ACEO, 2.5 x 3.5 inches, watercolor with gouache, 2008.
An ACEO portrait of Edward II. Born in 1284 he became King after the death of his father Edward I in 1307. Though married to Isabella of France in 1308, and having four children with her, he bestowed more attention on male favourites, firstly Piers Gaveston and later Hugh Despenser. These relationships caused outrage not only because homosexuality was considered a heinous sin, but also because these men were low born and Edward bestowed lands, title and riches on them over his Lords and Nobles. Edward was also a weak ruler, and the favourites wielded power. This caused great resentment, not only among the nobles but also from Isabella. Gaveston was murdered in 1312. By 1320 Hugh Despencer had replaced him. Isabella was sent to France in 1525 and while there plotted with her then lover Roger Mortimer to invade England and depose Edward. In 1326 they did this, Despencer was executed and Edward captured and imprisoned. He was forced to abdicate in favour of his son Edward III. While imprisoned at Berkeley Castle Edward was supposedly murdered on the orders of Isabella and Mortimer in 1327. However it is also believed that Edward actually escaped and lived as a hermit in Italy until 1338.