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War of the Roses

War of the Roses the History, Timeline Chronology and Family Connections

The War of the Roses history consists of a series of protracted series of events, disputes, skirmishes, routs ,battles, family arguments, claims and counter-claims that only in Victorian times would become known as the ‘War of the Roses.’

Events transpire as early as 1399 with the descent into war around 1450. What creates the climate where siblings fight and fued for power fame and fortune? Were the Tudors the saviours of a nation or just more of the same? The Plantagenets, Houses of York and Lancaster were all related why couldn’t they resolve their family disputes without civil war and a great cost to the nation?

War of the Roses Timeline Chronology and Interactive Tables

The following table can be searched and sorted as an overall narrative and outline of the sequence of events known as the War of the Roses. This is a 1st cut and we will be experimenting with various formats, your feedback welcomed via Contact Us

MajEvent: War of the Roses

Year EventNarrativeLocation 
1435Death of John Beaufort Duke of Bedford. 14 SepAfter the death of King Henry V, his brothers John of Lancaster (Beaufort) Duke of Bedford and Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester vied for control of England. John became Regent but mainly took care of affairs in France and Humphrey became Lord Protector of the young Henry VI. The country felt the loss of such a strong Regent.St Katherine's by the Tower London
1441Richard 3rd Duke of York appointed Lieutenant General of Normandy. 1 JuneIn 1439 Richard 3rd Duke of York was appointed Lieutenant General of Normandy, a measure taken to try to retain some of the French territories.He worked hard with some success to hold Normandy and to restore order there. He had been put in a very difficult situation there with insufficient funds to pay his troops and he had to use his own money to take care of many outstanding debts and his term of office there was greatly extended. In 1441, after failed negotiationswith the French, Henry sent him back to Normandy. This time his position was put under pressure by the king diverting resources to Somerset in Gascony. Normandy
1442Edward IV born. 28 AprEdward IV was born in Rouen in FranceRouen France
1444Treaty of Tours between Henry VI and Charles VII. 1 MayDuring the negotiations leading to the truce of Tours in 1444, the English made important concessions in saying that the claim to the French crown might be traded in return for sovereignty in Normandy; In December 1445, In March 1448 the capital, Le Mans, finally surrendered. This meant that Henry VI had initiated the dispossession of English soldiers whose homes and livelihoods were in MaineTours France
1445Henry VI marries Margaret of Anjou at Titchfield Abbey. 23 AprHenry's marriage to the beautiful young Margaret, she was only 15 at the time of her marriage is interesting. She was not of particularly high rank and brought little of value to the English monarchy. Henry at the time also claimed the Kingdom of France and controlled various parts of northern France. Henry's uncle King Charles VII of France, also claimed the crown of France He agreed to the marriage of Margaret to Henry on the condition that he would not have to provide a dowry and would receive the lands of Maine and Anjou from the English. Henry at this time is thought to have been in an unstable mental condition and agreed tothis. But why was it allowed to proceed? The English government, fearing a highly negative reaction, kept the fact of the relinquishing of the French lands secret from the English public.Titchfield Hampshire
1445Margaret is crowned Queen. 30 MayMargaret of Anjou is crowned Queen at Westminster AbbeyWestminster Abbey
1445Henry VI secret deal to surrender Maine to the French. 1 Dec In December 1445, Henry VI secretly undertook the surrender of Maine, in so doing he appeared to renounce sovereignty over it. The implication of this was that the English might yield to further military or diplomatic pressure. Charles VII threatens to attack English Garrisons, Henry has to make secret deal to surrender Maine. He is perpetually on his back foot and concedes far too much ground to France.
1447Humphrey Duke Of Gloucester dies having been imprisoned. 1 FebHumphrey had run England as co-regent with his brother John of Bedford. Their partnership had been successful and Humphrey was a popular leader. He made an unfortunate second marriage with Eleanor of Cobham who was arrested for sorcery in 1441 and he himself became tainted by her alledged wrong doings. The problems mount as Henry VI takes over in his majority and in 1447 was tried with treason and then died just three days after his arrest in Bury St Edmunds.Bury St Edmunds
1447Death of Cardinal Beaufort. 11 AprCardinal Beaufort was a steadying hand throughout the period of King Henry IV and V's reign. His death removes a very important player in the politics of the day.Winchester
1447York exiled as Lieutenant of Ireland. 1 DecYork is posted as Lieutenant of Ireland. An insult to York, a demotion but actually a political convenience as it removes York from the disastrous capitulations and appeasements by Henry and Somerset in FranceIreland
1448England surrenders Le Mans to the French. 15 MarMaine had been English since 1425 when John Duke of Bedford seized it's capital Le Mans. By Feb 1448 the French laid seige to it and on 15 March the English surrendered it. Henry VI had made secret commitments to surrender Maine as part of the Treaty of Tours. Many English nobles resented such weakness and whilst in modern opinion peace would be preferable, in this period War creates commercial opportunity and revenue raising capabilities. War was about land in effect property rights. Henry VI had also sold short and dispossesed his Soldiers who lived and earnt their living from their lives in Maine.Le Mans France
1448Henry VI promotes some main players. 1 MarKing Henry decides to promote some of the main protagonists in the period and they start jostling for power. He promotes William de la Pole as Duke of Suffolk and Edmund Beaufort as Duke of Somerset. Richard of Yorks styles himself as a Plantagenet promoting his close Royal Family connections.
1449Richard Neville succeeds as Earl of Warwick. 1 JulyRichard Neville married Anne Beauchamp, who, when her brother's daughter dies, brings her husband Richard Neville the title and chief share of the Warwick estates, making him a very wealthy man.
1449English surrender Rouen and have lost Normandy. 1 OctIn English hearts the loss of Normandy is devastating. This was a view shared amongst the public not just the nobles. A weak king with a pious approach always seeking peace and appeasement was contrary to what the English valued amongst its majority.Rouen France
1450Bishop Moelyns Murdered in Portsmouth explaining Misdemeanours of Suffolk. 9 JanBishop Moleyns had both a political and religious career but was keen to exticate himself from the former as he became involved in a dispute with Richard, duke of York who claimed that Moleyns had accused him of financial irregularities, defamed his reputation, and blamed him for endangering the security of Normandy. Moleyns denied this. Soon after, York was removed from the post of lieutenant-general in France and as the situation there deteriorated Moleyns found himself exposed to criticism, particularly because of his close association with the Duke of Suffolk, but also because he advocated giving up French territory. He attempted to concentrate on his religious career and came to Portsmouth possibly to go oon pilgrimage. Some stories say he came with money to pay the troops in Portsmouth. He was set upon by a mob and murdered but quite who these mobsters were or their motives is still not certain. As a result the city of Portsmouth was excommunicated.Church Old Portsmouth Hampshire
1450The Hundred Years War- Battle of Formingy. 15 AprThe Hundred Years War with France was becoming an expensive and wearying burden on the English population and levels of intolerance are running high. A further defeat of the English at the Battle of Formingy, leaves the English people looking for a scapegoat.ent and the Bishop is murdered. Given the intensity of events was this mob action or a convenient assassination?Formingy France
1450Insurrection in many parts of EnglandInsurrection broke out in this year in various parts of England. It was directed against the Duke of Suffolk and his supporters who were governing the country under King Henry VI.Dover Kent
1450Duke of Suffolk Impeached and Murdered/Executed. 28 JanWilliam de la Pole the Duke of Suffolk was identified as that scapegoat. He was impeached because he was suspected of being an accomplice in the murder of Humphrey Duke of Gloucester.It was a popular decision because the public felt he should shoulder the blame for a number of things including the many lands lost to the French. He had received many appointments including, the earldom of Pembroke,Lord Chamberlain, and Lord High Admiral of England, and in 1448 was created Duke of Suffolk. Suffolk was committed to the Tower and sentenced, without trial, to five years' banishment. He declared his innocence and then got on a boat at Ipswich. The Duke of Exeter, Constable of the Tower took another vessel and boarded Suffolk's ship. He ordered him to be beheaded and his body was returned to Dover and laid out on the sands.

