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Hugh le Despenser

Hugh le Despenser (or Hugh Despenser) (1262-1326) was an English baron, chief adviser to King Edward II of England. His son, also Hugh le Despenser, was the king's favourite, and was married off to Eleanor, daughter of Joan of Acre.

Despenser became Edward's loyal servant and chief administrator after the execution of Piers Gaveston in 1312, but the jealousy of other barons led to his being exiled along with his son in 1321. Edward found it difficult to manage without them, and recalled them to England a year later, an action which enraged the queen, Isabella, the more so when Despenser was created Earl of Winchester. When Isabella and her lover, Roger Mortimer, led a rebellion against the king, both Despensers were captured and executed. The elder Despenser was hung at Bristol and his son was hung at Hereford.

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