Merciless Parliament

On 3 February 1388, at the initiative of Thomas of Gloucester, Henry, earl of Derby, Richard of Arundel, Thomas of Warwick and others, this so-called Merciless Parliament convicted a number of the young King Richard Il's advisers of treason; as a result many were executed, or dismissed from the court. The intention was to destroy the king's inner circle and thus isolate him. The occasion arose from the defeat of the king's 'friends', led by Robert de Vere, at the Battle of Radcot Bridge, shortly before Christmas 1387. De Vere and others fled the country. After this, the lords who had opposed the young king ruled until May of the following year, 1389. That month Richard declared himself of age to rule personally and did so for the next few years, which were peaceful.

Dictionary of Medieval Terms and Phrases. .

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