On This Day

Henry IV of England

King of England and Lord of Ireland Henry IV of England

Full Name: Henry Bolingbroke
Profession: King of England and Lord of Ireland

Nationality:
England
English

Why Famous: Henry IV deposed and succeeded his cousin Richard II in 1377 and ruled till 1397. He was the son of John of Gaunt, the founder of the English House of Lancaster and one of the richest and most influential men in the Kingdom.

During his early 20s he was part of group opposed to Richard II and was exiled as a result. When his father died in 1399 and his lands and wealth was confiscated by the King, Henry, then called Henry Bolingbroke, invaded England to reclaim his inheritance. Henry went on to seize the throne and imprison Richard II, who died, perhaps of starvation, under mysterious circumstances.

Henry spent much of his rule putting down various rebellions including from Wales headed by Owain Glyn Dŵr and from the Percy family led by Henry Hotspur. He defeated the latter at the battle of Shrewsbury in 1403.

Towards the end of his reign Henry suffered from a serious skin complaint which may have been leprosy or syphilis. On his death he was succeeded by his son Henry V.

Born: April 3, 1367
Birthplace: Bolingbroke Castle, Lincolnshire, England
Star Sign: Aries

Died: March 20, 1413 (aged 45)

Historical Events

  • 1399-10-13 Henry of Bolingbroke is crowned King Henry IV of England in Westminster Abbey, a few weeks after deposing Richard II
  • 1403-07-21 Battle of Shrewsbury: Army led by the Lancastrian King of England, Henry IV defeats a rebel army led by Henry "Harry Hotspur" Percy of Northumberland thus ending the Percy challenge to the throne. Also the first battle English archers fought each other on English soil.
  • 1405-06-08 Richard le Scrope, Archbishop of York and Thomas Mowbray, Earl of Norfolk, are executed in York on the King of England, Henry IV's orders

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