Charles VI of France: The Mad King

Early Life Charles VI’s insanity would plunge France into chaos. Charles was born on December 3, 1368 in Paris. His father, the Valois King Charles V, was a sickly, yet competent ruler. At the time of Charles’s birth, France fought against England in the Hundred Years War. The king’s leadership gave France an advantage, but he didn’t live long enough […]

Thomas Becket: The Martyred English Saint

Early Life His defiance against the monarchy would end in tragedy. Thomas Becket was born in London in 1118. His father, Gilbert Becket, was a London merchant. Through his father, Thomas would meet the powerful Theobald, Archbishop of Canterbury. Theobald was impressed with Thomas’s work ethic and took the young man under his wing. The archbishop would serve as a […]

Henry V of England: The Warrior King

Early Life Henry V would become one of England’s greatest kings. He was born Henry of Monmouth on September 16, 1386. His father, Henry Bolingbroke, was a member of England’s royal family, the Plantagenets. As a descendant of the third son of King Edward III, Henry of Monmouth stood little chance of ever becoming king. However, young Henry’s life would […]

Charles IV of France: The Last Capetian King

Early Life Charles IV was never expected to be king. When his father, King Philip IV, died at the age of 46 on November 29, 1314, the Capetian line of succession was very secure. Philip IV had left behind three sons: Louis, Philip, and Charles. As the eldest brother, Louis succeeded his father as Louis X. No one suspected the […]