1 August 1714
Queen Anne died
Queen Anne (born. 6 February 1665 – died. 1 August 1714)
Anne was Queen of England, Scotland & Ireland between 8 March 1702 & 1 May 1707. On 1 May 1707, under the Acts of Union, the kingdoms of England & Scotland united as a single sovereign state known as Great Britain. She continued to reign as Queen of Great Britain & Ireland until her death in 1714.
Anne was born in the reign of Charles II to his younger brother & heir presumptive, James (later James II), whose suspected Roman Catholicism was unpopular in England. On Charles's instructions, Anne & her elder sister, Mary, were raised as Anglicans. Mary married their Dutch Protestant cousin, William III of Orange, in 1677, & Anne married Prince George of Denmark (2 April 1653 – 28 October 1708) in 1683.
On Charles's death in 1685, James succeeded to the throne, but just three years later he was deposed in the Glorious Revolution of 1688. Mary & William became joint monarchs. Although the sisters had been close, disagreements over Anne's finances, status, & choice of acquaintances arose shortly after Mary's accession & they became estranged. William & Mary had no children. After Mary's death in 1694, William reigned alone until his own death in 1702, when Anne succeeded him.
During her reign, Anne favoured moderate Tory politicians, who were more likely to share her Anglican religious views than their opponents, the Whigs. The Whigs grew more powerful during the course of the War of the Spanish Succession, until 1710 when Anne dismissed many of them from office. Her close friendship with Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough, turned sour as the result of political differences. The Duchess took revenge with an unflattering description of the Queen in her memoirs, which was widely accepted by historians until Anne was re-assessed in the late 20th century.
Anne was plagued by ill health throughout her life, & from her thirties, she grew increasingly ill & obese. Despite seventeen pregnancies by her husband, she died without surviving issue & was the last monarch of the House of Stuart. Under the Act of Settlement 1701, which excluded all Catholics, she was succeeded by her second cousin George I of the House of Hanover.
Stillborn daughter (12 May 1684, London - 13 May 1684).
Mary (2 June 1685, Palace of Whitehall - 8 February 1687, Windsor Castle), christened 2 June 1685 by the Bishop of London; styled "the Lady Mary". Died of smallpox.
Anne Sophia (Mary's younger sister), & their father all becoming ill at Windsor Castle in early 1687.
Anne Sophia (12 May 1686, Windsor Castle - 2 February 1687), christened by the Bishop of Durham, with Lady Churchill one of the godmothers; styled "the Lady Anne Sophia".
Miscarriage (21 January 1687).
Stillborn son (22 October 1687, Whitehall), Anne gave birth at seven months, but the baby "lay dead a full month within her".
Miscarriage (16 April 1688).
Prince William, Duke of Gloucester (24 July 1689, Hampton Court Palace - 30 July 1700).
Mary (14 October 1690, St James's Palace). She was two months premature, & lived about two hours.
George (17 April 1692, Syon House). He lived only for a few minutes, just long enough to be baptised; styled "Lord George".
Stillborn daughter (23 March 1693, Berkeley House).
Miscarriage (21 January 1694). Modern historians Edward Gregg & Alison Weir do not agree on whether it was a son or possibly a daughter. Contemporary chronicler Narcissus Luttrell wrote only that Anne "miscarried of a dead child".
Miscarried daughter (17 or 18 February 1696).
Miscarriage (20 September 1696). Luttrell said Anne "miscarried of a son". Dr Nathaniel Johnson told Theophilus Hastings, 7th Earl of Huntingdon, in a letter dated 24 October 1696, "Her Royal Highness miscarried of two children, the one of seven months' growth, the other of two or three months, as her physicians & midwife judged: one was born the day after the other." If so, the smaller foetus was probably a blighted twin or fetus papyraceus.
Miscarriage (25 March 1697).
Miscarriage (early December 1697). According to Saunière de L'Hermitage, the Dutch resident in London, Anne miscarried twins who were "too early to determine their sex". Other sources say the pregnancy ended in a stillborn son, or "two male children, at least as far as could be recognised".
Stillborn son (15 September 1698, Windsor Castle). James Vernon wrote to Charles Talbot, 1st Duke of Shrewsbury, that Anne's physician thought the foetus "might have been dead 8 or 10 days".
Stillborn son (24 January 1700). Contemporary sources say Anne gave birth at seven & a half months, after the foetus had been dead for a month.
1 August 1714
George, Elector of Hanover, becomes King George I of Great Britain
George I (28 May 1660 – 11 June 1727) was King of Great Britain & Ireland from 1 August 1714 & also ruler of the Duchy & Electorate of Brunswick-Lüneburg (Hanover) within the Holy Roman Empire from 23 January 1698 until his death in 1727. He was the first British monarch of the House of Hanover.
1 August 1800
The Acts of Union 1800 are passed which merge the Kingdom of Great Britain and the Kingdom of Ireland into the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.
2 August 1100
King William II died.
William went hunting on 2 August 1100 in the New Forest, probably near Brockenhurst, & was killed by an arrow through the lung, though the circumstances remain unclear. The earliest statement of the event was in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, which noted that the king was "shot by an arrow by one of his own men." Later chroniclers added the name of the killer, a nobleman named Walter Tirel, although the description of events was later embroidered with other details that may or may not be true. Over the following centuries, the obvious suggestion that one of William's enemies may have had a hand in this extraordinary event has repeatedly been made: chroniclers of the time point out themselves that Tirel was renowned as a keen bowman, & thus was unlikely to have loosed such an impetuous shot.
