Longshanks – Edward I

Edward was the son of Henry III and became King of England following his father’s death in 1272.

He was tall, over 6ft tall that earned him the nickname Edward Longshanks, and handsome and was known for his devious nature and bravery. He married Eleanor of Castille (another Eleanor) in 1254 and before her death in 1290 she have provided Edward with 16 children which 7 survived. Edward was truly in love with Eleanor and his children something that is covered on day X of my A to Z Challenge.

edward-i A
In 1277 he mounted a campaign into Wales, this a campaign that saw a Welsh rebellion that lasted to 1283. Eventually to satisfy the Welsh, they would only accept terms if the appointed Prince of Wales was someone who did not speak English. Edwards agreed to the Welsh terms to keep them happy, but Edward was smart and devious and appointed his infant son who spoke no English being only a few months old.

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Problems arose in Scotland in 1290 when he appointed John Balliol to the Scottish throne. There was widespread opposition from the Scottish believing that Balliol was just a pawn for the English. A number of Scots rebelled led by William Wallace against the English. Edwards’s military skill and bravery led to Wallace and the rebellion being crushed and an example of Wallace was made where he was hung drawn and quartered.

In 1294 a war with France over Gascony broke out and already under financial pressures from the military campaigns in Scotland meant Edward needed to claim funds from parliament where there was strong opposition. Eventually a settlement was agreed with Phillip IV of France in 1299 with the marriage to his sister Margaret in 1299 who bore Edward three further children.

Edward I Tomb at Westminster Abbey
Edward I Tomb at Westminster Abbey

Edward died in 1307 on his way to Scotland. Buried at Westminster Abbey with the words inscribed ‘Here lies Edward I the hammer of the Scots.

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