it true that King Henry 4th of Brian was a BASTARD ?

+1 vote
I understand that King Henry the 4th of Britain's real father was a common English soldier who impregnated the Queen, while K. Henry the 3rd was off fighting in the 100 Years War. That would invalidate every legitimate claim to monarchy by all subsequent British monarchs, including QE2, under long-standing British laws. How can this be proven via existing DNA test results, and which other people would need to be tested to prove it?

Would the rightful royal bloodline by Hasting, Scrope, Cornwall, or other ?
WikiTree profile: Adrian Scrope
in Genealogy Help by

None of this would matter -- British law assumes the father is the husband of the mother, no matter biology. Anyway, Henry (VII) Tudor was king by right of conquest -- to paraphrase from The Lion In Winter, England was his because his soldiers were on it.

What a marvelous movie. Peter O’Toole and Katherine Hepburn.
I love to watch "Becket" and "Lion in Winter" to see Peter O'Toole as the young King Henry II and the mature King Henry II.
Love both of them!!

4 Answers

+11 votes
Best answer
I'm told he was a very pleasant fellow and not at all a bastard.
by Anonymous McCormick G2G6 Mach 5 (55.9k points)
selected by Russell Van Rooy
+9 votes

Henry IV was king of England, not Britain, his predecessor was not Henry III, and his mother was not the Queen.  Beyond that, I think that 'invalid claim' horse has been well and truly beaten.

by Herbert Tardy G2G6 Pilot (576k points)

Henry IV was the son of John of Gaunt, and Blanche of Lancaster, not Henry III, neither of them were the King and Queen of England, Henry IV usurped or displaced  his cousin, Richard II, this was the starting point of all the troubles for England in the latter part of the 1400's now known as the war of the roses, because in a strict order of succession a younger cousin Edmund Mortimer should have been next in line for the crown. Later descendants of Edmund would base their claims to the English throne through him.

Another King, Edward IV was rumoured to be a bastard, this was mostly put out by his enemies, and those who wished to discredit the eligibility of Edward's children to inherit the throne,  but some people still believe this. His mother  Cecily Neville in her will explicitly stated that Edward IV was the son of her husband and herself. While I don't believe that Edward IV was illegitimate, if this was so, then in order of succession the rightful claimant to the English throne is the eldest living  child of Mike Hastings who died in 2012, he  emigrated to Australia and was a fork lift driver, there was a documentary about this on TV a few years ago.


I've never heard any reason to suppose that Henry IV wasn't fathered by John of Gaunt. Let's hope our anonymous friend doesn't face an angry Blanche of Lancaster in the afterlife for disparaging her good name.

The one that's 'questionable' is the paternity of Henry VI's son, Edward of Westminster. It's all moot anyway since Edward died in 1471 with no heirs. But Edward was conceived and born in a period when Henry VI was so mentally ill, even he was astonished when his wife gave birth and openly wondered where the child had come from.

 But, Herbert! There’s a whole Wikipedia page in alternate successions!


All those things that didn't happen. sad  I think the Earl and his supporters need to put up or cut bait.  Raise an army and take the crown fair and square, just like Henry did.

But, Herbert, surely all those alternate lines must be true! Of course, just because this appeals to all sorts of folks doesn’t mean we can dismiss it out of hand... ouch! I just bit my tongue in cheek! cheeky

(I think the fella in Australia doesn’t really care one way or another. Reporters just love this kind of thing.)

Apart from that (have you seen the Tony Robinson special that deals with this and interviews the guy in Aus?!) .. .. the Bill of Rights 1689 and the Act of Settlement 1701 restricted succession to the throne to the legitimate Protestant descendants of Sophia of Hanover* (blah blah blah blah), so it really doesn't matter if anyone has a "better" claim.  :)

* Some aspects have changed, now "allowing" females to inherit in line, even if there are brothers after them.  Way late in happening, but better late than never.  (If it'd happened a generation or so ago, Anne would be in line before Andrew and Edward, but it is what it is.)
+5 votes
There is no such thing as a bastard child, only bastard parents - so a Catholic priest informed me.
by Marion Poole G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)
I'm no RC priest, but I have contended since my teenage years that there is no such thing as an illegitimate child, only illegitimate parents; simply because the child had no choice in it, the parents (or at least one of them) did.

Same idea, different words.  :)
Like this. Never heard it put that way.
The Scots had a much nicer term ... Natural son or daughter.
I've a few of them on collateral branches, plus one on a direct.  That the guys (my blood kin) married the mothers of their natural children doesn't change that they were makin' nookie outside of wedlock in an era where it was extremely frowned upon by most.

I'm so glad I don't care about it, or I'd have been as shocked as my Mum was when she found it was HER father who was the 7-month child and not her uncle.

I love this voyage of discovery we are all on. :)
My paternal grandparents, 4 1/2 months later.... Dad!
My EXTREMELY prim and proper English grandmother .. who looked down her nose at her father-in-law having a child out of wedlock while his wife was still living .. HER parents married June Qtr, eldest son born September Qtr.  It must've killed her every time she thought of it!  :)
Some prefer the term "natural children", which seems a little bit silly to me. I understand the sentiment and all, but still -- we're all "natural"! Even if you were made in a petri dish, the same proteins and so forth made you, as made me.
Born outside of wedlock is another term that is fairly inoffensive, but I do like "natural child".
"Wrong side of the blanket" always had me giggling when much, much younger.
Melanie, I had forgotten that one.

Maybe maths was not Your Grandmother’s strong point Melanie? wink

Oh, my, you said mathS and not math!  YAY!  smiley

Seriously, I think she was just a wee bit snobbish.  The names she gave me (in writing) for her sisters, do NOT match up with official records.  I think she wanted to be classier than "just" a soldier's daughter.  She also looked down on her own son for being what she called a "blue collar worker".

If she only knew what I have discovered in almost every generation, she'd throw herself off a cliff (well, except that that would not be socially acceptable).  I loved her dearly, miss her terribly, but do not wear rose coloured glasses the way she seemed to.  :)

+1 vote
A lot us who regale in our royal ancestry descend through illegimate lines! After all, some of the ancient kings had lots of girl friends, and even more children.

If the “droit du seigneur” or “jus primae noctis” was real (there are discussions about this) many more of us may descend from these undocumented dalliances of the aristocrats.
by George Fulton G2G6 Pilot (342k points)

Related questions

0 votes
0 answers
36 views asked May 24, 2020 in Genealogy Help by anonymous
+3 votes
1 answer
86 views asked Jun 9, 2019 in The Tree House by Michael Cayley G2G6 Mach 9 (92.7k points)
+3 votes
1 answer
+3 votes
1 answer
70 views asked May 13, 2017 in Policy and Style by Ann Johnson G2G2 (2.3k points)
+4 votes
1 answer
+6 votes
1 answer
+6 votes
2 answers
220 views asked Jan 4, 2016 in Genealogy Help by Liz Shifflett G2G6 Pilot (420k points)
+4 votes
1 answer
122 views asked May 6, 2015 in Genealogy Help by RJ Horace G2G6 Pilot (565k points)

WikiTree  ~  About  ~  Help Help  ~  Search Person Search  ~  Surname:

disclaimer - terms - copyright