John of Eltham (DNB00)
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John of Eltham
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JOHN of Eltham, Earl of Cornwall (1316–1336), second son of Edward II by Isabella of France (1292-1358) [q. v.], was born at Eltham on 15 Aug. 1316. On 19 March 1319 he received a grant of the forfeited lands of all Scots south of the Trent (Fœdera, ii. 389). Numerous other grants made to him at various times are detailed by Dugdale. In October 1326, when the Londoners rose in revolt against Edward II, they removed the royal officers at the Tower, and appointed others in the name of John of Eltham, whom they styled warden of the city and Tower of London. In October 1328 John was created Earl of Cornwall, and in May 1329 was regent for his brother Edward III during his absence in France to do homage for Aquitaine (ib. ii. 763). In 1330 John paid a visit to Aquitaine (ib. ii. 784,793). In April 1331 he was again regent while the king was in France (ib. ii. 814), and for a third time next year, when Edward III was in Scotland. The young earl commanded the first division of the English army at the battle of Halidon Hill on 19 July 1333, and in January 1335 defeated the Scots when they made a raid into Redesdale. On 2 Feb. 1335 he was made warden of the marches of Northumberland, and a commissioner to receive the submission of the Scots. In April 1336 he had a grant of the coinage of tin in Cornwall, in return for his expenses in Scotland (ib. ii. 937). On 20 June of that year he was one of the commissioners to hold a parliament at Northampton (ib. ii. 940). John accompanied Edward III to Scotland in the same year, and was left in command there. He died at Perth in October 1336, and was buried with great ceremony at Westminster on 15 Jan. 1337. His tomb, with an effigy of alabaster, stands in St. Edmund's Chapel, on the south side of the choir. John was never married, though many projects for an alliance were mooted between 1329 and 1335 (ib. ii. 736, 854, 885, 890, 893, 929).
[Murimuth's Chronicle; Chron. Edw. I and II; Flores Historiarum (all these are in the Rolls Ser.); Rymer's Fœdera, Record edit.; Dugdale's Baronage, ii. 109; Doyle's Official Baronage, i. 439.]