Richard I of England
Overview
Richard I was King of England
Kingdom of England
The Kingdom of England was, from 927 to 1707, a sovereign state to the northwest of continental Europe. At its height, the Kingdom of England spanned the southern two-thirds of the island of Great Britain and several smaller outlying islands; what today comprises the legal jurisdiction of England...

 from 6 July 1189 until his death. He also ruled as Duke of Normandy
Duke of Normandy
The Duke of Normandy is the title of the reigning monarch of the British Crown Dependancies of the Bailiwick of Guernsey and the Bailiwick of Jersey. The title traces its roots to the Duchy of Normandy . Whether the reigning sovereign is a male or female, they are always titled as the "Duke of...

, Duke of Aquitaine
Duke of Aquitaine
The Duke of Aquitaine ruled the historical region of Aquitaine under the supremacy of Frankish, English and later French kings....

, Duke of Gascony
Duke of Gascony
The Duchy of Vasconia , later known as Gascony, was a Merovingian creation: a frontier duchy on the Garonne, in the border with the rebel Basque tribes...

, Lord of Cyprus
Cyprus
Cyprus , officially the Republic of Cyprus , is a Eurasian island country, member of the European Union, in the Eastern Mediterranean, east of Greece, south of Turkey, west of Syria and north of Egypt. It is the third largest island in the Mediterranean Sea.The earliest known human activity on the...

, Count of Anjou, Count of Maine, Count of Nantes, and Overlord of Brittany
Brittany
Brittany is a cultural and administrative region in the north-west of France. Previously a kingdom and then a duchy, Brittany was united to the Kingdom of France in 1532 as a province. Brittany has also been referred to as Less, Lesser or Little Britain...

 at various times during the same period. He was known as , or Richard the Lionheart, even before his accession, because of his reputation as a great military leader and warrior. The Saracen
Saracen
Saracen was a term used by the ancient Romans to refer to a people who lived in desert areas in and around the Roman province of Arabia, and who were distinguished from Arabs. In Europe during the Middle Ages the term was expanded to include Arabs, and then all who professed the religion of Islam...

s called him Melek-Ric or Malek al-Inkitar - King of England.

By the age of sixteen Richard was commanding his own army, putting down rebellions in Poitou
Poitou
Poitou was a province of west-central France whose capital city was Poitiers.The region of Poitou was called Thifalia in the sixth century....

 against his father, King Henry II
Henry II of England
Henry II ruled as King of England , Count of Anjou, Count of Maine, Duke of Normandy, Duke of Aquitaine, Duke of Gascony, Count of Nantes, Lord of Ireland and, at various times, controlled parts of Wales, Scotland and western France. Henry, the great-grandson of William the Conqueror, was the...

.
Timeline

1189    Philip II of France and Richard I of England begin to assemble troops to wage the Third Crusade.

1189    Richard I "the Lionheart" is crowned King of England.

1189    Richard I of England (a.k.a. Richard "the Lionheart") is crowned at Westminster.

1191    Richard I of England marries Berengaria of Navarre who is crowned Queen consort of England the same day.

1194    King Richard I of England gives Portsmouth its first Royal Charter.

Encyclopedia
Richard I was King of England
Kingdom of England
The Kingdom of England was, from 927 to 1707, a sovereign state to the northwest of continental Europe. At its height, the Kingdom of England spanned the southern two-thirds of the island of Great Britain and several smaller outlying islands; what today comprises the legal jurisdiction of England...

 from 6 July 1189 until his death. He also ruled as Duke of Normandy
Duke of Normandy
The Duke of Normandy is the title of the reigning monarch of the British Crown Dependancies of the Bailiwick of Guernsey and the Bailiwick of Jersey. The title traces its roots to the Duchy of Normandy . Whether the reigning sovereign is a male or female, they are always titled as the "Duke of...

, Duke of Aquitaine
Duke of Aquitaine
The Duke of Aquitaine ruled the historical region of Aquitaine under the supremacy of Frankish, English and later French kings....

, Duke of Gascony
Duke of Gascony
The Duchy of Vasconia , later known as Gascony, was a Merovingian creation: a frontier duchy on the Garonne, in the border with the rebel Basque tribes...

, Lord of Cyprus
Cyprus
Cyprus , officially the Republic of Cyprus , is a Eurasian island country, member of the European Union, in the Eastern Mediterranean, east of Greece, south of Turkey, west of Syria and north of Egypt. It is the third largest island in the Mediterranean Sea.The earliest known human activity on the...

, Count of Anjou, Count of Maine, Count of Nantes, and Overlord of Brittany
Brittany
Brittany is a cultural and administrative region in the north-west of France. Previously a kingdom and then a duchy, Brittany was united to the Kingdom of France in 1532 as a province. Brittany has also been referred to as Less, Lesser or Little Britain...

 at various times during the same period. He was known as , or Richard the Lionheart, even before his accession, because of his reputation as a great military leader and warrior. The Saracen
Saracen
Saracen was a term used by the ancient Romans to refer to a people who lived in desert areas in and around the Roman province of Arabia, and who were distinguished from Arabs. In Europe during the Middle Ages the term was expanded to include Arabs, and then all who professed the religion of Islam...

s called him Melek-Ric or Malek al-Inkitar - King of England.

By the age of sixteen Richard was commanding his own army, putting down rebellions in Poitou
Poitou
Poitou was a province of west-central France whose capital city was Poitiers.The region of Poitou was called Thifalia in the sixth century....

 against his father, King Henry II
Henry II of England
Henry II ruled as King of England , Count of Anjou, Count of Maine, Duke of Normandy, Duke of Aquitaine, Duke of Gascony, Count of Nantes, Lord of Ireland and, at various times, controlled parts of Wales, Scotland and western France. Henry, the great-grandson of William the Conqueror, was the...

. Richard was a central Christian
Christianity
Christianity is a monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus as presented in canonical gospels and other New Testament writings...

 commander during the Third Crusade
Third Crusade
The Third Crusade , also known as the Kings' Crusade, was an attempt by European leaders to reconquer the Holy Land from Saladin...

, effectively leading the campaign after the departure of Philip Augustus and scoring considerable victories against his Muslim counterpart, Saladin
Saladin
Ṣalāḥ ad-Dīn Yūsuf ibn Ayyūb , better known in the Western world as Saladin, was an Arabized Kurdish Muslim, who became the first Sultan of Egypt and Syria, and founded the Ayyubid dynasty. He led Muslim and Arab opposition to the Franks and other European Crusaders in the Levant...

, but was unable to reconquer Jerusalem.

Although speaking only langue d'oïl and langue d'oc and spending very little time in England
Kingdom of England
The Kingdom of England was, from 927 to 1707, a sovereign state to the northwest of continental Europe. At its height, the Kingdom of England spanned the southern two-thirds of the island of Great Britain and several smaller outlying islands; what today comprises the legal jurisdiction of England...

 (he lived in his Duchy of Aquitaine in the southwest of France, preferring to use his kingdom as a source of revenue to support his armies), he was seen as a pious hero by his subjects. He remains one of the very few Kings of England remembered by his epithet
Epithet
An epithet or byname is a descriptive term accompanying or occurring in place of a name and having entered common usage. It has various shades of meaning when applied to seemingly real or fictitious people, divinities, objects, and binomial nomenclature. It is also a descriptive title...

, rather than regnal number, and is an enduring, icon
Icon
An icon is a religious work of art, most commonly a painting, from Eastern Christianity and in certain Eastern Catholic churches...

ic figure in England and France.

Family and youth

Richard was born on 8 September 1157, probably at Beaumont Palace
Beaumont Palace
Beaumont Palace built outside the north gate of Oxford was intended by Henry I about 1130 to serve as a royal palace conveniently close to the royal hunting-lodge at Woodstock . Its former presence is recorded in Beaumont Street, Oxford...

. He was a younger brother of William IX, Count of Poitiers; Henry the Young King
Henry the Young King
Henry, known as the Young King was the second of five sons of King Henry II of England and Eleanor of Aquitaine but the first to survive infancy. He was officially King of England; Duke of Normandy, Count of Anjou and Maine.-Early life:Little is known of the young prince Henry before the events...

; and Matilda, Duchess of Saxony. As the third legitimate son of King Henry II of England
Henry II of England
Henry II ruled as King of England , Count of Anjou, Count of Maine, Duke of Normandy, Duke of Aquitaine, Duke of Gascony, Count of Nantes, Lord of Ireland and, at various times, controlled parts of Wales, Scotland and western France. Henry, the great-grandson of William the Conqueror, was the...

, he was not expected to ascend the throne. He was also an elder brother of Geoffrey II, Duke of Brittany
Geoffrey II, Duke of Brittany
Geoffrey II, Duke of Brittany and Earl of Richmond was Duke of Brittany between 1181 and 1186, through his marriage with the heiress Constance. Geoffrey was the fourth son of King Henry II of England and Eleanor, Duchess of Aquitaine.-Family:He was a younger maternal half-brother of Marie de...

; Leonora of England
Leonora of England
Eleanor of England was Queen of Castile and Toledo as wife of Alfonso VIII of Castile. She was a daughter of Henry II of England and his wife, Duchess Eleanor of Aquitaine.-Early life:...

, Queen of Castile; Joan of England
Joan of England, Queen of Sicily
Joan of England was the seventh child of Henry II of England and his queen consort, Eleanor of Aquitaine.Joan was a younger maternal half-sister of Marie de Champagne and Alix of France...

; and John, Count of Mortain
John of England
John , also known as John Lackland , was King of England from 6 April 1199 until his death...

, who succeeded him as king. Richard was the younger maternal half-brother of Marie de Champagne
Marie de Champagne
Marie of France , Countess of Champagne was the elder daughter of Louis VII of France and his first wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine.- Family :Marie's younger sister was Alix of France....

 and Alix of France
Alix of France
Alix of France was the second daughter born to King Louis VII of France and Duchess Eleanor of Aquitaine.- Childhood :...

. Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine
Eleanor of Aquitaine
Eleanor of Aquitaine was one of the wealthiest and most powerful women in Western Europe during the High Middle Ages. As well as being Duchess of Aquitaine in her own right, she was queen consort of France and of England...

's oldest son, William IX, Count of Poitiers, died in 1156, before Richard's birth. Richard is often depicted as having been the favourite son of his mother Eleanor of Aquitaine
Eleanor of Aquitaine
Eleanor of Aquitaine was one of the wealthiest and most powerful women in Western Europe during the High Middle Ages. As well as being Duchess of Aquitaine in her own right, she was queen consort of France and of England...

. His father, Henry, was Norman-Angevin and great-grandson of William the Conqueror. The closest English relation in Richard's family tree was Edith, wife of Henry I of England
Henry I of England
Henry I was the fourth son of William I of England. He succeeded his elder brother William II as King of England in 1100 and defeated his eldest brother, Robert Curthose, to become Duke of Normandy in 1106...

. Contemporary historian Ralph of Diceto traced his family's lineage through Edith to the Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon
Anglo-Saxon may refer to:* Anglo-Saxons, a group that invaded Britain** Old English, their language** Anglo-Saxon England, their history, one of various ships* White Anglo-Saxon Protestant, an ethnicity* Anglo-Saxon economy, modern macroeconomic term...

 kings of England and Alfred the Great
Alfred the Great
Alfred the Great was King of Wessex from 871 to 899.Alfred is noted for his defence of the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of southern England against the Vikings, becoming the only English monarch still to be accorded the epithet "the Great". Alfred was the first King of the West Saxons to style himself...

, and from there linked them to Noah
Noah
Noah was, according to the Hebrew Bible, the tenth and last of the antediluvian Patriarchs. The biblical story of Noah is contained in chapters 6–9 of the book of Genesis, where he saves his family and representatives of all animals from the flood by constructing an ark...

 and Woden
Woden
Woden or Wodan is a major deity of Anglo-Saxon and Continental Germanic polytheism. Together with his Norse counterpart Odin, Woden represents a development of the Proto-Germanic god *Wōdanaz....

. According to Angevin legend, there was even infernal blood in the family.