Tower of London St Katherine Dock London
1450John Cade's Rebellion Henry VI flees London and Bishop Ayscough Murdered in Wiltshire. 6 JuneCade’s Rebellion 1450John Cade's Rebellion: John Cade, calling himself John Mortimer, raised an insurrection in Kent against the policies of King Henry VI. The majority of the participants were peasants and small landowners who objected to forced labour, corrupt courts, the seizure of the land by nobles, the loss of lands in France and heavy taxation as a result of the Hundred Years War with France. Jack Cade marched on London in order to force the government to end the corruption and remove the traitors surrounding the King. Despite Cade's attempt to keep his men under control once the rebel forces had entered London he lost control and they began to loot. The citizens of London turned on the rebels and forced them out of the city in a bloody battle on London Bridge. To end the bloodshed the rebels were issued pardons by the king and told to return home.Cade fled but was later caught on 12 July by one, Alexander Iden, Cade died of his wounds before being brought to trial.The Jack Cade Rebellion highlighted the issues of the time and as a precursor to the War of the Roses.Blackheath London
1450Richard 3rd Duke of York Marches on London. 1 SepRichard Plantagenet, 3rd Duke of York,marches an army to London and attacks alleged traitors in the royal government. He demanded that Edward Beaufort, the Earl of Somerset, courtier, close to the King and favoured by him should be brought to trial for his misdeeds.Somerset and York were bitter rivals, Somerset had replaced York as commander in France in 1448 but had a series of disasters. York felt the time had come to trounce the imcompetent Somerset but he was persuaded to lay aside his arms. York was imprisoned but released shortly after and retired to his castle in Wigmore Herefordshire.City of London
1450England Surrenders Cherbourg. 12 AugThe lands in Normandy held by the English began to fall to the French one-by-one until Cherbourg finally fell on August 12th.Cherbourg
1451England surrenders Bordeaux and Bayonne in Gascony. 1 JuneThe port city of Bordeaux and Bayonne in Gascony, is surrendered to the French. This is a mighty loss to the English. Bordeaux is then recovered by the valiant John Talbot in October 1451.Bordeaux
1451Implementation of the Resumption Act. 2 NovParliament are keen to implement the the Resumption Act that Cade’s rebellion had demanded. This act for canceling grants taken from local revenues since the beginning of Henry VI’s reign in 1422 was accepted by Henry VI but with 186 exceptions.Westminster London
1452Richard of York comes to London Dartford 1 JanRichard of York along with the Earl of Devonshire and Lord Cobham came to London yet again,this they were confronted by King Henry and his troops and repulsed. Richard took up arms again in February, but his forces were trapped at Dartford and disbandedDartford London
1452Richard Swears Allegiance to the King. 2 MarThe bishops of Ely and Winchester and the earls of Warwick and Salisbury intervened, getting Henry VI and Richard of York to agree to Somerset being placed in ward because of York’s charges. Richard swore allegiance to the King publicly at St. Paul’s, but his son Edward was coming with 11,000 men. York accepted the general pardon issued by Henry VI on April 7.St Pauls London
1452Richard of Gloucester youngest son of Richard of York born. 2 OctRichard of Gloucester (who will become King Richard III) is born to his mother, cecily Neville and his father Richard Plantagenet 3rd Duke of York. He was born at Fotheringay Castle in Northamptonshire.Fotheringhay Castle Northamptonshire
1453Charles VII launched the final campaign of the Hundred Years War. 1 MarThe French army closed in on Bordeaux and destroyed the English army securing Castillon in July.Castillon Bordeaux
1452Henry VI elevates Tudors Edmuna and Jasper to Peerage as Edmund de Hadham and Jasper she HatfielsHenry VI Latin petition calls on parliament having praised Catherine of Valois and "the Illustrious and magnificent princes the lords Edmund de Hasham and Jasper de Hatfield, natural and legitimate sons of the most serene last the Queen, are citations. They are endowed with the lands seized from York's humiliated and ruined associate Sir William Oldhall.Hatfield Hertfordshire
1453Castillon Victory for French, heavy losses to English Talbot killed. JulyAll Henry V's French possessions except Calais and Pale lost sealing the loss of the 100 Years War.Castillon France
1453King Henry VI has mental breakdown when at Clarendon Palace/ Hunting Lodge. 7 AugKing Henry's,interest in government was sporadic and he surrounded himself with weak advisors who were unable to prevent the power struggles that began to develop at court. Meanwhile, the dual monarchy proved too difficult to maintain; the successes of the Dauphin and Joan of Arc began to weaken England's grip on its French possessions. This only contributed to the erosion of Henry's prestige and authority and his health. In 1453, the loss of English Gascony was a shock, and he became so ill that he was considered insane. Henry VI spent the next seventeen months in seclusion mostly at Windsor castle apparently unaware of the world around him. Mont de Marsan Gascony
1453Parliament meet to discuss King Henry's illnessParliament met to discuss the King's illness and his incapacity to rule was agreed. The discussion moved to what role Richard of York should assume.Westminster London
1453Prince Edward, born to Queen Margaret and Henry VI. 15 MarPrince Edward, the only son of King Henry VI is born. Also known as Edward of Westminster and Edward of Lancaster. Westminster London
1453Parliament appoints Richard of York as Protector. 3 AprThe Duke of York is named protector following the birth of King Henry’s heir Prince Edward, Somerset was deprived of his offices and accused of treason, but the charge was not pursued.Westminster London
1453Duke of Somerset is sent to the Tower. 23 NovThe Council had Duke Edmund Beaufort of Somerset put in the Tower, and the Earl of Devon was released from Wallingford castle and rejoined the Council which accepted his declarations of innocence.Westminster London
1454Richard of York made Lieutenant. 13 Feb Richard of York was now ascendant in the Council, and on February 13, 1454 the Council nominated him to be the King’s lieutenant to preside over Parliament which gathered at Westminster the next day. Margaret of Anjou demanded that the government be put in her hands; but neither the Speaker Thomas Thorp nor the Chancellor Kemp (who died on March 22) gave her any support, and the great seals of England could not be used. Westminster London
1454Richard of York nominated Protector and Defender of the Realm. 27 MarThe peers nominated Richard of York to be protector and defender of the realm with an annual salary of 2,000 marks plus expenses and Richard Neville Earl of Salisbury becomes Lord Chancellor. Somerset imprisoned in Tower of London.Westminster London
1454Battle of Stamford Bridge Yorkshire. 1 NovThe King's ill health only served to polarize families who had been at odds with each other previously. Two great families, the Nevilles and the Percy's had a history when they became serious rivals for power in the North of England. This in turn caused York a problem, he had already come to an agreement with the Nevilles to support them in return for their support in the council, but the attack at Heworth had put the Percies in a vulnerable position anyway. They in turn realised that York could turn the full power of the government against them, and began to look for allies of their own. Less of a battle more of a skirmish the battle of Stamford Bridge when the Nevilles took the upper hand and imprisoned the Percys. Stamford Bridge Yorkshire
1454King Henry VI recovered his health and wits. 25 DecKing Henry VI was restored to sanity, and he, his Queen Margaret of Anjou and Edmund Beaufort, Duke of Somerset, were restored to power. He revoked the Duke of York's commission as protector.Windsor Castle
1455King Henry VI Takes back power York and Neville (Salisbury) dismissed from government. 4 MarHenry presided over a Council meeting and released Edmund of Somerset who became his principal minister. They were rumored to have an alliance with King James II of Scotland, and they were raising the north to rebel against the Protector. On March 7 he replaced Chancellor Salisbury with Thomas Bourchier, the Archbishop of Canterbury. On March 13 the new Chancellor was ordered to release Exeter from prison, and two days later the Earl of Wiltshire replaced the Earl of Worcester as Treasurer. Queen Margaret became dominant at court.Westminster London
1455Richard Duke of York summoned to Leicester. 21 AprThe Council was summoned to meet at Leicester on May 21. York had earlier gone north to join the two Nevilles (earls of Salisbury and Warwick). They marched to Hertfordshire and issued a letter of allegiance to the King and a manifesto on May 20 declaring it was unsafe for them to go unarmed to the Council summoned at Leicester. Neither document got to the King or Queen, and Henry VI marched with a force to St. Albans on May 22. Leicester
1455First Battle of St. Albans and Henry VI 2nd mental collages. 22 MayThe battle traditionally marks the beginning of the Wars of the Roses. Richard, Duke of York along with Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick defeated the Lancastrians under the leadership of Edmund, Duke of Somerset who was killed.The Lancastrian army of 2,000 troops arrived at St. Albans and began placing their troops along the Tonman Ditch and at Sopwell and Shropshire Lane. The Yorkist army of 3,000 camped in Keyfield to the east. After several hours of negotiations between the rival commanders, Richard, Duke of York, decided to attack. The First Battle of St Albans was a victory for York and Warwick. York captured the King restoring himself to power. Somerset, Henry Percy, 2nd Earl of Northumberland and Lord De Clifford fell during the rout. The battle only lasted for an hour, Henry VI was wounded in the neck by an arrow, and York and the two Nevilles knelt and asked his forgiveness. Henry agreed to call a Parliament in July, and a pardon was granted. Henry went to Hertford castle with the Queen and the infant Prince Edward.St Albans Hertfordshire
