Wars of the Roses

 

Wars of the Roses

  • What were the Wars of the Roses?
  • What was the cause of the Wars of the Roses?
  • Why were they called the Wars of the Roses?
  • Wars of the Roses - The House of Lancaster
  • Wars of the Roses - The House of Lancaster
  • Important Facts about the Wars of the Roses
  • Timeline of the Wars of the Roses

Wars of the Roses

Wars of the Roses
The Middle Ages encompass one of the most exciting periods in English History.

 One of the most important historical events of the Medieval era is the Wars of the Roses.  What were the key dates of this famous historical event? What were the names of the Medieval people who were involved in this historical occasion? Interesting facts and information about the Wars of the Roses are detailed below.

What were the Wars of the Roses?
The Wars of the Roses were intermittent civil wars fought by members of the House of Lancaster and the House of York. Both houses were branches of the Plantagenet royal house, tracing their descent from King Edward III.

What was the cause of the Wars of the Roses?
The rivalry between the house of York and the House of Lancaster started when King Richard II was overthrown by his cousin, Henry Bolingbroke, Duke of Lancaster, in 1399. But the Wars of the Roses actually began on May 22, 1455 with First Battle of St Albans when Richard, Duke of York and his ally, Richard, Earl of Warwick defeated the Lancastrians under Edmund Beaufort who was killed. York captured Henry VI.

Why were they called the Wars of the Roses?
The White Rose was the symbol of Yorkist supporters who opposed the rival House of Lancaster, whose symbol was the Red Rose of Lancaster. The opposition of the two parties, symbolised by the red and white roses gave the wars their name - the Wars of the Roses. The Wars of the Roses ended with King Henry VII who started the Tudor dynasty and symbolically united the White and Red Roses to create the Tudor Rose.

Wars of the Roses - The House of Lancaster
House of Lancaster
Henry IV ("Bolingbroke," son of the Duke of Lancaster), 1399-1413.
Henry V (son of Henry IV), 1413-1422.
Henry VI (son of Henry V, deposed), 1422-1471.

Wars of the Roses - The House of Lancaster
House of York:
Edward IV (son of duke of York), 1461-1483.
Edward V (son of Edward IV), 1483.
Richard III ("Crookback," brother of Edward IV) 1483-1485

Important Facts about the Wars of the Roses
Interesting information and important facts:

  • Key Dates relating to the event: The Wars of the Roses raged from 1455 - 1485
  • Key People relating to the event: the Kings of England who were from the House of York and the House of Lancaster
  • The Lancastrians were:
    • Henry IV ("Bolingbroke," son of the Duke of Lancaster), 1399-1413
    • Henry V (son of Henry IV), 1413-1422
    • Henry VI (son of Henry V, deposed), 1422-1471
  • The Yorkists were:
    • Edward IV (son of duke of York), 1461-1483
    • Edward V (son of Edward IV), 1483
    • Richard III ("Crookback," brother of Edward IV) 1483-1485

Battles fought during the Wars of the Roses
The battles which were fought during the Wars of the Roses were:

1455: The First Battle of St Albans
1460: Battle of Northampton
1460: The Battle of Wakefield
1471: Battle of Barnet
1471: Battle of Tewkesbury
1485: Battle of Bosworth Field

Timeline of the Wars of the Roses
The following timeline of the Wars of the Roses charts the battles fought by the clashing factions and the reigns of the Kings of England during the period of the Wars of the Roses.

