Margaret of Scotland: The Saint Queen

Margaret of Scotland was born around 1045. A member of England’s ruling dynasty, the Anglo-Saxons, Margaret’s grandfather was King Edmund II. Instead of inheriting the throne, Margaret’s father, Prince Edward, would be exiled to Hungary. While in exile, Edward married Princess Agatha and had three children: Edgar, Margaret, and Cristina. The prince’s fortunes later improved after being recalled to England […]

Afonso V of Portugal: The African King

Afonso V was born on January 15, 1432 in Sintra, Portugal. As the son of King Edward, Afonso descended from John I. In 1385, John had established the Aviz dynasty after repelling an invasion from Castile. Over the following decades, his children would play essential roles in developing Portugal into a powerful kingdom. After John’s death in August 1433, Afonso’s […]

Louis VIII of France: The Short-Lived King

Louis VIII was born on September 5, 1187 as King Philip II‘s eldest son. Upon his birth, the Capetian dynasty was secured for another generation. As a result, the king could focus his efforts on combating the English. Through inheritance and marriage, Henry II of England controlled both England and western France. Due to this, the king’s Angevin Empire overshadowed […]

Edward IV of England: The Yorkist King

Edward IV was born on April 28, 1442, to Richard, Duke of York, and Cecily Neville. Through his father, Edward descended from two of King Edward III’s sons: Lionel and Edmund. At the time of his birth, the Lancastrian King Henry VI ruled England. Henry’s grandfather, Henry IV, had overthrown his cousin, Richard II, in September 1399. In turn, his […]

The Battle of Bouvines

Sixty years before the Battle of Bouvines, Henry II of England established the Angevin Empire. Through inheritance and marriage to Eleanor of Aquitaine, the king brought England and Western France under his control in 1154. Alarmed by this development, Louis VII of France sought to undermine the empire. Although the king spent his reign attempting to, he ultimately proved unsuccessful. […]