While his father visited his lands from Scotland to France, Richard probably stayed in England. He was wet-nursed by a woman called Hodierna, and when he became king he gave her a generous pension. Little is known about Richard's education. Although born in Oxford, Richard could speak no English; he was an educated man who composed poetry and wrote in Limousin (lenga d'òc) and also in French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

. He was said to be very attractive; his hair was between red and blond, and he was light-eyed with a pale complexion. He was apparently of above average height, according to Clifford Brewer he was 6 in 5 in (1.96 m) but his remains have been lost since at least the French Revolution
French Revolution
The French Revolution , sometimes distinguished as the 'Great French Revolution' , was a period of radical social and political upheaval in France and Europe. The absolute monarchy that had ruled France for centuries collapsed in three years...

, and his exact height is unknown. From an early age he showed significant political and military ability, becoming noted for his chivalry
Chivalry
Chivalry is a term related to the medieval institution of knighthood which has an aristocratic military origin of individual training and service to others. Chivalry was also the term used to refer to a group of mounted men-at-arms as well as to martial valour...

 and courage as he fought to control the rebellious nobles of his own territory. His elder brother Henry
Henry the Young King
Henry, known as the Young King was the second of five sons of King Henry II of England and Eleanor of Aquitaine but the first to survive infancy. He was officially King of England; Duke of Normandy, Count of Anjou and Maine.-Early life:Little is known of the young prince Henry before the events...

 was crowned king of England during his father's lifetime.

The practice of marriage alliances
Sham marriage
A sham marriage or fake marriage is a marriage of convenience entered into with the intent of deceiving public officials or society about its purpose. Arranging or entering into such a marriage to deceive public officials is itself a separate violation of the law of some countries...

 was common among medieval royalty: it allowed families to stake claims of succession on each other's lands, and led to political alliances and peace treaties. In March 1159 it was arranged that Richard would marry one of the daughters of Ramon Berenguer IV, Count of Barcelona
Ramon Berenguer IV, Count of Barcelona
Ramon Berenguer IV , sometimes called the Holy, was the Count of Barcelona who effected the union between the Kingdom of Aragon and the Principality of Catalonia into the Crown of Aragon....

; however, these arrangements failed, and the marriage never took place. Richard's older brother Henry was married to Margaret, daughter of Louis VII of France
Louis VII of France
Louis VII was King of France, the son and successor of Louis VI . He ruled from 1137 until his death. He was a member of the House of Capet. His reign was dominated by feudal struggles , and saw the beginning of the long rivalry between France and England...

 and heiress to the French throne, on 2 November 1160. Despite this alliance between the Plantagenets and the Capetian
Capetian
Capetian is an adjective, used to describe either:* The House of Capet, also called the Direct Capetians – the ruling family of France between 987 and 1328* The Capetian dynasty, a term applied to all direct descendants of Hugh Capet...

s, the dynasty on the French throne, the two houses were sometimes in conflict. In 1168, the intercession of Pope Alexander III
Pope Alexander III
Pope Alexander III , born Rolando of Siena, was Pope from 1159 to 1181. He is noted in history for laying the foundation stone for the Notre Dame de Paris.-Church career:...

 was necessary to secure a truce between them. Henry II had conquered Brittany and taken control of Gisors
Gisors
Gisors is a commune in the metropolitan area of Paris, France. It is located northwest from the center of Paris.Gisors, together with the neighbouring communes of Trie-Château and Trie-la-Ville, form an urban area of 12,669 inhabitants...

 and the Vexin
Vexin
The Vexin is a historical county of northwestern France. It covers a verdant plateau on the right bank of the Seine comprising an area east-to-west between Pontoise and Romilly-sur-Andelle , and north-to-south between Auneuil and the Seine near Vernon...

, which had been part of Margaret’s dowry. Early in the 1160s there had been suggestions Richard should marry Alys
Alys, Countess of the Vexin
Alys, Countess of the Vexin was the daughter of King Louis VII of France and his second wife Constance of Castile.- Life :...

 (Alice), second daughter of Louis VII; because of the rivalry between the kings of England and France, Louis obstructed the marriage. A peace treaty was secured in January 1169 and Richard’s betrothal to Alys was confirmed. Henry II planned to divide his and his wife's territories between their sons, of which there were three at the time; Henry would become King of England and have control of Anjou, Maine, and Normandy, while Richard would inherit Aquitaine from his mother and become Count of Poitiers, and Geoffrey would get Brittany through marriage alliance with Constance, the heiress to the region. At the ceremony where Richard's betrothal was confirmed, he paid homage to the King of France for Aquitaine, thus securing ties of vassalage between the two.

After he fell seriously ill in 1170 Henry II put in place his plan to divide his kingdom, although he would retain overall authority of his sons and their territories. In 1171 Richard left for Aquitaine with his mother and Henry II gave him the duchy of Aquitaine at the request of Eleanor. Richard and his mother embarked on a tour of Aquitaine in 1171 in an attempt to placate the locals. Together they laid the foundation stone of St Augustine's Monastery in Limoges
Limoges
Limoges |Limousin]] dialect of Occitan) is a city and commune, the capital of the Haute-Vienne department and the administrative capital of the Limousin région in west-central France....

. In June 1172 Richard was formally recognised as the Duke of Aquitaine when he was granted the lance and banner emblems of his office; the ceremony took place in Poitiers and was repeated in Limoges where he wore the ring of St Valerie, who was the personification of Aquitaine.

Revolt against Henry II

According to Ralph of Coggeshall
Ralph of Coggeshall
Ralph of Coggeshall , English chronicler, was at first a monk and afterwards sixth abbot of Coggeshall, an Essex foundation of the Cistercian order....

 Henry the Young King was the instigator of rebellion against Henry II; he wanted to reign independently over at least part of the territory his father had promised him, and to break away from his dependence on Henry II, who controlled the purse strings. Jean Flori, a historian who specialises in the medieval period, believes that Eleanor manipulated her sons to revolt against their father. Henry the Young King abandoned his father and left for the French court seeking the protection of Louis VII; he was soon followed by his younger brothers, Richard and Geoffrey, while the 5-year-old John remained with Henry II. Louis gave his support to the three sons and even knighted Richard, tying them together through vassalage. The rebellion was described by Jordan Fantosme
Jordan Fantosme
Jordan Fantosme was an Anglo-Norman historian, chronicler, and trouvère. He was a cleric and probably the spiritual chancellor of the Diocese of Winchester. His major work is an Anglo-Norman verse chronicle of the war between Henry II of England and his son Henry the Young King and William I of...

, a contemporary poet, as a "war without love".
The three brothers made an oath at the French court that they would not make terms with Henry II without the consent of Louis VII and the French barons. With the support of Louis, Henry the Young King attracted the support of many barons through promises of land and money; one such baron was Philip, Count of Flanders
Philip, Count of Flanders
Philip of Alsace was count of Flanders from 1168 to 1191. He succeeded his father Thierry of Alsace.-Count of Flanders:...

, who was promised £1,000 and several castles. The brothers had supporters in England, ready to rise up; led by Robert de Beaumont, 3rd Earl of Leicester
Robert de Beaumont, 3rd Earl of Leicester
Robert de Beaumont, 3rd Earl of Leicester was an English nobleman, one of the principal followers of Henry the Young King in the Revolt of 1173–1174 against his father Henry II...

, the rebellion in England from Hugh Bigod, 1st Earl of Norfolk
Hugh Bigod, 1st Earl of Norfolk
Hugh Bigod, 1st Earl of Norfolk was born in Belvoir Castle, Leicestershire, England.He was the second son of Roger Bigod , Sheriff of Norfolk, who founded the Bigod name in England...

, Hugh de Kevelioc, 5th Earl of Chester, and William I of Scotland
William I of Scotland
William the Lion , sometimes styled William I, also known by the nickname Garbh, "the Rough", reigned as King of the Scots from 1165 to 1214...

. The alliance was initially successful, and by July 1173 they were besieging
Siege
A siege is a military blockade of a city or fortress with the intent of conquering by attrition or assault. The term derives from sedere, Latin for "to sit". Generally speaking, siege warfare is a form of constant, low intensity conflict characterized by one party holding a strong, static...

 Aumale
Aumale
Aumale is a commune in the Seine-Maritime department in the Haute-Normandie region in north-western France.-Geography:A village of farming and associated light industry, situated in the valley of the Bresle River of the Norman Pays de Bray in Normandy on the border with Picardie. It is around ...

, Neuf-Marché
Neuf-Marché
Neuf-Marché is a commune in the Seine-Maritime department in the Haute-Normandie region in northern France.-Geography:A forestry and farming village situated by the banks of the river Epte in the Pays de Bray, some east of Rouen at the junction of the D915 with the D1 and D19 roads...

, and Verneuil
Verneuil
-Places in France:*Verneuil, Charente, in the Charente département*Verneuil, Cher, in the Cher département*Verneuil, Marne, in the Marne département*Verneuil, Nièvre, in the Nièvre département...

 and Hugh de Kevelioc had captured Dol
Dol-de-Bretagne
Dol-de-Bretagne , cited in most historical records under its Breton name of Dol, is a commune in the Ille-et-Vilaine département in Brittany in north-western France.-History:...

 in Brittany. Richard went to Poitou
Poitou
Poitou was a province of west-central France whose capital city was Poitiers.The region of Poitou was called Thifalia in the sixth century....

 and raised the barons who were loyal to himself and his mother in rebellion against his father. Eleanor was captured, so Richard was left to lead his campaign against Henry II's supporters in Aquitaine on his own. He marched to take La Rochelle
La Rochelle
La Rochelle is a city in western France and a seaport on the Bay of Biscay, a part of the Atlantic Ocean. It is the capital of the Charente-Maritime department.The city is connected to the Île de Ré by a bridge completed on 19 May 1988...

, but was rejected by the inhabitants; he withdrew to the city of Saintes which he established as a base of operations.

In the meantime Henry II had raised a very expensive army of over 20,000 mercenaries with which to face the rebellion. He marched on Verneuil, and Louis retreated from his forces. The army proceeded to recapture Dol and subdued Brittany. At this point Henry II made an offer of peace to his sons; on the advice of Louis the offer was refused. Henry II's forces took Saintes by surprise and captured much of its garrison, although Richard was able to escape with a small group of soldiers. He took refuge in Château de Taillebourg
Château de Taillebourg
The Château de Taillebourg is a ruin from the medieval era. It is built on a rocky outcrop, overlooking the village of Taillebourg and the valley of the Charente River, in the Charente-Maritime department of France...

 for the rest of the war. Henry the Young King and the Count of Flanders planned to land in England to assist the rebellion led by the Earl of Leicester. Anticipating this, Henry II returned to England with 500 soldiers and his prisoners (including Eleanor and his sons' wives and fiancées), but on his arrival found out that the rebellion had already collapsed. William I of Scotland and Hugh Bigod were captured on 13 July and 25 July respectively. Henry II returned to France where he raised the siege of Rouen
Rouen
Rouen , in northern France on the River Seine, is the capital of the Haute-Normandie region and the historic capital city of Normandy. Once one of the largest and most prosperous cities of medieval Europe , it was the seat of the Exchequer of Normandy in the Middle Ages...

, where Louis VII had been joined by Henry the Young King after he had abandoned his plan to invade England. Louis was defeated and a peace treaty was signed in September 1174, with the Treaty of Montlouis.

When Henry II and Louis VII made a truce on 8 September 1174, Richard was specifically excluded. Abandoned by Louis and wary of facing his father's army in battle, Richard went to Henry II's court at Poitiers on 23 September and begged for forgiveness, weeping and falling at the feet of Henry, who gave Richard the kiss of peace
Holy kiss
The kiss of peace is a traditional Christian greeting dating to early Christianity.The practice still remains a part of the worship in traditional churches, including the Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Catholic Churches, Eastern Orthodox churches, Oriental Orthodox churches and some liturgical...

. Several days later, Richard's brothers joined him in seeking reconciliation with their father. The terms the three brothers accepted were less generous than those they had been offered earlier in the conflict (when Richard was offered four castles in Aquitaine and half of the income from the duchy) and Richard was given control of two castles in Poitou and half the income of Aquitaine; Henry the Young King was given two castles in Normandy; and Geoffrey was permitted half of Brittany. Eleanor would remain Henry II's prisoner until his death, partly as insurance for Richard's good behaviour.

