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Eleanor of Woodstock (1318 – 1355) was the daughter of Edward II of England and Isabella of France. She was originally betrothed to Alphonso XI of Castile, but that fell through, and then Philip VI of France… but THAT fell through too. It seems her dowry was not acceptable. Yikes.

She eventually married the Count (and later Duke) of Guelders. Reginald II the Black, who was a widower with four daughters (that could NOT have been an easy family to jump in to.) “the black” was added to his name due to his sinister ways- he had his own father locked up for over six years.

Eleanor had two sons with Reginald (thank goodness), Reginald the Fat and Edward, Duke of Guelders. I happen to love these titles- my title this week would be Lisa the Grumpy (it really needs to stop snowing in New England.)

She was very eager to please her husband- but he grew tired of her and sent her away by saying she had leprosy! WHAT?!?! Reginald tried to have the marriage annulled, but Eleanor showed up in court to contest the annulment. She stripped down to her birthday suit to prove she was NOT a leper. Reginald was forced to take her back. He died from a fall off his horse in 1343.

Poor Eleanor died in complete poverty in a convent. She never asked her brother Edward III for help. She is buried in Deventer Abbey, but there is an image of her and her husband (ick!) in Westminster Abbey.

There is a good article about Eleanor and her sister Joan, here: http://edwardthesecond.blogspot.com/2008/11/edward-iis-daughters-eleanor-and-joan.html