Hugh Despenser Tomb - Tewkesbury Abbey

walwyn Thu, 08/18/2011 - 22:19
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Hugh Despencer Tomb


Hugh Despenser the Younger became the favourite of Edward II but was especially disliked by Queen Isabella of France. Some believed that this hostility was because he was having a sexual relationship with Edward, though there is no evidence that Edward II was homosexual. When Isabella along with Roger Mortimer raised an army in France, seized power and deposed Edward, Hugh was arrested and tried and sentenced for treason, theft and for having procured discord between the King and Queen. He was hanged, drawn, quartered, castrated, and beheaded in Hereford market place on the 24th November 1326.


After the execution of Hugh Despenser his remains were gathered together and buried here in Tewkesbury. The tomb once contained over 40 statues, all of which have now gone. One of the stained glass knights in the chancel clerestory window also represents him, and was donated by his wife Eleanor Despenser. The current tomb in the alcove is that of Abbot John Cotes (d1337) which was moved into this location in the 17th century.