Under Henry II's reign

After the conclusion of the war began the process of pacifying the provinces that had rebelled against Henry II. He travelled to Anjou for this purpose and Geoffrey dealt with Brittany. In January 1175 Richard was dispatched to Aquitaine to punish the barons who had fought for him. According to Roger of Howden's chronicle of Henry's reign, most of the castles belonging to rebels were to be returned to the state they were in 15 days before the outbreak of war, while others were to be razed. Given that by this time it was common for castles to be built in stone, and that many barons had expanded or refortified their castles, this was not an easy task. Gillingham notes that Roger of Howden's chronicle is the main source for Richard's activities in this period, although he notes that it records the successes of the campaign; it was on this campaign that Richard acquired the name "Richard the Lionheart". The first such success was the siege of Castillon-sur-Agen
Castillon-sur-Agen
Castillion-sur-Agen was a medieval castle in the commune of Bon-Encontre, near Agen in Aquitaine, France.Built on the top of a small hill with sheer rock cliffs , it was "fortified by both nature and artifice". According to the 12th-century chronicler Robert of Torigny, Henry II of England besieged...

. The castle was "notoriously strong", but in a two-month siege the defenders were battered into submission by Richard's siege engines.

Henry seemed unwilling to entrust any of his sons with resources that could be used against him. It was suspected that Henry had appropriated Princess Alys
Alys, Countess of the Vexin
Alys, Countess of the Vexin was the daughter of King Louis VII of France and his second wife Constance of Castile.- Life :...

, Richard's betrothed, the daughter of Louis VII of France
Louis VII of France
Louis VII was King of France, the son and successor of Louis VI . He ruled from 1137 until his death. He was a member of the House of Capet. His reign was dominated by feudal struggles , and saw the beginning of the long rivalry between France and England...

 by his second wife, as his mistress
Mistress (lover)
A mistress is a long-term female lover and companion who is not married to her partner; the term is used especially when her partner is married. The relationship generally is stable and at least semi-permanent; however, the couple does not live together openly. Also the relationship is usually,...

. This made a marriage between Richard and Alys technically impossible in the eyes of the Church
Catholicism
Catholicism is a broad term for the body of the Catholic faith, its theologies and doctrines, its liturgical, ethical, spiritual, and behavioral characteristics, as well as a religious people as a whole....

, but Henry prevaricated: Alys's dowry
Dowry
A dowry is the money, goods, or estate that a woman brings forth to the marriage. It contrasts with bride price, which is paid to the bride's parents, and dower, which is property settled on the bride herself by the groom at the time of marriage. The same culture may simultaneously practice both...

, the Vexin
Vexin
The Vexin is a historical county of northwestern France. It covers a verdant plateau on the right bank of the Seine comprising an area east-to-west between Pontoise and Romilly-sur-Andelle , and north-to-south between Auneuil and the Seine near Vernon...

, was valuable. Richard was discouraged from renouncing Alys because she was the sister of King Philip II of France
Philip II of France
Philip II Augustus was the King of France from 1180 until his death. A member of the House of Capet, Philip Augustus was born at Gonesse in the Val-d'Oise, the son of Louis VII and his third wife, Adela of Champagne...

, a close ally.

After his failure to overthrow his father Richard concentrated on putting down internal revolts by the nobles of Aquitaine, especially the territory of Gascony
Gascony
Gascony is an area of southwest France that was part of the "Province of Guyenne and Gascony" prior to the French Revolution. The region is vaguely defined and the distinction between Guyenne and Gascony is unclear; sometimes they are considered to overlap, and sometimes Gascony is considered a...

. The increasing cruelty of his reign led to a major revolt there in 1179. Hoping to dethrone Richard, the rebels sought the help of his brothers Henry and Geoffrey. The turning point came in the Charente Valley
Charente
Charente is a department in southwestern France, in the Poitou-Charentes region, named after the Charente River, the most important river in the department, and also the river beside which the department's two largest towns, Angoulême and Cognac, are sited.-History:Charente is one of the original...

 in spring 1179. The fortress of Taillebourg
Château de Taillebourg
The Château de Taillebourg is a ruin from the medieval era. It is built on a rocky outcrop, overlooking the village of Taillebourg and the valley of the Charente River, in the Charente-Maritime department of France...

 was well defended and was considered impregnable. The castle was surrounded by a cliff on three sides and a town on the fourth side with a three-layer wall. Richard first destroyed and looted the farms and lands surrounding the fortress, leaving its defenders no reinforcements or lines of retreat. The garrison sallied out of the castle and attacked Richard; he was able to subdue the army and then followed the defenders inside the open gates, where he easily took over the castle in two days. Richard’s victory at Taillebourg deterred many barons thinking of rebelling and forced them to declare their loyalty to him. It also won Richard a reputation as a skilled military commander.

In 1181–1182 Richard faced a revolt over the succession to the county of Angoulême
Angoulême
-Main sights:In place of its ancient fortifications, Angoulême is encircled by boulevards above the old city walls, known as the Remparts, from which fine views may be obtained in all directions. Within the town the streets are often narrow. Apart from the cathedral and the hôtel de ville, the...

. His opponents turned to Philip II of France for support, and the fighting spread through the Limousin
Limousin (province)
Limousin is one of the traditional provinces of France around the city of Limoges. Limousin lies in the foothills of the western edge of the Massif Central, with cold weather in the winter...

 and Périgord
Périgord
The Périgord is a former province of France, which corresponds roughly to the current Dordogne département, now forming the northern part of the Aquitaine région. It is divided into four regions, the Périgord Noir , the Périgord Blanc , the Périgord Vert and the Périgord Pourpre...

. Richard was accused of numerous cruelties against his subjects, including rape. However, with support from his father and from the Young King, Richard succeeded in bringing the Viscount Aimar V of Limoges
Aimar V of Limoges
Aimar V Boso was the Viscount of Limoges, a petty nobleman in the Loire valley in the Duchy of Aquitaine.Born in Limoges, Aimar was orphaned at a young age and raised by his relatives among the southern French aristocracy...

 and Count Elie of Périgord
Périgord
The Périgord is a former province of France, which corresponds roughly to the current Dordogne département, now forming the northern part of the Aquitaine région. It is divided into four regions, the Périgord Noir , the Périgord Blanc , the Périgord Vert and the Périgord Pourpre...

 to terms.

After Richard subdued his rebellious barons he again challenged his father for the throne. From 1180 to 1183 the tension between Henry and Richard grew, as King Henry commanded Richard to pay homage to Henry the Young King, but Richard refused. Finally, in 1183 Henry the Young King and Geoffrey, Duke of Brittany invaded Aquitaine in an attempt to subdue Richard. Richard’s barons joined in the fray and turned against their duke. However Richard and his army were able to hold back the invading armies, and they executed any prisoners. The conflict took a brief pause in June 1183 when the Young King died. However Henry II soon gave his youngest son John permission to invade Aquitaine. With the death of Henry the Young King, Richard became the eldest son and so heir to the English crown, but still he continued to fight his father.

To strengthen his position, in 1187, Richard allied himself with 22-year-old Philip II
Philip II of France
Philip II Augustus was the King of France from 1180 until his death. A member of the House of Capet, Philip Augustus was born at Gonesse in the Val-d'Oise, the son of Louis VII and his third wife, Adela of Champagne...

, the son of Eleanor's ex-husband Louis VII
Louis VII of France
Louis VII was King of France, the son and successor of Louis VI . He ruled from 1137 until his death. He was a member of the House of Capet. His reign was dominated by feudal struggles , and saw the beginning of the long rivalry between France and England...

 by Adele of Champagne
Adèle of Champagne
Adèle of Champagne , also known as Adelaide and Alix, was the third wife of Louis VII of France and the mother of his only male heir, the future Philip II...

. Roger of Hoveden
Roger of Hoveden
Roger of Hoveden, or Howden , was a 12th-century English chronicler.From Hoveden's name and the internal evidence of his work, he is believed to have been a native of Howden in East Yorkshire. Nothing is known of him before the year 1174. He was then in attendance upon Henry II, by whom he was sent...

 wrote:
"The King of England was struck with great astonishment, and wondered what [this alliance] could mean, and, taking precautions for the future, frequently sent messengers into France for the purpose of recalling his son Richard; who, pretending that he was peaceably inclined and ready to come to his father, made his way to Chinon
Chinon
Chinon is a commune in the Indre-et-Loire department in central France well known for Château de Chinon.In the Middle Ages, Chinon developed especially during the reign of Henry II . The castle was rebuilt and extended, becoming one of his favorite residences...

, and, in spite of the person who had the custody thereof, carried off the greater part of his father's treasures, and fortified his castles in Poitou with the same, refusing to go to his father."


Overall, Hoveden is chiefly concerned with the politics of the relationship between Richard and King Philip. The historian John Gillingham
John Gillingham
John Gillingham is emeritus professor of medieval history at the London School of Economics and Political Science. On the 19th July 2007 he was elected into the Fellowship of the British Academy He is renowned as an expert on the Angevin empire.-Books:...

 has suggested that theories that Richard was homosexual probably stemmed from an official record announcing that, as a symbol of unity between the two countries, the kings of France and England had slept overnight in the same bed. He expressed the view that this was "an accepted political act, nothing sexual about it; ... a bit like a modern-day photo opportunity".

In exchange for Philip's help against his father, Richard promised to concede to him his rights to both Normandy and Anjou. Richard paid homage to Philip in November of the same year. With news arriving of the Battle of Hattin
Battle of Hattin
The Battle of Hattin took place on Saturday, July 4, 1187, between the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem and the forces of the Ayyubid dynasty....

, he took the cross at Tours
Tours
Tours is a city in central France, the capital of the Indre-et-Loire department.It is located on the lower reaches of the river Loire, between Orléans and the Atlantic coast. Touraine, the region around Tours, is known for its wines, the alleged perfection of its local spoken French, and for the...

 in the company of other French nobles.

In 1188 Henry II planned to concede Aquitaine to his youngest son John. The following year, Richard attempted to take the throne of England for himself by joining Philip's expedition against his father. On 4 July 1189, Richard and Philip’s forces defeated Henry's army at Ballans
Ballans
Ballans is a commune in the Charente-Maritime department in southwestern France. It is in Ballans that Richard I of England fought against his father, Henry II, on 4th July 1189 and became King two days later. With the help of King Philip, Richard I defeated his father in Ballans and was then...

. Henry, with John's consent, agreed to name Richard his heir. Two days later Henry II died in Chinon, and Richard succeeded him as King of England, Duke of Normandy, and Count of Anjou. Roger of Hoveden claimed that Henry's corpse bled from the nose in Richard's presence, which was taken as a sign that Richard had caused his death.

Coronation and anti-Jewish violence

Richard I was officially crowned duke on 20 July 1189 and king in Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey
The Collegiate Church of St Peter at Westminster, popularly known as Westminster Abbey, is a large, mainly Gothic church, in the City of Westminster, London, United Kingdom, located just to the west of the Palace of Westminster. It is the traditional place of coronation and burial site for English,...

 on 3 September 1189. When he was crowned, Richard barred all Jews and women from the ceremony, but some Jewish leaders arrived to present gifts for the new king. According to Ralph of Diceto, Richard's courtiers stripped and flogged the Jews, then flung them out of court.

When a rumour spread that Richard had ordered all Jews to be killed, the people of London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

 began a massacre. Many Jews were beaten to death, robbed, and burned alive
Execution by burning
Death by burning is death brought about by combustion. As a form of capital punishment, burning has a long history as a method in crimes such as treason, heresy, and witchcraft....

. Many Jewish homes were burned down, and several Jews were forcibly baptised
Baptism
In Christianity, baptism is for the majority the rite of admission , almost invariably with the use of water, into the Christian Church generally and also membership of a particular church tradition...

. Some sought sanctuary in the Tower of London
Tower of London
Her Majesty's Royal Palace and Fortress, more commonly known as the Tower of London, is a historic castle on the north bank of the River Thames in central London, England. It lies within the London Borough of Tower Hamlets, separated from the eastern edge of the City of London by the open space...

, and others managed to escape. Among those killed was Jacob of Orléans
Jacob of Orléans
Jacob of Orléans was a noted Jewish scholar, considered by many to be one of the most learned men of his age. Jacob was a tosafist in Orléans, France, who studied under Rabbenu Tam. He remained in Orléans until at least 1171, leaving at a later date to go to London, most likely to become a teacher...

