LIONEL OF ANTWERP
Prince Lionel is Edward and Phillipa’s second son. He is a peripheral character and is mainly notable because he is the tallest recorded member of the english royal family—over seven foot.
He was however complicit with the Lancastrians in plans to split the Plantagenet Empire into three, four if Scotland could be persuaded to accept an English king.
He is important to our story because Phillipa de Roet—Pipa— met Geoffrey Chaucer when they were both in his service. They returned to the Queen’s household after Lionel’s wife died young leaving a baby daughter—yes another Phillipa— to be cared for.
EDMUND OF LANGLEY
Edmund is the forth son of Edward III. He is notable because he married Isabella of Castile and founded the House of York, challenging the justification of the Lancastrian right to the throne.
JOHN OF GAUNT
The third surviving son of Edward III, John of Gaunt falls under the influence of Henry of Lancaster, who offers him Blanche, his daughter.
John of Gaunt comes to realise that this is a device to enable Henry of Lancaster the opportunity to get control of the kingdom.
John refuses to co-operate, and this causes difficulties in his marriage.
He meets Pipa when she joins the Queen’s household.
He is of course the Hero of Shakespeare’s play Richard II
"This royal throne of kings, this scepter'd isle,
This earth of majesty, this seat of Mars,
This other Eden, demi-paradise,
This fortress built by Nature for herself
Against infection and the hand of war,
This happy breed of men, this little world,
This precious stone set in the silver sea,
Which serves it in the office of a wall,
Or as a moat defensive to a house,
Against the envy of less happier lands,
This blessed plot, this earth, this realm,
Though John of Gaunt may well have prevented the breakup of the English Empire and could therefore be considered somewhat of an English hero, Shakespeare is perhaps a little generous.
John of Gaunt spent much of his adult life attempting to acquire the throne of Castile.