Timeline of Key DatesTimeline of the Wars of the Roses
Key events
1455May 22, 1455: The First Battle of St Albans was the start of Civil war in England called the Wars of the Roses
1455 - 1460There were constant clashes between the Lancastrian faction of King Henry VI, his wife Margaret of Anjou and the Yorkist forces led by Richard, Duke of York and the Earl of Warwick
1460Battle of Northampton, on July 10, 1460: The Yorkist army under Richard Neville, Earl of Warwick ( the Kingmaker ) captured King Henry
1460King Henry VI again suffered a bout of madness and Richard Duke of York was again appointed Regent of England
1460October 1460 the Act of Accord: Richard, Duke of York was named as  successor to the throne, disinheriting Henry's six year old son Prince Edward
1460The Battle of Wakefield: Richard took a strong position at Sandal castle and far out numbered the Lancastrian army. Unbelievably Richard left Sandal castle and was defeated by the Lancastrian army. Richard was killed in the battle. His son, Edward of York, now pressed his claim to the throne of England
1461March 4: Edward of York was declared King Edward IV in London
1470A rebellion led by Warwick and Clarence failed and they were forced to flee to France where they made an alliance with Margaret of Anjou
1470The French support an English invasion led by Margaret, Warwick and Clarence.
1470King Edward IV was forced to flee when Warwick's brother, John Neville changed to the Lancastrian side
14703 October 1470, Readeption of Henry VI: Henry VI was briefly restored to the throne of England
1470December 1470: Prince Edward was married to Anne Neville, Warwick's younger daughter
1471March: King Edward IV lands with an invasion force in England
1471Battle of Barnet -14 April:  King Edward IV wins the battle and Warwick is killed.
1471King Henry VI is imprisoned in the Tower of London
1471Battle of Tewkesbury - May 4:  King Edward IV wins a decisive victory and the Lancastrian male line are virtually destroyed. Edward, Prince of Wales was one of those who were killed
1471May: Queen Margaret and her daughter-in-law, Anne Neville, are taken as prisoners by King Edward IV
1471May 22, 1471: The death of King Henry VI at the Tower of London. The cause of his death is unknown, but he is believed to have been murdered.
 King Edward IV reigned as King of England from March 4, 1461 - Oct 31,1470 and April 11, 1471 - April 9, 1483
1471May 22, 1471: The death of King Henry VI at the Tower of London. The cause of his death is unknown, but he is believed to have been murdered.
1471King Edward IV continues on his role as King of England
1483Easter: Edward fell ill during Easter 1483. He named his brother Richard, Duke of Gloucester as Protector after his death and entrusted his young sons and little princes, Edward and Richard, to his care
1483King Edward IV died: April 9, 1483 at Westminster
1483The young prince ascended the throne as Edward V when his father died in 9th April 1483. Edward V was joined by his brother Prince Richard at the Tower of London to await his coronation
148316th June 1483:  The coronation of Edward V was cancelled
1483June 25 1483: Parliament declared the two little princes illegitimate and, as next in line to the throne, their uncle and Protector, Richard, Duke of Gloucester, was declared the true King. The two little Princes in the Tower were never seen again
148326 June 1483: Richard, Duke of Gloucester was declared King Richard III
1484April 9 1484: Edward of Middleham, also known as Edward Plantagenet the only son of King Richard III of England died suddenly, cause unknown
1485Battle of Bosworth Field 22 August 1485: King Richard III  was killed and his supporters defeated at the Battle of Bosworth Field in Leicestershire against Lancastrian forces led by Henry Tudor
1485Richard was the last king of the Plantagenet family, who had ruled over England for more than three hundred years. Richard's defeat at Bosworth Field by Henry Tudor ended the Plantagenet dynasty and the War of the Roses and heralded the Tudor dynasty
Timeline of Key DatesTimeline of the Wars of the Roses
Key events

 

Wars of the Roses
Each section of this Middle Ages website addresses all topics and provides interesting facts and information about these great people and events in bygone Medieval times including the Wars of the Roses. The Sitemap provides full details of all of the information and facts provided about the fascinating subject of the Middle Ages!
 

Wars of the Roses

  • What were the Wars of the Roses?
  • What was the cause of the Wars of the Roses?
  • Why were they called the Wars of the Roses?
  • Wars of the Roses - The House of Lancaster
  • Wars of the Roses - The House of Lancaster
  • Important Facts about the Wars of the Roses
  • Timeline of the Wars of the Roses
  • Major Historical events of the Middle Ages

Wars of the Roses

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