, a respected Jewish scholar. Roger of Hoveden
Roger of Hoveden
Roger of Hoveden, or Howden , was a 12th-century English chronicler.From Hoveden's name and the internal evidence of his work, he is believed to have been a native of Howden in East Yorkshire. Nothing is known of him before the year 1174. He was then in attendance upon Henry II, by whom he was sent...

, in his Gesta Regis Ricardi, claimed that the rioting was started by the jealous and bigoted citizens, and that Richard punished the perpetrators, allowing a forcibly converted Jew to return to his native religion. Baldwin of Forde, Archbishop of Canterbury
Archbishop of Canterbury
The Archbishop of Canterbury is the senior bishop and principal leader of the Church of England, the symbolic head of the worldwide Anglican Communion, and the diocesan bishop of the Diocese of Canterbury. In his role as head of the Anglican Communion, the archbishop leads the third largest group...

 reacted by remarking, "If the King is not God's man, he had better be the devil's". in the House of Anjou.

Realising that the assaults could destabilise his realm on the eve of his departure on crusade, Richard ordered the execution of those responsible for the most egregious murders and persecutions, including rioters who had accidentally burned down Christian homes. He distributed a royal writ
Writ
In common law, a writ is a formal written order issued by a body with administrative or judicial jurisdiction; in modern usage, this body is generally a court...

 demanding that the Jews be left alone. The edict was loosely enforced, however, as the following March there was further violence including a massacre at York.

Crusade plans

Richard had already taken the cross as Count of Poitou in 1187. His father and Philip II had done so at Gisors
Gisors
Gisors is a commune in the metropolitan area of Paris, France. It is located northwest from the center of Paris.Gisors, together with the neighbouring communes of Trie-Château and Trie-la-Ville, form an urban area of 12,669 inhabitants...

 on 21 January 1188 after receiving news of the fall of Jerusalem to Saladin
Saladin
Ṣalāḥ ad-Dīn Yūsuf ibn Ayyūb , better known in the Western world as Saladin, was an Arabized Kurdish Muslim, who became the first Sultan of Egypt and Syria, and founded the Ayyubid dynasty. He led Muslim and Arab opposition to the Franks and other European Crusaders in the Levant...

. Having become king, Richard, together with Philip, agreed to go on the Third Crusade
Third Crusade
The Third Crusade , also known as the Kings' Crusade, was an attempt by European leaders to reconquer the Holy Land from Saladin...

, since each feared that during his absence, the other might usurp his territories.

Richard swore an oath to renounce his past wickedness in order to show himself worthy to take the cross. He started to raise and equip a new crusader army. He spent most of his father's treasury (filled with money raised by the Saladin tithe
Saladin tithe
The Saladin tithe, or the Aid of 1188, was a tax, or more specifically a tallage, levied in England and to some extent in France in 1188, in response to the capture of Jerusalem by Saladin in 1187.-Background:...

), raised taxes, and even agreed to free King William I of Scotland
William I of Scotland
William the Lion , sometimes styled William I, also known by the nickname Garbh, "the Rough", reigned as King of the Scots from 1165 to 1214...

 from his oath of subservience to Richard in exchange for marks
Mark (money)
Mark was a measure of weight mainly for gold and silver, commonly used throughout western Europe and often equivalent to 8 ounces. Considerable variations, however, occurred throughout the Middle Ages Mark (from a merging of three Teutonic/Germanic languages words, Latinized in 9th century...

. To raise still more finances he sold official positions, rights, and lands to those interested in them. Those already appointed were forced to pay huge sums to retain their posts. William Longchamp
William Longchamp
William Longchamp , sometimes known as William de Longchamp or William de Longchamps, was a medieval Lord Chancellor, Chief Justiciar, and Bishop of Ely in England. Born to a humble family in Normandy, he owed his advancement to royal favour. Although contemporary writers accused Longchamp's father...

, Bishop of Ely
Bishop of Ely
The Bishop of Ely is the Ordinary of the Church of England Diocese of Ely in the Province of Canterbury. The diocese roughly covers the county of Cambridgeshire , together with a section of north-west Norfolk and has its see in the City of Ely, Cambridgeshire, where the seat is located at the...

 and the King's Chancellor, made a show of bidding £ to remain as Chancellor. He was apparently outbid by a certain Reginald the Italian, but that bid was refused.

Richard made some final arrangements on the continent. He reconfirmed his father's appointment of William Fitz Ralph to the important post of seneschal
Seneschal
A seneschal was an officer in the houses of important nobles in the Middle Ages. In the French administrative system of the Middle Ages, the sénéchal was also a royal officer in charge of justice and control of the administration in southern provinces, equivalent to the northern French bailli...

 of Normandy. In Anjou, Stephen of Tours was replaced as seneschal and temporarily imprisoned for fiscal mismanagement. Payn de Rochefort, an Angevin knight, was elevated to the post of seneschal of Anjou. In Poitou the ex-provost of Benon, Peter Bertin, was made seneschal, and finally in Gascony the household official Helie de La Celle was picked for the seneschalship there. After repositioning the part of his army he left behind to guard his French possessions, Richard finally set out on the crusade in summer 1190. (His delay was criticised by troubadours such as Bertran de Born
Bertran de Born
Bertran de Born was a baron from the Limousin in France, and one of the major Occitan troubadours of the twelfth century.-Life and works:...

.) He appointed as regents Hugh de Puiset
Hugh de Puiset
Hugh de Puiset was a medieval Bishop of Durham and Chief Justiciar of England under King Richard I. He was the nephew of King Stephen of England and Henry of Blois, who both assisted Hugh's ecclesiastical career...

, Bishop of Durham, and William de Mandeville, 3rd Earl of Essex
William de Mandeville, 3rd Earl of Essex
William de Mandeville, 3rd Earl of Essex was a loyal councilor of Henry II and Richard I of England.He was the second son of Geoffrey de Mandeville, 1st Earl of Essex and Rohese de Vere, Countess of Essex. After his father's death while in rebellion , William grew up at the court of the Count of...

—who soon died and was replaced by Richard's chancellor William Longchamp
William Longchamp
William Longchamp , sometimes known as William de Longchamp or William de Longchamps, was a medieval Lord Chancellor, Chief Justiciar, and Bishop of Ely in England. Born to a humble family in Normandy, he owed his advancement to royal favour. Although contemporary writers accused Longchamp's father...

. Richard's brother John was not satisfied by this decision and started scheming against William.

Some writers have criticised Richard for spending only six months of his reign in England and siphoning the kingdom's resources to support his crusade. According to William Stubbs
William Stubbs
William Stubbs was an English historian and Bishop of Oxford.The son of William Morley Stubbs, a solicitor, he was born at Knaresborough, Yorkshire, and was educated at Ripon Grammar School and Christ Church, Oxford, where he graduated in 1848, obtaining a first-class in classics and a third in...

:
Richard claimed that England was "cold and always raining," and when he was raising funds for his crusade, he was said to declare, "I would have sold London
London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

 if I could find a buyer." However, although England was a major part of his territories—particularly important in that it gave him a royal title with which to approach other kings as an equal—it faced no major internal or external threats during his reign, unlike his continental territories, and so did not require his constant presence there. Like most of the Plantagenet kings before the 14th century, he had no need to learn the English language
English language
English is a West Germanic language that arose in the Anglo-Saxon kingdoms of England and spread into what was to become south-east Scotland under the influence of the Anglian medieval kingdom of Northumbria...

. Leaving the country in the hands of various officials he designated (including his mother, at times) Richard was far more concerned with his more extensive French lands. After all his preparations he had an army of men-at-arms, foot-soldiers and a fleet of 100 ships.

Occupation of Sicily

In September 1190 Richard and Philip arrived in Sicily
Sicily
Sicily is a region of Italy, and is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea. Along with the surrounding minor islands, it constitutes an autonomous region of Italy, the Regione Autonoma Siciliana Sicily has a rich and unique culture, especially with regard to the arts, music, literature,...

. After the death of King William II of Sicily
William II of Sicily
William II , called the Good, was king of Sicily from 1166 to 1189. William's character is very indistinct. Lacking in military enterprise, secluded and pleasure-loving, he seldom emerged from his palace life at Palermo. Yet his reign is marked by an ambitious foreign policy and a vigorous diplomacy...

 his cousin Tancred of Lecce had seized power and had been crowned early in 1190 as King Tancred I of Sicily, although the legal heir was William's aunt Constance
Constance of Sicily
Constance of Hauteville was the heiress of the Norman kings of Sicily and the wife of Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor...

, wife of the new Emperor Henry VI
Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor
Henry VI was King of Germany from 1190 to 1197, Holy Roman Emperor from 1191 to 1197 and King of Sicily from 1194 to 1197.-Early years:Born in Nijmegen,...

. Tancred had imprisoned William's widow, Queen Joan, who was Richard's sister, and did not give her the money she had inherited in William's will. When Richard arrived he demanded that his sister be released and given her inheritance; she was freed on 28 September, but without the inheritance. The presence of foreign troops also caused unrest: in October, the people of Messina
Messina, Italy
Messina is the third largest city on the island of Sicily, Italy and the capital of the province of Messina. It has a population of about 250,000 inhabitants in the city proper and about 650,000 in the province...

 revolted, demanding that the foreigners leave. Richard attacked Messina, capturing it on 4 October 1190. After looting and burning the city Richard established his base there, but this created tension between Richard and Philip Augustus. He remained there until Tancred finally agreed to sign a treaty on 4 March 1191. The treaty was signed by Richard, Philip and Tancred. Its main terms were:
  • Joan was to receive 20,000 ounces of gold as compensation for her inheritance, which Tancred kept.
  • Richard officially proclaimed his nephew, Arthur of Brittany, son of Geoffrey, as his heir, and Tancred promised to marry one of his daughters to Arthur when he came of age, giving a further twenty thousand ounces of gold that would be returned by Richard if Arthur did not marry Tancred's daughter.


The two kings stayed on in Sicily for a while, but this resulted in increasing tensions between them and their men, with Philip Augustus plotting with Tancred against Richard. The two kings finally met to clear the air and reached an agreement, including the end of Richard's betrothal to Philip's sister Alys (who had supposedly been the mistress of Richard's father Henry II).

Conquest of Cyprus

In April 1191 Richard, with a large fleet, left Messina in order to reach Acre. But a storm dispersed the fleet. After some searching, it was discovered that the boat carrying his sister and his fiancée Berengaria
Berengaria of Navarre
Berengaria of Navarre was Queen of the English as the wife of King Richard I of England. She was the eldest daughter of King Sancho VI of Navarre and Sancha of Castile. As is the case with many of the medieval queens consort of the Kingdom of England, relatively little is known of her life...

 was anchored on the south coast of Cyprus together with the wrecks of several other ships, including the treasure ship. Survivors of the wrecks had been taken prisoner by the island's despot Isaac Komnenos
Isaac Komnenos of Cyprus
Isaac Komnenos or Comnenus , was the ruler of Cyprus from 1184 to 1191, before Richard I's conquest during the Third Crusade.-Family:He was a minor member of the Komnenos family. He was son of an unnamed Doukas Kamateros and Irene Komnene...

.

On 1 May 1191 Richard's fleet arrived in the port of Lemesos (Limassol
Limassol
Limassol is the second-largest city in Cyprus, with a population of 228,000 . It is the largest city in geographical size, and the biggest municipality on the island. The city is located on Akrotiri Bay, on the island's southern coast and it is the capital of Limassol District.Limassol is the...

) on Cyprus. He ordered Isaac to release the prisoners and the treasure. Isaac refused, so Richard landed his troops and took Limassol.

Various princes of the Holy Land arrived in Limassol at the same time, in particular Guy of Lusignan
Guy of Lusignan
Guy of Lusignan was a Poitevin knight, son of Hugh VIII of the prominent Lusignan dynasty. He was king of the crusader state of Jerusalem from 1186 to 1192 by right of marriage to Sibylla of Jerusalem, and of Cyprus from 1192 to 1194...

. All declared their support for Richard provided that he support Guy against his rival Conrad of Montferrat
Conrad of Montferrat
Conrad of Montferrat was a northern Italian nobleman, one of the major participants in the Third Crusade. He was the de facto King of Jerusalem, by marriage, from 24 November 1190, but officially elected only in 1192, days before his death...

.

