Henry IV (b.1366 r.1399-1413)
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Henry IV (b.1366 r.1399-1413)

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At last, as he was praying before the shrine of St. Edward at Westminster Abbey, he was seized with a terrible fit, and was carried into the Abbot's chamber, where he presently died. It had been foretold that he would die at Jerusalem, which certainly is not, and never was, Westminster. But, as the Abbot's room had long been called the Jerusalem chamber, people said it was all the same thing, and were quite satisfied with the prediction.
Charles Dickens, A Child's History of England.

Additional Information on
Henry IV (b.1366 r.1399-1413)

Although Henry's claim to the throne was rather debatable (he had imprisoned his cousin Richard forcing him to abdicate in his favour) it was never questioned by Parliament, for many people welcomed the accession of this strong and able ruler.

Henry was a well educated, good-mannered man, who loved reading and encouraged the arts and foreign connections. Unfortunately his reign soon became bloody and difficult (the first crisis being a revolt led by King Richard's half brother after his murder), and beset with financial difficulties. Henry had to deal with rebellions in Wales and Scotland. Owain Glydwr, the Welsh leader was a thorn in Henry's side - he led a revolt in 1400, supported the Earl of Northumberland's uprising in 1403 and helped the French to invade in 1405. Henry resisted them all but became ill and from then on his son Henry The Prince of Wales ( a fine soldier) took on more responsibility - defeating and executing the Earl of Northumberland in 1408 and governing from 1409.

Henry's illness paralysed him, many believing it was God's punishment for the murder of Richard II, and the guilt led him to spend many hours praying in Westminster Abbey at the tomb of Edward the Confessor. Henry died at the age of 47 completely worn out, a shadow of his former conquering self.


Henry IV's feet and armpits enjoyed an international reputation.
- Adolus Huxley, The Devils of Loudun, 1952.

I did not usurp the crown, but was duly elected.
- Henry IV's reply when accused of overthrowing Richard Frisby, a Franciscan

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