1455Pardoning the Yorkists. 1 JuneWith pardons granted, York became constable, Warwick captain of Calais, and York’s brother-in-law Henry Bourchier treasurer. York and his commissioners condemned Exeter and his Percy allies as traitors, and the Parliament granted a legislative pardon to the Yorkists.where was the parliament?
1455York is made Protector again. 17 NovHenry did not attend the Parliament which on November 17 made Richard of York protector again. York had Percy and Egremont tried and imprisoned at Newgate.where was the parliament?
1456Queen moves Court to Coventry Wealthy Cloth Making City. 1 AugQueen Margaret moves the Court to Coventry, then a wealthy cloth making cityCoventry
1458Love Day' held as public reconciliation of opposing factions. 24 MarThe 'Loveday' of 24 March 1458 was an attempt by Henry VI to reconcile the two squabbling factions amongst his nobility. Despite a public display of unity the effort was a failure (AJRM) has citation for this its quite interestingLondon
1459Battle of Blore Heath Yorkist victory in just 4 hours almost 2000 men lay dead. 23 SepThe Realm had been in a state of uneasy peace for four years. No Parliament had been called in three years. Factions of unsettled people collected all over England. Small armies were armed. The Yorkists were marching all over England and there was a sense of ominous waiting. Lord Audley had recently raised a Lancastrian army centered round Market Drayton. Margaret of Anou, who was giving orders to the King and through the King, sent Audley orders to intercept Lord Salisbury, who was marching from Yorkshire to join the Duke of York at Ludlow. The two armies met at a place called Blore Heath. Salisbury, with 3,000 troops, was outnumbered. The two armies were separated by about 150m and the Lancasters attacked first. Two cavalry charges were repulsed, the first with heavy loss to the Lancastrians,they then mounted an infantry attack up the hill to the Yorkist position but this also failed. Lord Audley had already fallen and 500 Lancastrians decided to desert to the enemy. Salisbury’s victory was complete and in the pursuit, which continued for two miles, the slaughter was very heavy. Possibly 2,000 Lancastrians perished in this battle, but fewer than 200 Yorkists fell. This all transpired in just four hours of conflict.Market Drayton Shropshire
1459Parliament of Devils Attainted Yorkist Rebels. 9 OctThe Yorkists had been victorious after the Battle at Blore Heath but it was to be a short lived victory. Parliament was hastily convened and attainted York, Salisbury, Warwick, March, Rutland, and other leaders and their families, but the Queen’s bill also promised a pardon for humble submission. Coventry?
1459Battle of Ludford Bridge. 13 OctThere was a degree of uncertainty and resentment within the Yorkist troops and some of them had joined up with the Lancastrian Sir Andrew Trollpoe. Taking advantage of this, Henry VI advanced with a superior army and was joined by Sir Andrew Trollope, with a large body of the deserting troops. The King entered and plundered Ludlow Castle in what was a largely bloodless battle. York and Rutland fled to Ireland. March, Salisbury, and Warwick, to Calais. Ludford Shropshire
1459Parliament at Coventry. 20 NovRichard of York went to Ireland while his son Edward of March and the two Nevilles went to Calais. All four were attainted by the Parliament at Coventry on November 20 along with ten other Yorkist lords. The act of attainder pronounced their legal death and the forfeit of their estates. The Earl of Wiltshire was nominated to be lieutenant of Ireland, but the Irish Parliament protected York.Coventry
1460Yorkists at Calais receive support from the Duke of Burgundy. 15 JanDuke Philippe of Burgundy made a truce for three months with the Yorkists. The Lancaster government gathered a fleet at Sandwich to drive them from the channel ports. Warwick sent a force under John Dynham that raided Sandwich on January 15, 1460. Warwick left Calais for Ireland, and the royalists tried to halt a Venetian fleet in the Thames River. The fleet quickly departed, and the Council ordered all Venetian merchants in London imprisoned. York and Warwick drafted a manifesto in Ireland on the oppression caused by the government, which was now starting to use the French method of conscription. They asserted their loyalty to the King but called for radical reforms.Sandwich Kent
1460The Yorkist lords land at Sandwich from Calais Gates of Canterbury and London opened to them. 26 JuneThe government prepared for an invasion, and Edward of March, Warwick, Salisbury, Fauconberg, and John Wenlock landed at Sandwich on June 26 and seized the town. Gathering support they entered London on 2 July and were joined by almost all the Yorkist peers and their retainers. The gates of London had been left wide open and they were warmly greeted by London's citizens.Sandwich Kent
1460Battle of Northampton. 10 JulyOn hearing of the Yorkists triumphant march into London with 10,000 men, the King with his court who had been in Coventry, took up a defensive position at Northampton. With 5,000 troops the Lancastrians dug in. Warwick attempted to negotiate with the King but the King refused to see him. An exasperated Warwick decided to attack. The rain and wind in their faces made the going difficult but also rendered the Lancaster canon useless. As Warwick approached the Lancastrian left flank, the troops lay down their arms, their commander Lord Grey of Ruthin and Edward Earl of March had agreed terms. In trying to save the King, the Duke of Buckingham, Earl of Shrewsbury, Lord Egremont and Lord Beaumont, all lost their lives. The King was captured and taken to London, Queen Margaret escaped. Warwick and March assured the King of their loyalty. Warwick is running country York is in Ireland.Northampton
1460Duke of York returns from Ireland. 8 SepDuke Richard of York came back from Ireland to claim the throne and marched with 300 soldiers to Abingdon. Warwick was commissioned to arrest rebels in ten Midland counties.Abingdon
1460Repeal of the Acts of Coventry. 7 OctParliament meets to repeal all Acts of the Coventry parliamentWestminster London
1460Richard expects the crown is refused but recognised as heir in Act of Accord.. 10 OctRichard entered Westminster Hall but even though he had submitted his genealogical claim and expected to take the throne he was not requested to do so. The lords consulted Henry VI on the 17 Oct and they reminded York of his oath of allegiance to the King.Westminster London
1460Act of Accord York's 3rd Protectorate. 25 OctRichard of York requested parliament to recognize his claim to the throne in place of Henry VI. The claims of the House of Lancaster were, questionable, but they had occupied the crown for 60 years and there were obvious difficulties in declaring them to be usurpers. A compromise was reached by Henry VI naming York as his heir, passing over the claims of his young son, Edward of Lancaster, whose paternity was in doubt. Henry VI would retain the crown. So at last a compromise of sorts had been made but the Queen was far from happy.Richard DecWestminster London
1460Battle of Wakefield York Killed and Salisbury executed. 30 DecMargaret de Anjou marched south towards London, having raised an army in the north. On the 2nd Dec Richard, Duke of York marched from London northwards with an army numbering around 8,000 to 9,000 men. He was accompanied by his second son Edmund, Earl of Rutland and his brother-in-law Richard Neville Earl of Salisbury. Richard of York settled himself and his army at his castle of Sandal near Wakefield in Yorkshire. His intention to gather supplies and munitions in defence of the Lancastrians. The Lancastrians were camped at Pontefract. Richard knew the opposition were a short ride away and decided to send for reinforcements from his son Edward in Gloucestershire. As the Lancastrians advanced, instead of staying put in the castle, Richard made the fatal error of leaving and was engaged in battle and died. Salisbury executed the following day.Wakefield Yorkshire
1461Battle of Mortimor's Cross Edward now Duke of York defeats Lancastrians. 2 FebEdward Earl of March, heard of his fathers death and prepared to move form Gloucestershire to return to London, when he heard that Jasper Tudor's Lancastrian army was on the move. Edward, Earl of March wanted to prevent Jasper Tudor and his father, Owen, from leaving Wales and joining up with the main Lancastrian army. Edward, now duke of York following his fathers death, turned his troops to take on the Lancastrian army. A battle ensued Mortimers Cross, near Wigmore, on 2 February and Jasper Tudor and his troops were defeated. Jasper Tudor's father, Owen Tudor, and several other prisoners were beheaded on the field of battle.Wigmore Shropshire
14612nd Battle of St. Albans. 17 FebVictory for Margaret of ANJOU against over Earl of WARWICK, defending Yorkist hold of London and Henry VI, he is taken by surprise, confusion led to King Henry VI being left behind when Warwick fled. The queen advanced southward, sacking Yorkist towns on Great North Rd, defeated the earl of Warwick at the second battle of St Albans on 17 February, and rescued the king. But London closed its gates against her and she was obliged to retire to the north.St Albans Hertfordshire
1461Edward IV claims the crown. 28 FebEdward Duke of York, entered London on 28 February. He urged his claim before a council of peers, prelates and chief citizens, who declared him king on 3 March. He was crowned at Westminster in JuneWestminster London
1461Battle of Towton decisive Yorkist victory. 29 MarAfter the Battle of St. Albans Henry's forces retreated north and after his coronation, Edward mustered a large army and set off in pursuit. The Lancastrian army was of at least equal number to that of the Yorkists. The Lancastrians sent a vanguard forward to Ferrybridge near Towton and on the 28th March they face each other across the river Aire. But the Yorkist vanguard was dispatched NW to cross at Castleford to outflank the Lancastrians. They had to retreat back towards their own army, leaving the main route open at Ferrybridge for the rest of Edward's army. The scene was now set for what may have been the largest battle of the Wars of the Roses. The two armies met in the open field between the villages of Towton and Saxton. It was described as a major and bloody battle. The largest and longest battle fought on British soil, Towton was of huge significant in both military and social terms. The political significance was also substantial, for it secured the throne for the Yorkists, although the Lancastrian cause continued as Henry, Margaret, and his son and heir had all escaped. England continued to have two monarchs.Towton