The local barons abandoned Isaac, who considered making peace with Richard, joining him on the crusade and offering his daughter in marriage to the person named by Richard. But Isaac changed his mind and tried to escape. Richard then proceeded to conquer the whole island, his troops being led by Guy de Lusignan. Isaac surrendered and was confined with silver chains because Richard had promised that he would not place him in irons. By 1 June Richard had conquered the whole island. He named Richard de Camville
Richard de Camville
Richard de Camville was an English crusader knight, and one of Richard the Lionheart's senior commanders during the Third Crusade. In June 1190, at Chinon, he was, with 3 others, put in charge of King Richard's fleet sailing for the Holy Land. In 1191 he was appointed governor of Cyprus, jointly...

 and Robert of Thornham
Robert of Thornham
Robert of Thornham was an English soldier and administrator. The namesake of his landowner father, he was the younger brother of Stephen of Thornham. Robert made his reputation in connection with the conquest of Cyprus in 1191 during the Third Crusade. On order of King Richard I, he led half the...

 as governors. He later sold the island to the Knights Templar
Knights Templar
The Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon , commonly known as the Knights Templar, the Order of the Temple or simply as Templars, were among the most famous of the Western Christian military orders...

 and it was subsequently acquired, in 1192, by Guy of Lusignan and became a stable feudal kingdom.

The rapid conquest of the island by Richard is more important than it seems. The island occupies a key strategic position on the maritime lanes to the Holy Land, whose occupation by the Christians could not continue without support from the sea. Cyprus remained a Christian stronghold until the battle of Lepanto (1571)
Battle of Lepanto (1571)
The Battle of Lepanto took place on 7 October 1571 when a fleet of the Holy League, a coalition of Catholic maritime states, decisively defeated the main fleet of the Ottoman Empire in five hours of fighting on the northern edge of the Gulf of Patras, off western Greece...

. Richard's exploit was well publicized and contributed to his reputation. Richard also derived significant financial gains from the conquest of the island.

Richard left for Acre on 5 June with his allies.

Marriage

Before leaving Cyprus Richard married Berengaria of Navarre
Berengaria of Navarre
Berengaria of Navarre was Queen of the English as the wife of King Richard I of England. She was the eldest daughter of King Sancho VI of Navarre and Sancha of Castile. As is the case with many of the medieval queens consort of the Kingdom of England, relatively little is known of her life...

, first-born daughter of King Sancho VI of Navarre
Sancho VI of Navarre
Sancho VI Garcés , called the Wise , was the king of Navarre from 1150 until his death in 1194....

. Richard first grew closer to her at a tournament held in Berengaria's native Navarre. The wedding was held in Limassol
Limassol
Limassol is the second-largest city in Cyprus, with a population of 228,000 . It is the largest city in geographical size, and the biggest municipality on the island. The city is located on Akrotiri Bay, on the island's southern coast and it is the capital of Limassol District.Limassol is the...

 on 12 May 1191 at the Chapel of St. George. It was attended by his sister Joan, whom Richard had brought from Sicily. The marriage was celebrated with great pomp and splendour and many feasts and entertainments, and public parades, and celebrations followed, to commemorate the event. Among the other grand ceremonies was a double coronation. Richard caused himself to be crowned King of Cyprus, and Berengaria Queen of England and of Cyprus too. When Richard married Berengaria he was still officially betrothed to Alys, and Richard pushed for the match in order to obtain Navarre
Kingdom of Navarre
The Kingdom of Navarre , originally the Kingdom of Pamplona, was a European kingdom which occupied lands on either side of the Pyrenees alongside the Atlantic Ocean....

 as a fief like Aquitaine for his father. Further, Eleanor championed the match, as Navarre bordered on Aquitaine, thereby securing her ancestral lands' borders to the south. Richard took his new wife with him briefly on this episode of the crusade. However they returned separately. Berengaria had almost as much difficulty in making the journey home as her husband did, and she did not see England until after his death. After his release from German captivity Richard showed some regret for his earlier conduct, but he was not reunited with his wife.

In the Holy Land

King Richard landed at Acre
Acre, Israel
Acre , is a city in the Western Galilee region of northern Israel at the northern extremity of Haifa Bay. Acre is one of the oldest continuously inhabited sites in the country....

 on 8 June 1191. He gave his support to his Poitevin
Poitou
Poitou was a province of west-central France whose capital city was Poitiers.The region of Poitou was called Thifalia in the sixth century....

 vassal
Vassal
A vassal or feudatory is a person who has entered into a mutual obligation to a lord or monarch in the context of the feudal system in medieval Europe. The obligations often included military support and mutual protection, in exchange for certain privileges, usually including the grant of land held...

 Guy of Lusignan
Guy of Lusignan
Guy of Lusignan was a Poitevin knight, son of Hugh VIII of the prominent Lusignan dynasty. He was king of the crusader state of Jerusalem from 1186 to 1192 by right of marriage to Sibylla of Jerusalem, and of Cyprus from 1192 to 1194...

, who had brought troops to help him in Cyprus. Guy was the widower of his father's cousin Sibylla of Jerusalem
Sibylla of Jerusalem
Sibylla of Jerusalem was the Countess of Jaffa and Ascalon from 1176 and Queen of Jerusalem from 1186 to 1190. She was the eldest daughter of Amalric I of Jerusalem and Agnes of Courtenay, sister of Baldwin IV and half-sister of Isabella I of Jerusalem, and mother of Baldwin V of Jerusalem...

 and was trying to retain the kingship of Jerusalem, despite his wife's death during the Siege of Acre the previous year. Guy's claim was challenged by Conrad of Montferrat
Conrad of Montferrat
Conrad of Montferrat was a northern Italian nobleman, one of the major participants in the Third Crusade. He was the de facto King of Jerusalem, by marriage, from 24 November 1190, but officially elected only in 1192, days before his death...

, second husband of Sibylla's half-sister, Isabella
Isabella of Jerusalem
Isabella I was Queen regnant of Jerusalem from 1190/1192 until her death. By her four marriages, she was successively Lady of Toron, Marchioness of Montferrat, Countess of Champagne and Queen of Cyprus....

: Conrad, whose defence of Tyre had saved the kingdom in 1187, was supported by Philip of France, son of his first cousin Louis VII of France
Louis VII of France
Louis VII was King of France, the son and successor of Louis VI . He ruled from 1137 until his death. He was a member of the House of Capet. His reign was dominated by feudal struggles , and saw the beginning of the long rivalry between France and England...

, and by another cousin, Duke Leopold V of Austria. Richard also allied with Humphrey IV of Toron
Humphrey IV of Toron
Humphrey IV of Toron was the lord of Toron, Kerak, and Oultrejordain in the crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem.-Biography:...

, Isabella's first husband, from whom she had been forcibly divorced in 1190. Humphrey was loyal to Guy and spoke Arabic fluently, so Richard used him as a translator and negotiator.

Richard and his forces aided in the capture of Acre, despite the king's serious illness. At one point, while sick from scurvy
Scurvy
Scurvy is a disease resulting from a deficiency of vitamin C, which is required for the synthesis of collagen in humans. The chemical name for vitamin C, ascorbic acid, is derived from the Latin name of scurvy, scorbutus, which also provides the adjective scorbutic...

, Richard is said to have picked off guards on the walls with a crossbow
Crossbow
A crossbow is a weapon consisting of a bow mounted on a stock that shoots projectiles, often called bolts or quarrels. The medieval crossbow was called by many names, most of which derived from the word ballista, a torsion engine resembling a crossbow in appearance.Historically, crossbows played a...

, while being carried on a stretcher. Eventually Conrad of Montferrat concluded the surrender negotiations with Saladin and raised the banners of the kings in the city. Richard quarrelled with Leopold V of Austria
Leopold V, Duke of Austria
Leopold V , the Virtuous, was a Babenberg duke of Austria from 1177 and of Styria from 1192 until his death...

 over the deposition of Isaac Komnenos
Isaac Komnenos of Cyprus
Isaac Komnenos or Comnenus , was the ruler of Cyprus from 1184 to 1191, before Richard I's conquest during the Third Crusade.-Family:He was a minor member of the Komnenos family. He was son of an unnamed Doukas Kamateros and Irene Komnene...

 (related to Leopold's Byzantine
Byzantine Empire
The Byzantine Empire was the Eastern Roman Empire during the periods of Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, centred on the capital of Constantinople. Known simply as the Roman Empire or Romania to its inhabitants and neighbours, the Empire was the direct continuation of the Ancient Roman State...

 mother) and his position within the crusade. Leopold's banner had been raised alongside the English and French standards. This was interpreted as arrogance by both Richard and Philip, as Leopold was a vassal of the Holy Roman Emperor
Holy Roman Emperor
The Holy Roman Emperor is a term used by historians to denote a medieval ruler who, as German King, had also received the title of "Emperor of the Romans" from the Pope...

 (although he was the highest-ranking surviving leader of the imperial forces). Richard's men tore the flag down and threw it in the moat of Acre. Leopold left the crusade
Third Crusade
The Third Crusade , also known as the Kings' Crusade, was an attempt by European leaders to reconquer the Holy Land from Saladin...

 immediately. Philip also left soon afterwards, in poor health and after further disputes with Richard over the status of Cyprus (Philip demanded half the island) and the kingship of Jerusalem. Richard, suddenly, found himself without allies.
Richard had kept 2,700 Muslim prisoners as hostages against Saladin fulfilling all the terms of the surrender of the lands around Acre. Philip, before leaving, had entrusted his prisoners to Conrad, but Richard forced him to hand them over to him. Richard feared his forces being bottled up in Acre as he believed his campaign could not advance with the prisoners in train. He therefore ordered all the prisoners executed. He then moved south, defeating Saladin
Saladin
Ṣalāḥ ad-Dīn Yūsuf ibn Ayyūb , better known in the Western world as Saladin, was an Arabized Kurdish Muslim, who became the first Sultan of Egypt and Syria, and founded the Ayyubid dynasty. He led Muslim and Arab opposition to the Franks and other European Crusaders in the Levant...

's forces at the Battle of Arsuf
Battle of Arsuf
The Battle of Arsuf was a battle of the Third Crusade in which Richard I of England defeated Saladin at Arsuf. Following a series of harassing attacks by Saladin's forces, battle was joined on the morning of 7 September 1191...

 on 7 September 1191. He attempted to negotiate with Saladin, but, this was unsuccessful. In the first half of 1192 he and his troops refortified Ascalon
Ashkelon
Ashkelon is a coastal city in the South District of Israel on the Mediterranean coast, south of Tel Aviv, and north of the border with the Gaza Strip. The ancient seaport of Ashkelon dates back to the Neolithic Age...

.

An election forced Richard to accept Conrad of Montferrat as King of Jerusalem, and he sold Cyprus to his defeated protégé, Guy. Only days later, on 28 April 1192, Conrad was stabbed to death by Hashshashin
Hashshashin
The Assassins were an order of Nizari Ismailis, particularly those of Persia that existed from around 1092 to 1265...

 before he could be crowned. Eight days later Richard's own nephew Henry II of Champagne
Henry II of Champagne
Henry II of Champagne was count of Champagne from 1181 to 1197, and King of Jerusalem from 1192 to 1197, although he never used the title of king.- Early Life and Family :...

 was married to the widowed Isabella
Isabella of Jerusalem
Isabella I was Queen regnant of Jerusalem from 1190/1192 until her death. By her four marriages, she was successively Lady of Toron, Marchioness of Montferrat, Countess of Champagne and Queen of Cyprus....

, although she was carrying Conrad's child. The murder has never been conclusively solved, and Richard's contemporaries widely suspected his involvement.

Realising that he had no hope of holding Jerusalem even if he took it, Richard ordered a retreat. There commenced a period of minor skirmishes with Saladin's forces while Richard and Saladin negotiated a settlement to the conflict, as both realized that their respective positions were growing untenable. Richard knew that both Philip and his own brother John were starting to plot against him. However Saladin insisted on the razing of Ascalon's fortifications, which Richard's men had rebuilt, and a few other points. Richard made one last attempt to strengthen his bargaining position by attempting to invade Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

—Saladin's chief supply-base—but failed. In the end time ran out for Richard. He realised that his return could be postponed no longer since both Philip and John were taking advantage of his absence. He and Saladin finally came to a settlement on 2 September 1192—this included the provisions demanding the destruction of Ascalon's wall as well as an agreement allowing Christian pilgrim
Pilgrim
A pilgrim is a traveler who is on a journey to a holy place. Typically, this is a physical journeying to some place of special significance to the adherent of a particular religious belief system...

s and merchants access to Jerusalem. It also included a three-year truce.

