King Richard The lionheart – Luke PhillipsPosted: November 21, 2011
King Richard the Lionheart
Richard was born on the 8th of September 1157 in Oxford. He was the third son of King Henry II and Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine. Richard was thought to be his mother’s favourite son and in his early years Richard spent most of his time in her court in Poitiers. Richard spoke no English yet he composed poetry and wrote in French and Limousin. When he was eleven he received the Duchy of Aquitaine but was formerly stated in 1172. By the age of 16 he was commanding his own army and put down rebellions against his father in Poitou. But Queen Eleanor was constantly plotting against Henry II.
And eventually encouraged Richard and his brothers to campaign against their father in 1173, but were unsuccessful. But Richard was soon pardoned and reinstated as Duchy of Aquitaine where he proved himself by crushing a large revolt in Toulouse, 1175. Richards’s older brother Henry saw that Richard was becoming more powerful and demanded, as heir apparent that Richard should pay homage for Aquitaine. Richard passionately denied Henrys demand and civil war broke out between the two brothers. Henry II marched to Richards’s aid, but the war came to a sudden halt when the elder prince died in 1183.
Later Henry II died at Chinon castle, Anjou in France; with Richards’s older brother dead he was the rightful heir to the throne and was crowned in 1189. Prior to Richards coronation at Westminster abbey Richard ordered all the Jews and women to be absent at the banquet and coronation as to protect them from the violence of the people. At the time Jewish people were persecuted for their stands against the crusades. Although Richard commanded for there to be no Jews present, a few wealthy Jewish merchants and priest’s had snuck in and were recognised. Immediately a riot broke out and the Jews were attacked first with fists then clubs and stones.
As word spread of the riot in London the kings request got twisted and people interpreted it as the kings will on the all the Jewish subjects. And for the rest of the day mobs went through the city and burnt down Jewish homes whilst butchering their inhabitants.
As king, Richards’s greatest ambition was to join the crusade which was prompted by Saladin’s capture of Jerusalem in 1187, as he had already taken the crusaders vow. Richard started to sell Sheriffdoms and their offices in an effort to raise the funds for the third Crusade. And he departed in 1190 for the “Holy Land”.