This Day in History: 1223-11-28

On 28th November 1223, Henry III and Hubert de Burgh, 1st Earl of Kent and Chief Justiciar (king’s deputy during his minority), met a group of nobles including John de Lacy, Baron of Pontefract, in London to try to resolve a declaration by Pope Honorius III on April 23rd that year. The pope, in seeking to increase contributions to his plans for a crusade had declared that Henry was then to be considered of age and should be allowed to retake possession of castles that had been held by others during his minority. Henry had, initially, ordered that Hereford and Gloucester castles be handed over to de Burgh, sparking an outrage amongst the affected and liable nobles. Despite some conciliatory suggestions to Henry by the pope, Archbishop Langton’s threat of excommunication of the barons unless the identified castles were returned, and Henry’s promise that the properties were to be reclaimed in a fair manner, caused the barons to submit.