Richard II (6 January 1367 – c. 14 February 1400), also known as Richard of Bordeaux, was King of England from 1377 until he was deposed in 1399. Richard's father, Edward, Prince of Wales, died in 1376, leaving Richard as heir apparent to his grandfather, King Edward III. Upon the death of Edward III, the 10-year-old Richard succeeded to the ...
Jan 06, 2013 · Richard II, (born January 6, 1367, Bordeaux [France]—died February 1400, Pontefract, Yorkshire [now in West Yorkshire], England), king of England from 1377 to 1399. An ambitious ruler with a lofty conception of the royal office, he was deposed by his cousin Henry Bolingbroke ( Henry IV) because of his arbitrary and factional rule.
- Family & Succession
- Peasants' Revolt
- The Merciless Parliament
- Patron of The Arts
- Ireland & France
- The Return of Bolingbroke
- Death & Successor
Edward of Woodstock, better known as the Black Prince after his distinctive armour or martial reputation, was the eldest son of Edward III of England. Made the Prince of Wales in 1343 CE and one of the greatest of all medieval knights, Edward would not, however, become king. The Black Prince died, probably of dysentery, on 8 June 1376 CE and so Parliament selected as the official heir to Edward III the prince's surviving son Richard of Bordeaux (b. 6 January 1367 CE). The young king-to-be's mother was Joan, the countess of Kent (1328-1385 CE), and he had had one brother, Edward, who had died in 1371 CE. Richard was favoured over another of Edward III's sons, John of Gaunt (1340-1399 CE), the Duke of Lancaster, largely because the latter had supported a number of officials and nobles identified by Parliament as guilty of corruption and misrule. As planned then, when Edward III died on 21 June 1377 CE, Richard became king. Richard was crowned on 16 July 1377 CE at Westminster Abbey, b...
The so-called Peasants' Revolt of June 1381 CE was the most infamous popular uprising of the Middle Ages. The trouble started when a group of yeomen from Kent and Essex, fed up with the problem caused by the Black Death plague and, above all, the never-ending taxes which, since 1377 CE, included poll taxes of three groats (one shilling) aimed at everyone irrespective of resources, marched to protest in London. The group, numbering several thousand, caused havoc on the way as they looted, pillaged, and murdered. When the mob got to London, they burnt down the Savoy palaceof the Duke of Lancaster and murdered anyone they pleased - the Chancellor, Archbishop Simon of Sudbury would be one victim, decapitated on Tower Hill. The mob's demands for change included the abolition of serfdom, a repeal of the laws limiting wage increases brought in after the Black Death, more peasant participation on local government, and the redistribution of the Church's riches (the latter being an idea champ...
Richard II may have won accolades for his success in putting down the Peasants' Revolt but any hopes that England had found itself a fine king, true and just, were soon dashed. The young monarch was wilful and hot-tempered, and he turned out to be rather too confident in his divine right to rule, making him intolerant of any views that conflicted with his own. Ignoring his barons, Parliament and commoners alike, Richard largely preferred to spend his time with favourites like Robert de Vere, Earl of Oxford and his circle of sycophants. Medieval kings were often expected to perform great deeds on the battlefield but Richard's single campaign in Scotland in 1385 CE was a damp squib with no contact being made with the enemy. In 1388 CE, one of the great medieval knights, Sir Henry 'Hotspur' Percy (1364-1403 CE) led an army against the Scots but was soundly defeated at the Battleof Otterburn. Sir Henry even suffered the ignominy of capture and being set up for ransom, which Parliament a...
Richard, who reached maturity in 1389 CE, wisely opted for a low political profile and retreated into the arts by appointing his own circle of similarly-minded friends at court. The king may have resisted the temptation to persecute those who had earlier been against him but one thing which he could not desist from was his continuing love of pomp and ceremony. Glorifying his own image, it seemed Richard was in love with himself as king and now even insisted he be addressed as 'Your Majesty' or 'Your Highness' rather than the traditional 'My lord'. Perhaps significantly, Richard was the first English king to have his portrait painted while still alive; the artist chosen for this honour may have been Andre Beauneveu of Valenciennes (1335-1400 CE). The finished painting was hung in Westminster Abbey and shows the king in full regalia. Richard's tournament device was a white hart or stag which became an emblem for his supporters to wear as a mark of identification and as part of his ser...
