Henry’s mother Margaret Beaufort managed to outlive her own son, albeit only by two months. I guess she’d seen enough.
Despite plague and desertions, he managed to extract Brescia’s surrender in September 1311. Henry then passed through Pavia before arriving in Genoa, where he again tried to mediate between the warring factions within the town. During his stay in the city, his wife Margaret of Brabant died. Also while in Genoa he discovered that King Robert of Naples had decided to oppose the spread of imperial power in the Italian peninsula, and resumed his traditional position as head of the Guelph parties, as Florence, Lucca, Siena and Perugia all declared their support for Robert. Henry attempted to intimidate Robert by ordering him to attend his imperial coronation, and to swear fealty for his imperial fiefs in Piedmont and Provence. With Florence’s encouragement, much of Lombardy flared into open rebellion against Henry, with uprisings throughout December 1311 and January 1312, while in the Romagna, King Robert strengthened his position. Nevertheless, Henry’s supporters managed to capture Vicenza, and he received an embassy from Venice, who offered him the friendship of their city. Henry also began legal proceedings against Florence, laying charges of Lèse majesté against the city and placing it under an Imperial ban in December 1311.
Henry was the son of Edmund Tudor, earl of Richmond, who died before Henry was born, and Margaret BeaufortBeaufort, Margaret, countess of Richmond and Derby, 1443–1509, English noblewoman, mother of Henry VII. She was the daughter and heiress of John, 1st duke of Somerset, and great-granddaughter of John of Gaunt, duke of Lancaster...... Click the link for more information. , a descendant of Edward IIIEdward III,1312–77, king of England (1327–77), son of Edward II and Isabella. Early LifeHe was made earl of Chester in 1320 and duke of Aquitaine in 1325 and accompanied his mother to France in 1325...... Click the link for more information. through John of GauntJohn of Gaunt[Mid. Eng. Gaunt=Ghent, his birthplace], 1340–99, duke of Lancaster; fourth son of Edward III of England. He married (1359) Blanche, heiress of Lancaster, and through her became earl (1361) and duke (1362) of Lancaster...... Click the link for more information. , duke of Lancaster. Although the Beaufort line, which was originally illegitimate, had been specifically excluded (1407) from all claim to the throne, the death of the imprisoned Henry VI (1471) made Henry Tudor head of the house of Lancaster. At this point, however, the Yorkist Edward IV had established himself securely on the throne, and Henry, who had been brought up in Wales, fled to Brittany for safety.
Henry VII was the one to popularize the red rose as the Lancastrian symbol. While Edward IV popularized the white rose as the Yorkist symbol, no Lancastrian sported the comparison with crimson carnations until the first Tudor King. In effect, he also blazed the path for the propagandic “red and white” Tudor rose as a symbol of peace.
Henry marched northeast at a leisurely pace toward Richard’s camp. Were his troops wary of attacking first? Undoubtedly; but, in the end, Richard decided to order his attack when Henry’s force passed by a march. At this time, he also realized that Lord Stanley was not joining him. (He could see Stanley’s army motionless on the field.) Richard ordered his hostage, Lord Strange, beheaded but in the heat and confusion of battle, the order was not carried out. The first moments of battle were an indication of the chaos to come. Immediately, arrows were exchanged and then hand-to-hand combat began. Swords, pikes, aces, spears…. These were the weapons of choice. (Interesting note: Richard’s ally, the duke of Northumberland, waited at the rear of the army with a well equipped force which never entered battle for one simple reason – the topography of the battlefield.)
While Henry never strayed from his wife, he might have fathered an illegitimate child from before they met. A child named Roland de Velville landed with the 28-year-old Henry as the king claimed England. The boy was favored at the hard-to-please king’s court for the rest of his life, which led many historians to believe Roland was Henry’s secret lovechild from a youthful affair. Until we can time-travel Maury Povich to 14th century Brittany, no one can be sure.
