Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Philippa of Hainault

Philippa of Hainault
Queen of England.

Philippa was born (24/6/1311) at Valenciennes, Belgium, the daughter of Count Guillaume/William III de Avesnes of Hainault and Holland (d.1337) and Jeanne de Valois (d.1352. Her marriage to King Edward III of England was arranged by Edward's mother, Isabella of France (1326) - they were second cousins. She was married (24/1/1328) at York Minster and crowned two years later (c.1330).

Philippa bore Edward twelve children: son Edward the Black Prince born at Woodstock (1330), Isabella, Joan/Joanna, William of Hatfield, Lionel of Antwerp Duke of Clarence, John of Gaunt Duke of Lancaster, Edmund of Langley Duke of York, Blanche, Mary, Margaret, William of Windsor, Thomas of Woodstock Duke of Gloucester.

Philippa was a competant woman and was appointed Regent of England by her husband Edward when he was absent on the Continent. When the Scots invaded England as far south as Durham (1346), Philippa raised an army, winning the battle of Neville's Cross, and taking the Scottish King David II Bruce (d.1371) prisoner. Philippa was responsible for the introduction of weaving into England. She was the patron of poets and musicians.

Philippa herself survived the Black Death (1348) - but her daughter Joanna, en route to marry the Castilian Prince Pedro the Cruel, was struck down and died (some say fortunately). It was during the reign of her husband Edward III that English became the "official" language (1363).

Philippa died at Windsor (15/8/1369), Edward at her side. She was mourned by her devoted husband and buried at Westminster Abbey. Edward died 8 years later.

~~~ Melisende (first pub: 1998 - Women of History)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

My family lineage starts with Philipa of Hainault and King Edward III on my mothers site (http://members.tripod.com/~Bonestwo/). Just doing research! Thanks for the information.