Edward was the first son of Edward III, born at Woodstock in 1330. In 1337, he was created Duke of Cornwall, the first duke in England. He became Prince of Wales in 1343 and commanded the English right wing at Crecy in 1346. On an expedition against Aquitaine (1355-1356), he defeated and captured John, king of France, whom he brought to England in 1357.
Created prince of Aquitaine and Gascony, Edward sailed in 1363 to Gascony, where he contracted a fatal disease in his campaign against Henry of Trastamare in 1367. He relinquished his principality after his return to England in 1371.
The name Black Prince, attributed to Edward's custom of wearing black armor, was first used in the 16th century. Among his contemporaries, he was known as Edward of Woodstock.