of Provence. When she was growing up, she was very close to her sister, Marguerite of Provence. She was considered very pretty by contemporary standards and was a leader of fashion. She was regarded as fairly learned, and skilled at poetry and writing.

She married Henry III of England at the age of about 12, and intially was greeted fairly well by the kingdom. However, due to her nepotism and favour towards her Savoyard family she grew to be very unpopular, especially amongst Londoners. One incident had the Londoners attack her barge on Thames as she was traveling. In return, Eleanor punished the Londoners by levying higher taxes. Another time she was pelted with stones, mud and rotten food and was rescued by the Mayor of London. While an apparently very loving father and brother, Henry III was seen as a very weak ruler. Often, he appeased his unruly relatives rather than punishing them as their due. His French half-brothers de Lusignans were a constant thorn in the side of the English crown as they were constantly grasping and begging for privileges but had no talent for politics.

Henry had also angered his subjects by sending back gifts that his citizens had sent at the birth of his son, Edward I. Due to this and his favouritism of foreigners, he became unpopular. Once he was challenged for his crown by his brother-in-law, Simon de Montfort and Eleanor stoutly defended her crown and her husbands rights. While Eleanor’s nepotism was seen as something of a weakness, her uncles were men of considerable intellect and talent, her uncle Tomasso became the Archbishop of Canterbury (the highest church position in England). However, Tomasso proved to be very beneficial as he got Henry III and his son to come to a peace.

When Henry III died in 1272, Eleanor remained in England and took care of her grandchildren. Eventually she retired to a convent, and died in 1291.She was survived by her two sons, her two daughters both dying in 1275.


There are so many games that we all know where I’ve only recently thought to wonder about their origins. We all know Simon Says, a game that’s presumably supposed to teach kids to listen carefully. I checked the Internet to see if it said anything about the game’s origins, and this page says that it was originally called Cicero dicit fac hoc, or “Cicero says do this.” It was named in honor of…

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Concerning the Sister Queens Margaret and Eleanor of Provence...

I have some questions about them. I’ve been reading parts of “The Sister Queens” by Sophie Perinot and “Four Sisters, All Queens” by Sherry Jones and I’m quite confused about the historical accuracy/plausibility/realism.

First, did Margaret really have a passionate affair outside her marriage with one of her husband’s friends? Because in both books, it seems she really did carry on an affair with this guy named Jean who is her husband’s close friend, I think. Also, what exactly was her relationship with her husband Louis like? Was it as frosty and cold as portrayed in both books?

Aside from that, does anyone have a pretty sympathetic but also balanced idea of Henry and Eleanor’s relationship? I know in general it was happy, strong, and loving, and the two were loyal, devoted, and supportive of each other but it was far from perfect and surely had some tension, friction, and drama, right?

Eleanor, the Count’s Daughter | Henry III

In January 1236, the young daughter of the Count of Provence landed with her escort at Dover in England. From there she travelled to Canterbury, where she married Henry III, then moved to Westminster to be crowned queen. Her coronation took place on January 20th (Howell, pp.15-16) with all the splendour such an occasion required; England had waited a long time for a queen, and she had finally arrived. The future looked promising for this girl of around twelve, but where had she come from, this new Queen Eleanor? What was her story so far?

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englishrose1980 asked:

Hello, in your opinion who was worse, Henry VIII or Richard III?

    A worse person, or worse for England?

    If it’s worse for England, I have to vote for Henry. He started his reign with a peaceful, prosperous nation, and was one of the richest monarchs in Europe because of his father’s careful fiscal management. When Henry died, the country was broke and in shambles. Even the massive influx of wealth from the plundered monasteries wasn’t enough to staunch the gaping would Henry’s profligate spending had created. It took decades to dig England out of the mess. 

    Richard, in his two year reign, was a relatively decent king, as monarchs of that era go. He took his job seriously (Henry resented having to do anything that cut into his playtime) and enacted some significant legal reforms. It’s hard to evaluate Richard as a ruler because he had so little time on the throne and most of it was consumed with rebellion, but it appears he intended to be a diligent king.

    If the question is which man was a worse person, I’m leaning toward Henry again. Richard is accused of murdering his brother and the princes in the Tower, but no definite proof of those acts has emerged. Assuming he did, the body count on Henry’s side is larger. Henry murdered dozens of people, though he did it through the flimsy process of the law: Anne Boleyn, Katheryn Howard, Thomas More, Bishop Fisher, Margaret Pole … not to mention the five innocent men who died with Anne, Jane Parker, Anne Askew, the Nun of Kent … The list goes on and on. And I’m not even including the hundreds more persecuted as heretics or traitors for refusing to acknowledge Henry as head of the church. 

     Henry had a sociopathic disregard for anyone who stood in his way. He seemed to lack the capacity for normal emotional bonds. Henry Norris, who was his friend of over twenty years, died because Henry needed “guilty men” to kill with his wife. Margaret Pole, whom Henry once said he loved like his own granddame (grandmother), died because Henry was pissy about not being able to avenge himself on her son. Thomas More, whom the king had once esteemed as a personal friend, but died on the scaffold when Henry retrofitted the treason laws to say any man who wouldn’t swear his oath was guilty. And let’s not even get started on the abuse of his daughter.

    And Anne Boleyn… There’s not much more cold-blooded of an act than to condemn your wife to a certain death, order her executioner before the trial even begins, and then spend the two weeks until it’s over partying like a frat boy with her replacement.

On This Day In History
25 June 1291
Eleanor of Provence died
Eleanor died on 24/25 June 1291 in Amesbury, eight miles north of Salisbury, England. She was buried on 11 September 1291 in the Abbey of St Mary & St Melor, Amesbury on 9 December. The exact site of her grave at the abbey is unknown making her the only English queen without a marked grave. Her heart was taken to London where it was buried at the Franciscan priory.
👑 Eleanor was born, c. 1223, in  Aix-en-Provence, she was Queen consort of England, as the spouse of King Henry III of England, from 1236 until his death in 1272.
👑 She was completely devoted to her husband, & staunchly defended him against the rebel Simon de Montfort, 6th Earl of Leicester.
👑 Eleanor was married to King Henry III of England on 14 January 1236. She had never seen him prior to the wedding at Canterbury Cathedral & had never set foot in his kingdom.
👑 She was dressed in a shimmering golden gown which was tightly-fitted to the waist, & then flared out in wide pleats to her feet. The sleeves were long & lined with ermine. After riding to London the same day where a procession of citizens greeted the bridal pair, Eleanor was crowned queen consort of England in a ceremony at Westminster Abbey which was followed by a magnificent banquet with the entire nobility in full attendance. 
👑 Eleanor was the mother of five children including the future King Edward I of England.
👑 Eleanor was renowned for her learning, cleverness, & skill at writing poetry, as well as her beauty; she was also known as a leader of fashion, continually importing clothes from France. She often wore parti-coloured cottes (a type of tunic), gold or silver girdles into which a dagger was casually thrust, she favoured red silk damask, & decorations of gilt quatrefoil, & to cover her dark hair she wore jaunty pillbox caps. Eleanor introduced a new type of wimple to England, which was high, “into which the head receded until the face seemed like a flower in an enveloping spathe”.