Richard Lionheart is king of England after Henry's Death

London, 3 September 1189

Richard Lionheart, crowned king of England today, knows little of the country he has inherited. He has spent most of his life in France, as duke of Aquitaine ruling the land of his mother, Eleanor, and fighting his father, Henry 11, and his brothers. The old king's dying words to his pugnacious, disloyal son were:"God grant that I may not die till I have had a fitting revenge on you."

Richard, aged 32, grew up in an atmosphere of intrigue. Henry had acquired vast territories in France by his marriage, and his sons were never satisfied with their shares. When Richard's elder brother Henry died and he became heir, his father wanted him to leave Aquitaine and come to England. Richard scornfully refused and another family war, the last in fact,ensued.

Richard's first act as king was to release his mother, who had been confined at Winchester for supporting him against her husband. He has been busy raising money for an expedition to Palestine. He can hardly wait to be off crusading once more. The nick name "Lionheart" was given to him in France, as coeur de lion, for his military prowess.

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Created Dec 8 1994 by Aaron Rice (
a Timpview High School student
in partnership with the
David O. McKay School of Education
Brigham Young University