Edward II

(1284—1327) king of England and lord of Ireland, and duke of Aquitaine

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The first English Prince of Wales (1301–07) and King of England (1307–27). The fourth (but eldest surviving) son of Edward I and Eleanor of Castile, he was notorious in his own lifetime for his inordinate affection for Piers Gaveston and for his unhappy marriage with Isabella of France, daughter of Philip IV of France. Gaveston dominated Edward by 1304 and helped alienate him from his barons; the barons, led by Edward's cousin, Thomas of Lancaster, hemmed Edward in by a set of Ordinances (1310) and had Gaveston killed in 1312. The king's prestige fell further when he was defeated by Robert I (the Bruce) at Bannockburn in 1314, and although he attempted to reassert his royal authority and annulled the Ordinances (1322), his own wife and her lover, Roger Mortimer, imprisoned him in 1326 and finally had him murdered.

Subjects: British History.

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