The king's body was abandoned by the nobles at the place where he fell. A peasant later found it. His younger brother, Henry (Henry I), hastened to Winchester to secure the royal treasury, then to London, where he was crowned within days, before either archbishop could arrive. William of Malmesbury, in his account of William's death, stated that the body was taken to Winchester Cathedral by a few countrymen. William's brother Henry was among the hunting party that day & benefited directly from William's death, being crowned king shortly thereafter. Indeed, Henry's actions "seem to be premeditated: wholly disregarding his dead brother, he rode straight for Winchester, seized the treasury (always the first act of a usurping king).
William's remains are in Winchester Cathedral, scattered among royal mortuary chests positioned on the presbytery screen, flanking the choir. His skull appears to be missing, but some long bones may remain. A stone known as the "Rufus Stone", close to the A31 near the village of Minstead, is claimed to mark the spot where William II fell.
William II (c. 1056 – 2 August 1100), the third son of William the Conqueror, was King of England from 26 September 1087 until his death in 1100, with powers over Normandy, & influence in Scotland. He was less successful in extending control into Wales. William is commonly referred to as William Rufus (Rufus being Latin for "the Red"), perhaps because of his ruddy appearance or, more likely, due to having red hair as a child that grew out in later life.
2 August 1274
Edward I of England returns from the Ninth Crusade
Lord Edward's crusade, sometimes called the Ninth Crusade, was a military expedition to the Holy Land under the command of Lord Edward, Duke of Gascony (future King Edward I of England) in 1271–1272. It was an extension of the Eighth Crusade & was the last of the Crusades to reach the Holy Land before the fall of Acre in 1291 brought an end to the permanent crusader presence there.
Edward left Acre on 24 September 1272. After arriving in Sicily, Edward received the news that his father had died on 16 November. Edward was said to be deeply saddened by this news, but rather than hurrying home, he made a leisurely journey northwards. This was due partly to his still-poor health, but also to a lack of urgency. The political situation in England was stable after the mid-century upheavals, & Edward was proclaimed king after his father's death, rather than at his own coronation, as had until then been customary. In Edward's absence, the country was governed by a royal council, led by Robert Burnell.
Edward I (17/18 June 1239 – 7 July 1307), also known as Edward Longshanks was King of England from 1272 to 1307.
Did you know? The Society of Antiquaries of London opened the tomb of Edward I in 1774, finding that the body had been well preserved over the preceding 467 years, & took the opportunity to determine the King's original height.
2 August 1330
Yolande of Dreux, Queen consort of Scotland died.
Yolande of Dreux (20 March 1263 – 2 August 1330) was a sovereign Countess of Montfort from 1311 until 1322. Through her first marriage to Alexander III of Scotland, Yolande became Queen consort of the Kingdom of Scotland. Through her second marriage to Arthur II, Duke of Brittany, she became Duchess Consort of Brittany.
She was the daughter of Robert IV, Count of Dreux, & Beatrice, Countess of Montfort. Her father was a patrilineal descendant of King Louis VI of France, making her a member of a cadet branch of the Capetian dynasty with powerful connections. In 1281, King Alexander III of Scotland lost his son David & two other children in the two following years, leaving his granddaughter, Margaret, Maid of Norway, as his heir presumptive. His first wife Margaret of England had died in 1275, & he was in need to remarry to have a new heir to the throne. An embassy was sent from Scotland in February 1285 & returned with Yolande in the company of her brother Jean. The marriage was celebrated on 15 October 1285 at Jedburgh Abbey, attended by a great many nobles of France and Scotland. Alexander died on either 18 March or 19 March 1286, after falling from his horse, while riding from his court at Edinburgh to join Yolande at Kinghorn. Following his death, queen dowager Yolande moved to Stirling Castle & declared that she was pregnant. The Guardians of Scotland were elected by a parliament held at Scone, Perth & Kinross on 2 April or 28 April 1286 & swore to govern the kingdom until Alexander's declared heir Margaret of Norway arrived to take the throne or Yolande gave birth to a child who would be preferred over Margaret. It is unclear what happened to her pregnancy; either she had a miscarriage, or the baby was stillborn or died shortly after birth. However, by one account the Guardians gathered at Clackmannan on Saint Catherine's Day – 25 November 1286 – to witness the birth, but the child was stillborn. Tradition says the baby was buried at Cambuskenneth. After the queen dowager's pregnancy did not result in a living child, the council begun preparations for Margaret of Norway to be taken to Scotland as their new sovereign.
Queen dowager Yolande remained in Scotland for a couple of years supported by her dower provisions & living possibly at Stirling Castle: it is known that she was still in Scotland at least as late as in 1288. At some point, she returned to France.
In May 1294, she married Arthur II, Duke of Brittany. Together they had at least six children. Arthur died in 1312, being succeeded by his son John III, Duke of Brittany. Yolande succeeded her mother as suo jure Countess of Montfort in 1311. She continued to manage her Scottish affairs: as late as shortly before her death, she is noted to have sent a knight to Scotland to see to her dower lands. Yolande died on 2 August 1330 in the convent of Port-Royal des Champs outside of Paris. Her county of Montfort passed to her son John, who would later fight for his claim to his father's duchy in the Breton War of Succession.
