Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Philippa of Lancaster

An English Queen of Portugal, the mother of the great Prince Henry the Navigator. To quote:
Philippa said goodbye to her family on November 10, 1386. She had to wait until papal dispensation arrived which it did on February 2, 1387. The marriage ceremony took place at Oporto on February 14th. The marriage was to be successful and although Joao had a mistress before the marriage, there is no evidence he ever had another. He left to fight in Castile and Philippa proceeded to organize her court. She had an impact immediately. She was described as discreet, pious and modest, walking with her eyes lowered and her neck covered. She had a profound sense of duty. Many writers admired her behavior, if not her beauty. She was praised for her fair skin, blonde hair and blue eyes.

As far as possible, Philippa and Joao went everywhere together. They put forth the image of a loving and happy family. They agreed to name their first born child a Portuguese name if it were a boy and an English name if it was a girl and then alternate names, irrespective of sex. Their first child, born in 1388 was named Blanche after Philippa’s mother. They are recorded as having a total of nine children of which six survived childhood. These were the “illustrious generation”. (Read entire post.)

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