Edward IV notes

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  • Created on: 26-02-13 19:14
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Edward IV (1442-1483)
Reign: 1461-1483
18 years old when usurped the throne
Handsome, unusually tall, lean and athletic
Good-natured + approachable
Appetite for food + women
Lived luxurious lifestyle and liked hunting
Wore crown whenever he was in public
Dressed in fine, lavish costumes
Dynamic + relentless in war; victorious in first command @ Mortimer's Cross +
Died solvent in 1483 whereas Henry VI left debt of £372000; meant that Edward IV
wasn't reliant on parliament + had full control over finances
How was Yorkist Power consolidated following the battle of Towton?
Edward VI's position ­ tenuous: many families in the north remained staunchly loyal
to Lancastrian cause.
Lancastrian cause ­ two figureheads: King Henry VI in the north and Prince Edward of
Wales in Scotland.
Edward gave Warwick full military responsibility, Warwick successful in taking rebel
fortresses in north of England.
After Towton, Edward was remarkably lenient in 1460s with leaders of
Pro-Lancastrian Families, e.g. Henry Beaufort, duke of Somerset + Sir Ralph Percy ­
they were forgiven and lands + castles returned to them.
Being lenient didn't help, 1462: Percy back in league with rebels ­ killed on battlefield
of Hedgeley Moor 1464.
Duke of Somerset (despite being shown real friendship by Edward ­ occasionally
sharing his bed) led resistance of 1464: ended in defeat @ Hexham in May.
November 1462, Margaret of Anjou invaded north from Scotland with small army
donated by grand seneschal of Normandy ­ her reliance on French made her cause
unpopular in England.
Margaret promised Louis XI of France Calais in return for his help (deal with Louis
made her more unpopular in England) ­ she was not able to withstand massive army
Edward launched @ her: she fled by sea narrowly escaping capture.
October 1463 Edward secured truce with Louis XI where it was agreed that France
would stop funding Lancastrian cause.
Warwick began to look for a suitable French bride for Edward to strengthen the new
alliance between the English and French.
December ­ similar truce made with Scottish govt. This meant that Henry VI had to
leave Edinburgh + seek refuge of Bamburgh.

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Spring 1464 > duke of Somerset tried to inspire rebellion in Wales, Cheshire and
Lancashire ­ Lancastrians were defeated @ skirmish of Hedgeley Moor + @battle of
Hexham by Warwick's bro: John Neville.
Henry escaped, Somerset was killed (Lancastrian cause as a whole = shattered),
Henry spent over a year in Yorkshire, Lancashire and lake district on the run with only
chamberlain: Sir Richard Tunstall.…read more

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Woodville's rose = Warwick's influence over king declined> though his family
remained powerful, bro; George Neville became archbishop of York in September
Edward IV failed to act on Warwick's advice: Warwick loses influence over king which
worsens divide in foreign policy> if he had acted on Warwick's advice, they would
have gained a more secure kingdom ­ made Warwick feel left-out +under-valued +
Edward and Warwick were divided on foreign policy, Edward moved towards alliance
w/ Burgundy whilst Warwick wanted alliance w/ France.…read more

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Edward held in custody, Warwick + Clarence attempted to rule in his name>
Woodville's suffered retribution of Neville's: Earl Rivers + Sir John Woodville were
beheaded on 12th August.
Anarchy in parts of England + Lancastrian rising in north forced Warwick to release
king mid September> without king, Warwick unable to gain support from lords or
command loyalty of Yorkist soldiers.
Warwick gave Edward back his liberty in return for support of northern magnates who
suppressed Lancastrian rebellion.…read more

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Warwick , who had played an important part in his overthrow now made him king
once again + carried his train @ St. Pauls cathedral in formal thanksgiving ceremony
Warwick's ability to put Henry VI back on throne showed Edward was weak.
The return of Edward IV
The reinstating of Henry VI triggered war w/ Burgundy because of Warwick's deal w/
Louis XI.
Merchant community horrified ­ loss of wool trade's chief market loomed.
Duke of Burgundy leant towards alliance w/ fugitive king Edward.…read more

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April, after hearing of Margaret's landing, Edward left London to defeat her
before she could reach Jasper Tudor.
Margaret chose not to wait for Edward's army and continued to go further to Bristol
on May Day she continued north and rested @ Berkeley castle, south of
Gloucester; Edward camped some miles behind @Chipping Sodbury.
Lancastrian army continued to Tewkesbury but here Edward finally caught up w/
Margaret and the prince.…read more

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In most cases the soldiers were local men fighting as an obligation to their lords.
*1478> George Plantagenet, duke of Clarence, is put to death in the tower of London.
The second reign of Edward IV
2nd decade of Edwards reign was dull.
No further crises after 1471 to compare w/ Warwick's rebellion
Edward was no longer too lenient/trusting towards wrong people therefore
govt. was more successful as he had loyalty to himself rather than the crown.…read more

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Treaty of Arras, Edwards greatest failure; he was outmanoeuvred by Louis XI and he
failed to take full advantage of the rivalry bet. France and Burgundy.
How effectively did Edward IV manage his financial affairs?
Edwards's personal excesses contributed to his early death, which was the result of a
Renowned for his costume and once splendid figure, but infamous for his
overindulgence.…read more

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