3 August 1460
James II King of Scotland died.
James II (16 October 1430 – 3 August 1460) was King of Scots from 1437 until his death in 1460.
James II enthusiastically promoted modern artillery, which he used with some success against the Black Douglases. His ambitions to increase Scotland's standing saw him besiege Roxburgh Castle in 1460, one of the last Scottish castles still held by the English after the Wars of Independence.
For this siege, James took a large number of cannons imported from Flanders. On 3 August, he was standing near one of these cannons, known as "the Lion", when it exploded & killed him. Robert Lindsay of Pitscottie stated in his history of James's reign that "as the King stood near a piece of artillery, his thigh bone was dug in two with a piece of misframed gun that brake in shooting, by which he was stricken to the ground and died hastily."
The Scots carried on with the siege, led by George Douglas, 4th Earl of Angus, & the castle fell a few days later. Once the castle was captured, James' widow, Mary of Guelders, ordered its destruction. James' son became king as James III & Mary acted as regent until her own death three years later.
James II key facts;
Born: 16 October 1430, Holyrood Abbey, Scotland.
Father: James I of Scotland.
Mother: Joan Beaufort.
Married: Mary of Guelders, at Holyrood Abbey, Edinburgh, on 3 July 1449.
Unnamed son - (b.19 May 1450).
James III, (10 July 1451-11 June 1488). James's successor as King of Scots.
Mary Stewart, Countess of Arran, (13 May 1453-May 1488). Wife of (firstly) Thomas Boyd, Earl of Arran; (secondly) James Hamilton, 1st Lord Hamilton.
Alexander, Duke of Albany (c. 1454 7 August 1485)
David, Earl of Moray - (c. 1455 Bef. July 1457)
John, Earl of Mar and Garioch c. 1456 c. 1479
Margaret: 1453/60 unknown.
Reign: 21 February 1437 – 3 August 1460.
Coronation: 25 March 1437.
Died: 3 August 1460, Roxburgh Castle, Roxburghshire, Scotland.
Burial: Holyrood Abbey.
Did you know? James II was the first Scottish monarch not to be crowned at Scone, James II's coronation took place at Holyrood Abbey.
4 August 1265
Second Barons' War: Battle of Evesham
The army of Prince Edward (the future king Edward I of England) defeats the forces of rebellious barons led by Simon de Montfort, 6th Earl of Leicester, killing de Montfort & many of his allies.
The Battle of Evesham was one of the two main battles of 13th century England's Second Barons' War. It marked the defeat of Simon de Montfort, Earl of Leicester, & the rebellious barons by the future King Edward I, who led the forces of his father, King Henry III. It took place on 4 August 1265, near the town of Evesham, Worcestershire.
With the Battle of Lewes (14 May 1264), de Montfort had won control of royal government, but after the defection of several close allies & the escape from captivity of Prince Edward, he found himself on the defensive. Forced to engage the royalists at Evesham, he faced an army twice the size of his own. The battle soon turned into a massacre.
With their defeat at Lewes still fresh in memory, the royalists fought with a strong sense of bitterness & resentment. As a result, & despite attempts to surrender, most of the baronial rebels were killed on the battlefield rather than taken prisoner & ransomed, as was the common custom & practice. In what has been referred to as "an episode of noble bloodletting unprecedented since the Conquest", de Montfort's son Henry was killed first, then Simon himself lost his horse & died fighting. His body was mutilated; his head, hands, feet & testicles cut off. King Henry himself, who had been in the custody of de Montfort & dressed up in his colours, was barely rescued from the mêlée by Roger de Leybourne, a converted rebel.
Death & mutilation of Simon de Montfort at the Battle of Evesham. Above Simon is the body of Hugh le Despencer, 1st Baron le Despencer (1223-1265) (with arms of Despencer on his surcoat) an important ally of Simon de Montfort who served briefly as Justiciar of England in 1260 & as Constable of the Tower of London. He was killed fighting on de Montfort's side at the Battle of Evesham in August, 1265.
It was described by the contemporary historian Robert of Gloucester as the "murder of Evesham, for battle it was none". Though the battle effectively restored royal authority, scattered resistance remained until the Dictum of Kenilworth was signed in 1267.
4 August 1900
Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother was born
Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon (4 August 1900 – 30 March 2002) was Queen of the United Kingdom & the Dominions from 1936 to 1952 as the wife of King George VI. She was the last Empress of India from 1936 until India gained independence from Britain in 1947. After her husband died, she was known as Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, to avoid confusion with her daughter, Queen Elizabeth II.
Elizabeth Angela Marguerite Bowes-Lyon was the youngest daughter & the ninth of ten children of Claude Bowes-Lyon, Lord Glamis (later the 14th Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne in the Peerage of Scotland), & his wife, Cecilia Cavendish-Bentinck. Her mother was descended from British Prime Minister William Cavendish-Bentinck, 3rd Duke of Portland, & Governor-General of India Richard Wellesley, 1st Marquess Wellesley, who was the elder brother of another prime minister, Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington.