1461Edward proclaimed crowned King. 28 JuneEdward returned to London following Towton and was crowned at Westminster AbbeyWestminster Abbey
1461Edward IV gives Dukedoms to his brothersEdward IV, The new king created his brothers, George and Richard, dukes of Clarence and Gloucester respectively and the Lancastrians throw their support behind Edward.
1462Richard Duke of Gloucester made Govenor of the North. 2 OctKing Edward appointed Richard, Duke of Gloucester, Governor of the North, and also Constable of Gloucester and Corfe Castles. All these gifts made him one of the richest and therefore most powerful nobles in England. As Governor of the North he represented royal interests in securing the loyalty of the North for Edward IV's new Yorkist dynasty. Richard set about building his empire in the north, he tried to form good relationships with some of his leading nobles to extend his authority, both through gifts of land and patronage. He acquired land and castles hoping to stamp his authority in the north. He was only twenty years old. Oxford executed. Queen Margaret lands in Northumberland.Northumberland
1462Queen Margaret landed in NorthumberlandQueen Margaret landed in Northumberland with French troops, and retired to Scotland after no English joined her.Northumberland
1463Somerset reneges on Edward's pardon and joins Lancastrians in Northumberland. 1 MarSomerset having been pardoned quite generously by Edward turns again rejoins the Lancastrians and the Queen in Northumberland.Northumberland
1464Battle of Hedgeley Moor and Hexham Yorkist Victory. 25 AprEdward wanted the peace talks with Scotland to go ahead and so prepared a large army to march north and take the Northumbrian castles.John Neville, Lord Montagu, was sent to Northumberland to collect the Scottish envoys and on the way fought with the Lancastrians after reinforcing with men and arms at Newcastle. The two armies clashed at Hedgeley Moor the Lancastrians led by led by Somerset, Percy, Robert Hungerford. The Lancastrian soldiers fell into disarray. Queen Margaret marched into England and captured several northern castles. She was again joined by Somerset and other supporters. John, Marquess of Montague, brother of the earl of Warwick, defeated the Lancastrians at a battle on Hedgley Moor, near Wooller, Northumberland, on 25 April, and again at Hexham, also in Northumberland, on 15 May. Henry found refuge in Lancashire; the queen and the prince retired to Flanders. The Duke of Somerset and many other prisoners were executed.Hedgeley Moor
1464King Edward IV Married Elizabeth Woodville. 1 MayElizabeth Woodville was appointed one of the four ladies of the bedchamber of Margaret of Anjou. A widow with two sons, she begged Edward to intervene in the restoration of her sons lands (they had been deprived of their inheritance following the death of their father). He was very smitten by her but she refused him unless he married her, which he did.Reading Palace
1464King Edward IV revealed his marriage to Elizabeth Woodville. 29 SepElizabeth Woodville was the widow of a knight, Sir John Grey, a Lancastrian. The match had been made in secret and there may have been many reasons for this. Elizabeth already had two sons and the Woodvilles were not liked, they were considered 'low' and manipulative. The marriage had to be announced as Warwick was making plans for Edward to make a suitable dynastic marriage with a foreign royal princess. Edward had to provide land, money and titles for the extensive Woodville family and they came to be bitterly resented by those around the King. Edwards brother Richard Duke of Gloucester hated them and this would fuel a fire in the Yorkist camp.Grafton Regis Northamptonshire
1464King Edward tries to forge an alliance with his old enemiesEdward IV works hard both politically and militarily to gain back power in the north east. He makes friends of his enemies such as Somerset, Henry Bellingham, Sir Humphrey Neville and Sir Ralph Percy but in a short while they turn back to the Lancastrians and sieze control of a number of strategic castles. Edward wants to forge peace with Scotland but this is put in jeopardy by the problems in the north east.York
1465King Henry VI imprisonedAfter the Battle of Towton, King Henry fled into exile, but returned and was captured by Edward in 1465.Clitheroe
1467George Neville dismissed as Lord Chancellor. 1 JuneGeorge Neville brother of Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick and 'Kingmaker'. After the battle of Northampton the Yorkists gained power and George was made chancellor of England. Edward then dismisses him.Westminster
1468Harlech Castle Siege by Lord Herbert won marks end of Lancastrian resistance. AugHarlech signals the end of Lancastrian resistance to the Yorkist onslaught. But peace was far from settled as Warwick and Clarence coninue in their rebellion against the Woodvilles.Harlech Castile
1469Earl of Warwick and the Duke of Clarence raise insurrections against the Woodvilles. 1 JuneThe Earl of Warwick was furious at being out manipulated by the Woodvilles and in June 1469, he and the King's brother the Duke of Clarence raised insurrections against the Woodville family. The King was out of the way, on pilgrimage in Norfolk, accompanied by his brother Richard Duke of Gloucester. On 11 July the Duke of Clarence married Isabel Neville, daughter of the earl of Warwick, against the wishes of his brother.Norfolk
1469The Earl of Warwick RebelsWarwick no longer exercised any control or even influence over his cousin, the King, in political matters. Thoughts turned to rebellion in Warwick's mind, a rebellion in which he already had an ally, the Duke of Clarence, heir to the English throne while the King had no male offspring. Warwick began to spread rumours in the north about about the King's right to rule. The northern lords were already becoming fed up with Edward, his alliances with the Duke of Burgundy and of course his close attendance to the Woodville family. He probably instigated the Redesdale rebellion which culminated in the capture of the King by Warwick.
1469Battle of Edgecote Moor Yorkists defeated by Redesdale and Edward imprisoned. 26 JulyIt took place in Northamptonshire when the army of the Earl of Pembroke, which was marching to join with Edward IV at Nottingham, encountered a rebel force under Robin of Redesdale, which was marching to join with the army of the Earl of Warwick.They clashed on the morning of the 26th July, on Danesmoor in the parish of Edgcote, about 6 miles north east of the town of Banbury. Pembroke’s army had been dangerously weakened because, supposedly after an argument the night before, the Earl of Devon had withdrawn his troops. On 26 July the king’s troops were defeated. Pembroke himself was captured and then executed then next day. The Queen’s father, Richard, Earl Rivers and her brother John Woodville, together with other supporters of the King were captured and executed.Edgecote Moor Northamptonshire
1469The capture and release of King Edward. 1 Aug In the ensuing days after the Battle of Edgecote Moor, Warwick ordered his brother George Neville, the archbishop of York, to intercept and capture the king and imprisoned him in Middleham Castle. Warwick attemted to rule England but struggled to maintain control. When it became clear that Warwick intended to rule through either Edward or his brother George, duke of Clarence, Sir Humphrey Neville (of the divided Neville family) began his own Lancastrian uprising in the north. Much to his dismay Warwick discovered that he couldn't raise troops to fight the rebels while Edward was being held prisoner and so he was forced to release the king. Warwick was then able to raise troops and Sir Humphrey's revolt was quickly crushed. Sir Humphrey was captured, and on 29 September he was executed in front of Edward IV at York.Middleham Castle
1470Battle of Losecote Field Welles rebels supporting Warwick and Clarence. 12 MarHowever with the help and support of his brother Richard, Duke of Gloucester, Edward had regained power.Warwick however, found himself in a similar position to that which he had been in before the battle of Edgecote. He was unable to exercise any control over, or influence, Edward's policies. Warwick wanted to place another of the King's brothers, George, Duke of Clarence, on the throne so that he could regain his influence. To do so, he called on former supporters of the defeated House of Lancaster. He decided the time had come to kill or depose Edward. Rebels began to agitate in Lincoln and rumours were bandied about that the King was marching north. One of the Lancastrians Sir Robert Welles, gathered from all the surrounding area an army of 100,000 men. Warwick and Clarence swore allegiance to the King and raised their own armies. Edward was duped by them though as instead of coming to meet him they swung their forces toward Leicester.The King sent Welles a letter telling him to disband his rebel army, or his father would be executed. Welles quickly turned back with his army to Stamford.
Edward positioned his men in a battle line to the north of Welles' army, and then had Lord Welles executed in view of both armies. The rebels advaced, Edward fired his canon and the rebels fled. The leaders were captured and named Warwick and Clarence as the "partners and chief provokers" of the rebellion.
Empingham
1470Warwick and Clarence denounced as traitors and flee to Calais from West Country. 15 MarWarwick and the Duke of Clarence are forced to flee to Calais but once there are denied acess, so they sought refuge with King Louis XI of France.Louis arranged a reconciliation between Warwick and Margaret of Anjou, it was decided that Margaret and Henry's son, Edward of Westminster would marry Warwick's daughter Anne.The objective of the alliance was to restore Henry VI to the throne.Calais France
1470Edward IV flees to Burgundy. OctEdward IV confronted by Marquis Montagu and flees via Kings Lynn to Burgundy. Queen Margaret and Prince Edward remain in France.Burgundy France
