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Edward III

Edward III became King of England and Lord of Ireland in 1327. His reign of 50 years was one of the longest in medieval England and saw considerable successes in both military action and developments in government. Coins produced during Edward’s reign were of the ‘Noble’ style, with full, half and quarter denominations.

Edward III was born in 1312 and became King at the age of 14 when his father, Edward II, was deposed by his mother and her lover, who went on to be the de facto ruler of the country. Three years later he led a successful coup d’état and began his personal reign.

Following successful military campaigns in Scotland, Edward went on to lay claim to the French throne, beginning what would come to be known as the Hundred Years’ War. By 1360 Edward controlled over a quarter of France, but in his later years he failed to maintain the successes he had enjoyed and the support of his nobles.

Edward relied heavily on subordinates and by 1376 his health had deteriorated significantly, before dying of a stroke in 1377. Edward’s son, the ‘Black Prince’ Edward of Woodstock, died the year previous and as such the crown passed on to his ten-year-old grandson, Richard II.