Elizabeth Angela Marguerite Bowes-Lyon (Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother) by Philip de László, 1925
Elizabeth came to prominence in 1923 when she married the Duke of York, the second son of King George V & Queen Mary. The couple & their daughters Elizabeth & Margaret embodied traditional ideas of family & public service. The Duchess undertook a variety of public engagements & became known for her consistently cheerful countenance.
In 1936, Elizabeth's husband unexpectedly became king when his older brother, Edward VIII, abdicated in order to marry the American divorcée Wallis Simpson. Elizabeth then became queen. She accompanied her husband on diplomatic tours to France & North America before the start of the Second World War.
The Queen & Princess Elizabeth talk to paratroopers preparing for D-Day, 19 May 1944
During the war, her seemingly indomitable spirit provided moral support to the British public. After the war, her husband's health deteriorated, & she was widowed at the age of 51.
Coronation portrait of Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon (4 August 1900 – 30 March 2002) by Gerald Kelly, c.1938.
Her elder daughter Elizabeth, aged 25, became the new queen on 6 February 1952. After the death of Queen Mary in 1953, Elizabeth was viewed as the matriarch of the British royal family.
In her later years, she was a consistently popular member of the family, even when other members were suffering from low levels of public approval. She continued an active public life until just a few months before her death at the age of 101 years, 238 days, which was seven weeks after the death of her younger daughter, Princess Margaret.
The Queen Mother at Dover Castle Kent by Allan Warren
5 August 910
The Battle of Tettenhall
The Battle of Tettenhall took place, according to the chronicler Æthelweard, near Tettenhall on 5 August 910. The allied forces of Mercia & Wessex met an army of Northumbrian Vikings in Mercia. After successful raids by Danish Vikings, significant parts of northeastern England, formerly Northumbria, were under their control. Danish attacks into central England had been resisted & effectively reduced by Alfred the Great, to the point where his son, King Edward of Wessex, could launch offensive attacks against the foreigners. Edward was allied with the Mercians under his sister Æthelflæd, & their combined forces were formidable. The allies launched a five-week campaign against Northumbrian Danes in 909.
The Vikings quickly sought retaliation for the Northern excursion. In 910, King Edward was in Kent waiting for a fleet he had summoned, & the Vikings, believing that most of the king's troops were on board ship, launched an invasion of Mercia. They raided as far as the Avon near Bristol, & then harried along the Severn until they reached the Bridgnorth area. They now moved east, followed by a joint Mercian & West Saxon army, which caught up with the Vikings near Tettenhall. The raiders were annihilated & three kings were killed: Ingwær, Eowils & Halfdan.
With the Northern Danes subdued, the forces of Wessex & Mercia could be focused against the Vikings who had settled further south, & there was no further incursion from the north for a generation.
5 August 1063
Gruffydd ap Llywelyn, King of Gwynedd died
5 August 1100
Henry I of England coronation at Westminster Abbey
Henry I (c. 1068 – 1 December 1135), also known as Henry Beauclerc, was King of England from 1100 to his death in 1135. He was the fourth son of William the Conqueror & Matilda of Flanders.
5 August 1901
Victoria, Princess royal, German Empress & Queen of Prussia died
Victoria, Princess Royal (born. 21 November 1840) was German Empress & Queen of Prussia as the wife of German Emperor Frederick III. She was the eldest child of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom & Albert, Prince Consort, & was created Princess Royal in 1841. She was the mother of Wilhelm II, German Emperor.
Educated by her father in a politically liberal environment, Victoria was married at age 17 to Prince Frederick of Prussia, with whom she had eight children.
Victoria was empress for only a few months, during which she had opportunity to influence the policy of the German Empire. Frederick III died in 1888 – 99 days after his accession – from laryngeal cancer & was succeeded by their son William II, who had much more conservative views than his parents. After her husband's death, she became widely known as Empress Frederick (German: Kaiserin Friedrich). The empress dowager then settled in Kronberg im Taunus, where she built Friedrichshof, a castle, named in honour of her late husband. Increasingly isolated after the weddings of her younger daughters, Victoria died of breast cancer on 5 August 1901, not long after her mother's death on 22 January 1901.
The correspondence between Victoria & her parents has been preserved almost completely: 3,777 letters from Queen Victoria to her eldest daughter, & about 4,000 letters from the empress to her mother are preserved & catalogued. These give a detailed insight into life at the Prussian court between 1858 & 1900.
6 August 1844
Prince Alfred was born.
7 August 1385
Joan of Kent, died.
7 August 1821
Caroline of Brunswick died
Caroline of Brunswick (Caroline Amelia Elizabeth; 17 May 1768 – 7 August 1821) was Queen of the United Kingdom & Hanover as the wife of King George IV from 29 January 1820 until her death in 1821. She was Princess of Wales from 1795 to 1820.
The daughter of Charles William Ferdinand, Duke of Brunswick, & Princess Augusta of Great Britain, Caroline was engaged to her cousin George in 1794, despite their never having met. He was already illegally married to Maria Fitzherbert. George & Caroline married the following year but separated shortly after the birth of their only child, Princess Charlotte of Wales, in 1796. By 1806, rumours that Caroline had taken lovers & had an illegitimate child led to an investigation into her private life. The dignitaries who led the investigation concluded that there was "no foundation" to the rumours, but Caroline's access to her daughter was nonetheless restricted. In 1814, Caroline moved to Italy, where she employed Bartolomeo Pergami as a servant. Pergami soon became Caroline's closest companion, & it was widely assumed that they were lovers. In 1817, Caroline was devastated when Charlotte died in childbirth. She heard the news from a passing courier as George had refused to write & tell her. He was determined to divorce Caroline, & set up a second investigation to collect evidence of her adultery.
