And daughter of John of Gaunt by his marriage with Constance, daughter of Peter the Cruel and Maria de Padilla, Ferdinand proved a good ruler.
His claim to the throne was through his mother from John of Gaunt and Catherine Swynford, whose issue born before their marriage had been legitimated by parliament.
Henry strengthened his position still further by his marriage with Catherine, daughter of John of Gaunt and of Constance, elder daughter of Peter the Cruel and Maria de Padilla.
As Clarence was King Edward's third son, while John of Gaunt was his fourth, in ordinary course on the failure of the elder line the issue of Clarence should have taken precedence of that of Lancaster in the succession.
How far this was due to religious and how far to political considerations may be a question; but not only John of Gaunt but his immediate descendants, the three kings of the house of Lancaster, all took deep interest in the religious movements of the times.
The elder, Eleanor, was given in 1374 to Thomas of Woodstock, seventh son of Edward III.; the younger, Mary, to Henry, earl of Derby, son of John of Gaunt and afterwards Henry IV., in 1380 or 1381.
Accusations had been made against John of Gaunt more than once during the earlier part of Richard II.'s reign of entertaining designs to supplant his nephew on the throne.
Pp. 3 6 9, 37 o) corroborates Hardyng to some extent; for we are told that John of Gaunt had once desired in parliament that his son should 'be recognized on this flimsy plea as heir to the crown; and when Roger Mortimer, earl of March, denied the story and insisted on his own claim as descended from Lionel, duke of Clarence, Richard imposed silence on both parties.
Richard found a convenient way to get rid of John of Gaunt by sending him to Castile to make good his barren title, and on this expedition he was away three years.
The direct male line of John of Gaunt became extinct.