The son of King Henry V and Queen Catherine of Valois, Henry was the last king from the House of Lancaster, and his reign was dominated by competing Aristocratic factions. He became king in 1422, at the age of 1 year, and in 1445 he married a French Princess, Margaret of Anjou.
During the 1450’s a group of nobles sought to replace him with Richard, Duke of York, the next in line of succession to the throne. The resulting civil conflict, known as the Wars of the Roses, resulted in Henry’s capture and he was compelled to acknowledge Richard rather than his own infant son as successor.
Like his father, Henry claimed the crown of France, but France gradually freed itself from English control between 1430 and 1453. This coin is from that period of France. When Richard was killed, and his son, Edward, declared himself King, Henry and his queen escaped to Scotland, where they remained until 1464.
When he returned with a rebel force he was taken prisoner and imprisoned. Following a brief reign as nominal king, Henry died in 1471. Although a troubled monarch and man, Henry was venerated by many as a saint because of his piety. He who founded Eton College and King’s College, and the University of Cambridge.