In January 1820, George became King of the United Kingdom & Hanover. He insisted on a divorce from Caroline, which she refused. A legal divorce was possible but difficult to obtain. Caroline returned to Britain to assert her position as queen. She was wildly popular with the British people, who sympathised with her & despised the new king for his immoral behaviour. On the basis of the loose evidence collected against her, George attempted to divorce Caroline by introducing the Pains & Penalties Bill 1820 to Parliament, but he & the bill were so unpopular, & Caroline so popular with the masses, that it was withdrawn by the Liverpool ministry. The King barred Caroline from his coronation in July 1821. She fell ill in London & died three weeks later. Her funeral procession passed through London on its way to her native Braunschweig, where she was buried.
8 August 1503
King James IV of Scotland marries Margaret Tudor, daughter of King Henry VII of England at Holyrood Abbey in Edinburgh, Scotland.
In a ceremony at the altar of Glasgow Cathedral on 10 December 1502, James confirmed the Treaty of Perpetual Peace with Henry VII of England. By this treaty James married Henry VII's daughter Margaret Tudor. After a wedding by proxy in London, the marriage was confirmed in person on 8 August 1503 at Holyrood Abbey, Edinburgh. Their wedding was commemorated by the gift of a Book of Hours.
The union produced four children plus two stillbirths:
James, Duke of Rothesay (21 February 1507, Holyrood Palace – 27 February 1508, Stirling Castle).
A stillborn daughter at Holyrood Palace on 15 July 1508.
Arthur, Duke of Rothesay (20 October 1509, Holyrood Palace – Edinburgh Castle, 14 July 1510).
James V (Linlithgow Palace, 10 April 1512 – Falkland Palace, Fife, 14 December 1542), the only one to reach adulthood, and the successor of his father. James V was the father of Mary, Queen of Scots.
A second stillborn daughter at Holyrood Palace in November 1512.
Alexander, Duke of Ross (Stirling Castle, 30 April 1514 – Stirling Castle, 18 December 1515), born after James's death.
8 August 1588
Queen Elizabeth I delivers her Tilbury speech to her troops.
Because of the threat of invasion from the Netherlands, Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester assembled a force of 4,000 militia at West Tilbury, Essex, to defend the Thames Estuary against any incursion up-river toward London. Because the result of the English fire ship attack & the sea battle of Gravelines had not yet reached England, on 8 August, Elizabeth went to Tilbury to review her forces, arriving on horseback in ceremonial armour to imply to the militia she was prepared to lead them in the ensuing battle. She gave to them her royal address, which survives in at least six slightly different versions.
"My loving people, we have been persuaded by some that are careful of our safety, to take heed how we commit ourselves to armed multitudes for fear of treachery; but, I do assure you, I do not desire to live to distrust my faithful & loving people. Let tyrants fear, I have always so behaved myself, that under God I have placed my chiefest strength & safeguard in the loyal hearts & goodwill of my subjects; &, therefore, I am come amongst you as you see at this time, not for my recreation & disport, but being resolved, in the midst & heat of battle, to live or die amongst you all – to lay down for my God, & for my kingdoms, & for my people, my honour & my blood even in the dust.
I know I have the body of a weak & feeble woman; but I have the heart & stomach of a king – & of a King of England too,
& think foul scorn that Parma or Spain, or any prince of Europe, should dare to invade the borders of my realm; to which, rather than any dishonour should grow by me, I myself will take up arms – I myself will be your general, judge, & rewarder of every one of your virtues in the field. I know already, for your forwardness, you have deserved rewards & crowns, &, we do assure you, on the word of a prince, they shall be duly paid you. In the mean time, my lieutenant general shall be in my stead, than whom never prince commanded a more noble or worthy subject; not doubting but by your obedience to my general, by your concord in the camp, & your valour in the field, we shall shortly have a famous victory over those enemies of my God, of my kingdom, & of my people."
8 August 1988
Princess Beatrice of York was born.
Beatrice was born on 8 August 1988, at 8:18 pm at the Portland Hospital, the first child of the Duke & Duchess of York, & fifth grandchild of Queen Elizabeth II & Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. She is currently tenth in line of succession to the British throne, followed by her sister, Princess Eugenie.
Born in Portland Hospital, London, Beatrice attended St George's School, Ascot before studying at Goldsmiths College, graduating with a bachelor's degree in history. She was briefly employed at the Foreign Office & Sony Pictures before joining software company Afiniti as a Vice President of Strategic Partnerships. Beatrice also works privately with a number of charitable organisations, including the Teenage Cancer Trust & Outward Bound. She married Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi, a property developer, in 2020. Their daughter Sienna Elizabeth was born on 18 September 2021.
Did You Know? Beatrice was the first member of the family to appear in a non-documentary film when she had a small, non-speaking role as an extra in The Young Victoria (2009), based on the accession and early reign of her ancestor Queen Victoria.
