Isabella of France-wife of Edward II

Discussion in 'Ancient Coins' started by Steven Michael Gardner, Jan 28, 2021.

  1. Steven Michael Gardner

    Steven Michael Gardner Well-Known Member

    I am impressed with the cunning & resourcefulness of the so called "She-wolf"
    Isabella and all she went through with her being tied to Edward II and the
    things she must have had to endure in this union...
    Does anyone know if there was a coin of the day dedicated to her much as
    we see during Roman times??

    Also I seem to have stumped the members of coin talk with my Athena / Lion
    coin, which I thought would be impossible to do;
    panzerman and +VGO.DVCKS like this.
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    +VGO.DVCKS Well-Known Member

    Sadly, nothing approaching this was done in medieval England. The only females to have coins with, never mind in their own names were reigning queens.
    ...And even then, only in the absence of a reigning king!
    (Edit: Well, apart from Matilda, during the the civil war under King Stephen. But those are distinctly on the rare side of life....)
    Italian coins of the Hohenstaufen German emperors, especially in the late 12th century, do a little better. Heinrich VI and Constanza /Constance of Sicily, parents of Friedrich II, did some coissues, but mostly with both their names abbreviated to one letter apiece. I posted one, I think in the thread, 'Post an Old Coin and a New Tune.'
    ...Even with that, it's an easy guess that the influence of Roman precedent probably played a role. ...Found the thread, hopefully on the right page (with a little scrolling).
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2021
  4. Steven Michael Gardner

    Steven Michael Gardner Well-Known Member

    Thanks VGO, for that lession in female coins of the middle ages, I could see several
    viable wives & Queens that would have made memorable coins if they were but allowed by males of the day...
    panzerman and +VGO.DVCKS like this.
  5. panzerman

    panzerman Well-Known Member

    Isabella had the misfortune of being forced to marry the fool=Edward II. Story well told in Mel Gibson movie, "Braveheart". sophie-marceau-princess-isabella-of-france-photo-u1.jpg
    +VGO.DVCKS, galba68 and Alegandron like this.

    +VGO.DVCKS Well-Known Member

    To second @Steven Michael Gardner and @panzerman, the impression I get is that Isabella's reputation as 'the she-wolf of France' is mostly reducible to a combination of xenophobia toward the French, misogyny, and guilt by association. Not necessarily in that order. But this was a century and change after the end of the Angevin Empire (under which, numerous English barons held land on both sides of the Channel --and spoke some version of French as their first language); misogyny --well, kind of obvious; with the guilt by association from her corule of England, with her consort, Roger Mortimer. This happened from Edward II's deposition in 1327, to the apprehension and hanging of Mortimer in 1330.
    During the interval, Mortimer implemented an increasingly despotic rule, evoking the dictatorship of Oliver Cromwell centuries later. After three years, enough of the baronage got suitably p-ssed off enough to allow the future Edward III's countercoup in 1330.
    Their are some good books on this stuff. (All of them could be considered 'popular' histories, but it doesn't affect their methodology for a minute. Fully annotated, with pages of bibliography.)
    Mortimer, Ian. The Greatest Traitor: The Life of Sir Roger Mortimer. (2003/4.)
    Warner, Kathryn. Isabella of France: The Rebel Queen. (2006.)
    Weir, Alison. Queen Isabella. (2005.)
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2021
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