Edward II

Topics: Edward II of England, Famine, Edward I of England Pages: 3 (1146 words) Published: December 17, 2014
WHere history meets legend: Medieval English Royal Families Edward II
The Linchpin of England

Zain Mobeen

Edward II: The Linchpin of England
Between the strong reigns of his father Edward I and son Edward III, the reign of Edward II was considered by some to be disastrous for England. With military defeats and incompetence, his reign is known as being unsuccessful. His choices were problematic amongst his peers and colleagues. This was due to his playing of bias and favoritism towards Gascon knight Piers Gaveston and later English lord Hugh Despenser. The ongoing war with Scotland, which was inherited from his father, continued to be the cause of many problems and seemed to hit him at the worst moments. The Great Famine of 1315 also further devalued his reign. It seemed like Edward II couldn’t get a break during his twenty year reign.

Edward I died on July 7, 1307 in his route to a battle with Scotland. This war was a particular strongpoint of Edward I’s reign. After the death of Edward I, Edward II was chosen king of England and what some may was a questionable move, immediately created Gascon knight Piers Gaveston Earl of Cornwall and gave him the hand of his niece, Margaret of Gloucester. During this time, he also withdrew from the Scottish campaign, the very campaign his father created to keep the Scottish at bay. These series of moves started people to question but not immediately lose hope in Edward II since he was the son of Edward I, a king credited with many accomplishments during his reign including restoring royal authority after the reign of Edward II’s grandfather, Henry III, and establishing parliament as a permanent institution.

His abandonment of the Scottish Wars and his support of the unpopular Piers Gaveston caused discontent among the barons and other British government officials. In 1308 Edward travelled to Boulogne to marry Isabella, leaving Gaveston to act as substitute. It was at this moment when here that the first...

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Rubin, Miri. The Hollow Crown: A History of Britain in the Late Middle Ages. London: Penguin, 2006. Print.
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