9 August 1386
Henry V was born
Henry was born in the tower above the gatehouse of Monmouth Castle in Wales, & for that reason was sometimes called Henry of Monmouth. He was the son of Henry of Bolingbroke (later Henry IV of England) & Mary de Bohun. His father's cousin was the reigning English monarch, King Richard II. Henry's paternal grandfather was the influential John of Gaunt, a son of King Edward III.
Henry V was King of England from 1413 until his death in 1422. Despite his relatively short reign, Henry's outstanding military successes in the Hundred Years' War against France made England one of the strongest military powers in Europe. Immortalised in Shakespeare's "Henriad" plays, Henry is known & celebrated as one of the greatest warrior kings of medieval England.
9 August 1902
Edward VII coronation
Edward VII & Alexandra of Denmark are crowned King & Queen of the United Kingdom of Great Britain & Ireland at Westminster Abbey.
Edward VII (Albert Edward; 9 November 1841 – 6 May 1910) was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain & Ireland & the British Dominions, & Emperor of India from 22 January 1901 until his death in 1910. The eldest son of Queen Victoria & Prince Albert of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha, & nicknamed "Bertie", Edward was related to royalty throughout Europe. He was Prince of Wales and heir apparent to the British throne for almost 60 years.
Edward was related to nearly every other European monarch, & came to be known as the "uncle of Europe". German Emperor Wilhelm II & Emperor Nicholas II of Russia were his nephews; Queen Victoria Eugenia of Spain, Crown Princess Margaret of Sweden, Crown Princess Marie of Romania, Crown Princess Sophia of Greece, & Empress Alexandra of Russia were his nieces; King Haakon VII of Norway was both his nephew & his son-in-law; kings Frederick VIII of Denmark & George I of Greece were his brothers-in-law; kings Albert I of Belgium, Ferdinand of Bulgaria, & Charles I & Manuel II of Portugal were his second cousins. Edward doted on his grandchildren, & indulged them, to the consternation of their governesses. However, there was one relation whom Edward did not like: Wilhelm II. His difficult relationship with his nephew exacerbated the tensions between Germany & Britain.
10 August 1520
Madeleine of Valois was born at Saint-Germain-en-Laye, France.
Madeleine of Valois was a French princess who became Queen of Scotland as the first spouse of King James V.
Madeleine was born at Saint-Germain-en-Laye, France, the fifth child & third daughter of King Francis I of France & Claude, Duchess of Brittany (daughter of King Louis XII of France & Anne, Duchess of Brittany).
She married James V of Scotland on 1 January 1537 at Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. There was a banquet that night in the Louvre Palace. Francis I also provided Madeleine with a very generous dowry, which considerably boosted the Scottish treasury. According to the marriage contract made at Blois, Madeleine renounced her & any of her heirs' claims to the French throne. If James died first, Madeleine would retain for her lifetime assets including the Earldoms of Fife, Strathearn, Ross, & Orkney with Falkland Palace, Stirling Castle, & Dingwall Castle, with the Lordship of Galloway & Threave Castle. After months of festivities & celebrations, the couple left France for Scotland in May 1537. Madeleine's health deteriorated even further, & she was very sick when the royal pair landed in Scotland.
Madeleine wrote to her father from Edinburgh on 8 June 1537 saying that she was better & her symptoms had diminished. James V had written to Francis I asking him to send the physician Master Francisco, & Madeleine wrote that he was now needed only to perfect her cure. She signed this letter "Magdalene de France". However, a month later, on 7 July 1537, (a month before her 17th birthday), Madeleine, the so-called "Summer Queen" of Scots, died in her husband's arms at Holyrood Palace. James V wrote to Francis I informing him of his daughter's death.
Queen Madeleine was interred in Holyrood Abbey in Edinburgh, next to King James II of Scotland. The grave was desecrated by a mob in 1776 & her allegedly still beautiful head was stolen.
11 August 991
Battle of Maldon: The English, led by Byrhtnoth, Ealdorman of Essex, are defeated by a band of inland-raiding Vikings near Maldon, Essex.
12 August 1762
King George IV was born
George IV was King of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland & King of Hanover.
Reign: 29 January 1820 – 26 June 1830.
Coronation: 19 July 1821.
Born: 12 August 1762, St James's Palace.
Parents: King George III & Queen Charlotte.
House of: Hanover.
Married: Caroline of Brunswick, 8 April 1795 at the Chapel Royal, St James's Palace. Caroline (17 May 1768 – 7 August 1821) was the daughter of Charles William Ferdinand, Duke of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttel, & his wife Princess Augusta of Great Britain, eldest sister of King George III.
Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales (7 January 1796 – 6 November 1817). Had she outlived both her grandfather George III & her father, she would have become Queen of the United Kingdom, but she died at the age of 21, predeceasing them both.
George IV died: 26 June 1830, Windsor Castle.
Burial: 15 July 1830, St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle.
Successor: William IV (brother).
Did you know? George's coronation was a magnificent & expensive affair, costing about £243,000 (approximately £23,558,000 in 2023; for comparison, his father's coronation had only cost about £10,000).
13 August 1792
Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen was born at Meiningen, Germany
Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen was Queen of the United Kingdom & Hanover as the wife of King William IV. Adelaide was the daughter of George I, Duke of Saxe-Meiningen, & Luise Eleonore of Hohenlohe-Langenburg.
