Henry VII::Wars of the Roses
Many of Buckingham's defeated supporters and other disaffected nobles fled to join Henry Tudor in exile. Richard made an attempt to bribe the Duke of Brittany's chief Minister Pierre Landais to betray Henry, but Henry was warned and escaped to France, where he was again given sanctuary and aid.<ref>Rowse, p. 212</ref>
Confident that many magnates and even many of Richard's officers would join him, Henry set sail from Harfleur on 1 August 1485 with a force of exiles and French mercenaries. With fair winds, he landed in Pembrokeshire six days later. The officers Richard had appointed in Wales either joined Henry or stood aside. Henry gathered supporters on his march through Wales and the Welsh Marches, and defeated Richard at the Battle of Bosworth Field. Richard was slain during the battle, supposedly by the major Welsh landowner Rhys ap Thomas with a blow to the head from his poleaxe. (Rhys was knighted three days later by Henry VII.)
Henry, having been acclaimed King Henry VII, then strengthened his position by marrying Elizabeth of York, daughter of Edward IV and the best surviving Yorkist claimant. He thus reunited the two royal houses, merging the rival symbols of the red and white roses into the new emblem of the red and white Tudor Rose. Henry shored up his position by executing all other possible claimants whenever any excuse was offered, a policy his son Henry VIII continued.
Many historians consider the accession of Henry VII to mark the end of the Wars of the Roses. Others argue that they continued to the end of the fifteenth century, as there were several plots to overthrow Henry and restore Yorkist claimants. Only two years after the Battle of Bosworth, Yorkists rebelled, led by John de la Pole, Earl of Lincoln, who had been named by Richard III as his heir but had been reconciled with Henry after Bosworth. The conspirators produced a pretender to the throne, a boy named Lambert Simnel, who bore a close physical resemblance to the young Edward, Earl of Warwick (son of George of Clarence), the best surviving male claimant of the House of York. This plan was on very shaky ground, because the young earl was still alive and in King Henry's custody and was paraded through London to expose the impersonation. At the Battle of Stoke, Henry defeated Lincoln's army. Lincoln died in the battle. Simnel was pardoned for his part in the rebellion and was sent to work in the royal kitchens.
Henry's throne was again challenged in 1491 with the appearance of the pretender Perkin Warbeck, who claimed he was Richard, Duke of York (the younger of the two Princes in the Tower). Warbeck made repeated attempts to incite revolts, with support at various times from the court of Burgundy and James IV of Scotland. He was captured after the failed Second Cornish Uprising of 1497, and executed in 1499 after attempting to escape imprisonment.
During the reign of Henry VII's son Henry VIII, the possibility of Yorkist challenges to the throne remained until as late as 1525, in the persons of Edward Stafford, 3rd Duke of Buckingham; Edmund de la Pole, 3rd Duke of Suffolk; and his brother Richard de la Pole, all of whom had blood ties to the Yorkist dynasty but were excluded by the pro-Woodville Tudor settlement. To an extent, England's break with Rome was prompted by Henry's fears of a disputed succession should he leave only a female heir to the throne, or an infant who would be as vulnerable as Henry VI had been to antagonistic or rapacious regents.
Wars of the Roses sections
Intro Name and symbols Summary of events Origins of the conflict Start of the war Act of Accord Death of Richard, Duke of York Edward's claim to the throne Yorkist triumph Edward IV Warwick's rebellion and the death of Henry VI Richard III Buckingham's revolt Henry VII Aftermath and effects In literature Key figures See also References Further reading External links
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