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

How serious a threat did the pretenders pose to Henry VII's crown?

Extracts from this document...


How Serious A Threat Did The Pretenders Pose To Henry VII's Crown? Almost immediately after Henry's unlikely success at Bosworth in August 1485, the highly superstitious King, had to contend with two attempted usurpations by pretenders. Was it that there was indeed a serious threat posed to Henry's crown, or a mere disruptive nuisance and if there was such a threat did it come from the Pretenders or was there a hidden depth to both situations that actually contemplated Yorkist masterminds pulling the strings behind the scenes of a magnificently staged puppet show? After Richard III's unexpected defeat at The Battle of Bosworth in 1485, the newly victorious and young Henry Tudor, took the English crown and alongside it his claim to the English throne. Henry's usurpation was sealed at his coronation on October 30th 1485. However, Henry's reign was not an easy one and Henry knew his claim to the throne was not as stable nor as strong as he would have liked it to be. Therefore, Henry took many, sometimes unnecessary, methods to try to secure his position as the King of England. Henry claimed that he had actually become King on August 21st (a day before The Battle of Bosworth), making those who fought against him traitors and liable to execution. Henry also used bonds and recognises to guarantee the loyalty of English nobles to himself alone. ...read more.


As a deterrent to others Henry attained and confiscated the lands of 28 nobles who fought against him in the Battle of Stoke. Henry never again faced an army composed of his own subjects on English soil. However, the fact that such a ridiculous scheme almost succeeded and a re-enactment of Bosworth was a possibility with Henry in the place of Richard III, suggests that the country was still unsettled and highlights what a fragile grasp Henry had on the crown. It was no coincidence that on November 25th 1487, Henry belatedly crowned Elizabeth (originally a Yorkist) an act meant to unite people's goodwill and secure the unification of Yorkists and Lancastrians. The next conspiracy against Henry VII was to last for nearly ten years and caused the King much angst. In 1491, a young servant of a Breton merchant was wondering the streets of Cork in Ireland, displaying his master's fine products. He bore a striking resemblance to Edward, Earl of Warwick, however denying he was the Earl of Warwick he 'changed' into Richard, Duke of York. The young prince Richard was the younger son of Edward IV who had supposedly been murdered in the Tower of London, along with his elder brother Edward. Consequently began the adventures of Perkin Warbeck. Originally, it was thought that Warbeck came from Tournai in Flanders. It was likely that he had already been 'discovered' by Margaret of Burgundy and she had decided to send the young man to Ireland, always a centre for Yorkist plots. ...read more.


The weakness of his claim to the throne and the usurpation of Richard III left Henry vunerable to attack, when Henry himself was insecure and wary of his own claim to the throne. Warbeck especially proved a threat to Henry, as he was supported abroad, this was bad timing for Henry as Warbeck provided doubt for the foreign policies Henry was trying to secure, with influential countries, such as Spain. On the other hand, Henry dealt well with the situation once in his control quickly and took decisive action on the pretenders, as Anderson observed; ", it is noticeable that when Warbeck appeared, his support was principally from outside England and his two attempts to invade both failed miserably". This shows that Henry was capable of establishing himself and the monarchy, by the time the Pretenders attacked. Also, as Guy explains; "The most important revolt in Henry VII's reign, the Cornish uprising of 1497, was not dynastic." Therefore displaying the fact that Henry had other factors to take into consideration when discussing the threat to his crown, rather than simply the threat posed by pretenders to the throne. The Cornish uprising was caused by Henry himself and so proved that Henry needed to focus on his own leadership skills and gaining support from the people within England would be his next difficult but cope able challenge. Katie Furnell- 12CUR ...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. Marked by a teacher

    How serious a threat did the Puritans pose to Elizabeth I and her Church?

    4 star(s)

    the Puritans' and Robert Lockyer even goes so far to say that 'the Queen herself hated Puritans'. Although she was raised a Protestant her views were not extreme and, as Guy explains, 'Overall, she sought compromise and reconciliation...she would not examine their consciences or force anyone to take communion provided

  2. Essay: How serious was the Yorkist threat to Henry VII?

    Late in the same year; 1486, a pretender called Lambert Simnel emerged as a claimant to the throne. The plot was mainly led by John de la Pole, Earl of Lincoln, using Lambert Simnel as a front, who would have been dropped once the plot had succeeded and they had overthrown Henry.

  1. The Battle of Bosworth.

    Even though this is true Vergil's history often presents pure facts making it good reliable history. So the armies would have been placed as below, the Stanley's are clearly well away from the battle just far enough to see the battle from a safe distance.

  2. Who was the greater threat to Henry VII's throne, Lambert Simnel or Perkin Warbeck?

    With the threat of the crowning Henry will have feared that if he lost control of his nobility, the War of the Roses would restart which is a key element of the country that Henry had worked hard to unite.

  1. Was Lambert Simnel a greater threat to the security of Henry VII than Perkin ...

    backing Warbeck to invade England, but also with Warbeck marrying noble Lady Catherine Gordon. However, Warbeck didn't gain the support from Ireland as they were too loyal too Henry and also no Englishmen had joined Warbeck, but support that has not yet been mentioned, which could threaten Henry was the

  2. Assess the nature and threat posed by Puritanism

    Four years after, in 1576, Peter Wentworth was sent to the tower for similar offenses. Therefore, Puritanism was seen by Elizabeth to be threatening to her established Church for ideological reasons alone, because in practice, the Queen could, and did, employ formidable powers to suppress it successfully.

  1. This essay examines the actions of Charles VII in relation to events pertaining to ...

    cities which had recently capitulated to Charles; one such town was Compiegne. Despite the strategic importance of the city, Charles was prepared to relinquish it, if by doing so, he could make peace with the Duke; this news was received with much disappointment and frustration by the inhabitants of the

  2. Wives & War: To what extent did these two aspects undermine Henry VIIIs rule ...

    results whether Katherine?s dangerous behaviour in her religious beliefs put Henry in an unstable position. Chapter 3- A bloody matter: Henry?s Wars King Henry VIII?s reign was undoubtedly surrounded by military conflict within and outside of his realm, which he ultimately favoured as king.

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