In 1394 CE Richard led an army to Ireland, a very rare deed for an English king, but the campaign was inconclusive. 80 Irish chiefs did pay homage to the king, and English claims to lands there were recognised. Relations improved with France on 12 March 1396 CE, though, when the king married Isabella of France, the daughter of Charles VI of France (r. 1380-1422 CE). Isabella was only seven, but it was a union which cemented a three-decade truce between the two countries. Richard had been previously married to Anne of Bohemia, the daughter of Holy Roman EmperorCharles IV (r. 1346-1378 CE) from 1382 CE, but she died in June 1394 CE, probably of plague. Neither of these marriages produced any children, something which would be exploited by Richard's enemies. The arrangement with Charles VI did not include Richard giving up his claim to the French throne (a claim which began with Edward III) and so the Hundred Years' War was, for now, merely put on pause.
In 1397 CE, perhaps feeling more secure on his throne and giving vent to the taste for vengeance so many medieval monarchs enjoyed, Richard, at last, began to plot against those who had betrayed him ten years before. The king had the Lords Appellants, including Bolingbroke, arrested and either exiled or executed; their estates becoming useful gifts for others at court or the Crown itself. Many barons now realised the king was tyrannical and that nobody was safe from his whims. In 1399 CE, Richard then made his fatal mistake. The king had a hankering to continue his unfinished business in Ireland but while there, Bolingbroke, seen by some as the legitimate heir to Edward III now that his father John of Gaunt was dead (3 February 1399 CE), returned from his exile in France. In June-July 1399 CE Bolingbroke only had a small invading army, perhaps 300 fighting men, which landed at Spurn Head in Yorkshire. Fortunately for Bolingbroke, the English barons, who included such figures as Sir...
On 30 September Parliament officially nominated Henry Bolingbroke as Richard's successor. Richard was moved to his final place of confinement, Pontefract Castle in Yorkshire, in September 1399 CE, and there he died on 14 February 1400 CE. A failed uprising by Richard's supporters only sealed the ex-king's fate; he could not be allowed to live. Richard perhaps died of starvation or he was perhaps poisoned or he was even hacked to death by a squad of assassins, such are the varying theories on the king's quick demise. Richard was just 33 years of age, and his body was put on public display in the Tower of London in case any would-be rebels thought he might still be alive and ready to launch a coup. Eventually, Richard was interred in Westminster Abbey where his effigy can still be seen. Meanwhile, Henry Bolingbroke was crowned Henry IV of England in Westminster Abbey on 13 October 1399 CE and he would reign until 1413 CE, although his time as king was beset with rebellions in both Eng...
- Mark Cartwright
Aug 05, 2017 · About Richard II of England. "Richard II (6 January 1367 – c. 14 February 1400), also known as Richard of Bordeaux, was King of England from 1377 until he was deposed on 30 September 1399. Richard, a son of Edward, the Black Prince, was born during the reign of his grandfather, Edward III.
- "Richard of Bordeaux"
- Bordeaux, Duchy of Aquitaine
- January 06, 1367
- First Crisis of 1387-88
- A Fragile Peace
- Second Crisis of 1397–99 and Richard's Deposition
- Richard as A Collector
- Association with Geoffrey Chaucer
- in Literature
- External Links
As Richard began to take over the business of government himself, he sidelined many of the established nobles, such as Thomas de Beauchamp, 12th Earl of Warwick, Richard Fitzalan, 11th Earl of Arundel, and Thomas of Woodstock, 1st Duke of Gloucester. These individuals, not surprisingly, were among those who plotted his downfall. After having exiled the current council, Richard turned to his inner circle of favourites for his council, men such as Robert de Vere, 9th Earl of Oxford and Michael de la Pole, whom he created Earl of Suffolk and made chancellor of England. This alienated Parliament because they were not consulted. Subsequently, debate ensued on whether the King had the right to appoint Ministers without Parliamentary consent. It is possible that Richard had a homosexual relationship with de Vere. The nobles he had snubbed formed the head of a group of the disaffected who called themselves the Lords Appellant. The central tenet of their appeal was continued war with Francea...
In the years which followed, Richard became more cautious in his dealings with the barons. After having recovered power in 1389, and having made his promise to the Marcolf chamber for better improvements and a better government, Richard began to improve his relationships with his subjects. In 1390, a tournament was held to celebrate Richard’s coming of age and the apparent new-found harmony since Richard's uncle John of Gaunt's return from Spain. Richard’s team of knights, The Harts, all wore the identical symbol—a white hart—which Richard had chosen. Richard himself favored genteel interests like fine food, insisting spoons be used at his court and inventing the handkerchief. He beautified Westminster Hall with a new ceiling and was a keen and cultured patron of the arts, architecture and literature. His detractors, however, dismissed him as another Edward II, somehow unworthy of his military Plantagenet heritage, given his delicate 'unkingly' tastes. Yet, he had shown personal cou...
