The Provisions of Westminster of 1259 were part of a series of legislative constitutional reforms that arose out of power struggles between Henry III of England and his barons. The King's failed campaigns in France in 1230 and 1242, and his choice of friends and advisers, together with the cost of his failed scheme to make one of his younger sons King of Sicily and help the Pope against the Holy Roman Emperor, led to further disputes with the barons and united opposition in Church and State. Henry's position was not helped by the fact that his lifestyle was extravagant and his tax demands were widely resented. The King's accounts show a list of many charitable donations and payments for building works, including the rebuilding of Westminster Abbey, which began in 1245.
Henry III, also known as Henry of Winchester, was King of England, Lord of Ireland, and Duke of Aquitaine from 1216 until his death. The son of King John and Isabella of Angoulême, Henry assumed the throne when he was only nine in the middle of the First Barons' War. Cardinal Guala declared the war against the rebel barons to be a religious crusade and Henry's forces, led by William Marshal, defeated the rebels at the battles of Lincoln and Sandwich in 1217. Henry promised to abide by the Great Charter of 1225, which limited royal power and protected the rights of the major barons. His early rule was dominated first by Hubert de Burgh and then Peter des Roches, who re-established royal authority after the war. In 1230, the King attempted to reconquer the provinces of France that had once belonged to his father, but the invasion was a debacle. A revolt led by William Marshal's son, Richard, broke out in 1232, ending in a peace settlement negotiated by the Church.
Sicily is the largest island in the Mediterranean Sea and one of the 20 regions of Italy. It is one of the five Italian autonomous regions, in Southern Italy along with surrounding minor islands, officially referred to as Regione Siciliana.
The pope, also known as the supreme pontiff, is the Bishop of Rome and ex officio leader of the worldwide Catholic Church. Since 1929, the pope has also been head of state of Vatican City, a city-state enclaved within Rome, Italy. The current pope is Francis, who was elected on 13 March 2013, succeeding Benedict XVI.
The Provisions themselves were an enlarged scheme of governmental reform drawn up by the committee of 24 barons who had been originally appointed under the Provisions of Oxford, which the Provisions of Westminster superseded. The new document largely reinforced many of the provisions of the earlier Provisions of Oxford, but also provided for additional inheritance and taxation reforms, including the first statutory provisions relating to Mortmain.
The Provisions of Oxford were constitutional reforms developed in 1258 to resolve a dispute between the English barons and King Henry III. They asserted the right of the barons to representation in the king's government and, like the earlier Magna Carta, demonstrated the ability of the barons to press their concerns in opposition to the monarchy.
Mortmain is the perpetual, inalienable ownership of real estate by a corporation or legal institution; the term is usually used in the context of its prohibition. Historically, the land owner usually would be the religious office of a church; today, insofar as mortmain prohibitions against perpetual ownership still exist, it refers most often to modern companies and charitable trusts. The term mortmain is derived from Mediaeval Latin mortua manus, literally "dead hand", through Old French morte main..
As a whole the Provisions consisted of a miscellaneous group of administrative and legal measures demanded by the baronial reformers and their allies during the crisis of 1258–1265. The Provisions were also the first English legislation to deliberately alter existing procedures in the King's courts. The measures were also important for expanding the reform movement from the issue of baronial-royal relations to a redefinition of the barons' relations with their tenants and their mutual rights and responsibilities toward one another as enforced in the lords' own courts. In addition, the Provisions of Westminster included proposals for improving the functioning of the royal courts, chiefly new remedies in the civil sphere but also some changes in criminal justice.
Subsequent divisions among the barons themselves enabled Henry to repudiate the Provisions – helped by a papal bull – in 1261. A period of strife begun in 1263, known as the Second Barons' War, ended in a victory for the King in 1267, although the main turning point occurred in 1265 at the Battle of Evesham, where the barons' leader, Simon de Montfort was killed. The clauses of the provisions that limited monarchical authority were then annulled, but the legal clauses of the Provisions of Westminster were reaffirmed in the Statute of Marlborough (1267). The Provisions of Westminster have been described as the most important English legislation since the 1225 reissue of Magna Carta.
A papal bull is a type of public decree, letters patent, or charter issued by a pope of the Roman Catholic Church. It is named after the leaden seal (bulla) that was traditionally appended to the end in order to authenticate it.
The Second Barons' War (1264–1267) was a civil war in England between the forces of a number of barons led by Simon de Montfort against the royalist forces of King Henry III, led initially by the king himself and later by his son, the future King Edward I. The war featured a series of massacres of Jews by Montfort's supporters including his sons Henry and Simon, in attacks aimed at seizing and destroying evidence of Baronial debts. After a rule of just over a year, Montfort was killed by forces loyal to the King in the Battle of Evesham.
The Battle of Evesham was one of the two main battles of 13th century England's Second Barons' War. It marked the defeat of Simon de Montfort, Earl of Leicester, and the rebellious barons by the future King Edward I, who led the forces of his father, King Henry III. It took place on 4 August 1265, near the town of Evesham, Worcestershire.
