John Holland, 2nd Duke of Exeter

John Holland, 2nd Duke of Exeter

John Holland, 2nd Duke of Exeter KG (18 March 1395 – 5 August 1447) was an English nobleman and military commander during the Hundred Years' War.

Family

He was the second son of John Holland, 1st Duke of Exeter and Elizabeth Plantagenet. His maternal grandparents were John of Gaunt, 1st Duke of Lancaster and Blanche of Lancaster.

He was thus a half-nephew of Richard II of England, a nephew of Henry IV, and a first cousin of Henry V.

Life account

Holland was just a boy when his father conspired against Henry IV and was attainted and executed. Nevertheless, he was given a chance to serve Henry V in the 1415 campaign in France, where he distinguished himself at Agincourt.

The next year Holland was restored in blood and to his father's earldom of Huntingdon, and was made a Knight of the Garter. (His older brother Richard had died in 1400.)

Over the next five years he held various important commands with the English forces in France, until he was captured by the French in 1421 at the Battle of Baugé. He spent four years in captivity, not being released until 1425.

On March 6, 1427, he married Lady Anne Stafford (d. September 20, 1432), daughter of Edmund Stafford, 5th Earl of Stafford. By her he had one child:
* Henry Holland, 3rd Duke of Exeter (1430–1475)

He married secondly Beatrice of Portugal on January 20, 1433; then finally, he married Anne Montagu (d. November 28, 1457), daughter of John Montacute, 3rd Earl of Salisbury.

By his third marriage he also had one child:
* Anne Holland (d. December 26, 1486, married first Sir John Neville (d. 1450), son of Ralph Neville, 2nd Earl of Westmorland, the marriage unconsummated; married second John Neville, 1st Baron Neville de Raby; married third James Douglas, 9th Earl of Douglas

In 1435 he was appointed admiral of England, Ireland, and Aquitaine, and in 1439 he was made the king's lieutenant in Aquitaine, and later governor of Aquitaine.

Holland recovered his father's dukedom of Exeter in 1439, and was given precedence just below the Duke of York. He was succeeded as duke by his son Henry.

References


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