I would like to emphasize – once again – the tenuousness of Henry Tudor’s claim. At this point, only he and Richard III were viable claimants to the English throne. But Richard’s position was stronger by far (and as will become clear later), the Battle of Bosworth ended in Henry’s favor only because a key nobleman betrayed Richard. This was hardly an auspicious beginning to Henry’s rule. Throughout these pages, I have tried to emphasize the general unpopularity of Richard’s rule – with regard to the disappearance of his nephews. The disappearance sullied Richard’s character and made those Englishmen who didn’t support Henry Tudor less than thrilled about defending Richard III. In other words, they would simply wait out the conflict without openly supporting either party. And that is exactly what most of the country did. Personally, I do not believe Richard III murdered his nephews but, of course, the mystery will always remain open to interpretation. It is true that Richard III has received a ‘raw deal’ from historians. Can we blame this on Shakespeare? Hey, it is a great play but written during the reign of Henry Tudor’s granddaughter. It isn’t likely the playwright wanted to offend the monarch (witness the ending to All Is True for proof of that – a sympathetic introduction to Katharine of Aragon which ends with Elizabeth’s triumphant birth.) Richard was a capable and intelligent man and – whatever the truth about his nephews – had far more experience in government thhan Henry Tudor. He also reacted to betrayal with an appealing mixture of punishment and forgiveness; he was far more conciliatory than, say, Henry VIII. (During this time, an embarrassing episode occurred which may have furthered Richard’s resolve to shore up his support against Henry: John de Vere, the Lancastrian earl of Oxford, was imprisoned at Calais in France; he escaped, along with two English soldiers, to join Henry Tudor in Paris. Understandably, this embarrassed Richard; he issued pardons to the English soldiers at Calais, including de Vere’s supporters, but they still rebelled. In the end, Henry’s morale went up and Richard’s fell drastically. The Oxford episode indicated the lack of loyalty to Richard’s regime. This was coupled with the disloyalty of Sir William Stanley, advising Henry from England.)
(NOTE: The story of Richard III’s claiming of the throne is told in great detail at his site. Please read those pages to gain a better understanding of the events of 1483-1485. I have not included the information here since this page is about Henry VII.)
By 1483, Richard III of the House of York had overstepped his missing nephews (who became known as the “Princes in the Tower” for their long, mysterious imprisonment in the Tower of London) to become King of England. However, this alienated enough of old King Edward IV’s in-laws, the Woodvilles, for them side with none other than our pal Henry Tudor. Henry’s mother Margaret Beaufort began to advocate for her son to be made heir. At the same time, the late Edward IV’s daughter and heir, Elizabeth of York, was pledged to wed Henry. Backed by the French themselves, Henry—now in his late 20s—had sharp swords to match his royal blood.
Catherine had been married to Henry V until his death, but after Henry V’s death, she married Owen Tudor. By John of Gaunt, he was with Prince Edward and Henry VI the death of a possible deputy to the throne from the house of Lancaster. In doing so, he was a potential threat to the York regime, and Edward IV tried several times to get him in his power.
From this, it can ultimately be agreed that Henry VII’s reign highlights the limitations of the more famous Henry VIII. It cannot be forgotten that Henry VII was at the forefront of societal and foreign change and this created the perfect environment for his son to emerge on the throne in. “His spirit was distinguished, wise and prudent; his mind was brave and resolute and never, even at moments of the greatest danger, deserted him” – Polydore Vergil. Henry VII’s tactful manner and intelligent mind meant that he was undoubtedly the better King due to his unswerving determination to transform England into a blend of harmony, wealth and social success. Thus, Henry VII deserves more recognition as the founder of the Tudor dynasty.
The bed where Henry VII likely “made” Prince Arthur of Wales has survived and is currently valued at £20 million. For the record, the bed also depicts Henry and his wife as Adam and Eve being transmuted into the community of Christ. By my standards, that makes it worth every penny.
Henry was born at Pembroke Castle in Wales in 1457, the only son of Edmund Tudor, 1st Earl of Richmond, and his wife, Lady Margaret Beaufort. His paternal grandfather, Owen Tudor, was part of the Penmynydd family originally from Wales, he was a page at the court of King Henry V of England.
The marriage will take place only after the death of Henry VII, June 11, 1509, according to the wishes of the latter. Queen Elizabeth of York, to save the future of the dynasty, fell pregnant for the last time but died on February 11, 1503of puerperal sepsis, a few days after giving birth to Catherine Tudor.