• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

"To what extent can the accession of Henry VII be attributed to the instability of Richard III 's short reign?"

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Abby Clayton Miss Levers yr 12 12-4 "To what extent can the accession of Henry VII be attributed to the instability of Richard III 's short reign?" Word count: 1,815 By 1485, Britain had experienced a long period of monarchy usurptions, called the War of the Roses. This disastrous period had been raging in England for many years between two main families, well known in history, the Yorks and Lancastrians. More than 500 years ago, King Edward IV died, leaving his sons, Richard and Edward, aged 10 and 12 respectively. This ongoing feud allowed the exchanging of the throne through usurption, or murder. The claiming of the throne was, as some say, easy, and it seems that anyone with a legible claim, however longwinded, could become king. The end of this ongoing feud came when 'Henry VII later took for his bride Elizabeth of York, thereby uniting the houses'1 This essays intension is to explain how and also why Henry VII got the English throne in 1485. It will include details of the circumstances in which he claimed his place, and if, in other circumstances, would he have become the famous king and a great achiever who 'survived a series of rebellions, to have restored the monarchy to stability and to have left government strong and solvent after disorder in the realm.'2 But the main question that arises in this essay is 'would Henry have become king if he did not make his claim to the throne during the reign of an unpopular king, Richard III, and not only after the short-term past, but the long-term instability of the monarchy?' ...read more.

Middle

Henry's claim to the throne however was very weak, and the fact that Henry Tudor became King of England at all is somewhat of a miracle. Henry's mother, was Margaret Beaufort, who was a descendant of Edward III. This was a long and complicated claim, as Henry's mother was the daughter of John of Gaunt, who was Edwards third child, and his wife, before they were married, leaving her as a bastard child. However, he was better than Richard III, and preferred by the people! During Richard and Buckinghams' rebellion, Henry sat watching from France, and quite cleverly learnt from Buckinghams' mistakes, so that when he went into battle with Richard, he would have a strategic plan. From one source, this essay can say that Buckingham seems to have an unimportant role in Tudor history, as it does not mention his name once, and when speaking of ' The Battle of Bosworth field' on which Henry won his crown, it says that " It was here that Henry and his forces met with Richard III and Henry won the crown"7 This essay perceives that the key factor which led up to Henry becoming King, was luck. It was luck that the only heir to the throne after Richard, his son, died. It was also Richards stupidity that led to his rebellion with his former friend, Buckingham. It was pure luck, as well as Richards ignorant personality that led people to despise him, also his lack of political rhetoric let him down, with him not having any present or recent glories which he could inform people of, only old glories. ...read more.

Conclusion

It could be debated if Henry was a good king, but he was clearly a successful one, after accomplishing several goals during his reign, survived a series of rebellions, and successfully denying all other claims to his throne. He also created a wealthy monarchy, through gradually accumulating wealth during his powerful reign as King of England for 24 years, and creating a strong and solvent period after disorder in the realm. The War of the Roses is remembered in history as a period of unstable Kings. From this essay, it can be understood that Henry altered this instability, so the Battle of Bosworth field is often considered to be "...highly significant, as it marked the foundation of a new dynasty. But did it also, as some claim, the end of Medieval England?"13 This period is the landmark that also divided medieval and modern England in history, making Henry IV, King of England the most efficient of the medieval monarchs. 1 http://tudorhistory.org/henry7/ 2 John McGurk, The Tudor Monarchies 1485-1603 (Oxford University 1999) pg. 106 3 http://www.law.indiana.edu/law/realaudio/richard3.html#TRIALINFO 4 http://www.law.indiana.edu/law/realaudio/richard3.html#TRIALINFO 5 M. Hicks, Richard III (London: Routledge, 1997) 6 John McGurk, The Tudor Monarchies 1485-1603 (1999) page 17. 7 http://tudorhhistory.org/henry7/ 8 John McGurk, The Tudor Monarchies 1485-1603 (1999) page 17. 9 John McGurk, The Tudor Monarchies 1485-1603 (1999) page 19. 10 S.T. Bindoff Tudor England 1485 PROLOGUE. 11 George B. Churchill, Richard III up to Shakespeare ( 1900-1976) page iii. 12 George B. Churchill, Richard III up to Shakespeare ( 1900-1976) page 19. 13 John McGurk The Tudor Monarchies 1485-1603 (1999)page 19. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level British History: Monarchy & Politics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level British History: Monarchy & Politics essays

  1. Securing the Tudor Dynasty: The Reign of Henry VII.

    "Neither country shall give any help to rebels". Therefore the view that dynastic threats dominated Henry's foreign policy is correct according to this Treaty of Medina Del Campo as Henry is trying to neutralise the claimants threat through foreign powers.

  2. The Battle of Bosworth.

    and horsemen that to the beholders afar it gave a terror for the multitude...after this long vanward followed the king himself." This shows Richard's position but for his direction Jean de Molinet explains, " The king had artillery of his army fire on the Earl of Richmond, and so the

  1. Charlemagne Essay.

    Whereas opposition such as Avars did not have cavalries. However in other sources there is very little information on how cavalries were used in battle. This was maybe because the historians writing the sources did not see the battle. If they had seen the battle they probably did not want to mention it because they wanted to give credit to Charles and God.

  2. What kind of king does Shakespeare create in Act 3 Scenes 1 and 2? ...

    There are many other scenes, which cast Henry in a different light, but still give the impression of a strong and nationalistic King. In Act3 Scene4 Henry's conversation with the Governor of Harfleur is highlighted. In this scene Henry is portrayed as being severe in his stance towards the Governor;

  1. This essay will be based around the Government of Henry VII and will view ...

    Therefore retaining even more revenue. When a member of nobility died, and had a young heir to his title, Henry took away the land and "looked after it" until the youngster was coming of age. Henry used the land to earn a profit, but when the heir had become say

  2. Discuss Shakespeare's presentation of women in Richard III. Are they convincing characters?

    At this point, Lady Anne absolutely loathes Richard. It is ironic that she agrees to marry him knowing at some point she'll be killed. It also suggests that her curse is somewhat false. The purpose of this scene is for Lady Anne to get married, as part of the historical

  1. In what ways and to what extent does the concept of Spain's 'Golden Age' ...

    Catholicism was in danger from Protestants in the Netherlands, where Philip's aims were to "impose despotic rule over the states and make them a base from which to force the Protestant countries in Europe to reintroduce Catholicism. He planned to increase the number of bishops from four to eighteen", and

  2. Within the context of the period 1337-1471, to what extent can Henry VI be ...

    McFarlane referred to Henry VI as ?a baby who grew up to be an imbecile?, and the length of minority supports this view. Contemporary and Yorkist views on Henry VI were that he was a child-like, idiotic king, and that the council made all the decisions for him.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work