John of Gaunt

Date of birth: 1340-03-06 — Date of death: 1399-02-03

Duke of Lancaster. Fourth son of -Edward III (1312-1377) and his wife, Philippa of Hainault. John of Gaunt exercised great influence over the English throne during the reign of his nephew Richard II. The Duke was valued as a military commander, particularly during the conflict with France in this period. As an expert negotiator, he exerted great political influence in courts at home and abroad. The religious reformer John Wycliffe acted as the Duke's clerical advisor from 1376-1378, leading to speculation about the Duke's religious sympathies.