1470King Henry VI restored to the throne. 13 SepFrom France Warwick staged yet another uprising in the north and when the King turned north to quell the uprising, Warwick and Clarence landed at Dartmouth on 13 September 1470. Many in the country were glad to see the return of Warwick among them, the Earls brother Montague. Edward turned to hurry south and face Warwick whilst at the same time, Montague surrounded him from the north. Edward escaped and on 2 October fled to the Netherlands.Warwick went to London and released King Henry VI.Dartmouth Devon
1470Parliament repeals the attainders of the Lancastrians. 1 NovA parliament was held at Westminster which repealed the attainder of the Lancastrians, attainted the Yorkists, including Edward and settled the crown again on King Henry and his son Edward of Westminster.Westminster London
1470Edward IV and Elizabeth's son Edward V born. 2 NovThe future Edward V is born whilst Elizabeth is in sanctuary. Edward V would become one of the Princes in the Tower.Westminster Abbey?
1470Warwick's daughter Anne is married to Margaret of Anjou's son. 13 DecAnne Neville was formally betrothed to Henry VI and Margaret of Anjou's son, Edward at the Chateau of Amboise in France and were then married in Angers Cathedral.Amboise France
1471Battle of Barnet and the death of Warwick and his brother Montagu. 14 AprWith help from the Duke of Burgundy, King Edward returned to England at Ravenspur. He marched south gathering troops as he went and rode uncontested to London, arriving on 12th April. Warwick was in the Midlands with his troops and turned to London to confront Edward. Warwick had a Lancastrian army of about 15,000 troops positioned about a mile north of Barnet. Edward arrived on the evening of the 13 April with a force of between 10,000 - 12,000 troops and positioned and deployed them to the south of the Lancastrians. The two armies were very close and Edward commanded his troops to be silent and show no light. He obviously wanted to take Warwick by surprise. In the event Edwards troops were so close that when Warwick opened his canon, the projectiles went straight over the Yorkists heads. This battle at Barnet did not resolve the Wars of the Roses but it was of enormous significance. Edward IV secured a resounding victory and in doing so had killed the Earl of Warwick.Barnet Hertfordshire
1471Queen Margaret lands in Weymouth. 14 AprOn the same day as the Lancastrians were defeated at the battle of Barnet,Queen Margaret with Prince Edward and supporters arrived back in England from exile in France. The Queen was joined by Lancastrian supporters led by the Duke of Somerset. After Barnet, Somerset would not attempt an assault upon the Yorkist forces without superior numbers and so, in order to reinforce his army, Somerset headed for Wales where he could count upon the support of Jasper Tudor. Jasper was the second son of Owen Tudor and the former Queen Catherine of Valois, the widow of Henry V of England. He was the half-brother to Henry VI, who, on attaining his majority in 1452, named Jasper the Earl of PembrokeWeymouth Dorset
1471Battle of Tewkesbury Yorkists defeat Lancastrians. 4 MayKing Edward was at Windsor and headed for the West Country in an attempt to intercept the Queen and Somerset before they could reach Wales. The Lancastrians arrived at Tewkesbury first on 3rd May after many days of hard marching they were exhausted. Edward was fast catching them up so Somerset chose to stand and fight, rather than risk his exhausted army being caught as they attempted the difficult crossing of the Severn at Lower Lode. Thus Edward arrived to find the Lancastrians already deployed and so he arrayed his army to the south of and parallel to Somerset’s. The battle of Tewkesbury was a decisive win for King Edward and would be the battle which ended the second phase of the Wars of the Roses. In the battle King Henry VI's son Edward was killed. Tewkesbury
1471Death of King Henry VI Murdered in Tower. 21 MayKing Henry VI died not long after hearing of his son's death. He died murdered in the Tower of London. Queen Margaret captured. Bastard of Fauconberg rebels in Kent and besieges London but his rebellion is put down.Tower of London
1471Edward IV tried to persuade the duke of Brittany to surrender to him Henry and Jasper Tudor. 1 JuneJasper Tudor and his nephew Henry Tudor fled onto the continent, seeking refuge from the French Duke Francis II. Whilst in France, Jasper did a lot of travelling and attempted to gather support for the Lancastrian cause. Although Edward placed diplomatic pressure on the Duke of Brittany, the uncle and nephew remained safe from the clutches of the King Edward but also subject to the veiled threat of being ransomed by the French.
1473Earl of Oxford occupies St Michael's MountJohn de Vere the 13th Earl of Oxford seized and held St Michaels Mount during a siege of twenty-three weeks against 6,000 of Edward IV's troops in 1473. He then surrenders and is imprisoned at Hammea Castle Calais.St Michaels Mount
1475Edward embarks on French expedition makes peace Treaty of Picquignay and collects pension. 29 AugThe English invaded France in 1475, Edward IV having made an alliance with Charles of Burgundy, but directly the English set foot in France, Louis offered to treat for peace, and eventually the treaty of Pecquigny was drawn up which provided that Elizabeth of York would marry the french King's son and that he would also pay Edward 50,000 crowns per annum.Pecquigny France
1478George, Duke of Clarence, tried for treason before Parliament and executed. 7 FebThe arrest and committal to the Tower of one of Clarence's retainers, an Oxford astronomer named Dr John Stacey, led to his confession under torture that he had 'imagined and compassed' the death of the King. He implicated others who were tried for treason and killed. The Duke of Clarence very unwisely spoke up for them. King Edward was incensed by what he saw as an act of disloyalty. He summoned his brother the Duke of Clarence to Windsor, severely upbraided him, accused him of treason, and ordered his immediate arrest and confinement. He tried him himself without the Duke being present and he was privately executed at the Tower of London.Tower of London
There is relative peace in EnglandThe period after the death of King Henry VI was one in which there was relative peace and security in England. Edward recognized that many of the problems the monarchy had faced with government came about because the monarchs demanded too much money for wars.He used income from the Crown Estates to pay governmental costs, and therefore needed to demand fewer taxes. He called parliament only six times. He was keen to boost England's commercial trade and this he did. Keeping a peaceful kingdom encouraged trade and taxes could be raised from this.Councils were set up to govern in the Marches of Wales and in the north, thereby keeping peace at the margins of England..London
1478Prince Richard of York age 4 marries Anne Mowbray. 15 JanAnne Mowbray, Duchess of York, was married as a child to Richard, Duke of York, son of Edward IV. The ceremony took place on 15 January 1478 in St Stephen's chapel in the Palace of Westminster and the bridegroom was only five years old.Westminster London
1481Death of Ann Mowbray. 1 NovPrince Richard inherits lands and title of Norfolk.London
1483Death of Edward IV. 9 AprThere was an unseen flaw in King Edward IV's plans, he had not anticipated dying at the age of forty from an illness, leaving a twelve year old son to succeed him and deal with the divisions in the Yorkist household that his marriage to Elizabeth Woodville had caused.Westminster London
1483Edward V becomes monarch but is never crowned. 4 MayEdward V was a minor, so his uncle Richard, Duke of Gloucester, was made Protector. Richard had been loyal throughout to his brother Edward IV throughout all the troubles but the Woodville family were still a thorn in his side and he did not trust them. He believed they had had a hand in the death of his brother George, Duke of Clarence.Elizabeth Woodville wanted control of her son but Richard was having none of it.to Richard intercepted his nephew and brother at Stony Stratford and brought the young Edward V to London on 4 May, with Edward's coronation fixed for 22 June.London
1483Richard of Gloucester declares Edward IV sons illegitimate. 13 JuneBy mid June though, it was apparent that Richard had no intention of Edward being crowned. Richard appeared suddenly in the parliament council baring his withered arm and accusing Jane Shore and the Queen of sorcery, supporters of the Queen, Hastings, Morton and Stanley were arrested. He declared Edward and his younger brother Richard illegitimate (referring back to Edward IV's precontract with Eleanor Talbot before his marriage to Elizabeth Woodville). On the 25th a sort of parliament was convened at which Edward's marriage was declared invalid and declared Richard the rightful heir. Elizabeth Woodville and her younger children were in sanctuary at Westminster.Having been declared illegitimate Edward V and his younger brother Richard were taken to the Royal apartments at the Tower of London and never seen again. Hastings executed and Edward is never crowned but is already deposed.Tower of London
1483Richard III is crowned King. 13 JuneRichard is crowned King at Westminster AbbeyWestminster Abbey
1483Buckingham Revolt in South and West of Country. OctAbortive landing by Henry Tudor but he emerges as serious contender for throne.
1483Richard's troubled yearRichard found it difficult to carry the people of England with him. All the time the young princes were alive in the Tower, there were factions who found Richard's usurption untenable. It is possible that by August 1483 the princes were dead. He tried hard to win hearts and minds when he called his only parliament in January 1484 he did so with good and wise intent. His position was weakened by the death of his only legitimate son in April 1484.London
1483Buckingham executed at Salisbury. 2 NovHenry Stafford, Second Duke of Buckingham, was of royal descent. According to popular legend, he had been forced to the sidelines of influence during the reign of Edward IV. Upon the death of Edward and the subsequent appointment of Richard, Duke of Gloucester, as Protector of Edward’s son, Edward V, Buckingham saw an opportunity to rise to power and influence. Buckingham provided the key support that enabled Gloucester to assume the throne as Richard III. Buckingham may have been instrumental in, if not personally responsible for, the deaths of the "Princes in the Tower". Soon after the coronation of Richard, Buckingham argued with the King and, suborned by his prisoner, John, Cardinal Morton, and possibly by the machinations of Margaret Beaufort, he rebelled against his former friend and mentor. Buckingham’s Rebellion was a major political and military disaster. Buckingham escaped death in battle and went into hiding. He was betrayed for a reward by one of his own retainers. Buckingham was tried and condemned to death. After begging for an audience with Richard, which was refused, Buckingham was executed at Salisbury.Salisbury Wiltshire
