Henry III (born 1207, ruled 1216-1272). The elder son of King John and grandson of Henry II was a weak and incompetent ruler. He was born in Winchester on Oct. 1, 1207. Until he came of age, in 1227, the government was in the hands of regents.
In 1236 Henry married Eleanor of Provence. His extravagance, his lavish gifts to favorites and to his wife's French relatives, and an unsuccessful war in France in 1242 caused mounting opposition to him. In 1258 a group of barons, led by Simon de Montfort, agreed to grant the king money only if he accepted the Provisions of Oxford, a body of reforms to be carried out by a commission of barons.
Henry repudiated the reform measures in 1261. In the Barons' War that followed, King Henry and his son Edward were captured at Lewes in 1264. Edward escaped and rescued his father. After the defeat and death of Simon in 1265, Henry was restored to the throne. Thereafter, however, the gifted and respected Edward was king in all but name. Henry died at Westminster, on Nov. 16, 1272 (see Edward, Kings of England ; Montfort ).