Captivity and return

Bad weather forced Richard's ship to put in at Corfu
Corfu
Corfu is a Greek island in the Ionian Sea. It is the second largest of the Ionian Islands, and, including its small satellite islands, forms the edge of the northwestern frontier of Greece. The island is part of the Corfu regional unit, and is administered as a single municipality. The...

, in the lands of the Byzantine Emperor Isaac II Angelos
Isaac II Angelos
Isaac II Angelos was Byzantine emperor from 1185 to 1195, and again from 1203 to 1204....

, who objected to Richard's annexation of Cyprus, formerly Byzantine territory. Disguised as a Knight Templar
Knights Templar
The Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon , commonly known as the Knights Templar, the Order of the Temple or simply as Templars, were among the most famous of the Western Christian military orders...

, Richard sailed from Corfu with four attendants, but his ship was wrecked near Aquileia
Aquileia
Aquileia is an ancient Roman city in what is now Italy, at the head of the Adriatic at the edge of the lagoons, about 10 km from the sea, on the river Natiso , the course of which has changed somewhat since Roman times...

, forcing Richard and his party into a dangerous land route through central Europe.

On his way to the territory of his brother-in-law Henry of Saxony
Henry the Lion
Henry the Lion was a member of the Welf dynasty and Duke of Saxony, as Henry III, from 1142, and Duke of Bavaria, as Henry XII, from 1156, which duchies he held until 1180....

, Richard was captured shortly before Christmas 1192 near Vienna
Vienna
Vienna is the capital and largest city of the Republic of Austria and one of the nine states of Austria. Vienna is Austria's primary city, with a population of about 1.723 million , and is by far the largest city in Austria, as well as its cultural, economic, and political centre...

 by Leopold V, Duke of Austria
Leopold V, Duke of Austria
Leopold V , the Virtuous, was a Babenberg duke of Austria from 1177 and of Styria from 1192 until his death...

 who accused Richard of arranging the murder of his cousin Conrad of Montferrat
Conrad of Montferrat
Conrad of Montferrat was a northern Italian nobleman, one of the major participants in the Third Crusade. He was the de facto King of Jerusalem, by marriage, from 24 November 1190, but officially elected only in 1192, days before his death...

. Moreover Richard had personally offended Leopold by casting down his standard from the walls of Acre. Richard and his retainers had been travelling in disguise as low-ranking pilgrims, but he was identified either because he was wearing an expensive ring, or because of his insistence on eating roast chicken, an aristocratic delicacy.
Duke Leopold kept him prisoner at Dürnstein Castle
Dürnstein
Dürnstein is a small town on the Danube river in the Krems-Land district, in the Austrian state of Lower Austria. It is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the Wachau region and also a well-known wine growing area...

. His mishap was soon known to England, but the regents were for some weeks uncertain of his whereabouts. While in prison, Richard wrote Ja nus hons pris or Ja nuls om pres ("No man who is imprisoned"), which is addressed to his half-sister Marie de Champagne
Marie de Champagne
Marie of France , Countess of Champagne was the elder daughter of Louis VII of France and his first wife, Eleanor of Aquitaine.- Family :Marie's younger sister was Alix of France....

. He wrote the song, in French and Occitan versions, to express his feelings of abandonment by his people and his sister. The detention of a crusader
Crusades
The Crusades were a series of religious wars, blessed by the Pope and the Catholic Church with the main goal of restoring Christian access to the holy places in and near Jerusalem...

 was contrary to public law, and on these grounds Pope Celestine III
Pope Celestine III
Pope Celestine III , born Giacinto Bobone, was elected Pope on March 21, 1191, and reigned until his death. He was born into the noble Orsini family in Rome, though he was only a cardinal deacon before becoming Pope...

 excommunicated Duke Leopold.

On 28 March 1193 Richard was brought to Speyer
Speyer
Speyer is a city of Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany with approximately 50,000 inhabitants. Located beside the river Rhine, Speyer is 25 km south of Ludwigshafen and Mannheim. Founded by the Romans, it is one of Germany's oldest cities...

 and handed over to Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor
Henry VI, Holy Roman Emperor
Henry VI was King of Germany from 1190 to 1197, Holy Roman Emperor from 1191 to 1197 and King of Sicily from 1194 to 1197.-Early years:Born in Nijmegen,...

, who was aggrieved both by the support which the Plantagenets had given to the family of Henry the Lion
Henry the Lion
Henry the Lion was a member of the Welf dynasty and Duke of Saxony, as Henry III, from 1142, and Duke of Bavaria, as Henry XII, from 1156, which duchies he held until 1180....

, and also by Richard's recognition of Tancred in Sicily, and who imprisoned him in Trifels Castle
Trifels Castle
Trifels Castle is a medieval castle at an elevation of near the small town of Annweiler, in the Palatinate region of southwestern Germany. It is located high above the Queich valley within the Palatinate Forest on one peak of a red sandstone mountain split into three...

. Henry VI, needing money to raise an army and assert his rights over southern Italy, continued to hold Richard for ransom. In response Pope Celestine III excommunicated Henry VI, as he had Duke Leopold, for the continued wrongful imprisonment of Richard.

Richard famously refused to show deference to the emperor and declared to him, "I am born of a rank which recognizes no superior but God". Despite his complaints, the conditions of his captivity were not severe.

The emperor demanded that marks (65,000 pounds of silver) be delivered to him before he would release the king, the same amount raised by the Saladin tithe
Saladin tithe
The Saladin tithe, or the Aid of 1188, was a tax, or more specifically a tallage, levied in England and to some extent in France in 1188, in response to the capture of Jerusalem by Saladin in 1187.-Background:...

 only a few years earlier, and 2–3 times the annual income for the English Crown under Richard. Eleanor of Aquitaine worked to raise the ransom. Both clergy and laymen were taxed for a quarter of the value of their property, the gold and silver treasures of the churches were confiscated, and money was raised from the scutage
Scutage
The form of taxation known as scutage, in the law of England under the feudal system, allowed a knight to "buy out" of the military service due to the Crown as a holder of a knight's fee held under the feudal land tenure of knight-service. Its name derived from shield...

 and the carucage
Carucage
Carucage was a medieval English land tax introduced by King Richard I in 1194, based on the size—variously calculated—of the estate owned by the taxpayer. It was a replacement for the danegeld, last imposed in 1162, which had become difficult to collect because of an increasing number of exemptions...

 taxes. At the same time, John, Richard's brother, and King Philip of France offered marks for the Emperor to hold Richard prisoner until Michaelmas
Michaelmas
Michaelmas, the feast of Saint Michael the Archangel is a day in the Western Christian calendar which occurs on 29 September...

 1194. The emperor turned down the offer. The money to rescue the King was transferred to Germany
Germany
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...

 by the emperor's ambassadors, but "at the king's peril" (had it been lost along the way, Richard would have been held responsible), and finally, on 4 February 1194 Richard was released. Philip sent a message to John: "Look to yourself; the devil is loose".

The affair had a lasting influence on Austria, since part of the money from King Richard's ransom was used by Duke Leopold V to finance the founding in 1194 of the new city of Wiener Neustadt
Wiener Neustadt
-Main sights:* The Late-Romanesque Dom, consecrated in 1279 and cathedral from 1469 to 1785. The choir and transept, in Gothic style, are from the 14th century. In the late 15th century 12 statues of the Apostles were added in the apse, while the bust of Cardinal Melchior Klesl is attributed to...

, which had a significant role in various periods of subsequent Austrian history up to the present.

Later years and death

In Richard's absence, his brother John
John of England
John , also known as John Lackland , was King of England from 6 April 1199 until his death...

 revolted with the aid of Philip; amongst Philip's conquests in the period of Richard's imprisonment was Normandy. Richard forgave John when they met again and, bowing to political necessity, named him as his heir in place of Arthur, whose mother Constance of Brittany was perhaps already open to the overtures of Philip II.

Richard began his reconquest of Normandy. The fall of Château de Gisors
Château de Gisors
The Château de Gisors is a castle in the town of Gisors in the départment of Eure, France.-History:The castle was a key fortress of the Dukes of Normandy in the 11th and 12th centuries. It was intended to defend the Anglo-Norman Vexin territory from the pretensions of the King of France...

 to the French in 1196 opened a gap in the Norman defences. The search began for a fresh site for a new castle to defend the duchy of Normandy and act as a base from which Richard could launch his campaign to take back the Vexin
Vexin
The Vexin is a historical county of northwestern France. It covers a verdant plateau on the right bank of the Seine comprising an area east-to-west between Pontoise and Romilly-sur-Andelle , and north-to-south between Auneuil and the Seine near Vernon...

 from French control. A naturally defensible position was identified perched high above the River Seine, an important transport route, in the manor
Manorialism
Manorialism, an essential element of feudal society, was the organizing principle of rural economy that originated in the villa system of the Late Roman Empire, was widely practiced in medieval western and parts of central Europe, and was slowly replaced by the advent of a money-based market...

 of Andeli. Under the terms of the Peace of Louviers (December 1195) between Richard and Philip II, neither king was allowed to fortify the site; despite this, Richard intended to build the vast Chateau Gaillard. Richard tried to obtain the manor through negotiation. Walter de Coutances
Walter de Coutances
Walter de Coutances was a medieval English Bishop of Lincoln and Archbishop of Rouen. He began his royal service in the government of Henry II, serving as a vice-chancellor...

, Archbishop of Rouen, was reluctant to sell the manor as it was one of the diocese's most profitable, and other lands belonging to the diocese had recently been damaged by war. When Philip besieged
Siege
A siege is a military blockade of a city or fortress with the intent of conquering by attrition or assault. The term derives from sedere, Latin for "to sit". Generally speaking, siege warfare is a form of constant, low intensity conflict characterized by one party holding a strong, static...

 Aumale
Aumale
Aumale is a commune in the Seine-Maritime department in the Haute-Normandie region in north-western France.-Geography:A village of farming and associated light industry, situated in the valley of the Bresle River of the Norman Pays de Bray in Normandy on the border with Picardie. It is around ...

 in Normandy, Richard grew tired of waiting and seized the manor, although the act was opposed by the Church. Walter de Coutances issued an interdict
Interdict (Roman Catholic Church)
In Roman Catholic canon law, an interdict is an ecclesiastical censure that excludes from certain rites of the Church individuals or groups, who nonetheless do not cease to be members of the Church.-Distinctions in canon law:...

 against the duchy of Normandy
Duchy of Normandy
The Duchy of Normandy stems from various Danish, Norwegian, Hiberno-Norse, Orkney Viking and Anglo-Danish invasions of France in the 9th century...

 which prohibited church services from being performed in the region. Roger of Howden detailed "the unburied bodies of the dead lying in the streets and square of the cities of Normandy". Construction began with the interdict hanging over Normandy, but it was later repealed in April 1197 by Pope Celestine III
Pope Celestine III
Pope Celestine III , born Giacinto Bobone, was elected Pope on March 21, 1191, and reigned until his death. He was born into the noble Orsini family in Rome, though he was only a cardinal deacon before becoming Pope...

, after Richard made gifts of land to Walter de Coutances and the diocese of Rouen, including two manors and the prosperous port of Dieppe
Dieppe, Seine-Maritime
Dieppe is a commune in the Seine-Maritime department in France. In 1999, the population of the whole Dieppe urban area was 81,419.A port on the English Channel, famous for its scallops, and with a regular ferry service from the Gare Maritime to Newhaven in England, Dieppe also has a popular pebbled...

.

During Richard's reign, royal expenditure on castles declined from the levels spent under Henry II
Henry II of England
Henry II ruled as King of England , Count of Anjou, Count of Maine, Duke of Normandy, Duke of Aquitaine, Duke of Gascony, Count of Nantes, Lord of Ireland and, at various times, controlled parts of Wales, Scotland and western France. Henry, the great-grandson of William the Conqueror, was the...

