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Articles

  1. Henry VIII at St James's Palace
  2. Henry VII of England - Wikipedia
  3. Henry VI of England
  4. Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights, and the hold of time.

But when Henry appointed him archbishop of Canterbury in , Becket began to take the side of the Church against the king, and the two quarrelled.

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Responding to an outburst of frustration by the king against Becket, four knights murdered Becket in Canterbury Cathedral. Within a few years of his death, Becket was canonised and Canterbury became a site of pilgrimage. In , Strongbow and his followers took Wexford, Waterford and Dublin. Henry decided to visit Ireland himself to assert his overlordship. Nearly all the kings of Ireland came to submit to him. Four years after Thomas Becket's murder, Canterbury Cathedral was ravaged by fire and the eastern end had to be rebuilt.

The first master of works was a Frenchman, William of Sens, who planned a structure in the new Gothic style. After an accident on site, Sens was replaced by William the Englishman, who added the Trinity Chapel for the shrine housing Becket's relics. It was a turning point in English cathedral architecture and provided the basis for the greatest shrine in medieval Britain.

Henry VIII at St James's Palace

Lord Rhys ap Gruffyd held a winter court at which contests were held between top entertainers of the period. The winner of the 'eisteddfod', or 'session', was to be seated in the bardic chair. Bards, poets, harpists and other music makers engaged in contests in pursuit of the seat of honour. Henry II and his wife Eleanor had five sons, who squabbled among themselves and with their parents about who would inherit which part of Henry's kingdom. When Henry died it was Richard later nicknamed 'Lionheart' for his bravery in battle the oldest surviving son, who became king of England.

The crusades and the state of his French territories preoccupied Richard, such that he spent less than a year of his year reign in England. Shortly after his accession, Richard left England to join the Third Crusade. He raised taxes, sold assets and emptied the treasury to raise funds for his army.

He took Cyprus and the town of Acre, but was stopped short of his ultimate goal of Jerusalem after Philip Augustus of France withdrew from the crusade. A massive ransom was paid, securing his release in early The fifth son of Henry II, John, stayed in England during Richard's crusading absences, where he schemed against his brother. Despite this, Richard forgave him and named John as his successor.

In , a group of scholars migrated from the established centre of learning at Oxford to Cambridge, where they set up a new university. Social tensions and riots between townspeople and scholars were probably the key motivation for the move.

The death of Hubert Walter, Archbishop of Canterbury, in July initiated a dispute between the king and the monks of Canterbury over who should name his successor. The pope intervened and overruled John, sparking a series of tit-for-tat exchanges that resulted in John's excommunication in He later declared his kingdom a papal fief and was readmitted to the favour of the papacy.

Philip's victory was complete and allowed him to seize Normandy, Anjou and Brittany, among other possessions. John was forced to return to England to face the nobles whose lands he had lost. He also suffered the indignity of nicknames like 'lack land' and 'soft sword'. A rebellion by northern barons led to a meeting between John and their leaders at Runnymede on the River Thames. At the meeting, the Magna Carta or 'Great Charter' was signed. More significantly, it represents the first time that defined limitations to royal rights were established in written law.

The Magna Carta of did not prevent fighting between rebel barons and John. Initially the French force was very successful, but when John suddenly died in October and his nine-year-old son was hastily crowned Henry III, the barons reconsidered. The French withdrew in Henry came to the throne aged nine.

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Henry VII of England - Wikipedia

At the time, a French force had invaded with the intention of unseating his father, John. With John dead, the rebellious barons who had encouraged French aid, saw the young king as the safer option. Many rejoined the royal cause and eventually the French were defeated at Lincoln in They withdrew with a large financial payment. The Dominican order of friars had arrived in England in Just over five years later they began their ministry in Scotland. They later became associated with Scottish university towns.

Henry VI of England

It has remained unaltered ever since, with the exception of the disputed town of Berwick. Berwick alternated between English and Scottish control before its final capture by the English in The first abbey at Westminster was built by Edward the Confessor in the s in the Romanesque style. Henry III ordered the rebuilding of the abbey in a Gothic style, with a central shrine to honour Edward the Confessor.


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Henry was himself very religious, and focusing on a saintly predecessor sanctified his own kingship. Henry was eventually buried in Westminster Abbey. Henry III had made himself unpopular with the barons, who objected to the cost of his military campaigns and the influence of his foreign relatives and favourites. In , de Montfort was one of a group of barons who imposed the Provisions of Oxford on the king.

These created a council, selected by the barons, to advise Henry. In , Henry obtained a papal dispensation to extricate himself from the Provisions. Normandy, Anjou, Maine, Touraine and Poitou were given up in return for keeping control the Channel Islands and Gascony in the south west. Now in control of England, de Montfort summoned an assembly, including two knights from each county and two elected representatives of each borough - a precursor to parliament.

Later in , de Montfort was killed at the Battle of Evesham by the forces of Prince Edward, and royal authority was restored. Llywelyn ap Gruffydd, a prince of Gwynedd, had defeated his brothers Owain and Dafydd in the s and completed the expansion begun by his grandfather, Llywelyn the Great. Since defeating and killing Simon de Montfort at the Battle of Evesham in , Edward had been a powerful influence on his father.

In , he left to fight in the crusades, but on hearing of his father's death he immediately returned to England. He was crowned in August The church owned a great deal of land, and the statute prevented it from acquiring more. Immortal institutions with their 'dead hand', or 'mortmain', did not pass on their estates and thus could not be taxed by the government.


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Relations between the Welsh and the English crown had deteriorated. In , Llywelyn and his brother Dafydd rebelled against Edward, who defeated and killed them both. Edward built a network of castles in Wales to emphasise his power and authority. In , he made his eldest son, also Edward, prince of Wales, a title the eldest son of the English monarch continues to take to this day. The bulk of the Jewish community in England had arrived from France in the 11th century and acted as bankers to the ruling and business classes.

Magna Carta, the Bill of Rights, and the hold of time.

In an atmosphere of growing anti-semitism, Edward I turned against the Jews. In , he prohibited Jewish traders from lending on interest, depriving them of their primary means of earning a living. In , he imprisoned and ransomed 3, Jewish people. The ransom was paid, but in an edict was issued expelling all Jews from England. This parliament, summoned by Edward I, has been compared to that of Simon de Montfort 30 years earlier. It included a broader range of members than was usual, extending beyond senior clergy and aristocracy to lower clergy, knights of the shire and representatives of towns.

Its main aim, for Edward, was to raise money for his wars against France, Scotland and Wales. In , a disputed succession to the Scottish throne allowed Edward I to force the Scots to accept his sovereignty as 'lord paramount' of Scotland. To prevent this, Elizabeth was quarantined, and her beloved governess thrown in jail. Worse was to come.