Posts Tagged ‘John King of England’

A Royal Baby

July 22, 2013

Our British friends are celebrating the birth of the newest addition to the royal family. Catherine, the duchess of Cambridge gave birth to a boy. This newborn is now the third in line to the throne, after Princes Charles and William. I suppose its a good thing to know that the royal line will continue for another generation though there is no shortage of heirs to the throne. The Wikipedia article lists fifty people but states that there are several thousand people potentially in line to the throne.

I don’t think they have released any photographs of the new prince yet. If the young royals need a baby sitter, I understand that Mr. Bean is available, though perhaps they might not want to take advantage.

They also haven’t released the name of the baby yet and people are taking bets on what names will be chosen. I wouldn’t care to speculate myself, but I can guarantee that the name chosen will not be John. There was only one King John of England who was not a very successful king. His legacy has been so negative that no royal prince has been named John since his time.

In case you’re not that familiar with English history, John reigned from 1199 to 1216. He was the youngest son of Henry II and the brother of Richard I the Lion-Hearted. He wasn’t actually a complete disaster as king. He made the administration of his government more efficient and continued the judicial reforms of Henry II. He paid more attention to England than his brother Richard, who was always off crusading. Unfortunately he was unsuccessful at war and during his reign, England lost most of its territory on the continent to France, earning John the name of lackland and soft sword with his barons. He managed to alienate the Pope, who placed England under the interdict, and his barons, who rebelled and forced him to sign the Magna Carta in 1215. When it became clear that King John would not adhere to the Magna Carta, the barons rebelled again and invited Louis, the son of Phillip II of France to be their king. They changed their minds when John died in 1216 and his nine year old son Henry III became king and Louis had to go back to France. No one in England wants a king so bad that rule by the French is preferable, so the royal family avoids the name John.

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