Nursery Rhymes

King Stephen

Middle Ages - Lords and Ladies

Short Biography profile and facts about the life of King Stephen of England
The following biography information provides basic facts and information about the life of King Stephen of England:

  • Nationality: Norman - raised in the English court

  • Also known as Stephen de Blois
  • Lifespan: 1097 - 1154
  • Reigned as King of England: 22 December 1135 25 October 1154
  • Date of Birth: King Stephen was born in 1097, the exact date of birth is unknown
  • Family connections / Genealogy: He was the son of Stephen, Count of Blois, and Adela the daughter of William the Conqueror. Cousin of Queen Matilda the daughter of King Henry I of England - the rightful heir to the English throne
  • Date succeeded to the throne of England: His coronation was on 22 December 1135
  • Married: Queen Matilda of Boulogne (1105 - 1152)
  • Date when King Stephen died: October 25, 1154. Stephen died in Dover, at Dover Priory, and was buried in Faversham Abbey
  • Character of King Stephen: Kind, gracious

King Stephen
The story and biography of King Stephen which contains interesting information, facts & the history about the life of King Stephen

Timeline of King Stephen

The story of King Stephen ( Stephen de Blois )
Neither English nor Normans had ever been ruled by a woman, and the Empress Maude (aka Matilda), as she still called herself, was a proud, disagreeable, ill-tempered woman, whom nobody liked. So her cousin, Stephen de Blois, whose mother Adela had been daughter of William the Conqueror, thought to obtain the crown of England by promising to give everyone what they wished. Stephen, like all the other barons, had sworn that Maude ( Matilda ) should reign. The people knew he was a kindly, gracious sort of person, and greatly preferred Stephen to Matilda. Stephen was therefore crowned; and the Norman barons believed they would have greater power. The barons built strong castles, and hired men, with whom they made war upon each other, robbed one another's tenants and generally terrorised the people of England. Stephen tried to stop these cruelties; but then the barons turned on him, told him he was not their proper king, and invited Maude (Matilda) to come and be crowned in his stead. Stephen was taken prisoner at a battle at Lincoln. Stephen's friends could not leave him in prison for life; and so they went on fighting for him, while more and more of the English joined them and Matilda eventually conceded the throne.

Matilda's son, Henry made an agreement with Stephen. Henry would leave Stephen to reign all the days of his life, provided Stephen promised that Henry should reign instead of his own son after his death. This incensed Stephen's son, Eustace, and he went away in a rage to raise troops to maintain his cause; but he died suddenly in the midst of his wild doings, and King Stephen, did not live long after him and died in 1154.

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