1483Henry Tudor makes plans to marry Elizabeth of York known from France. DecHe swears a solemn oath to honour the marriage brokered between Margaret Beaufort (now married to injured Lord Stanley) and Queen Elizabeth (Woodville Edward iV's wife) to Elizabeth of York, this political move is a stroke of genius arranged by two women not the men of power. Both were sharply focused on the survival of their line. Henry's oath was sworn a in a Cathedral church, he could not lightly break such an oath. Richard III had imprisoned her sons and there would have been nothing but bitterness between Richard III and Elizabeth Woodville. This was certainly part of her revenge. Did Richard know of this plan or was his political mind thinking the same? His own brother's daughter hardly a noble plan. There are theories he may have even had his own wife Anne poisoned but specific evidence for this is lacking.France? need to find reference AJRM, it might be rouen cathedral or burgundy i need to check
1484Death of Richard and Anne's son and heir Prince Edward. 9 AprRichard had imprisoned and probably at least had murded his brother's sons, now he lost his only legitimate heir who was only 9 when dedied. He had not attended his parents cornnation but had celebrated becoming Prince of Eales and Earl of Chester the titles normally given to the king's eldest son and heir. A contemporary account in Croyland Chronicle "However, in a short time after, it was fully seen how vain are the thoughts of a man who desires to establish his interests without the aid of God. For, in the following month of April, on a day not very far distant from the anniversary of king Edward, this only son of his, in whom all the hopes of the royal succession, fortified with so many oaths, were centred, was seized with an illness of but short duration, and died at Middleham Castle, in the year of our Lord, 1484, being the first of the reign of the said king Richard. On hearing the news of this, at Nottingham, where they were then residing, you might have seen his father and mother in a state almost bordering on madness, by reason of their sudden grief."Middleham Yorkshire
1485Death of Queen Anne. 16 MarThe death of Queen Anne left Richard III free to marry again and he set his mind on his niece Elizabeth of York. This horrified many people in England and made his position even more difficult. Cause of frail Anne's death uncertain. Was it grief or murder for Richards counter ambitioma to marry EliAbeth of York and block Henry Tudor?London
1485Henry Tudor lands in England. 7 AugSupport for the claim to the throne by Henry Tudor grew and Henry landed at Mill Milford Haven on the 7th of August 1485. It was an area known to him from his associaion with Pembroke Castle and out of the way of the king's observers at Dale Castle just a couple of miles north of Mill BayMill Bay Milford Haven
1485Battle of Bosworth Richard Killed deserted by Stanley and Henrv IV proclaimed as king. 22 AugHaving landed at Milford Haven, Henry Tudor made his way inland, gathering around him loyal supporters. Richard knew the confrontation would be a significantly serious one and gathered his troops. he met Henry Tudor at Market Bosworth in Leicestershire. The Stanleys had brought a force to the filed but held back until they could see whose force was stronger, Henry's or Richards. It was a weak army of Richards that made the charge, the Stanleys saw this, rounded on him and killed him. Henry was declared King of England and Richards body was hurridley desposed of. An unfitting end to a King.Ambion Hill,Market Bosworth
1485Henry Tudor is crowned King Henry VII. 30 OctHenry Tudor is crowned King of England at Westminster AbbeyWestminster London
1486Henry VII and Elizabeth of York are married. 18 JanHenry appeased many of the Yorkists by marrying the eldest daughter and heiress to Edward IV, Elizabeth of York. The notion of the Tudor Rose was a mixing of the houses of Lancaster and York, the white and the red rose.Westminster London
1486Insurrection in the spring. 22 AprThere were a number of Yorkist agitators who sought to unsettle the new King. Amongst them was Francis Lovell, a close and staunch friend of Richard III. He organized a revolt and a plot to sieze King Henry at York. It failed but Lovell continued to lead the Yorkists and was thought to be behind the pretender Lambert Simnel. Francis Lovell avoided full rebellion and fled to France.York
1486The pretender, Lambert Simnel. 5 MayLambert Simnel was a commoner who was a pupil of a priest Richard Simon. Simon noticed a similarity between the features of Simnel and the Yorkist royal children. Simon spread a rumour that the Earl of Warwick, the Duke of Clarneces son, had actually escaped from the Tower and was under his guardianship. He was taken to Ireland and presented to the government there. They agreed to support his case, to invade England and overthrow King Henry. Others joined the cause including Margaret of York, Warwicks aunt. She mustered several thousand Flemish troops to join the attack. The Flemish troops arrived in Ireland on the 5 May and the young Simnel was duly crowned king at ChristChurch Cathedral Dublin on the 14th May. Ireland
1487Battle of Stoke Field Yorkists at Barrow-in-Furness defeated and Richards heir Earl of Lincoln killed. 16 JuneThe Battle of Stoke Field was the last main battle in the War of the Roses. It was the decisive engagement in an attempt by leading Yorkists to unseat him in favour of the pretender Lambert Simnel. The King faced the Yorkists who were determined to have one more major attempt to unseat the Yorkist King. The two large armies faced each other fairly evenly matched and a determined battle of attrition took place with heavy casualties on both sides. Henry's victory was crushing. Almost all the leading Yorkists were killed in the battle.East Stoke Nottingham
1487Elizabeth of York is crowned Queen. 25 NovElizabeth of York was crowned at Westminster Abbey
1489Tax Rebellion in YorkshireHenry had decided to back Brittany's efforts to maintain independence in the hope that the move would give him an ally in France. Parliament voted Henry £100,000 in his quest to support Brittany, however, this had to be raised via taxation and the people in Yorkshire were vehemently opposed to this. Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland, put the case of the people before the king but returned with the King's refusal. He was murdered for bringing the news and Sir John Egremont led the York rebels. The Earl of Surrey easily put down their rising and Egremont fled to Flanders. Henry anxious to quell more rebellions travelled north and issued many pardons for those who were involved in the uprising. York
1491The pretender Perkin Warbeck arrives in Dublin. 1 NovPerkin Warbeck was a pretender to the throne. He was a Belgian boy working in the house of a merchant in Ireland. Whilst there he is set up to claim he was Richard, Duke of York, the younger of the two sons of Edward IV, murdered in the Tower. Many people encourage this falsehood, including Margaret sister of Edward IV. It is to the advantage of many to cause a disturbance in government and Warbeck is presented to foreign monarchs as the lawful king of England. The farce continued as Warbeck and his protectors sought favour from many quarters.Dublin Ireland
1495Sir William Stanley executed. 16 FebSir William Stanley is executed in connection with the activities of Perkin WarbeckLondon?
1495James IV and Warbeck invade England. 1 JulyWarbeck was provided with a few ships and men by Emperor Maximilian and he appeared on the coast of Kent. No movement in his favour took place. A few of his followers who landed were cut off, and he went on to Ireland to join the Earl of Desmond in Munster. After an unsuccessful attack on Waterford in August, he fled to Scotland. Here King James IV showed him favour, and arranged a marriage for him with Catherine Gordon, daughter of the Earl of Huntly. He was helped to make a short inroad into Northumberland, but the intervention of the Spanish government brought about a peace between England and Scotland and Warbeck was on his own again.Northumberland
1497Warbeck Surrenders. 7 SepIn 1497 Perkin was sent on his travels again with two or three small vessels, and accompanied by his wife, who had borne him one or two children. After some obscure adventures in Ireland, he landed at Whitesand Bay, near the Land's End, on the 7th of September, and was joined by a crowd of the country people, who had been recently in revolt against excessive taxation. He advanced to Exeter, but was unable to master the town. On the approach of the royal troops he deserted his followers, and ran for refuge to the sanctuary of Beaulieu in Hampshire. He then surrendered and was taken to London.Beaulieu Hampshire
1499Warbeck and Earl of Warwick are executed. 23 NovPerkin was compelled to make two ignominious public confessions at Westminster, and in Cheapside in June 1498. On the 23rd of November 1499, he was hanged on a charge of endeavouring to escape from the Tower with the imprisoned Earl of Warwick.Tower of London
1503Death of Queen Elizabeth of York. 11 FebHenry VII’s queen lies buried beside him in Westminster Abbey in a magnificent marble tomb provided by their son, Henry VIII. The face of her effigy may have been based on her death mask, taken when she died on her thirty-seventh birthday in the royal apartments in the Tower of London. She had not recovered from giving birth the week before, perhaps prematurely, to her eighth child.Tower of London
1509Death of Henry VII. 21 AprHenry VII died of tuberculosis on 21 April 1509 and was buried at Westminster Abbey.Westminster Abbey London
1509Death of Margaret Beaufort. 29 JuneOn 29th June 1509, just two months after the death of her son, Henry VII, and the accession of her grandson, Henry VIII, Lady Margaret Beaufort died at the age of sixty-six.Westminster Abbey London