, Richard's father. This has been attributed to a concentration of resources on Richard's war with the king of France. However, the work at Château Gaillard was some of the most expensive of its time and cost an estimated £15,000 to £20,000 between 1196 and 1198. This was more than double Richard's spending on castles in England, an estimated £7,000. Unprecedented in its speed of construction, the castle was mostly complete in just two years, when most construction on such a scale would have taken the best part of a decade. According to William of Newburgh
William of Newburgh
William of Newburgh or Newbury , also known as William Parvus, was a 12th-century English historian and Augustinian canon from Bridlington, Yorkshire.-Biography:...

, in May 1198 Richard and the labourers working on the castle were drenched in a "rain of blood
Blood rain
Blood rain or red rain is a phenomenon in which blood is perceived to fall from the sky in the form of rain. Cases have been recorded since Homer's Iliad, composed ca eighth century BC, and are widespread. Before the 17th century it was generally believed that the rain was actually blood...

". While some of his advisers thought the rain was an evil omen, Richard was undeterred:
As no master-mason is mentioned in the otherwise detailed records of the castle's construction, military historian Allen Brown has suggested that Richard himself was the overall architect; this is supported by the interest Richard showed in the work through his frequent presence. In his final years, the castle became Richard's favourite residence, and writs and charters were written at Château Gaillard bearing "apud Bellum Castrum de Rupe" (at the Fair Castle of the Rock). Château Gaillard was ahead of its time, featuring innovations that would be adopted in castle architecture nearly a century later. Richard later boasted that he could hold the castle "were the walls made of butter". Allen Brown described Château Gaillard as "one of the finest castles in Europe" and military historian Sir Charles Oman
Charles Oman
Sir Charles William Chadwick Oman was a British military historian of the early 20th century. His reconstructions of medieval battles from the fragmentary and distorted accounts left by chroniclers were pioneering...

 wrote that:
Determined to resist Philip's designs on contested Angevin lands such as the Vexin and Berry, Richard poured all his military expertise and vast resources into war on the French King. He constructed an alliance against Philip, including Baldwin IX of Flanders, Renaud, Count of Boulogne, and his father-in-law King Sancho VI of Navarre
Sancho VI of Navarre
Sancho VI Garcés , called the Wise , was the king of Navarre from 1150 until his death in 1194....

, who raided Philip's lands from the south. Most importantly, he managed to secure the Welf inheritance in Saxony for his nephew, Henry the Lion
Henry the Lion
Henry the Lion was a member of the Welf dynasty and Duke of Saxony, as Henry III, from 1142, and Duke of Bavaria, as Henry XII, from 1156, which duchies he held until 1180....

's son Otto of Poitou, who was elected Otto IV of Germany in 1198.
Partly as a result of these and other intrigues, Richard won several victories over Philip. At Freteval in 1194, just after Richard's return from captivity and money-raising in England to France, Philip fled, leaving his entire archive of financial audits and documents to be captured by Richard. At the battle of Gisors
Battle of Gisors
The Battle of Gisors was a skirmish fought in Courcelles-lès-Gisors, Oise, Picardie, part of the on-going fighting between Richard I of England and Philip Augustus of France that lasted from 1194 to Richard's death in April 1199...

 (sometimes called Courcelles) in 1198 Richard took "Dieu et mon Droit"—"God and my Right"—as his motto (still used by the British monarchy
British monarchy
The monarchy of the United Kingdom is the constitutional monarchy of the United Kingdom and its overseas territories. The present monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, has reigned since 6 February 1952. She and her immediate family undertake various official, ceremonial and representational duties...

 today), echoing his earlier boast to the Emperor Henry that his rank acknowledged no superior but God.

In March 1199, Richard was in the Limousin suppressing a revolt by Viscount Aimar V of Limoges
Aimar V of Limoges
Aimar V Boso was the Viscount of Limoges, a petty nobleman in the Loire valley in the Duchy of Aquitaine.Born in Limoges, Aimar was orphaned at a young age and raised by his relatives among the southern French aristocracy...

. Although it was Lent
Lent
In the Christian tradition, Lent is the period of the liturgical year from Ash Wednesday to Easter. The traditional purpose of Lent is the preparation of the believer – through prayer, repentance, almsgiving and self-denial – for the annual commemoration during Holy Week of the Death and...

, he "devastated the Viscount's land with fire and sword". He besieged the puny, virtually unarmed castle of Chalus-Chabrol
Château de Chalus-Chabrol
The Château de Chalus-Chabrol is a castle in the commune of Châlus in the département of Haute-Vienne, France.The castle dominates the town of Châlus...

. Some chroniclers claimed that this was because a local peasant had uncovered a treasure trove
Treasure trove
A treasure trove may broadly be defined as an amount of money or coin, gold, silver, plate, or bullion found hidden underground or in places such as cellars or attics, where the treasure seems old enough for it to be presumed that the true owner is dead and the heirs undiscoverable...

 of Roman gold, which Richard claimed from Aimar in his position as feudal overlord.
In the early evening of 25 March 1199, Richard was walking around the castle perimeter without his chainmail, investigating the progress of sappers on the castle walls. Missiles were occasionally shot from the castle walls, but these were given little attention. One defender in particular amused the king greatly—a man standing on the walls, crossbow in one hand, the other clutching a frying pan which he had been using all day as a shield to beat off missiles. He deliberately aimed at the king, which the king applauded; however, another crossbowman then struck the king in the left shoulder near the neck. He tried to pull this out in the privacy of his tent but failed; a surgeon, called a 'butcher' by Hoveden, removed it, 'carelessly mangling' the King's arm in the process. The wound swiftly became gangrenous
Gangrene
Gangrene is a serious and potentially life-threatening condition that arises when a considerable mass of body tissue dies . This may occur after an injury or infection, or in people suffering from any chronic health problem affecting blood circulation. The primary cause of gangrene is reduced blood...

. Accordingly, Richard asked to have the crossbowman brought before him; called alternatively Pierre (or Peter) Basile, John Sabroz, Dudo, and Bertrand de Gurdon (from the town of Gourdon) by chroniclers, the man turned out (according to some sources, but not all) to be a boy. This boy claimed that Richard had killed the boy's father and two brothers, and that he had killed Richard in revenge. The boy expected to be executed; Richard, as a last act of mercy, forgave the boy of his crime, saying, "Live on, and by my bounty behold the light of day," before ordering the boy to be freed and sent away with 100 shilling
Shilling
The shilling is a unit of currency used in some current and former British Commonwealth countries. The word shilling comes from scilling, an accounting term that dates back to Anglo-Saxon times where it was deemed to be the value of a cow in Kent or a sheep elsewhere. The word is thought to derive...

s. Richard then set his affairs in order, bequeathing all his territory to his brother John and his jewels to his nephew Otto.

Richard died on 6 April 1199 in the arms of his mother; it was later said that "As the day was closing, he ended his earthly day." His death was later referred to as 'the Lion (that) by the Ant was slain'. According to one chronicler, Richard's last act of chivalry proved fruitless; in an orgy of medieval brutality, the infamous mercenary
Mercenary
A mercenary, is a person who takes part in an armed conflict based on the promise of material compensation rather than having a direct interest in, or a legal obligation to, the conflict itself. A non-conscript professional member of a regular army is not considered to be a mercenary although he...

 captain Mercadier
Mercadier
Mercadier was a "French" Provençal warrior of the 12th century, and chief of mercenaries in the service of Richard I of England.In 1183 he appears as a leader of Brabant mercenaries in Southern France. He entered Richard's service in 1184, attacking and laying waste to lands of Aimar V of Limoges....

 had the crossbowman flayed alive
Flaying
Flaying is the removal of skin from the body. Generally, an attempt is made to keep the removed portion of skin intact.-Scope:An animal may be flayed in preparation for human consumption, or for its hide or fur; this is more commonly called skinning....

 and hanged
Hanging
Hanging is the lethal suspension of a person by a ligature. The Oxford English Dictionary states that hanging in this sense is "specifically to put to death by suspension by the neck", though it formerly also referred to crucifixion and death by impalement in which the body would remain...

 as soon as Richard died.

Richard's heart was buried at Rouen
Rouen
Rouen , in northern France on the River Seine, is the capital of the Haute-Normandie region and the historic capital city of Normandy. Once one of the largest and most prosperous cities of medieval Europe , it was the seat of the Exchequer of Normandy in the Middle Ages...

 in Normandy, the entrails in Châlus
Châlus
Châlus is a commune in the Haute-Vienne department in the Limousin region in western France.-History:Châlus' is where Richard I of England was wounded by a crossbow bolt and killed as a result of the wound...

 (where he died) and the rest of his body was buried at the feet of his father at Fontevraud Abbey
Fontevraud Abbey
Fontevraud Abbey or Fontevrault Abbey is a religious building hosting a cultural centre since 1975, the Centre Culturel de l'Ouest, in the village of Fontevraud-l'Abbaye, near Chinon, in Anjou, France. It was founded by the itinerant reforming preacher Robert of Arbrissel, who had just created a...

 in Anjou.

A 13th-century Bishop
Bishop (Catholic Church)
In the Catholic Church, a bishop is an ordained minister who holds the fullness of the sacrament of Holy Orders and is responsible for teaching the Catholic faith and ruling the Church....

 of Rochester
Diocese of Rochester
The Diocese of Rochester is a Church of England diocese in South-East England and forms part of the Province of Canterbury. It is an ancient diocese, having been established in 604; only the neighbouring Diocese of Canterbury is older in the Church of England....

 wrote that Richard spent 33 years in purgatory
Purgatory
Purgatory is the condition or process of purification or temporary punishment in which, it is believed, the souls of those who die in a state of grace are made ready for Heaven...

 as expiation for his sins, eventually ascending to Heaven
Heaven
Heaven, the Heavens or Seven Heavens, is a common religious cosmological or metaphysical term for the physical or transcendent place from which heavenly beings originate, are enthroned or inhabit...

 in March 1232.

Sexuality

Since the 1950s, Richard's sexuality has become an issue of controversy. Victorian and Edwardian historians had rarely addressed this question, but in 1948 historian John Harvey challenged what he perceived as "the conspiracy of silence" surrounding Richard's homosexuality. This argument drew primarily on available chronicler accounts of Richard's behaviour, chronicler records of Richard's two public confessions and penitences, and Richard's childless marriage. This material is complicated by accounts of Richard having had at least one illegitimate child (Philip of Cognac
Philip of Cognac
Philip of Cognac was an illegitimate son of Richard I of England by an unidentified mother.Philip had reached adulthood by the end of the 1190s. His father married him to his ward, Amelia, the heiress of Cognac in Charente...

), and allegations that Richard had sexual relations with local women during his campaigns.

Leading historians remain divided on the question of Richard's sexuality. Harvey's argument has gained considerable support; However this view has been disputed by other historians, most notably John Gillingham
John Gillingham
John Gillingham is emeritus professor of medieval history at the London School of Economics and Political Science. On the 19th July 2007 he was elected into the Fellowship of the British Academy He is renowned as an expert on the Angevin empire.-Books:...

. Drawing on other chronicler accounts, he argues that Richard was probably heterosexual.

Historian Jean Flori states that contemporary historians quite generally accept that Richard was homosexual. Flori also analysed contemporaneous accounts; he refuted Gillinham's arguments and concluded that Richard's two public confession
Confession
This article is for the religious practice of confessing one's sins.Confession is the acknowledgment of sin or wrongs...

s and penitences (in 1191 and 1195) must have referred to the "sin of sodomy
Sodomy
Sodomy is an anal or other copulation-like act, especially between male persons or between a man and animal, and one who practices sodomy is a "sodomite"...

". Flori cites contemporaneous accounts of Richard taking women by force and concludes that Richard was probably bisexual.

Flori and Gillingham agree that the contemporaneous accounts do not support the allegation that Richard had a homosexual relation with King Philip II of France
Philip II of France
Philip II Augustus was the King of France from 1180 until his death. A member of the House of Capet, Philip Augustus was born at Gonesse in the Val-d'Oise, the son of Louis VII and his third wife, Adela of Champagne...

, as suggested by some modern authors.

Legacy

Richard's reputation over the years has "fluctuated wildly", according to historian John Gillingham
John Gillingham
John Gillingham is emeritus professor of medieval history at the London School of Economics and Political Science. On the 19th July 2007 he was elected into the Fellowship of the British Academy He is renowned as an expert on the Angevin empire.-Books:...

. Richard's contemporaneous image was that of a king who was also a knight
Knight
A knight was a member of a class of lower nobility in the High Middle Ages.By the Late Middle Ages, the rank had become associated with the ideals of chivalry, a code of conduct for the perfect courtly Christian warrior....

