Edward Coulter was a politician and a close advisor to the King. He married Marisa van Zee, a beautiful and clever Scholar who later had an affair with Lord Asriel, resulting in the birth of Lyra Belacqua. The baby was hidden away in a cottage in Oxfordshire and Marisa told Edward that the baby had died. When Edward finally discovered his wife's betrayal, he hunted down the child and almost killed her, however was challenged by Asriel. Although he managed to get a shot with his gun, Asriel knocked it out of his hands and turned it back on him, killing him. The law favoured Asriel's side of defence on the part of his child and Marisa was left a widow.