Hundred Years War

Richard II of England
Coronation of Richard II aged ten in 1377, from the Recueil des croniques of Jean de Wavrin. British Library, London. ©Image Attribution forthcoming. Image belongs to the respective owner(s).
1377 Jun 22

Richard II of England

Westminster Abbey, London, UK

The Black Prince died in 1376; in April 1377, Edward III sent his Lord Chancellor, Adam Houghton, to negotiate with Charles, who returned home when Edward himself died June 21. He was succeeded by his ten year old grandson, Richard II, succeeded to the throne of England.

It was usual to appoint a regent in the case of a child monarch but no regent was appointed for Richard II, who nominally exercised the power of kingship from the date of his accession in 1377. Between 1377 and 1380, actual power was in the hands of a series of councils. The political community preferred this to a regency led by the king's uncle, John of Gaunt, although Gaunt remained highly influential.

Richard faced many challenges during his reign, including the Peasants' Revolt led by Wat Tyler in 1381 and an Anglo-Scottish war in 1384–1385. His attempts to raise taxes to pay for his Scottish adventure and for the protection of Calais against the French made him increasingly unpopular.

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