15th Century 1400-1499 CE

The 15th century brought to the world, Leonardo da Vinci, one of the greatest geniuses of the Italian Renaissance. It was his direct observation of the world around him, that steered the world to a more enlightened way of looking at the world.

  • Wynkyn de Worde Printer
  • The Haberdasher's Company
  • John Gower 14th Century Poet
  • George Duke of Clarence
  • Who was Catherine of Valois?
  • Plantagenet Roll of the Royal Blood
  • Richard III Bosworth
  • Crossbones Graveyard
  • Treaty of Troyes 1420
  • Richard III Illegitimate?
  • Why the French lost the Battle of Agincourt
  • Elizabeth Woodville Queen of Edward IV
  • Edward IV 1442-1483
  • Cade's Rebellion 1450
  • King Edward IV's Mistress Jane Shore
  • King Richard III of England Found Facts and Fiction
  • Freehold, Freeholders and Leaseholders
  • Copyhold Tenure what does it mean?

‘All our knowledge has its origins in our perceptions’
Leonardo da Vinci

Portugal extended its international trading routes.

In Portugal navigation, exploration and mastery of the oceans dominated. The country looked outwards, towards Africa and explorers such as Henry the Navigator will encourage further exploration westwards. This will, as the century unfolds, lead to the founding of gold and slave routes. Trade became crucially important to the economy of fledgling European nations. At this time only England could probably call itself a nation, Germany, France, Italy and Spain had yet to form to become the countries we recognize today.

The Hundred Years War continues

The costly war continues:

King Henry V inflicts a mighty blow to the superior French force at the Battle of Agincourt but France bit back when Joan of Arc, a farmers daughter, heard voices in her head telling her to go to the aid of the French Dauphin and Orleans. She defeated the English and returned to Paris triumphant. Joan was captured and the English turned her over to the Inquisition, calling her a witch. In the French town of Rouen, then under English rule, Joan is burned at the stake.

The Renaissance gains momentum in Italy

In Italy, the cultural movement known as the Renaissance is advancing. Florence is at the heart of the movement but other cities Rome, Milan and Venice also become hubs of activity. The Medici family come to dominate the politics and business of Tuscany.

The church in the 15th century

By the 15th century, the power of the all encompassing Roman Catholic church was dwindling. The popes were no longer held by the ordinary people as shining lights of Christian piety, they were seen as corrupt and turned away from any form of renewal in the church that might just have saved their superiority. The monastic and religious orders became richer and more powerful than ever before. Aristocratic families placed younger children with them and bought into the church this way. There was plenty of room for corruption. Reform of the church was an inevitable consequence. The movement of Reformation was born in the 15th century.

By the middle of the 15th Century, powerful families in England tear the nation apart as a dynastic war takes shape.

The War of the Roses set family against family and when all the dust had settled, a new dynasty emerges from the virtual destruction of the Plantagenets, Lancastrians and Yorkist factions, the Tudors emerge and a brilliant marriage  alliance is forged between the daughter of Edward IV and Henry VII (Tudor. in 1486)

Gutenberg built a printing press in 1439

The Gutenberg Bible is the first major book to be printed using a movable type printing press. Mass production of books is achievable for the first time. This is an immense development that has a massive impact on society in the following hundred years, spreading knowledge and sharing ideas. Caxton introduced the printing press in England in 1476. He would also be the first commercial printer of books in England.

Our 15th century chronology and timelines are being created and curated but already via each century page you can quickly locate our collections for each 100 years of history. These evolve as we explore topical themes, but if you are looking for something you can’t see here then please feel free to contact us and request, Thanks for taking a look.

 

15th century collection

King Henry V

King Henry V

King Henry V of England is portrayed as a a great military ruler, Shakespeare did his best to represent Henry as a ‘golden King’ but was he really a cruel and aloof man whose autocratic leadership, piety and belief he was God’s chosen put him at odds with those he ruled?

Wynkyn de Worde Printer

Wynkyn de Worde Printer

Wynkyn de Worde the printer and publisher of Shoe Lane Fleet Street who became a great typographist in addition to the 800 books he produced during the early part of the 16th century.

The Haberdasher’s Company

The Haberdasher’s Company

This entry is part 6 of 6 in the series Livery Companies

The Haberdasher’s Company is one of the Great City of London Companies and was founded in the 15th century and was granted it’s first charter in 1448. But what did the haberdashers actually sell and what legacy has this great company left?

John Gower 14th Century Poet

John Gower 14th Century Poet

This entry is part 7 of 8 in the series Intriguing London

John Gower was one of the great Medieval poets and a friend and contemporary of Geoffrey Chaucer. He was poet laureate to King Richard II and then Henry IV.

George Duke of Clarence

George Duke of Clarence

This entry is part 2 of 5 in the series House of York

George Duke of Clarence may have been the only legitimate heir in the House of York he married the Kingmaker’s daughter what happened to their children? Margaret of York, Edward Plantagenet and Richard of York were born to rank and privilege but how would their lives stand-up to the brutal times of the War of the Roses?

Who was Catherine of Valois?

Who was Catherine of Valois?

This entry is part 6 of 15 in the series Intriguing Women

Who was Catherine of Valois whose short life included being the daughter of a King, married to one, the mother of one and the grandmother of another? One of history’s most interesting characters from the 15th century.

Medieval Music in Britain

Medieval Music in Britain

This entry is part 1 of 2 in the series Intriguing Resources

Directly access this expert published work online for an authoritative view of the history of Medieval Music.This is by Frank Harrison a 19th cetury Senior Lecturer in Music at Oxford University. If you have discovered or would like to explore the wonders of British Medieval Music, Sacred Music or Polyphony then this is a great starting point. Click to access directly from here…an intriguing resource free to access and use online or to download.

Plantagenet Roll of the Royal Blood

Plantagenet Roll of the Royal Blood

Plantagenet Roll of the Royal Blood Plantagenet Roll of the Royal Blood, 3 Ways to Check your Plantagenet Heritage Are you one of the many or one of the few? Watching and reading the media during this amazing week, it seems as if ‘the world and his wife’ were related to Richard III and the…

Richard III Bosworth

Richard III Bosworth

This entry is part 1 of 5 in the series House of York

King Richard III Bosworth Field, where the King stood and faced the army of Henry Tudor and was defeated, his crown left tumbeld under a thorn bush, his body unceremoniously dumped at Grey Friars Leicester. This week is re-buried at Leicester Cathedral.

Crossbones Graveyard

Crossbones Graveyard

This entry is part 3 of 8 in the series Intriguing London

Crossbones graveyard in Southwark is adorned with colourful ribbons, a tribute to those Winchester Geese and others who exist on the margins of society. This burial ground has been in existence since Medieval times.