Richard I - Lionheart or Coeur De Lion?

06 Sep 2021
by Simone de Mestre

On this day in history, 3rd September 1189 Richard I was crowned King of England. He later garnered the name Lionheart due to his prowess as a fighter and military leader, particularly during the Third Crusade.

His coronation was one of the first English ceremonies to be well documented by chroniclers. It is described as one would imagine a medieval coronation, a procession, "triumphal chanting" and a crowd of nobles and clergymen. Apparently some "evil omens" were also recorded, a bat fluttered around Richard's head during the service and a "mysterious peal of bells" was heard.richard lionheart

Perhaps this was a sign of the odious persecution of the Jewish people that would follow his coronation, and be present in England during his reign.

What's interesting about his life is that despite being King of England, he barely spent any of his adult life actually inside the country. After his accession, he mostly resided in his acquired southwestern French duchy of Aquitaine. He was said to have barely spent six months actually in England for the entirety of 20171128 182933 his reign, cited as believing it to be a "useful resource" rather than anything of vast importance.

Comjeruselum.PNG 1 pared to the other Crusades, Richard I managed to lead a successful campaign against Saladin, yet despite several substantial victories, he ended his regime with a peace treaty and never managed to capture Jerusalem.

Rather remarkably Richard I died suppressing a revolt in France in 1199. Shot by a boy with a crossbow, the wound became gangrenous and eventually led to his death, later to be referred to as "the Lion by the Ant was slain". His body was interred in a tomb with his father, but his so called "Lion's Heart" was buried in Rouen, to commemorate his love of Normandy.