Richard II Coins
Richard II was King of England from 1377, until 1399. The grandson of Edward III, Richard was crowned King at the age of ten. His reign was challenged repeatedly, and he was eventually deposed by his cousin, Henry of Bolingbroke.
War with France was becoming increasingly expensive, and in order to finance the campaign a poll tax had been introduced. The continual taxation eventually led to the Peasants’ Revolt, further straining the economy.
King Richard II coins are fairly rare, thanks to their age. The majority of coins are silver, and are of typical denominations for the period – such as the penny. Gold coins were struck however for larger transactions, such as the Noble.
King Richard II Coins
Richard II was born in Bordeaux, which at the time was a principality under the control of the English. His father, Edward the Black Prince, was the son of King Edward III. A distinguished military commander, the Black Prince eventually contracted dysentery and – after six years of illness – died in 1376.
With no other surviving heirs, Richard became the heir apparent, and was crowned in 1377 at the age of ten. His reign faced many challenges; the Peasants’ Revolt in 1381, and the Lords Appellant in 1387.
King Richard II’s authority was still at risk from the House of Lancaster, under the leadership of John of Gaunt, and his son Henry of Bolingbroke. When Gaunt died, Richard blocked Henry from inheriting his father’s lands. The move was too big a gamble, and Henry retaliated by deposing Richard; imprisoning him, and taking the crown for himself as Henry IV.
Richard eventually died while in prison; this was generally accepted to be caused by starvation, although there is disagreement over whether this was forced, or the result of depression at his new situation.
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