On this Day in History ... 26 February

26 Feb is in February.

1266 Battle of Benevento

1461 Proclamation of Edward IV as King

1462 Vere Plot to Murder Edward IV

1547 Coronation of Edward VI

1552 Trial and Execution of Edward Seymour Duke of Somerset and his Supporters

1696 Plot to Assassinate King William III

Battle of Benevento

On 26 Feb 1266 the Battle of Benevento was fought between King Charles Capet of Sicily (age 38) and Manfred King Sicily (age 34). Manfred King Sicily (age 34) was killed. His fifth cousin King Charles Capet of Sicily (age 38) succeeded King Sicily. Beatrice Provence Queen Consort Sicily (age 35) by marriage Queen Consort Sicily.

On 26 Feb 1307 Piers Gaveston 1st Earl Cornwall (age 23) exiled by King Edward "Longshanks" I of England (age 67) for being his son Edward's (age 22) favourite.

Before 26 Feb 1322 John Mowbray 3rd Baron Mowbray (age 11) and Maud Holland 3rd Baroness Holand, Baroness Lovel (age 12) were married. The marriage was later declared void. They were fourth cousins. He a great x 4 grandson of King Henry "Curtmantle" II of England. She a great x 4 granddaughter of King Henry "Curtmantle" II of England.

On 26 Feb 1324 William Jülich V Duke Jülich (age 25) and Joanna Hainault Duchess Guelders (age 9) were married. She the daughter of William Hainault I Count Hainault III Count Avesnes III Count Holland II Count Zeeland (age 38) and Joan Valois Countess Zeeland Holland Avesnes and Hainault (age 30). He the son of Gerhard Jülich V Count Jülich (age 74) and Elisabeth Brabant Countess Jülich. They were half third cousins. She a great x 5 granddaughter of King Henry "Curtmantle" II of England.

Ralph Longford: Ralph Longford and Margaret Melton were married. On 27 Oct 1400 he was born to Nicholas IV Longford (age 27) and Sarah Harrington at Colwich. He was baptised at St Peter's Church Ellastone. On 19 May 1426, Whitsunday, King Henry VI of England and II of France (age 4) was knighted by his uncles John Lancaster 1st Duke Bedford (age 36) and Humphrey Lancaster 1st Duke Gloucester (age 35) at Leicester, Leicestershire. Henry then went on to knight Ralph Longford (age 25), Thomas Courtenay 13th Earl Devon (age 12) and Robert Wingfield (age 23).

Proclamation of Edward IV as King

Chronicle of Gregory 1461. Alle soo the xxvj [26] day of Februer nexte folowyng Edwarde Erle of Marche (age 18) com to London owt of Walys and the Erle of Warwycke (age 32) with hym, and xl M1 [40,000] men with hem bothe, and they enteryd unto the cytte of London, and there he toke uppon hym the crowne of Inglond by the avysse of the lordys spyrytual and temporalle, and by the elexyon of the comyns. And so he began hys rayne the iiij day of Marche, in the yere of oure Lorde God M1CCCC lxj [1461], the Sondy letter D as for that yere.

Vere Plot to Murder Edward IV

Chronicle of Gregory 1462. 26 Feb 1462. And thys same yere the Erle of Oxforde (age 53), the Lord Abbry, the Lorde of Oxforde ys sone, Syr Thomas Todenham (deceased) knyght, John Mongomery, and William Terelle (deceased) squyer, were takyn in Esex, and brought unto Lundon to the Towre [Map]. Ande thenne they were ledde to Westemyster to the Kynges palys, and there they were attaynte of hyghe and myghthy treson that they ymagenyd agayne þe Kynge. And thenn they were drawe to the Towre from Westemyster. And at the Towre hylle was made a schaffolde for them, and there hyr heddys were smetyn on, and hyr bodys beryd, as hyt plesyd them to be qwethe hyr bodys. See Vere Plot to Murder Edward IV.

On 26 Feb 1462 John de Vere 12th Earl of Oxford (age 53) was hanged at Tower Hill [Map]. His son John de Vere 13th Earl of Oxford (age 19) succeeded 13th Earl of Oxford 2C 1141.

