Henry IV: 1399 - 1413
Henry was born at Bolingbroke Castle, 4th April 1366, son of John of Gaunt and Blanche of Lancaster.
Henry Bolingbroke succeeded his father, who died 1399, as Duke of Lancaster and overthrew Richard II, who had seized the Lancastrian estates (30th September 1399). As king, he was confronted by revolt and conspiracy himself. More energetic and more conciliatory than Richard, he overcame all opponents, defeating supporters of Richard II (1399), the powerful Percys of Northumberland (1408), and Owain Glyndwr in Wales. The French took the opportunity to raid the south, and the Scots the north, but King James I of Scots was captured in 1406 and a truce with France agreed in 1407. Thereafter, Henry was relatively safe.
To the insecurity of the Crown was added the constant problem of insufficient income. Henry endured considerable criticism from parliament before it would grant the taxes he needed.
Henry IV was the first king of the House of Lancaster, although there was no dynastic break, as he and his predecessor were both grandsons of Edward III.
Henry married (1) Mary de Bohun, daughter of the Earl of Hereford, (2) Joan, daughter of Charles II of Navarre and they had five sons, including the future Henry V, and two daughters. He died in the abbot's parlour at Westminster Abbey, 20th March 1413, and was buried in Canterbury Cathedral.