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The Reign of Henry II, 1154-89

2. Henry's Civil War Inheritance

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About this Lecture


In this module, we think about the period of civil war in the period 1135-54 – sometimes known as The Anarchy – and the impact this had on the early part of Henry II's reign.


In this course, Dr Hugh Doherty (University of East Anglia) explores the reign of Henry II, 1154-89. We being by considering the nature of evidence for Henry's reign, focusing in particular on the later accounts of his reign, but also the various administration documents – royal charters, pipe rolls, etc. – that give us an insight into what his reign was like. After that, we think about the period of civil war that immediately preceded Henry's reign and how this impacted the early years of his rule, before turning in the third module to outline the extent of Henry's lands at the beginning of his reign. Each of the following four modules focuses on a different period in Henry's reign: in the fourth module, we explore the early years of his reign from 1154-70; after that, we look at the crisis surrounding Thomas Becket, which culminated in the murder of the Archbishop in his own Cathedral in late December 1170; in the sixth module, we consider the second great crisis of Henry's reign – the Great Rebellion of 1173-74; and in the seventh and final module, we think about the final fifteen years of Henry's reign between 1774-89, focusing in particular on his celebrated reforms to the English legal system, his struggles to keep his fractious kingdom (and family) together, and his death on campaign on 6 July 1189.


Hugh Doherty is Lecturer in Medieval History at the University of East Anglia. He was taught at King’s College, London, the University of Cambridge, and the University of Oxford, where he completed a thesis under Rees Davies and Richard Sharpe. He has worked on two ARHC-funded research projects on royal writs and charters in the twelfth and early thirteenth century, and between September 2008 and September 2013 was a research fellow at Jesus College, Oxford. He joined the School of History at UEA in September 2013.

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Doherty, H. (2018, August 15). The Reign of Henry II, 1154-89 - Henry's Civil War Inheritance [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Doherty, H. "The Reign of Henry II, 1154-89 – Henry's Civil War Inheritance." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 15 Aug 2018,