Decimation of a generation, the relative casualties would have a profound impact on a generation. Britain would not face such a scale of loss again until WW1.

Blood ties were close, the War of the Roses was not so much an outright continuous war but a series of phases and events that would ebb and wane as one or more families and political figures fought for their own self-interests. The days of actual fighting were not as protracted as we might have thought. But the impact on the life of a nation was great. It would be  a very long time until there would be any such event that would so disrupt British society and proportionally decimate the younger generations and that would be the horrors of a the WW1 (World War 1).

Out of this confusion and bitter disputes, motivated largely by self-interests, would emerge the House of Tudor but the right to be Kings of England was at least tenuous, as much as it had been with those that went before them. A convenient marriage between Henry Tudor and Elizabeth of York seems to bring hostilities to an end, but for how long would that last? Was this a unique event or really just a repeat of violent wealthy families pursuing their own agendas, which had gone on from the earliest of our fledgling British Monarchs and would this be an end to the traumas such disputes created.

Look to the Tudor Dynasty and you just might think that this was the continuance of feuding that is almost inevitable when a country is ruled by a single individual and the success or failure of that king or queen as much depends on the strength of a single character? But with the arrival of the Tudors a whole new series of events transpires equally as divisive and driven by the desire for power wealth and supremacy at almost any price.