Coronation of Edward VI

On 26 Feb 1547 Richard Rich 1st Baron Rich (age 50) was created 1st Baron Rich Leez. Elizabeth Jenks Baroness Rich (age 37) by marriage Baroness Rich Leez.


Trial and Execution of Edward Seymour Duke of Somerset and his Supporters

Annales of England by John Stow. 26 Feb 1552. The 26 of February, Sir Ralph a Vane and Sir Miles Partridge were hanged on the tower hill [Map], Sir Michael Stanhope (age 45) with Sir Thomas Arundel (age 50) were beheaded there: all which foure persons tooke on their death that thep never offended against the kings maiestie, nor against any of his counfell.

Henry Machyn's Diary. 26 Feb 1552. The xxvjth day of Feybruarii, the wyche was [the morrow aft]er saynt Mathuwe day, was heddyd on the Tower [hill sir] Myghell Stanhope (age 45) knyght, and ser Thomas Arundell (age 50); [and in]-contenent was hangyd the seylff sam tyme sir Raff [a Vane] knyght, and ser Mylles Parterege knyght, of the galowse besyd the .... and after ther bodys wher putt in to dyvers nuw coffens [to be be-] red and heds in to the Towre in cases and ther bered .. cent.

Note. Execution of sir Thomas Arundell. One of the "metrical visions" of George Cavendish, the gentleman usher of Cardinal Wolsey, furnishes some biographical particulars of sir Thomas Arundell: viz. that he was educated with Cardinal Wolsey, and was chancellor to queen Katharine Howard. He is also made to confess that "I was cheaf councellor in the first overthrowe of the duke of Somerset, which few men did know." (See Singer's edition of Cavendish's Life of Wolsey, 1825, vol. ii. p. 125.) A letter of the earl of Northumberland in 1527, directed "To his beloved cosyn Thomas Arundel, one of the gentleman of my lord legates prevy chambre," and at its foot "To my bedfellow Arundel," with which term he also commences, is printed from the duke of Northumberland's archives, ibid. p. 246. With regard to his fate there is a curious passage in a very rare book, bishop Ponet's "Short Treatise of Politic Power," which Strype has quoted in his Memorials, vol. ii. 306: but with an interpolation which, as it is made silently, is perfectly inexcusable. Writing of the earl of Warwick, Ponet states,—"at th'erles sute Arundel hathe his head with the axe divided from the shoulders."

But Strype, imagining that the earl of Arundel (who was also involved in trouble at this period, having been fined 12,000l. in Jan. 1549–50,) was the suffering party named by the bishop, altered this passage thus:——"at the earl's suit, Arundel escaped, otherwise had his head with the axe been divided from his shoulders."

See the "Life of Henry Earl of Arundel, K.G." edited by J. G. Nichols, 1834, p. 7; or the Gentleman's Magazine for July 1833, p. 16, and for Feb. 1848.

Note. Sir Michael Stanhope also makes a poetical lament in Cavendish's Metrical Visions. He states that he had been dubbed knight by king Edward, and had been of his privy chamber. He was half-brother of the duchess of Somerset (as sir Thomas Arundell was half-brother of the countess of Arundel), and was great-grandfather of the first earl of Chesterfield. See a curious letter regarding his widow's funeral written by their son sir Thomas Stanhope in 1588, in the Archæologia, vol. xxxi. p. 212.

Around 26 Feb 1552 William Paget 1st Baron Paget Beaudasert (age 46) was degraded 321st Knight of the Garter by King Edward VI of England and Ireland (age 14).


Henry Machyn's Diary. 26 Feb 1554. The same tyme and day be-twyne iiij [and v of the] cloke at nyght my lade Elssabeth('s) (age 20) grase c[ame riding] to London thrught Smythfeld unto West[minster] with a C. welvett cottes a-for her grace. A[nd her] grace rod in a charett opyn of boyth sydes. [And with] her grace rydyng after her a C. in cotes of [scarlet and] fyne red gardyd with velvett, and so thrught Fletstret unto the cowrt thrught the qu[een's] garden, her grace behyng syke.

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Henry Machyn's Diary. 26 Feb 1561. The xxvj day of Feybruary dyd pryche at the cowrt master Samsun a-for the quen (age 27).

