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Saturday, 7 May 2016



                                           HUMPHREY, DUKE OF GLOUCESTER (Wiki)

Humphrey of Lancaster, 1st Duke of Gloucester, 1st Earl of Pembroke, KG (3 October 1390 – 23 February 1447) was an English nobleman. He was "son, brother and uncle of kings," being the fourth and youngest son of Henry IV and his first wife Mary de Bohun, the brother of Henry V, and the uncle of Henry VI.
Humphrey was the exemplar of the romantic chivalric persona. Mettled and courageous,[1] he was a foil for the beautiful Jacqueline of Hainaut, his wife. His learned, widely read, scholarly approach to the early renaissance cultural expansion demonstrated the quintessential well-rounded princely character. He was an exemplar for Oxford, accomplished, diplomatic, with political cunning. Unlike his brothers, he was not naturally brave, but opinionated, fervent and judgmental. He exaggerated his own achievements, but idolized his brother Henry V.
He was the youngest in a powerful quadrumvirate of brothers, who were very close companions; on 20 March 1413, Henry and Humphrey had been at their dying father's bedside.[2] ThomasJohn and Humphrey had all been knighted in 1399. They joined the Order of the Garter together in 1400.
The place of his birth is unknown, but he was named after his maternal grandfather, Humphrey de Bohun, 7th Earl of Hereford.


                                                   FROM ENGLISH MONARCHS


                              THE FALL OF HUMPHREY, DUKE OF GLOUCESTER


An English Chronicle recorded that Humphrey arrived after the opening of Parliament, was met outside the town and that before ‘he came fully into the town of Bury, there were sent unto him messengers commanding him on the king’s behalf’. He was ordered to go straight to his lodgings and not to try to see his nephew the king, who seems to have been convinced that his fifty-six year old childless uncle was actively plotting to seize the throne, a notion probably promoted by Suffolk and Cardinal Beaufort, who spied a final end for his longtime nemesis. Humphrey was arrested on 20 February by Viscount Beaumont, accompanied by the Duke of Buckingham, the Marquis of Somerset (Edmund Beaufort), the Earl of Salisbury and Lord Sudeley. Either that day or the following Humphrey suffered what was reported to be a devastating stroke. He lingered until 23 February when he finally died. His body was placed on public display before being buried at St Albans Abbey but rumours quickly sprang up that he had been murdered, perhaps poisoned. There is no evidence to support this and a natural cause is entirely possible, but the belief that Humphrey had been wronged lingered for years and his death was undoubtedly convenient to the government.


                                                   DOWNFALL AND DEATH


Astrology was practised by many to forecast what the future may hold, but it was still looked upon with very mixed feelings, and any practice of the art had to be very discreet. Humphrey had dabbled in it, but his interest was probably an innocent one, and was no more than an exercise of his scientific and quasi-scientific interests with which he amused himself with his extensive library. [page ] The avenue to attack Humphrey lay through his consort Eleanor Cobham, and this seemed much more promising.
A considerable degree of preparation and care was spent on the stage-management of the whole affair. An obscure priest, Roger Bolingbroke,  [Roger was no relation of the House of Lancaster. He was perhaps born in Bolingbroke, and in the common usage of the time, would have been known as Roger of Bolingbroke] who had some connection with Humphrey and Eleanor, was arrested together with some other equally obscure priests on the grounds that they had cast Eleanor's horoscope to forecast whether she would ever become Queen of England. Whether or not this was ever done is not clear, but if it was, it was probably no more than a silly joke of the kind that Eleanor, a cheerful and rather witless lady, was inclined to indulge to amuse herself and her friends. At all events, in July 1441, Roger found himself placed on a stage in St Paul's Churchyard, clad in a fantastic garb and surrounded with the tools of his 'craft'. In the presence of Henry Chichele, the aged Archbishop of Canterbury, the Bishops of London, Salisbury and Rochester, and the large crowd of citizens who were always drawn to any spectacle, a fire-eating sermon was preached bidding Roger to turn his back on all sorts of sorcery and other tenets:



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