Clement-Jones family v2/21 - Person Sheet
Clement-Jones family v2/21 - Person Sheet
NameConstance of YORK, 12702
Birth1374
Death1416
MotherIsabella of Castile , 6969 (1355-1392)
Spouses
Birth1373
Death1400
FatherEdward Le DESPENSER , 12707
ChildrenIsabel , 12700 (1400-1439)
Notes for Constance of YORK
Constance of York, Countess of Gloucester (c. 1374 – 28 November 1416) was the only daughter of Edmund of Langley, 1st Duke of York and his wife Isabella of Castile, daughter of King Peter of Castile and his favourite mistress, Maria de Padilla.
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Family

Constance was born about 1374, the only daughter of Edmund of Langley, 1st Duke of York, and his wife, Isabella of Castile, the youngest daughter of King Peter of Castile and his favourite mistress, Maria de Padilla.

Plots against Henry IV]

Shortly before 7 November 1379, Constance married Thomas le Despenser, 1st Earl of Gloucester (22 September 1373 – 16 January 1400), eldest but third surviving son of Edward le Despenser and Elizabeth Burghersh. Despenser was created Earl of Gloucester by King Richard II on 29 September 1397, but after Richard's deposition and the accession of King Henry IV some of his lands were seized and he was degraded from the earldom. In consequence in late December 1399 he and others joined in a plot, known as the Epiphany Rising, to assassinate King Henry and restore King Richard to the throne. According to a French chronicle the plot was betrayed to the King by Constance's brother, Edward; however contemporary English chronicles make no mention of Edward's alleged role. Gloucester escaped immediate capture, but was eventually turned in to the authorities at Bristol, where he was beheaded on 16 January 1400.[1]

After her husband's death, Constance was granted a life interest in the greater part of his lands and custody of her son.[2]

In February 1405, during the rebellion of Owain Glyndŵr, Constance herself instigated a plot to abduct the young Edmund Mortimer, 5th Earl of March, and his brother, Roger Mortimer, from Windsor Castle, apparently intending to deliver the young Earl, who had the best claim to the throne of any of Henry IV's rivals, to his uncle Sir Edmund Mortimer, who was married to Glyndwr's daughter. The young Edmund Mortimer and his brother were recaptured before entering Wales. Constance implicated her elder brother, Edward, in the plot, as a result of which he was imprisoned for 17 weeks at Pevensey Castle, but was eventually restored to Henry IV's favour.
When Constance died in 1416, she was buried at the High altar in Reading Abbey.
Marriage and issue[edit source | editbeta]

Shortly before 7 November 1379 Constance married Thomas le Despenser, 1st Earl of Gloucester (22 September 1373 – 16 January 1400), third but first surviving son of Edward le Despenser and Elizabeth Burghersh, by whom she had a son and two daughters:

Richard le Despenser, 4th Baron Burghersh (1396 – 1414). He married Lady Eleanor Neville (c. 1397 - 1472), daughter of Ralph de Neville, 1st Earl of Westmorland (d.1425) and Joan Beaufort (d.1440), daughter of John of Gaunt by Katherine Swynford. He died young without issue.

Elizabeth (died young c. 1398)

Isabel, born after her father's execution. She married, firstly, Richard Beauchamp, Earl of Worcester (d. 1421/2). A daughter, Elizabeth, Lady Abergavenny (b.1415) was the sole product of this union. Following Worcester's death, she married Richard de Beauchamp, 13th Earl of Warwick. They were parents to Henry de Beauchamp, 1st Duke of Warwick and Anne de Beauchamp.

After her husband's death, Constance was either betrothed to or lived as the mistress of Edmund Holland, 4th Earl of Kent (1382-1408), by whom she had an illegitimate daughter, Eleanor Holland (died c. 1459), who married James Tuchet, 5th Baron Audley.

Shakespeare and Constance of York[edit source | editbeta]

Constance is referred to as 'my sister Despenser' in Shakespeare's Richard II.
Last Modified 4 Aug 2013Created 11 Dec 2021 using Reunion for Macintosh