Between 13 Jan 1571 and 26 Feb 1572 Colin Campbell 6th Earl Argyll (age 28) and Agnes Keith Countess Moray and Argyll (age 40) were married. She by marriage Countess Argyll. She the daughter of William Keith 4th Earl Marischal (age 64) and Margaret Keith Countess Marischal. He the son of Archibald Campbell 4th Earl Argyll and Margaret Graham Countess Argyll. They were half fourth cousins.

On 26 Feb 1577 King Erix XIV of Sweden (age 43) died.

On 26 Feb 1603 Maria of Spain Holy Roman Empress (age 74) died at Madrid.


On 26 Feb 1608 Bishop John Still (age 74) died.

On 26 Feb 1612 William Graham 7th Earl Menteith 1st Earl Airth (age 21) and Agnes Gray Countess of Menteith and Airth (age 26) were married. She by marriage Countess Menteith. He the son of John Graham 6th Earl Menteith. She a great x 3 granddaughter of King Henry VII of England and Ireland.

On 26 Feb 1622 Bishop Robert was born.

On 26 Feb 1629 Archibald Campbell 9th Earl Argyll was born to Archibald Campbell 1st Marquess Argyll (age 21) and Margaret Douglas Marchioness Argyll (age 19) at Dalkeith. Coefficient of inbreeding 4.20%.

After 26 Feb 1687. All Saints Church, Thirkleby [Map]. Memorial to Arabella Belasyse Lady Thirkleby (deceased), daughter of Henry Belasyse, wife William Frankland 1st Baronet (age 47).

Arabella Belasyse Lady Thirkleby: Around 1637 she was born to Henry Belasyse (age 33) and Grace Barton. In or before 1665 William Frankland 1st Baronet (age 25) and Arabella Belasyse Lady Thirkleby (age 27) were married. She by marriage Lady Frankland of Thirkleby in Yorkshire. On 26 Feb 1687 Arabella Belasyse Lady Thirkleby (age 50) died.

1696 Plot to Assassinate King William III

Evelyn's Diary. 26 Feb 1696. There was now a conspiracy of about thirty knights, gentlemen, captains, many of them Irish and English Papists, and Nonjurors or Jacobites (so called), to murder King William (age 45) on the first opportunity of his going either from Kensington, or to hunting, or to the chapel; and upon signal of fire to be given from Dover Cliff to Calais [Map], an invasion was designed. In order to it there was a great army in readiness, men-of-war and transports, to join a general insurrection here, the Duke of Berwick (age 25) having secretly come to London to head them, King James (age 62) attending at Calais with the French army. It was discovered by some of their own party. £1,000 reward was offered to whoever could apprehend any of the thirty named. Most of those who were engaged in it, were taken and secured. The Parliament, city, and all the nation, congratulate the discovery; and votes and resolutions were passed that, if King William (age 45) should ever be assassinated, it should be revenged on the Papists and party through the nation; an Act of Association drawing up to empower the Parliament to sit on any such accident, till the Crown should be disposed of according to the late settlement at the Revolution. All Papists, in the meantime, to be banished ten miles from London. This put the nation into an incredible disturbance and general animosity against the French King and King James. The militia of the nation was raised, several regiments were sent for out of Flanders, and all things put in a posture to encounter a descent. This was so timed by the enemy, that while we were already much discontented by the greatness of the taxes, and corruption of the money, etc., we had like to have had very few men-of-war near our coasts; but so it pleased God that Admiral Rooke (age 46) wanting a wind to pursue his voyage to the Straits, that squadron, with others at Portsmouth [Map] and other places, were still in the Channel, and were soon brought up to join with the rest of the ships which could be got together, so that there is hope this plot may be broken. I look on it as a very great deliverance and prevention by the providence of God. Though many did formerly pity King James's condition, this design of assassination and bringing over a French army, alienated many o£ his friends, and was likely to produce a more perfect establishment of King William.


Minutes of the Society of Antiquaries. 26 Feb 1718. A petition was offered by Mr President (age 57) of Mr John Spoll[?], [?] seeking to be employed by the Society as a Messenger or transcriber of any English and Latin Papers, which was agreed to when there shall be occasion for any thing of that kind.