War of the Roses Timeline and Chronology with interactive map and narrative

This is a series of events that transpire with the build-up stretching as far back as 1399 and continuing to its conclusion around 1485. Many will shorten that start date back to 1450 but the importance of events before 1450 should not be underestimated. Hence we are bulding an interactive timeline and map plus family trees to help us all explore and unravel some of the intriguing connections in this complex vilent and ruthless series of events.

War of the Roses Collection

You will also find links and connections to the events explored in more detail linked to this page below. These articles aim to help extend the connections and reveal some more intriguing people, their families, roles and significance in this massive series of events. We try to identify existing physical places and map those to the events and people who participated together with the relevance across the broader sweep of our history in the 15th century and for the specific royal houses that are connected to this series of events. For more on the Plantagenets, the House of Lancaster, House of York and the emergence of the Tudors (click on the related links.

In the extraordinary evidence that has been scientifically researched by the University of Tudor we now learn that whilst the research team are more than 99.99% certain that the remains recovered in Leicester are Richard III, they have also discovered a complex issue that there is a non-paternity event (an illegitimacy) compared to the established genealogies which traverses over some 13 links. This brings into question the possibility that one or more of these factions connected to Richard’s genealogy was in fact invalid, incorrect and may have mean’t that the often cited smear of illegitimacy on a child of the royal family may well have had some substance and changed the course of history. Find out more here about Richard III’s DNA and new eveidence here and make your mind-up. Was the War of the Roses , more of what had gone before and would follow again with the Tudors  whilst England suffered the rule and absolute power of an anointed monarch or was it the lesser of two evils when Civil War challenged the Monarchy and put a Commoner at the head of a nation. When would Parliament get some real diplomatic teeth and govern by consent and democracy? Who would rid us of these despotic dynastic kings?