The Dictum of Kenilworth, issued on 31 October 1266, was a pronouncement designed to reconcile the rebels of the Second Barons' War with the royal government of England. After the baronial victory at the Battle of Lewes in 1264, Simon de Montfort took control of royal government, but at the Battle of Evesham the next year Montfort was killed, and King Henry III restored to power. A group of rebels held out in the stronghold of Kenilworth Castle, however, and their resistance proved hard to crush.
Edward I, also known as Edward Longshanks and the Hammer of the Scots, was King of England from 1272 to 1307. Before his accession to the throne, he was commonly referred to as The Lord Edward. The first son of Henry III, Edward was involved from an early age in the political intrigues of his father's reign, which included an outright rebellion by the English barons. In 1259, he briefly sided with a baronial reform movement, supporting the Provisions of Oxford. After reconciliation with his father, however, he remained loyal throughout the subsequent armed conflict, known as the Second Barons' War. After the Battle of Lewes, Edward was hostage to the rebellious barons, but escaped after a few months and joined the fight against Simon de Montfort. Montfort was defeated at the Battle of Evesham in 1265, and within two years the rebellion was extinguished. With England pacified, Edward joined the Ninth Crusade to the Holy Land. The crusade accomplished little, and Edward was on his way home in 1272 when he was informed that his father had died. Making a slow return, he reached England in 1274 and was crowned at Westminster Abbey on 19 August.
Boniface of Savoy was a medieval Bishop of Belley in France and Archbishop of Canterbury in England. He was the son of Thomas, Count of Savoy, and owed his initial ecclesiastical posts to his father. Other members of his family were also clergymen, and a brother succeeded his father as count. One niece was married to King Henry III of England and another was married to King Louis IX of France. It was Henry who secured Boniface's election as Archbishop, and throughout his tenure of that office he spent much time on the continent. He clashed with his bishops, with his nephew-by-marriage, and with the papacy, but managed to eliminate the archiepiscopal debt which he had inherited on taking office. During Simon de Montfort's struggle with King Henry, Boniface initially helped Montfort's cause, but later supported the king. After his death in Savoy, his tomb became the object of a cult, and he was eventually beatified in 1839.
The Parliament of England was the legislature of the Kingdom of England, existing from the early 13th century until 1707, when it merged with the Parliament of Scotland to become the Parliament of Great Britain after the political union of England and Scotland created the Kingdom of Great Britain.
Edmund Crouchback, 1st Earl of Lancaster, 1st Earl of Leicester, of Grosmont Castle in Monmouthshire, Wales, a member of the House of Plantagenet, was the second surviving son of King Henry III of England and Eleanor of Provence. In his childhood he had a claim on the Kingdom of Sicily, but he never ruled there. He was granted all the lands of Simon de Montfort in 1265, and from 1267 he was titled Earl of Leicester. In that year he also began to rule Lancashire, but he did not take the title Earl of Lancaster until 1276. Between 1276 and 1284 he governed the counties of Champagne and Brie with his second wife, Blanche of Artois, in the name of her daughter Joan. His nickname, "Crouchback", refers to his participation in the Ninth Crusade.
Roger de Quincy, 2nd Earl of Winchester ,) hereditary Constable of Scotland, was a nobleman of Anglo-Norman and Scottish descent who was prominent in both England and Scotland, at his death having one of the largest baronial landholdings in the two kingdoms.
The Statute of Marlborough was a set of laws passed by King Henry III of England in 1267. It is the oldest piece of statute law in the United Kingdom that has not yet been repealed. There were twenty-nine chapters, of which four are still in force.
Simon de Montfort's Parliament was an English parliament held from 20 January 1265 until mid-March of the same year, instigated by Simon de Montfort, a baronial rebel leader.
Richard de Montfichet was a Magna Carta surety. He was a landowner in Essex.
Events from the 1260s in England.
Events from the 1250s in England.
The Mise of Amiens [miz ɒv a.mjɛ̃] was a settlement given by King Louis IX of France on 23 January 1264 in the conflict between King Henry III of England and his rebellious barons, led by Simon de Montfort. Louis' one-sided decision for King Henry led directly to the hostilities of the Second Barons' War.
The Mise of Lewes was a settlement made on 14 May 1264 between King Henry III of England and his rebellious barons, led by Simon de Montfort. The settlement was made on the day of the Battle of Lewes, one of the two major battles of the Second Barons' War. The conflict between king and magnates was caused by dissatisfaction with the influence of foreigners at court and Henry's high level and new methods of taxation. In 1258 Henry was forced to accept the Provisions of Oxford, which essentially left royal government in the hands of a council of magnates, but this document went through a long series of revocations and reinstatements. In 1263, as the country was on the brink of civil war, the two parties agreed to submit the matter to arbitration by the French king Louis IX. Louis was a firm believer in the royal prerogative, and decided clearly in favour of Henry. The outcome was unacceptable for the rebellious barons, and war between the two parties broke out almost immediately.
William Bardolf, was an English baronial leader.
Paul Anthony Brand, FBA, FRHistS is a British legal historian. He was Professor of Legal History at the University of Oxford from 2010 to 2014 and a senior research fellow at All Souls College, Oxford, from 1999 to 2014.
Robert de Neville, 2nd Baron Neville of Raby, was a medieval English nobleman.