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29 Oct 2014
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This Sceptred Isle

Simon de Monfort
Simon de Montfort, Earl of Leicester, married to the King's sister, was Governor of English land in Gascony for four years. He was to become the driving force behind the barons in the Second Barons' War.

In October 1258 the King accepted the Provisions of Oxford, but he had no intention of living by them. The barons that had written them had differing ideas of how far they should be taken. Simon de Montfort took them to their most extreme. He believed that the Council of Fifteen, set up by the Provisions of Oxford, could if necessary rule against the King's wishes. Edward, heir to the throne, believed the council should be a group of advisers and nothing more than that.

Civil War was inevitable. In May 1264 de Montfort won the Battle of Lewes and captured the king and his heir. Edward escaped and de Montfort fought and died at the Battle of Evesham in 1265. In 1267 the Provisions of Oxford and Westminster were revoked and the King could once again choose his own councillors.

Simon de Montfort
Simon de Montfort
SIMON DE MONTFORT (c. 1208-1265)

  • A statesman, soldier and controversial politician
  • On becoming the sixth Earl of Leicester, he expelled Jews from Leicester
  • Married Henry III's sister Eleanor
  • Helped to frame the Provisions of Oxford in 1258 and was determined to live by them, which led him to war with Henry III and his heir Edward
  • Won the Battle of Lewes in May 1264 and captured both King and heir
  • Became de facto ruler
  • Summoned both knights and burgesses to a Parliament in January 1265 thus founding the House of Commons
  • Edward (later I) escaped from custody and fought de Montfort at the Battle of Evesham in August 1265
  • Died in battle

did you know?
The de Montforts were one of the families who first came to England with William the Conqueror in 1066.

Select historical period

[an error occurred while processing this directive] Chronology
1216John dies
Henry III becomes King of England
William the Marshal becomes Regent
1217Louis VIII defeated at the Battle of Lincoln
1219William the Marshal dies
Hubert de Burgh becomes chief Justiciar
1236Henry III marries Eleanor of Provence
1238Simon de Montfort marries Henry III's sister, Eleanor
1249Alexander III, King of Scots
1258Provisions of Oxford
1259Provisions of Westminster
1264Second Barons' War
1265De Montfort dies at Battle of Evesham
1271Henry III dies
Edward I becomes King

Corn to Norway and France
Wool and hides to Flanders
Fish to the Continent
Wine from France and Italy

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