Friday, 6 February 2015

Art on Friday, Henry IV Plantagenet (Bolingbroke)

Henry IV Plantagenet

Richard II resigned under pressure on 29 September 1399, bringing his 22 year reign to an end. Taken to Pontefract castle, the failure of another loyalist plot reminded Henry of Lancaster how great a liability the live Richard II would be. By the end of February 1400, Richard of Bordeaux had starved to death. His passing receiving little contemporary comment or record. Henry Bolingbroke proclaimed himself king and took the throne as Henry IV.

Henry IV in pictures;

The children of Henry IV and Mary de Bohun;

(1) King Henry V 
(2) Thomas, 1st Duke of Clarence
(3) John, 1st Duke of Bedford
(4) Humphrey of Lancaster, 1st Duke of Gloucester
(5) Blanche of England
(6) Philippa of England 

Mary de Bohun died at Peterborough Castle, giving birth to her daughter, Philippa, she was around the age of 25 at her death. Mary was buried at the Church of St Mary de Castro, Leicester. After attaining the throne as Henry IV, her husband married for a second time to Joan of Navarre, the widow of John V of Britanny.

Joan of Navarre

The Entry into Bridport, Dorset, of Joan of Navarre, Second Wife of Henry IV, January 1403 - Francis Henry Newbery


Sir Henry Percy, known as Harry Hotspur, killed at the Battle of Shrewsbury


In the latter part of his reign Henry was struck by a disfiguring disease, which forced him to become a recluse. The Prince of Wales, who the king considered too eager to step into his shoes, was given control of the government along with a council.
The king's health steadily deteriorated, he contracted a form of skin disease, variously considered to be leprosy, syphilis or psoriasis.

The attacks he suffered from have been the subject of a wide range of theories which it is impossible to confirm, they range from epilepsy to a form of cardiovascular disease. Henry suffered a seizure whilst praying at St. Edward's shrine at Westminster and was carried to the to the abbot's house. The first King of the House of Lancaster died on 20th of March 1413, aged forty-six, in the Jerusalem chamber at Westminster. During his lifetime it had been predicted that Henry would die in Jerusalem. The king himself took this to mean that he would die on Crusade.

He was not buried at Westminster, the traditional mausoleum of English kings, but at Canterbury Cathedral, in the Trinity Chapel, near to the shrine of Thomas A' Becket and opposite the tomb of the Black Prince. During Henry's reign, the cult of St. Thomas Becket was extremely popular and Henry was particularly devoted to Becket. His widow, Joan of Brittany, had an altar tomb built over the spot.
Queen Joan herself was later accused of necromancy by her step-son, Henry V and was imprisoned by him in Leeds Castle. Being released by Henry on his deathbed, she lived on until 1437, when she was laid to rest in the tomb of her husband in Canterbury Cathedral.

 Tomb of King Henry IV and Joan of Navarre

© KH

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