From him dates the immediate connection between royalty and the duchy. In 1310, Thomas, second earl of Lancaster, son of Edmund Crouchback, married a great heiress, the only child of De Lacy, earl of Lincoln.
Their estates were confiscated, and in 1265 were in the possession of Robert Ferrers, earl of Derby. This nobleman took part with Simon de Montfort in his rebellion, and was deprived of all his estates in 1265 by Henry III., who bestowed them on his youngest son, Edmund, commonly called Edmund Crouchback, whom he created earl of Lancaster.
There are fine specimens of the great seals also of Henry III., and of his sons Edward I. and Edmund Crouchback, and of the Tudor sovereigns, as well as many private seals of great interest. The wax of the early seals was obviously stronger and better than the wax since used.
Of shorter stature, darker browed, of less regular feature and less clear complexion, so as to look as if he were the elder of the brothers, Prince Edmund moved by his side, using much exertion, and bending with the effort, so as to increase the slight sloop that had led to his historical nickname of the Crouchback, though some think this was merely taken from his crusading cross.
This Earl of Lancaster was the son of Edmund Crouchback and of Blanche of Artois, mother of the Queen of France.
In loading his second son, Edmund Crouchback, with honours and estates he raised a family to greatness which overawed the Crown. Edmund had been created Earl of Lancaster; after Evesham he had received the forfeited Earldom of Leicester; he had been made Earl of Derby on the extinction of the house of Ferrers.
A like story was invented, and even a ballad was current, making Queen Eleanor of Provence confess that Edmund Crouchback, not Edward I., was the rightful heir, but that he was set aside on account of his deformity; and Lancaster, as Edmund's son, was on the watch to profit by the King's unpopularity.
In 1255 occurred three events of great importance to Wales: Llywelyn overthrew his brothers in battle; Edward Longshanks took possession of his Chester estates; Edmund Crouchback was formally proclaimed king of Sicily.
Thomas, Earl of Lancaster, the son of Edmund Crouchback, was "the old hog" and the "stage-player;" pale, dark, Provencal Aymar de Valence, Earl of Pembroke, he called "Joseph the Jew;" the fierce Guy, Earl of Warwick, "the black dog of Ardennes."
This Edward neglected, whereupon Philippe sent to seize the lands of Perigord, and, on being repulsed by the seneschal, called on Edward to appear at his court within twenty days, to answer for his misdeeds, on pain of forfeiting the province of Gascony. Edward sent first the Bishop of London, and afterward his brother Edmund Crouchback, to represent him.