Saxe-Meiningen was a small state, covering about 423 square miles (1,100 km2). It was the most liberal German state &, unlike its neighbours, permitted a free press & criticism of the ruler.
Did You Know? Adelaide had twenty-one Godparents, including her mother, the Holy Roman Empress, the Queen of Naples & Sicily, the Crown Princess of Saxony, the Duchess of Saxe-Gotha-Altenburg, the Duchess of Saxe-Coburg, the Duchess of Saxe-Weimar, the Prince of Hohenlohe-Langenburg, & the Landgrave of Hesse-Philippsthal-Barchfeld
Adelaide married William, The Duke of Clarence & St Andrews (later William IV) in a double wedding with William's brother, Prince Edward Augustus, Duke of Kent & Strathearn, & his bride Victoria, Dowager Princess of Leiningen, on 11 July 1818, at Kew Palace in Surrey, England. They had only met for the first time a week earlier on 4 July at Grillon's Hotel in Bond Street. Neither William nor Adelaide had been married before, & William was 27 years her senior. Although William from 1791 had lived with an Irish actress, Dorothea Bland, better known by her stage name, Mrs. Jordan. The couple had ten illegitimate children—five sons & five daughters—nine of whom were named after William's siblings; each was given the surname "FitzClarence". Their affair lasted for twenty years before ending in 1811.
The couple settled amicably in Hanover & by all accounts were devoted to each other throughout their marriage. Adelaide improved William's behaviour; he drank less, swore less, & became more tactful!
Did You Know? Adelaide, the capital city of South Australia, is named after her.
On the Continent, Adelaide became pregnant, but in her seventh month of pregnancy, she caught pleurisy & gave birth prematurely on 27 March 1819 at the Fürstenhof Palace in Hanover. Her daughter, Charlotte Augusta Louise, lived only a few hours. Another pregnancy in the same year caused William to move the household to England so his future heir would be born on British soil; however, Adelaide miscarried at Calais or Dunkirk during the journey on 5 September 1819. Back in London, they moved into Clarence House, but preferred to stay at Bushy House near Hampton Court, where William had already lived with Dorothea. She became pregnant again, & a second daughter, Elizabeth Georgiana Adelaide, was born on 10 December 1820 at St James's Palace. Elizabeth seemed strong but died less than three months old on 4 March 1821 of "inflammation in the Bowels". Ultimately, William & Adelaide had no surviving children. Twin boys were stillborn on 8 April 1822 at Bushy Park & a possible brief pregnancy may have occurred within the same year. Princess Victoria of Kent came to be acknowledged as William's heir presumptive, as Adelaide had no further pregnancies.
In 1830, on the death of his elder brother, George IV, William acceded to the throne. One of King William's first acts was to confer the Rangership of Bushy Park (for 33 years held by himself) on Queen Adelaide. This act allowed Adelaide to remain at Bushy House for her lifetime. William & Adelaide were crowned on 8 September 1831 at Westminster Abbey. Adelaide was deeply religious & took the service very seriously. William despised the ceremony & acted throughout, it is presumed deliberately, as if he was "a character in a comic opera", making a mockery of what he thought to be a ridiculous charade. Adelaide, alone among those attending received praise for her "dignity, repose & characteristic grace".
Adelaide was beloved by the British people for her piety, modesty, charity, & her tragic childbirth history. A large portion of her household income was given to charitable causes. She also treated the young Princess Victoria of Kent (William's heir presumptive & later Queen Victoria) with kindness, despite her inability to produce an heir & the open hostility between William & Victoria's mother, the Dowager Duchess of Kent.
By June 1837, it became evident that the King was fatally ill. Adelaide stayed beside William's deathbed devotedly, not going to bed herself for more than ten days. William IV died from heart failure in the early hours of the morning of 20 June 1837 at Windsor Castle. Victoria was proclaimed as queen, but subject to the rights of any issue that might be born to Adelaide on the remotely possible chance that she was pregnant.
Did You Know? Adelaide was the first queen dowager in over a century (Charles II's widow, Catherine of Braganza, had died in 1705, & Mary of Modena, wife of the deposed James II, died in 1718), Adelaide survived her husband by twelve years.
She died on 2 December 1849 of natural causes at Bentley Priory in Middlesex. She was buried at St. George's Chapel, Windsor. She wrote instructions for her funeral during an illness in 1841 at Sudbury Hall: I die in all humility … we are alike before the throne of God, & I request therefore that my mortal remains be conveyed to the grave without pomp or state … to have as private & quiet a funeral as possible. I particularly desire not to be laid out in state … I die in peace & wish to be carried to the fount in peace, & free from the vanities & pomp of this world.
Princess Charlotte of Clarence (27 March 1819). Died a few hours after being baptised, in Hanover.
Stillborn child (5 September 1819). Born dead at Calais or Dunkirk.
Princess Elizabeth of Clarence (10 December 1820 - 4 March 1821). Born & died at St James's Palace.
Stillborn twin boys (8 April 1822). Born dead at Bushy Park.
14 August 1479
Catherine of York was born at Eltham Palace.
