Edward was born in 1284 in Carnarvon, according to legend Edward I presented his new-born on a child to the Welsh as a prince who spoke no English.
Edward’s parents were King Edward I and Eleanor of Castile – remembered by the Eleanor Crosses.
Edward was supposed to have been killed in Berkeley Castle, Gloucestershire on 21 September 1327. By Tudor times he was supposed to have met his demise by the insertion of a red hot poker in an unmentionable and eyewaterinw location – a reference to his alleged homosexuality. Whilst medieval chroniclers placed the blame on Roger Mortimer’s doorstep no one suggested an incident with a poker although by 1326 his enemies did accuse him of sodomy. Ian Mortimer suggested in 2005 that he did not die. He pointed out that only the Brut written at the time gave his death as 1326. The discovery of the Fieschi Letter in the 1870s cast doubt on the events that history generally accepts as having happened and there is contemporary evidence that Edward was still alive at the end of 1327. There are two theories and it is up to you to consider the evidence provided and weigh the evidence to decide which one is more likely.
Edward granted the earldom of Cornwall to his friend Piers Gaveston but not until after his father died.
Pope Boniface VIII arranged the marriage between Edward II and Isabella of France to bring an to the warring over Gascony which Edward claimed as his.
The Lords Ordainers demanded that Edward II reform his household and get rid of his favourite. They passed a series of ordinances – hence the name.
Battle of Bannockburn June 1314 – Edward II didn’t win but he is on record as digging a lot of ditches.
Thomas of Lancaster was executed on 22 March 1322 near Pontefract Castle following the Battle of Boroughbridge which took place on 16 March 1322.
Hugh Despenser the Elder was the only baron who remained loyal to Edward II throughout his life. His son Hugh Despenser the Younger became Edward’s hated favourite. On the Marches his desire for land resulted in the so-called Despenser War.
Isabella of France became Edward II’s wife.
Isabella’s lover was Roger Mortimer of Wigmore.
Isabella and her lover Roger Mortimer invaded England at Orwell in Suffolk.
Hugh Despenser the Elder was executed at Bristol then fed to the dogs.
Edward II is buried in Gloucester Cathedral. Robert Curthose, the deposed Duke of Normandy, brother of William Rufus and Henry I is also buried in Gloucester Cathedral. At the time it was St Peter’s Abbey.
Edward had four legitimate children, Edward who became King Edward III and started the Hundred Years War; John of Eltham who died aged twenty; Eleanor of Woodstock who married Reginald or Renauld II, Count of Guilders and was forced, according to the story, to show that she didn’t have leprosy and Joan of the Tower who was married to King David II of Scotland to bring an end to the Anglo-Scottish Wars. Edward also had an illegitimate son called Adam.
Edmund of Woodstock, the Earl of Kent , Edward’s half brother by Margaret of France, was executed in 1330 for his part in a plot to depose Mortimer and Isabella. The death of his uncle was one of the factors which spurred seventeen-year-old Edward to act against his mother and her lover.
The English and the French fought over Gascony. Edward I spent many years in Gascony. It was part of his personal possessions as was Aquitaine.
Edward II kept a camel at Langley.
He took a lion on campaign to Scotland.
Christopher Marlowe wrote a play about the monarch ensuring he remained within the public eye.