On 26 Feb 1725 William Pleydell-Bouverie 1st Earl Radnor was born to Jacob Bouverie 1st Viscount Folkestone (age 30) and Mary Clarke.

On 26 Feb 1726 Maximilian Wittelsbach II Elector Bavaria (age 63) died.

On 26 Feb 1742 Charles Hope 1st Earl Hopetoun (age 61) died. His son John Hope 2nd Earl Hopetoun (age 37) succeeded 2nd Earl Hopetoun. Anne Ogilvy Countess Hopetoun (age 32) by marriage Countess Hopetoun.

On 26 Feb 1743 Constantine Phipps 1st Baron Mulgrave (age 20) and Lepell Hervey Baroness Mulgrave (age 19) were married. He a great grandson of King James II of England Scotland and Ireland.


On 26 Feb 1746 Thomas Watson 3rd Earl Rockingham (age 30) died without issue. Earl Rockingham extinct. His first cousin once removed Thomas Watson 1st Marquess Rockingham (age 52) succeeded 6th Baron Rockingham of Northampton, 6th Baronet Watson of Rockingham Castle in Northamptonshire. He left his estates to his first cousin Lewis Watson 1st Baron Sondes (age 17) who changed his surname from Monson to Watson on 31 Jan 1751.

On 26 Feb 1766 Stephen Moore 1st Viscount Mount Cashell (age 70) died. His son Stephen Moore 1st Earl Mount Cashell (age 35) succeeded 2nd Viscount Mount Cashell of the City of Cashell, 2nd Baron Kilworth of Moore Park in the County of Cork.


On 26 Feb 1783 George Richard St John 4th Viscount St John 3rd Viscount Bolingbroke (age 21) and Charlotte Collins were married.

On 26 Feb 1795 Francis Stuart 10th Earl Moray (age 24) and Lucy Scott (age 19) were married. He the son of Francis Stuart 9th Earl Moray (age 58).

On 26 Feb 1812 Harry Grey 8th Earl Stamford 4th Earl Warrington was born to Harry Grey (age 29) and Frances Elizabeth Ellis (age 19).

On 26 Feb 1841 Evelyn Baring 1st Earl Cromer Norfolk was born to Henry Baring (age 64) and Cecilia Anne Windham (age 38).

On 26 Feb 1851 Reverend Henry Wilson 10th Baron Berners (age 88) died. His son Henry Wilson 11th Baron Berners (age 54) succeeded 11th Baron Berners. Mary Letitia Crump Baroness Berners (age 50) by marriage Mary Letitia Crump Baroness Berners (age 50).

On 26 Feb 1862 George Chichester 3rd Marquess Donegal (age 65) and Harriet Graham Marchioness Donegal (age 32) were married. She by marriage Marchioness Donegal. The difference in their ages was 32 years. He the son of George Chichester 2nd Marquess Donegal.

On 26 Feb 1890 Thomas Trevor 22nd Baron Dacre (age 81) died without issue. His brother Henry Brand 1st Viscount Hampden (age 75) succeeded 23rd Baron Dacre Gilsland 1C 1321.


On 26 Feb 1891 Frederick Methuen 2nd Baron Methuen (age 73) died. His son Paul Methuen 3rd Baron Methuen (age 45) succeeded 3rd Baron Methuen of Corsham in Wiltshire. Mary Ethel Sanford Baroness Methuen by marriage Baroness Methuen of Corsham in Wiltshire.

PAINTINGS/ROBERTS/Albert_Parker.jpgBefore 26 Feb 1905. Ellis William Roberts (age 44). Portrait of Albert Parker 3rd Earl Morley (age 61).


On 26 Feb 1931 Henry Rainaud Gage 6th Viscount Gage (age 35) and Alexandra Imogen Clair Grenfell (age 26) were married.

On 26 Feb 1942 William Palmer 2nd Earl Selborne (age 82) died. His son Roundell Palmer 3rd Earl Selborne (age 54) succeeded 3rd Earl Selborne. Grace Ridley Countess Selborne (age 53) by marriage Countess Selborne.

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