In 1397, Richard decided to rid himself of the Lords Appellant who were confining his power, on the pretext of an aristocratic plot. Richard had the Earl of Arundel executed and Warwick exiled, while Gloucester died in captivity. Finally able to exert his autocratic authority over the kingdom, he purged all those he saw as not totally committed to him, fulfilling his own idea of becoming God’schosen prince. Richard was still childless. The heir to the throne was Roger Mortimer the Earl of March, grandson of Lionel of Antwerp, and after his death in 1398, his seven-year-old son Edmund Mortimer. However, Richard was more concerned with Gaunt's son and heir Henry Bolingbroke, whom he banished for ten years on a spurious pretext in 1399. After Gaunt's death, Richard also confiscated Bolingbroke's lands, following the policy of his forebears Henry IIand Edward I in seizing the lands of a powerful noble to centralize power in the crown. At this point Richard left for a campaign in Ireland...
Richard was a keen collector of precious objects. In 1398/1399 they were recorded on a treasure roll, and the treasure roll has survived. It is now held at the British National Archives, Kew, London (reference TNA: PRO, E 101/411/9). The roll lists 1,026 items of treasure, how much each item weighed, and how much it was worth. We learn, for example, that Richard had 11 gold crowns, 157 gold cups, and 320 precious religious objects including bells, chalices and reliquaries. Each item also has a brief description. The only object listed on the roll that certainly survives is a crown now held in the Schatzkammer der Residenz, Munich. The roll describes the crown as "…set with eleven sapphires, thirty-three balas rubies, a hundred and thirty-two pearls, thirty-three diamonds, eight of them imitation gems."
Geoffrey Chaucerserved as a diplomat and Clerk of The King's Works for Richard II. Their relationship encompassed all of Richard's reign, and was apparently fruitful. In the decade before Chaucer's death, Richard granted him several gifts and annuities, including: 20 pounds a year for life in 1394, and 252 gallons of wine per year in 1397. Chaucer died on October 25, 1400. Richard also promoted the cult of Edward the Confessor, whom he liked because he was an English saint but also because he, too, have wanted peace.
Although it would be several centuries before rule by Parliamentevolved, and other kings not least of all Charles I would assert their divine right to rule single-handedly, Richard II’s life demonstrates that already in reality power was shared, and that no king could rule without Parliament. Oddly, Richard was on the one hand sympathetic towards his subjects, who also benefited more from his peace making than did the barons. For the former, war meant higher taxation while for the latter it meant promotion and wealth from the booty and spoils of war. Perhaps one of the most important aspects of Richard’s legacy was the encouragement of English culture. The English language itself owes much to Chaucer, whose work also had political undertones. His readership was mainly aristocratic but he dealt with the lives of the poor as well as the rich, depicting both as leading vivid and real lives, contrary to the common view that peasants—roughly nine-tenths of the population—were little more...
Richard is the main character in Richard II, a play written by William Shakespearearound 1595. King Richard II is also the main antagonist in the anonymous unfinished play, often known as Thomas of Woodstock or Richard II, Part I, whose composition is dated between 1591 and 1595. King Richard is also a character in the novel The Named. King Richard is one of the main characters in The Crucible Trilogy by Sara DouglassHarvey, John Hooper. 1948. The Plantagenets, 1154-1485(Revised Edition 1959). London: Collins Clear Type Press.Saul, Nigel. 1997. Richard II. New Haven: Yale University Press. ISBN 0300070039Schama, Simon. A History of Britain 1 3000B.C.E.-AD1603 At the Edge of the World? London: BBC Worldwide Ltd, ISBN 0563487143Weir, Alison. 1995. The Wars of the Roses. New York: Ballentine. ISBN 9780345391179
All links retrieved July 28, 2019. 1. Richard II's Treasure– a site about Richard II's treasure from the Institute of Historical Research and Royal Holloway, University of London. The content was written by academics, and contains a bibliography and an image gallery.
Richard II (Reign 1377-1399) Richard II became King of England after the death of his grandfather, Edward III. Tragedy struck England when Richard's father, the Black Prince, was struck down with dysentery in 1376, predeceasing his father by one year. Since Black Prince had an heir, the crown did not pass to any of his younger brothers.
Aug 24, 2021 · Richard II had to face an immediate rebellion. Wikimedia Commons. Richard II became King of England when he was just a kid, and he inherited a country embroiled in massive change beyond anyone's control. As noted by BBC History, England had suffered huge population losses as the result of the Black Death.