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27 Jul

Richard the Lionheart (1157 – 1199)

A portrait of Richard the Lionheart

Richard the Lionheart

Richard I of England commonly referred as Richard the Lionheart was the son of Henry II of England and his heir to the throne. Richard was King of England from 1189 until his death in 1199 but he spent less than six months in England. Richard the Lionheart departed on the Third Crusade shortly after his coronation and gained a reputation of a great military leader. One of his greatest achievements during the Third Crusade was conquest of Acre but he did not succeed to conquer Jerusalem. Richard concluded a treaty with Saladin which allowed the Christians free access to the holy places in Jerusalem.

On his return to England, Richard the Lionheart was captured and held hostage by Leopold V of Austria. He was released by Holy Roman Emperor Henry VI after paying an enormous ransom in 1194. During the brief time he spend in England Richard suppressed the revolt led by his brother John and afterwards went to France to fight against Philip II of France. Richard the Lionheart died in 1199 from an arrow wound he received while besieging Chalus in France. His heart was buried at Rouen in Normandy, his brain at the abbey of Charroux in Poitou and the rest of his body at the feet of his father at Fontevraud Abbey in Anjou.

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