, and that was apparently the first such instance of this combination. He was known as a valiant and competent military leader and individual fighter: courageous and generous. That reputation has come down through the ages and defines the popular image of Richard. He left an indelible imprint on the imagination extending to the present, in large part because of his military exploits. This is reflected in Steven Runciman
Steven Runciman
The Hon. Sir James Cochran Stevenson Runciman CH — known as Steven Runciman — was a British historian known for his work on the Middle Ages...

's final verdict of Richard I: "he was a bad son, a bad husband and a bad king, but a gallant and splendid soldier."("History of the Crusades" Vol. III) meanwhile, Muslim writers during the Crusades period and after wrote of him: "Never have we had to face a bolder or more subtle opponent."

Richard however also received negative portrayals. During his life, he was criticized by chroniclers for having taxed the clergy both for the Crusade and for his ransom, whereas the church and the clergy were usually exempt from taxes. Victorian England was divided on Richard: "Many of them admired him as a crusader and man of God, erecting an heroic statue
Richard Coeur de Lion (statue)
thumb|right|upright|The statue of King Richard I outside the Houses of ParliamentRichard Coeur de Lion is an equestrian statue of Richard I of England, who was also known as Richard the Lionheart, created by Baron Carlo Marochetti. A clay model was displayed at The Great Exhibition in 1851, with...

 to him outside the Houses of Parliament; Stubbs, on the other hand, thought him 'a bad son, a bad husband, a selfish ruler, and a vicious man'. Though born in Oxford, he spoke no English. During his ten years' reign, he was in England for no more than six months, and was totally absent for the last five years.

Richard produced no legitimate heirs and acknowledged only one illegitimate son, Philip of Cognac
Philip of Cognac
Philip of Cognac was an illegitimate son of Richard I of England by an unidentified mother.Philip had reached adulthood by the end of the 1190s. His father married him to his ward, Amelia, the heiress of Cognac in Charente...

. As a result, he was succeeded by his brother John as King of England. However, his French territories initially rejected John as a successor, preferring his nephew Arthur of Brittany, the son of their late brother Geoffrey, whose claim was by modern standards better than John's. Significantly, the lack of any direct heirs from Richard was the first step in the dissolution of the Angevin Empire
Angevin Empire
The term Angevin Empire is a modern term describing the collection of states once ruled by the Angevin Plantagenet dynasty.The Plantagenets ruled over an area stretching from the Pyrenees to Ireland during the 12th and early 13th centuries, located north of Moorish Iberia. This "empire" extended...

. While Kings of England continued to press claims to properties on the continent, they would never again command the territories Richard I inherited.

Medieval folklore

Around the middle of the 13th century, various legends developed that, after Richard's capture, his minstrel Blondel travelled Europe from castle to castle, loudly singing a song known only to the two of them (they had composed it together). Eventually, he came to the place where Richard was being held, and Richard heard the song and answered with the appropriate refrain, thus revealing where the king was incarcerated. The story was the basis of André Ernest Modeste Grétry
André Ernest Modeste Grétry
André Ernest Modeste Grétry was acomposer from the Prince-Bishopric of Liège , who worked from 1767 onwards in France and took French nationality. He is most famous for his opéras comiques....

's opera
Opera
Opera is an art form in which singers and musicians perform a dramatic work combining text and musical score, usually in a theatrical setting. Opera incorporates many of the elements of spoken theatre, such as acting, scenery, and costumes and sometimes includes dance...

 Richard Coeur-de-Lion and seems to be the inspiration for the opening to Richard Thorpe
Richard Thorpe
Richard Thorpe was an American film director.Born Rollo Smolt Thorpe in Hutchinson, Kansas, he began his entertainment career performing in vaudeville and onstage. In 1921 he began in motion pictures as an actor and directed his first silent film in 1923. He went on to direct more than one hundred...

's film version of Ivanhoe
Ivanhoe (1952 film)
Ivanhoe is a 1952 historical film made by MGM. It was directed by Richard Thorpe and produced by Pandro S. Berman. The cast featured Robert Taylor, Elizabeth Taylor, Joan Fontaine, George Sanders, Emlyn Williams, Finlay Currie and Felix Aylmer...

. It seems unconnected to the real Jean 'Blondel' de Nesle, an aristocratic trouvère
Trouvère
Trouvère , sometimes spelled trouveur , is the Northern French form of the word trobador . It refers to poet-composers who were roughly contemporary with and influenced by the troubadours but who composed their works in the northern dialects of France...

. It also does not correspond to the historical reality, since the king's jailers did not hide the fact; on the contrary, they publicized it.

At some time around the 16th century, tales of Robin Hood
Robin Hood
Robin Hood was a heroic outlaw in English folklore. A highly skilled archer and swordsman, he is known for "robbing from the rich and giving to the poor", assisted by a group of fellow outlaws known as his "Merry Men". Traditionally, Robin Hood and his men are depicted wearing Lincoln green clothes....

 started to mention him as a contemporary and supporter of King Richard the Lionheart, Robin being driven to outlawry, during the misrule of Richard's evil brother John, while Richard was away at the Third Crusade. Although this view has become increasingly popular, it is certainly not supported by the earliest ballads.

Modern fiction

Richard appears as a major or minor character in many works of fiction, both written and audio-visual. As noted above, Richard appears in connection with Robin Hood
Robin Hood
Robin Hood was a heroic outlaw in English folklore. A highly skilled archer and swordsman, he is known for "robbing from the rich and giving to the poor", assisted by a group of fellow outlaws known as his "Merry Men". Traditionally, Robin Hood and his men are depicted wearing Lincoln green clothes....

 in Sir Walter Scott's novel Ivanhoe
Ivanhoe
Ivanhoe is a historical fiction novel by Sir Walter Scott in 1819, and set in 12th-century England. Ivanhoe is sometimes credited for increasing interest in Romanticism and Medievalism; John Henry Newman claimed Scott "had first turned men's minds in the direction of the middle ages," while...

 and the many works derived from the novel
Ivanhoe (disambiguation)
Ivanhoe is an 1819 novel by Walter Scott.Ivanhoe may also refer to:-Film, arts, and literature:*Ivanhoé, 1826 pastiche opera with music by Gioachino Rossini*Ivanhoe , by Arthur Sullivan *Ivanhoe Ivanhoe is an 1819 novel by Walter Scott.Ivanhoe may also refer to:-Film, arts, and literature:*Ivanhoé,...

, and in numerous films about Robin Hood
Robin Hood (disambiguation)
Robin Hood is a famous English folk hero and legendary outlaw.Robin Hood may also refer to:Film:*Robin Hood , a silent film starring Robert Frazer*Robin Hood , a silent film starring Douglas Fairbanks...

. The opera Riccardo Primo
Riccardo Primo
Riccardo primo, re d’Inghilterra is an opera in three acts written for the Royal Academy of Music by George Frideric Handel. The Italian-language libretto was by Paolo Antonio Rolli, after Francesco Briani's Isacio tiranno, set by Antonio Lotti in 1710...

 by George Frideric Handel
George Frideric Handel
George Frideric Handel was a German-British Baroque composer, famous for his operas, oratorios, anthems and organ concertos. Handel was born in 1685, in a family indifferent to music...

 is based on Richard's invasion of Cyprus. He is one of the main character in Scott's The Talisman, which is set during the Third Crusade
Third Crusade
The Third Crusade , also known as the Kings' Crusade, was an attempt by European leaders to reconquer the Holy Land from Saladin...

. He also appears in many other fictional accounts of the Third Crusade and its sequel, for example Graham Shelby
Graham Shelby
Graham Shelby is a British historical novelist. He worked as a copywriter and book-reviewer before embarking on a series of historical novels, mainly set in the twelfth century.-List of works:...

's The Kings of Vain Intent and The Devil is Loose. He is the main character in Norah Lofts
Norah Lofts
Norah Lofts, née Norah Robinson, was a 20th century best-selling British author. She wrote more than fifty books specialising in historical fiction, but she also wrote non-fiction and short stories...

' novel The Lute Player (which focuses on his sexuality). Richard is a major character in James Goldman
James Goldman
James Goldman was an American screenwriter and playwright, and the brother of screenwriter and novelist William Goldman.He was born in Chicago, Illinois, and grew up primarily in Highland Park, Illinois, a Chicago suburb...

's The Lion in Winter
The Lion in Winter
-Synopsis:Set during Christmas 1183 at Henry II of England's château in Chinon, Anjou, Angevin Empire, the play opens with the arrival of Henry's wife Eleanor of Aquitaine, whom he has had imprisoned since 1173...

, in which there are references to the alleged homosexual relation between Richard and Philip of France. James Rado created the role on Broadway in 1966, and Anthony Hopkins
Anthony Hopkins
Sir Philip Anthony Hopkins, KBE , best known as Anthony Hopkins, is a Welsh actor of film, stage and television...

 played it in Anthony Harvey
Anthony Harvey
Anthony Harvey is a British filmmaker who started his career in the 1950s as a film editor, and moved into directing in the mid 1960s. Harvey has fifteen film credits as an editor, and he has directed thirteen films...

's 1968 film
The Lion in Winter (1968 film)
The Lion in Winter is a 1968 historical drama made by Avco Embassy Pictures, based on the Broadway play by James Goldman. It was directed by Anthony Harvey and produced by Joseph E...

.

Ancestors



See also

  • The Crusade and Death of Richard I
    The Crusade and Death of Richard I
    The Crusade and Death of Richard I is a mid-13th century Anglo-Norman prose chronicle by an anonymous author. It tells of the journey of King Richard I from England to the Holy Land on the Third Crusade from 1190 to 1191...

  • Cultural depictions of Richard I of England
    Cultural depictions of Richard I of England
    Richard I of England has been depicted many times in romantic fiction and popular culture.-Robin Hood:The Scots philosopher and chronicler John Mair was the first to associate Richard with the Robin Hood legends in his Historia majoris Britannae, tam Angliae quam Scotiae...

  • List of English monarchs

Further reading

  • Ralph of Diceto, Radulfi de Diceto Decani Lundoniensis Opera Historica, ed. William Stubbs, 2 vols (London, 1876)
  • Berg, Dieter. Richard Löwenherz. Darmstadt, 2007.
  • Edbury, Peter W. The Conquest of Jerusalem and the Third Crusade: Sources in Translation. Ashgate, 1996. [Includes letters by Richard reporting events of the Third Crusade (pp. 178–182).] ISBN 1-84014-676-1
  • Gabrieli, Francesco. (ed.) Arab Historians of the Crusades, English translation 1969, ISBN 0-520-05224-2
  • Gillingham, John, Richard Coeur de Lion: Kingship, Chivalry and War in the Twelfth Century, 1994, ISBN 1-85285-084-1
  • Nelson, Janet L. (ed.) Richard Coeur de Lion in History and Myth, 1992, ISBN 0-9513085-6-4
  • Nicholson, Helen J. (ed.) The Chronicle of the Third Crusade: The Itinerarium Peregrinorum et Gesta Regis Ricardi, 1997, ISBN 0-7546-0581-7
  • Runciman, Steven
    Steven Runciman
    The Hon. Sir James Cochran Stevenson Runciman CH — known as Steven Runciman — was a British historian known for his work on the Middle Ages...

    . A History of the Crusades, 1951–54, vols. 2–3.
  • Stubbs, William
    William Stubbs
    William Stubbs was an English historian and Bishop of Oxford.The son of William Morley Stubbs, a solicitor, he was born at Knaresborough, Yorkshire, and was educated at Ripon Grammar School and Christ Church, Oxford, where he graduated in 1848, obtaining a first-class in classics and a third in...

     (ed.), Itinerarium Peregrinorum et Gesta Regis Ricardi (London, 1864), available at Gallica. (PDF of anon. translation, Itinerary of Richard I and others to the Holy Land (Cambridge, Ontario, 2001))
  • William of Tyre, French continuation of. Historia rerum in partibus transmarinis gestarum (external link to text in mediæval French).
  • Williams, Patrick A. "The Assassination of Conrad of Montferrat: Another Suspect?", Traditio, vol. XXVI, 1970.
  • Reston, James Jr. "Warriors of God", 2001, ISBN 0-385-49562-5


External links

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