The five daughters of King Edward IV (1461–1483) & Elizabeth Woodville, (left to right): Elizabeth, Cecily, Anne, Catherine, & Mary. Royal Window, Northwest Transept, Canterbury Cathedral
Catherine or Katherine of York (14 August 1479 – 15 November 1527) was the ninth child & sixth daughter of King Edward IV by his wife Elizabeth Woodville. She was the daughter of Edward IV, sister to Edward V, niece to Richard III, sister-in-law to Henry VII & aunt to Henry VIII.
In October 1495, Henry VII arranged a marriage between Catherine & William Courtenay. They were parents to three children:
Henry Courtenay, 1st Marquess of Exeter (c. 1496 – 9 January 1539)
Edward Courtenay (c. 1497 – 12/13 July 1502);
Margaret Courtenay (c. 1499 – bef. 1526) married Henry Somerset, 2nd Earl of Worcester
In 1500, Catherine & William Courtenay moved to their home on Warwick Lane. Catherine was the chief mourner at the funeral of her sister, Elizabeth of York, in 1503. In 1504, William Courtenay was charged with treason in relation to his dealings with Edmund de la Pole. Catherine remained at court. William Courtenay was pardoned in 1509 & restored by Henry VIII in 1511. After William Courtenay's death in 1511, Henry VIII gave Catherine control of the earldom. The title went to the couple's son Henry. On 13 July 1511, Catherine took a vow of celibacy in the presence of Richard FitzJames, Bishop of London. For the rest of her life, Catherine remained in the favour of her nephew Henry VIII. She was godmother to his daughter Mary. Catherine outlived all of her siblings by over a decade, dying in 1527. She died at Tiverton Castle & was buried next door at St Peter's Church following an elaborate funeral.
15 August 1369
Philippa of Hainault, wife of king Edward III died
15 August 1950
Princess Anne was born
Anne is the second child & only daughter of Queen Elizabeth II & Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh. She is 17th in the line of succession to the British throne & has been Princess Royal since 1987.
For more about the Princess Royal visit my Princess Royal blog.
16 August 1513
Battle of the Spurs (Battle of Guinegate): King Henry VIII of England & his Imperial allies defeat French Forces who are then forced to retreat.
For more about The Battle of the Spurs tap here.
17 August 1786
Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld was born
Princess Victoria of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, later Princess of Leiningen & subsequently Duchess of Kent and Strathearn, was a German princess and the mother of Queen Victoria of the United Kingdom. As the widow of Charles, Prince of Leiningen (1763–1814), from 1814 she served as regent of the Principality during the minority of her son from her first marriage, Carl, until her second wedding in 1818 to Prince Edward, son of King George III of the United Kingdom.
Victoria was born in Coburg on 17 August 1786 in the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation & was named Marie Louise Victoire. She was the fourth daughter & seventh child of Franz Frederick Anton, Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Saalfeld, & Countess Augusta of Reuss-Ebersdorf.
On 21 December 1803 at Coburg, a young Victoria married (as his second wife) Charles, Prince of Leiningen (1763–1814), whose first wife, Countess Henrietta of Reuss-Ebersdorf, had been her aunt. The couple had two children, Prince Carl, born on 12 September 1804, & Princess Feodora of Leiningen, born on 7 December 1807. Through her first marriage, she is a direct matrilineal ancestor to various members of royalty in Europe, including Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden, Felipe VI of Spain, & Constantine II of Greece. After the death of her first spouse, she served as regent of the Principality of Leiningen during the minority of their son, Carl.
Victoria, Duchess of Kent (1786-1861) with Princess Victoria (after Beechey) c.1824.
In 1817 Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn (1767–1820), son of George III proposed to Victoria & she accepted. The couple were married on 29 May 1818 at Amorbach & on 11 July 1818 at Kew, a joint ceremony at which Edward's brother, the Duke of Clarence, later King William IV, married Adelaide of Saxe-Meiningen. Shortly after their marriage, the Kents moved to Germany. Soon after, Victoria became pregnant, & the Duke & Duchess, determined to have their child born in England, raced back. Arriving at Dover on 23 April 1819, they moved into Kensington Palace, where Victoria gave birth to a daughter on 24 May 1819, Princess Alexandrina Victoria of Kent, later Queen Victoria. An efficient organiser, Sir John Conroy, ensured the Kents' speedy return to England in time for the birth of their first child. The Duke of Kent died suddenly of pneumonia in January 1820, six days before his father, King George III.
The Duchess died at 09:30 on 16 March 1861, aged 74 years, with her daughter Victoria at her side. The Queen was much affected by her mother's death.
18 August 1342
The battle of Brest took place in Brittany
It was an action in 1342 between an English squadron of converted merchant ships & that of a mercenary galley force from Genoa fighting for the Franco-Breton faction of Charles of Blois during the Breton War of Succession, a side conflict of the Hundred Years War, resulting in an English victory.
19 August 1274
Edward I coronation at Westminster Abbey
Edward I (17/18 June 1239 – 7 July 1307), also known as Edward Longshanks & the Hammer of the Scots, was King of England from 1272 to 1307. Edward was taking part in the Ninth Crusade when his father died. Making a slow return, he reached England on 2 August 1274, and was crowned on 19 August.
19 August 1596
Elizabeth Stuart, Queen of Bohemia was born
For more about Elizabeth Stuart visit my Winter Queen blog