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Joan, Princess

Joan, Princess (d. 1237). An illegitimate daughter of King John, Joan was married 1205/6 to Llywelyn ab Iorwerth of Gwynedd, prince of North Wales. Thereafter, she was a wise counsellor to her husband and a peacemaker in the fluid and often belligerent relations between England and Wales. In 1211, when John attacked Wales, Joan pleaded her husband's cause. The following year she warned her father of the hostile plans of his barons. She continued to act as a mediator during the reign of John and of his successor Henry III. In 1226 Pope Honorius III removed the stigma of her illegitimacy. Llywelyn remained indebted to his wife for her support, forgiving her an affair in 1228. He founded a Franciscan monastery to her memory at Llanfaes (Anglesey), where she is buried.

June Cochrane

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